One of the highlights of the annual events calendar in Auckland is the Diwali Festival – a celebration of Auckland’s vibrant Indian culture. This year the festival will be held over the weekend of Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 October and the main hub for the event will be in Aotea Square.
Celebrate the Indian Culture
Auckland is a rich melting pot of different cultures and the Indian presence is widely felt across the city and beyond. The Diwali Festival is a great chance to celebrate many aspects of the Indian culture from the delicious cuisine and the smells that come with it to the exotic dancing and of course the wonderful celebration of light which is what the festival is all about.
Those who come along to the Diwali Festival will be able to see local and international dance, music and theatre performers as well as visiting the wide variety of food and craft stalls.
About the Diwali Festival
Diwali is celebrated by Indians throughout the world and the lighting of lamps, candles and fireworks is done to symbolise the triumph of light over dark, wisdom over ignorance and good over evil. Whilst Diwali is universally celebrated by Indians home and abroad, the festival has different meanings depending on which part of India you are from. In Gurjarat for example, Diwali honours Laxmi, the goddess of wealth whereas in North India, it celebrates the god Rama’s homecoming to the kingdom of Ayodhya after a 14 year exile.
No matter the reason, the overriding celebration is about the triumph of light over dark and the spectacular celebrations are a sight to behold each year.
Come down and get involved
This year’s celebrations promise to be bigger and better than ever and weather permitting, promises a spectacular fireworks display to cap off the weekend of events and activities in the city. Some of the highlights this year promise to include:
- Jaipur-based Rajasthani puppeteers – a colourful and lively laugh-out-loud funny traditional art form that dates back more than 1,000 years
- Ahmedabad paper cut artists Parth Kothekar who carves delicate art works from paper
- A kathak dance group led by Assamese film actress and dancer Meghranjani Medhi
At the time of writing, the full programme of events is yet to be confirmed but keep an eye on the Auckland NZ website for more information and a full programme of events in the coming week.
In the meantime, check out this video taken from Diwali 2015 in Auckland and see why you need to get down to this year’s event: