December 20, 2016: Christmas is a sacred religious festival that is celebrated worldwide. It is celebrated as the birth anniversary of Jesus Christ on December 25, every year. People exchange gifts, decorate their homes, share meals and wait for Santa Claus.
With around 27.8 million Christians, Christmas is one of the major festivals of India. It is a great time to be with friends and family. But if you are not planning on staying indoors this Christmas, here are the top 5 places for celebrating Christmas in India:
If you want a traditional Christmas or the modern one with late night party, Mumbai is the place for you. The city has a large Catholic community with many churches. These churches are renowned for their Christmas Eve celebration. If you want a space, you better arrive early as thousands of people line up to attend the midnight mass. These churches include Mount Merry Church, Holy Family church, Mahim Shrine, etc.
Malls and Markets are all filled with Christmas decorations and amazing offers. Bandra and Hill Road have sidewalks lit up with Christmas trees.
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Christians form the majority in Meghalaya. So, the celebration of Christmas brings joy and gaiety as people of other religion join in to welcome the Prince of Peace of Jesus Christ. The Christmas carols bring sunshine to the city of orchids and pines. People visit the Cathedral church, one of the oldest churches in Northeast India, to attend the Midnight Mass.
At All Saints Cathedral, as part of the pre-Christmas celebration, the century-old fir tree is illuminated. The warm greetings, carols, bells and the tall Christmas tree all add up to the festivities. You can hear some local bands play Gospel music in the churches. Local dance troops perform across the city.
Puducherry, also known as Little France, has major western influence because of the presence of Anglo-Indians. The Christmas celebration in Puducherry reflects classy moments in a unique way. Midnight masses are organised at all the churches. Official leaders from the Christian missionaries deliver their official messages to people.
The Church, Sacred Heart of Jesus, is decorated beautifully. Special service is conducted in churches like Church of our Lady Lourde at Villianoor. The observation of huge Cathedral is totally different from the rest of the places.
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If you are looking to celebrate Christmas away from the crowd, Lansdowne is the place for you. Plan your own little celebration with some music, bonfire and a Christmas tree. The Ottawa Farmers’ Market’s Christmas Markets could be a special treat. They have live local music.
There are over 100 vendors who sell locally grown food, and arts and crafts. It is a great stop for shopping gifts, stocking stuffers and buying ingredients for the delicious holiday dinner.
People attend Midnight masses at the Church. The relaxed ambience in the houseboats mixed with the atmosphere of festivity has a charm of its own. Carols are sung in all the churches.
People make traditional dishes like Kappa biryani, Acchapam cookies, kappa stew and Neyyappam. Families recreate the birth of Jesus by making cribs and place paddy and hay to capture the actual nativity.
– by Diksha Arya of NewsGram. Twitter: @diksha_arya53