gudi padwa

We shall celebrate Gudi Padwa 2023 on Wednesday, March 22, 2023. For Marathi and Konkani Hindus, Gudi Padwa, often spelled Gudhi Padwa, is an auspicious day that ushers in a new year. The residents of Maharashtra and Goa are the main celebrators of the regional Hindu festival Gudi Padwa. The lunisolar Hindu calendar, which divides the year into months and days based on the Sun and Moon’s positions, celebrates Gudi Padwa on the first day of the Chaitra period to commemorate the start of the New Year.

Why is Gudi Padwa celebrated?

Gudi Padva is a celebration of the coming of spring and the harvesting of the rabi crops. The celebration honors the day that the Hindu deity Brahma is said to have created the universe and time on.For some, it honors the beginning of the Shalivahan calendar following Rama’s conquest over the Huns in the first century, or the enthronement of Rama in Ayodhya following his victory over Ravana. In rural Maharashtra, the celebration is linked to Shiva’s dance and the community coming together as they bring the Gudi Kavads to Lord Shivji’s temple

Thus, Gudi Padwa represents the harmonious culmination of culture and nature, celebrating the cycles of life, growth, and prosperity that come with the arrival of spring and the heavy harvest of Rabi crops.

How is Gudi Padwa celebrated?

In the state of Maharashtra, Gudi Padwa, one of the major holidays, is observed with much fanfare.

On this day, individuals use powdered coloring, flowers, and petals to create rangoli designs on the floors of their homes. They create a unique Gudhi flag that is capped with an upside-down silver or copper cup and decorated with flowers, mango, and neem leaves. Making rangoli is thought to be the most elegant and vibrant way to greet all of your loved ones and guests.

Brightly colored flowers adorn the dwellings, and lovely torans hang from the doors, symbolizing the belief that optimism spreads.

They take a holy bath in a river, change into new clothes, and go to the temple to make their daily prayers to God. Women decorate their hair with a garland of mogra flowers and don nine-yard sarees. The males are dressed in traditional kurta pajamas and a turban made of saffron.

On this day, women make delicacies like Aambe Daal and Sunth Paak as well as desserts like Puran Poli and Shrikhand, which are enjoyed by the entire family.

Neem leaves and jaggery are used to make the bitter-sweet Gudi Padwa prasad. Every Marathi home prepares this dish, which represents life’s journey through a fair share of happiness and sadness.

One of the main customs of this event is gift-giving, where older family members give younger family members clothing, cash, and other items.

On this unique day, street processions known as Prabhat Pheri are held all over Maharashtra, and are followed by festivities with dance and food. Many men and women wrap saffron-colored turbans around their heads to protect their heads during the processions.

Gudi Padwa day and time of year

Gudi Padwa, which is mostly observed in the state of Maharashtra, heralds the start of the harvest season. Maharashtrians observe the day as New Year’s Day in accordance with the lunisolar Hindu calendar.

The expression “Gudi Padwa” originates from two terms: Gudi, signifying Brahma’s flag, and Padwa, also known as Padva or Paddava, denoting the initial day of the moon’s bright phase.

According to the Hindu lunisolar calendar, Gudi Padwa is observed on the first day of the month of Chaitra, which, in the Gregorian calendar, often falls between March and April. The event is scheduled to take place on April 9, 2024.

Gudi Padwa Story

Tales and mythological allusions abound about Gudi Padwa. One of the most revered Hindu texts, the Brahma Purana, describes how Lord Brahma halted time and restored the universe after a catastrophic disaster killed everyone. This day marked the beginning of the era of justice and truth and the reversal of time due to Brahma’s efforts. This is the reason why people worship Lord Brahma on this day.

According to another legend, Lord Rama spent 14 years in exile before making his way back to Ayodhya with Sita and Laxman. The triumph of Lord Rama over Ravana is celebrated on this day. As a result, Gudi, also known as Brahma’s flag, is flown in homes in a manner similar to how it was (according to legend) flown in Ayodhya following Rama’s victory over Ravana.

