Mela is held in the village of Tarnetar in Saurashtra, Gujarat. It is a three
day fair held during the months of August-September every year.
This Mela is
a temple festival that’s associated with the Trinetreshwara Temple. It is often
termed as the Trinetreshwara Temple Fair. The festival falls in the month of
Bhadrapad according to the Hindu calendar, coinciding with the months of
August-September as per the Gregorian calendar and is a good time to book holiday tours in Gujarat.
History Behind the Fest
celebrations are held to honor an important event recorded in the Indian epic,
Mahabharata. It marks the marriage of Arjuna and Draupadi. It is believed that
the Swayamvar of Draupadi was held in this temple, and this is where Arjuna won
her hand after completing the daunting challenge of Matsyavedh. This ancient
temple was renovated in the 19th century.
has a kund or tank which is believed to be of special significance. A dip in
this tank is said to be equivalent to taking a bath in the holy Ganga. The tank
is called ‘Papanshu’ or ‘destroyer of sin’.
fair, tribals and villagers from the neighboring areas gather here to take part
in the celebrations and to find their future husbands or wives. Young people
gather here attired in colorful clothes, seeking to find suitable matches.
bachelors deck themselves in vivid clothes, embroidered coats and in
turbans. They also carry colorful umbrellas that feature rich embroidery and
mirror work. The beautifully dressed young women can then choose their grooms
from this eye catching group of young men.
Look at the Celebrations
Mela, besides being a matrimonial fair, is also a cultural celebration. Young
people sing and dance to enchanting folk beats and tunes. The Huda and the
Rasada dances are enchanting to watch. The Rasada is performed by groups of
women standing in circles and they sway and dance gracefully to the rhythm of
the drums and the tune of the flutes.
The fair also
serves as a platform where the fine handicrafts of the region are exhibited.
There are additional attractions like cattle shows and village sports.One very
distinctive feature of this Mela is the ‘Chhatri’ or ‘umbrella’. The Tarnetar
chhatris are beautifully decorated parasols carried by young men. They are
covered in intricate embroidery and mirror work.
government makes special arrangements for tourists during this festival. The
government puts up tent villages and kuba huts for tourists to stay in. The
Tarnetar Mela is truly a spectacular show that is worth seeing at least once,
especially if you’re interested in the local culture.
How To Get There
airport is at Rajkot and the nearest town is Surendranagar, which has a railway
station and also houses the nearest main bus terminus.