Saputara Monsoon Festival: The much-awaited monsoon festival filled with various cultural and fun activities has started in Gujarat and will go on for a month. Inaugurated on August 10 by Minister of Tourism Jawahar Chawda at Saputara, the month-long festival will conclude on September 9. While inaugurating the festival, Chawda said that Gujarat is witnessing the growth of tourist footfalls at an average of 14% per year. The number of tourists visiting the state has reached almost 6 crores, last year. N.K. Damor. Gujarat Minister said that Gujarat’s tourism industry is marching ahead with good infrastructural facilities and development.
Each year, the festival is specially curated to pay a magnificent ode to Saputara’s beauteous monsoon. This time’s ninth edition is marked by an array of eclectic activities including adventure, exhibitions, cultural programmes, food festival, flash mobs, interactive games and competitions, and much more organised by Gujarat Tourism. The festival is organised by Gujarat Tourism to encourage tourism in the region and promote Saputara as a hill resort destination and create awareness about its many natural and cultural attractions soon after the arrival of monsoon.
This year, a special inaugural parade was organised during the opening ceremony of the Saputara Monsoon Festival. The parade featured a fascinating tableau and a flash-mob featuring 25 artistes, Garba-folk dances, brass bands and various other attractions. The folk dance of the famous Siddi brothers of Gujarat and the folk dance of Rajasthan was performed by the artists along with the traditional Garba of Gujarat. Slit walkers, fire heaters, cartoon characters and jokers, balloon arches, etc., were part of the inaugural function specially organised to attract children. The local Dangi folk dances were exhibited by about 35 artists.
Many fun-filled activities like painting, quizzes, glass paintings, etc., were also organized for locals and tourists visiting the Saputara festival. A special photo corner and interactive games were a part of the function. Through the festival, hour-long special cultural programmes will be arranged that will include various performances by local artists during evenings between 4 and 7 pm in the Main Circle Parking Area, also at the famous Governor Hill and the Saputara Lake area local artists will perform their local regional instruments. Special food stalls are set up and air balloons are also arranged for the event. For visitors’ convenience, safety facilities like waterproof domes, help desks, healthcare facilities, drinking water, security and parking have also been arranged at the venues. The month-long festival will also see a light and sound show every day in the evening to entertain people.
Jenu Devan MD TCGL, said, “The festival is very popular in Gujarat and our neighbouring state Maharashtra. Since the last few years we have been seen a great rise in tourist footfall from across the country. The tourist flow goes up phenomenally during the Monsoon Festival. Saputara is indeed a beautiful place and during the monsoon, it blooms in full glory. The Tourism department is taking various initiatives to provide the best of experiences to tourists. We have special tour packages for tourists arriving from different parts of the country. The festival also serves the government’s major objective of providing income generation and livelihood to the locals. The popularity of Saputara will definitely increase and we will see more people coming in and enjoying the true beauty of monsoon here.”
Saputara is nestled in the picturesque Dang District and the densely wooded hills of the Sahayadris. It’s a part of Gujarat’s only mountainous region and has emerged as one of the state’s major tourist destinations.
How to reach Saputara: For tourists wishing to visit Saputara, the nearest airport is Surat which is 164 km away. Nashik is about 85 km from here and Mumbai is 250 km. More information about the Saputara Monsoon Festival 2019 is available at Gujarat Tourism’s website.