But Gudi has more historical significance than that. History suggests that Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj emancipated the state’s populace from Mughal domination by defeating the Mughals. This is one of the main causes for which Maharashtrians celebrate Gudi on this day. The flag is thought to keep evil spirits from ever setting foot on a home.

Gudi Padwa History

Gudi Padwa, rooted in ancient Indian history, holds a rich cultural legacy dating back to thousands of years. Its origins are intertwined with various historical and mythological narratives, making it a festival of multifaceted significance.

One prevalent belief traces its origins to the reign of King Shalivahana, who defeated the Sakas to establish a new era marked by prosperity and victory. This victory is commemorated through the hoisting of the Gudi, symbolizing the king’s triumph and the dawn of a prosperous era.

Another prominent mythological association connects Gudi Padwa with Lord Rama’s return to Ayodhya after defeating Ravana in the epic Ramayana. It is believed that people welcomed Lord Rama by hoisting Gudis, symbolizing his victorious return and the triumph of good over evil.

Over the centuries, Gudi Padwa has evolved into a festival that not only celebrates historical victories but also embraces the onset of spring, harvest season, and the Hindu New Year. It stands as a testament to India’s diverse cultural tapestry, embodying resilience, tradition, and the spirit of new beginnings.

Significance of Gudi Padwa

Gudi Padwa is the festival of the harvest of Rabi crops. In addition, a lot of people commemorate it as the day that Lord Rama was crowned in Ayodhya following his victory over the demon Ravana.

Another story claims that the celebration of Gudi Padwa also marks the beginning of the Shalivahan calendar, which began in the first century AD when the powerful ruler defeated the Hun invasion.

Anne Feldhaus, President of the Association for Asian Studies, noted that Gudi Padwa was a festival associated with the community gathering together and the dance of Lord Shiva in rural Maharashtra. The devotees transport Gudhi Kavads to a close-by or well-known Lord Shiva shrine.

Gudi Padwa Rituals

A few days prior to the celebration, people begin making preparations for Gudi Padwa. The house is made beautiful, various décor pieces are purchased, and cleaning is completed. People adore the Lord Brahma. Gudis are raised at home on Gudi Padwa. These Gudis stand for achievement in all spheres of life. Signs in Swastik and Mangalik are created or positioned at the home’s main entrance. People dress in traditional attire. The Sun God is revered.

Many homes’ entrances are adorned with garlands on this particular day. On this day, taking an oil and Ubtan bath is customary. It is thought that on this day, the body receives the highest amount of nourishment from all the food consumed.

What is Gudi?

Gudi is a South Indian word that signifies “flag,” according to Kittel. The Sanskrit term pratipad, which refers to the first day of every fortnight in a lunar month, or the first day on which the moon emerges following the “new moon” day (amāvāsya) and the first day following the full moon, is the source of the word pāḍavā. This celebration derives its name from the hoisting of a Gudhi on this particular occasion. Balipratipada is similarly linked to the term padva or padavo.


At Chrysalis, we understand the significance of integrating cultural awareness with education. We believe that learning about festivals like Gudi Padwa can enrich the students’ understanding of the world around them, fostering a sense of respect and appreciation for diverse traditions and beliefs. Celebrating Gudi Padwa in educational settings can also serve as a hands-on learning experience, where children can engage in art and craft activities related to the festival, such as making rangolis, crafting Gudhi flags, and learning about the stories and traditions that define this auspicious day.


Is Gudi Padwa a Hindu New Year?

Gudi Padwa stands as a significant Hindu festival widely observed across India, particularly in Maharashtra, symbolizing the onset of the Hindu New Year. Typically occurring in March or April, it marks the commencement of the Chaitra month, the first month of the Hindu Panchangam calendar.

Are Gudi Padwa and Ugadi the same?

Gudi Padwa is mainly a celebration in Maharashtra and Goa, while Ugadi is primarily celebrated in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Telangana.

Why is Gudi Padwa celebrated in Maharashtra only?

In certain traditions, Gudi Padwa is associated with the creation of time and the universe by Lord Brahma. In rural Maharashtra, the festival holds significance in connection with Shiva’s cosmic dance, symbolizing the community’s unity as they collectively carry the Gudhi Kavads to a Shiva temple.