A file photo of Swayambhu stupa on the eve of Laxmi Puja on the third day of Tihar (Dipawali), in Nepal.
A file photo of Swayambhu stupa on the eve of Laxmi Puja on the third day of Tihar (Dipawali), in Nepal.Dhilung Kirat/Wikimedia

5 Destinations You Can Visit Outside India for a Perfect Diwali

Mumbai, October 22, 2022

Diwali or Deepavali, one of the biggest festivals of India, is celebrated with great enthusiasm across the country. Celebrating the victory of good over evil and knowledge over ignorance, symbolized by light over darkness, this Indian festival has deep spiritual significance and is a joyous celebration and a visual spectacle. Diwali in India is definitely the most spectacular Diwali celebration, but thanks to the huge Indian diaspora spread across the globe, there are several countries where the Indian festival of lights is celebrated and observed with the same zeal as India. If you want to experience this, here are some places where you can go:

Nepal

It's no wonder that Diwali, an important Hindu festival, is celebrated on a grand scale in the neighbouring country of Nepal. Nepal celebrates Deepavali by the name of Tihar. This festival is celebrated for five days and each day has its own meaning. Common traditions among neighbouring nations include decorating the house, worshipping Lakshmi (goddess of wealth and prosperity), lighting diya and exchanging gifts. Of the five days, one day is called Kokur Tihar, which honours dogs and their loyalty to humans, and the other day is dedicated to cows. The best part of going to Nepal is that you do not need a visa to enter the country. However, you still need to buy travel insurance against the various kinds of risks you might face on your journey.

United States of America

Indians, who make up the second largest immigrant group in the United States, make sure that Diwali outside India is just as special as the festivities at home. Their celebrations include wearing traditional clothes and decorating homes with rangoli and diyas, praying at Hindu temples in America, gathering for cultural events and distributing Diwali sweets to each other. Times Square is also famous for hosting spectacular events celebrating the Festival of Lights. Attending Diwali celebrations in the US can make you feel right at home, even if you are miles away. Get your ticket, fly to America, and experience it for yourself.

Malaysia

Multi-cultural and multi-racial, Malaysia eschews fireworks and firecrackers to celebrate Deepavali. For Indians living in Malaysia (who make up about 9% of Malaysia's total population), Deepavali traditionally begins with an oil bath ceremony, followed by a puja. People of all religions and beliefs come together to celebrate the celebration of good versus evil. Family and friends gather to exchange gifts, feast on Indian food and display flower diyas and kolams (rangoli) in front of their homes. Little India in Brickfields, Ipoh, Penang and Malacca are the best places in Malaysia to watch Deepavali celebrations. These ethnic areas come alive in the beautiful colours of India during Deepavali.

Singapore

Deepavali is an important cultural festival and a public holiday in Singapore. Hindus in Singapore's Little India celebrate this day with fervour. With beautiful decorations that light up the entire neighbourhood of Little India, the experience is reminiscent of other Indian cities where everything is decorated for Diwali. Even a stroll through the vibrant streets shows that Diwali is impressive outside of India too.

Mauritius

Celebrating important Hindu festivals is a long-standing tradition in Mauritius, an island nation with a significant Indian population. Diwali is a national festival in this country and people celebrate it akin to how it is celebrated in India. The Indian Festival of Lights brings a glorious glow to the beautiful landscapes of Mauritius, revealing their beauty in a whole new light. While you can share the experience all over your social media apps, your phone should also have a travel insurance app for any sudden emergencies.

Australia

Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, and other popular Australian cities host special Diwali events for the thousands of Indians who call the island continent home. This festival in Melbourne's iconic Federation Square is one of the biggest festivals in the country. Spectacular fireworks, carnivals, fairs, Indian food stalls, competitions, cultural shows, and other live entertainment are all part of Diwali celebrations in Australia.

(Disclaimer: This is branded content. Readers are advised to exercise due diligence and discretion before entering into any correspondence, investment, purchase, business dealings or any other decision on the basis of this content.)

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