|2023||18th to 20th September|
|2024||To be announced|
The Tarnetar Fair is one of the most traditional yet vibrant festivals of Gujarat. Spanning for three days, the Tarnetar Fair is an annual festival celebrated in Tarnetar Village, located in Surendranagar District in the state of Gujarat. The festival falls in the months of August or September, as per the Bhadra month of the Hindu Calendar. Tarnetar Fair is organized in a grand way by the state tourism department and in each passing year, the fair has become all the more grandeur, attracting the people not only from various parts of Gujarat but also from other parts of India. The Tarnetar Fair 2023 dates are from 18th September to 20th September 2023.
This is a festival mainly for the Saurashtra tribe. Other tribes like as Bharwads, Khants, Kolis, Rabaris, Charans, Kanbis, Kathis,the Harijans and the Desh-rabaris also attend this festival.
Tarnetar Fair has today become one of the most important festival tours of India as you can witness the ethnic and rural side of vibrant Gujarat. The little Tarnetar town comes to life during these three days of celebrations when the fair becomes an amalgamation of folk-dance, music, costumes, food, arts and culture. The festival is only gaining more and more popularity in each passing year and attracting tourists not only from India, but from abroad. Every year more than 50,000 people attend the festival.
Since the time immemorial, this fair has been held. As per legends, the origin of the fair trace back to the time of Draupadi’s Swayamvar, when Arjuna completed the task of piercing the eye of a fish rotating above with an arrow by looking at its reflection in a bowl of water below. He then married Draupadi by winning this task. It is believed that this fair was held to celebrate Draupadi’s swayamvar, which was almost 200 to 250 years ago.
The fair is held at the temple complex of Triniteshwar Mahadev. This temple is the main attraction point of the fair. The fair ground looks just beautiful with the temple at the centre and a river flowing by the side. Inside the temple, there are three kunds, Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu Kund and it is believed that a holy dip in these kunds or temple tanks is considered auspicious by the devotees. This holy dip is equivalent to taking a dip in the Ganga river.
Celebrations at the Tarnetar Fair
The major highlight of the fair is the promotion of the traditional music, dance, costumes and arts of Gujarat. Some highlights of the festival are as follows:
- Many types of folk dances are performed. Folk dance performance like Rass is very popular. The colourful costumes, attractive ornaments and free-spirited movements of folk dances, accompanied by incessant throbbing of the drums add a memorable touch to these performances.
- Another dance form which is very popular is the Rahado, the circular folk dance, where more than 200 women perform in a single circle. The married women wear a glittering black zimi (skirt) and the unmarried women wear red zimi.
- Devotees and sadhus sing various types of bhajans and other devotional songs, accompanied by folk instruments.
- Another significant highlight is that the fair becomes a common platform for prospective marriages as young men and women get a chance to search for their life partners. The prospective grooms are seen elegantly dressed in their artistically designed traditional dhoti kurta and waistcoats, along with turbans, moving around at the fairground with striking umbrellas.
- Tourists have a gala time in shopping of Gujarat’s crafts and looms. Local handicrafts of Gujarat become a major display at the fair. The embroidered umbrellas with embellishments, beadworks, the patchworks in the design are highly popular. It is said that local craftsmen take almost a year to embroider such beautiful umbrellas. Ethnic jewellery, mirror work fabrics, hand crafted items, traditional deities are all displayed at the stalls which the tourists take back home as memories.
- Other fun activities like as merry-go-round rides, photographers’ stalls, magic shows go side by side, which both the young and the old enjoy.
Tarnetar is a small village located 200 Km from Ahmedabad, Gujarat and there is easy connectivity to reach the place. The nearest airport is Rajkot, 75 km away. To have a unique experience and enjoy to the fullest the ethnic charm of Gujarat, Tarnetar Fair is worth visiting.
For all travel freaks, if you have missed the Tarnetar Fair in your travel itinerary, then plan a tour to Gujarat. A traditional celebration with traditional dance and music performances, along with spectacular costumes and handicrafts, fun and food, the Tarnetar Fair must be in your travel plans for 2023. Book your tour to Tarnetar Fair 2023 now with the best in-bound travel operator in India.