Festivals of Thanjavur
The Karthika Festival
The Karthika Festival is commonly known among the local people of Tamil Nadu as the festival of lamps and more interestingly the earliest reference of this festival is as old as the Sangam period which is between 200 BC to 300 AD. An ancient Tamil book of poems called Ahananuru gives apparent indications that the Karthika festival is celebrated during the full moon day of the Tamil month of Karthikai.
Maha Maham Festival
The Maha Maham festival is an event of grand celebrations held during the Tamil month of Masi in an ancient and holy village called Kumbakonam.in the district of Thanjavur. This festival occurs only once in every 12 years when the planet Jupiter enters the Leo constellation. The festival is celebrated at the Maha Maham Tank, the last festival being held in the year 2004.
Kartikai Somavara Festival
Somavara in Sanskrit means Monday, the first day of the week in most of the time zones of the world. As the name indicates, the Karthikai Somavara Festival is observed on every Monday during the month of Karthikai according to the Tamil calendar. The primary deity to which prayers are offered during the whole month is Lord Shiva and special holy rituals are conducted during the course of the festival.
Velankanni church festival
The grand Velankanni church festival is held every year in the town of Velankanni from August 29th to September 8th. The last day of the festival is considered highly prosperous for the Christian community in Velankanni because of the fact that the construction of the church was completed on this day more than 500 years back by Portuguese sailors as a token of gratitude of escaping from a violent sea storm.
Skanda Sashti Festival
The festival marks the day when Lord Muruga slayed the evil demon called Soorapadman and bought peace to the world that was once under the control of the latter. Celebrated during the Tamil month of Aippasi (during October-November months of the English calender), the Skanda Sashti festival is a highly regarded and sought after celebration for the people of Tamil Nadu. The events of the festival commences on the 6th day of the diminishing moon of the month.
The Kanthuri Urs festival is celebrated with much grandeur during the lunar month of Jumada al-Thani in the shrines of Nagore Dargah every year. Pilgrims belonging to diverse backgrounds of the globe gather at this holy shrine of the Muslim community. The Urs, which means anniversary, is held to commemorate the death of Meeran Sahib, a holy Islamic preacher and social reformer.