When I went to Katmandu on somewhat of a whim in March 2017. I did not know exactly why I was going there , but the universe was telling me to go, So I duly went. The little research I did told me that there were two festivals happening and for what ever reason either I skimmed the info or did not really read it, I said to myself I will find out from the locals when I am there exactly what is going on, as some of these listings are totally wrong, out of date or just vague.
I arrived in Katmandu and found my hotel, after checking in I asked what the festivals were going on. The owner said there is only one festival and it was “Holi” I could not believe my ears, why ? I hear you ask. This is a festival of coloured powder and seen many photographs in Newspaper and on line about this event. But living in the UK, I could not really justify going for just one day to India or where ever it was happening. This March was my lucky day, I was here in Katmandu, Nepal and it is going to happen this coming Sunday. I had to attend, so booked extra time at the hotel, to ensure I had a room over this busy period. I have always wanted to photograph this event and now it is my chance.
The atmosphere at the festival was electric and was one of the friendliest I have ever been to. I kept seeing smiling faces all round and the term Happy Holi was being shouted at the tops of their voices. In the main square where many thousands of people were gathering. I thought the drums would be boring and repetitive, but no, everyone was loving this simply rhythmic beat of the drums.
The photographs speak more than word can ever do, so here are a few from the days event, more can be found at https://www.imagesfromaroundtheworld.com/index/G00003kIt22vr0ZI I also have a short video on You tube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xFF621zgYLI I am only just starting to venture into video and this was taken on a Gopro 4 Session, it shows some of the All Hands Volunteers who help rebuild the Schools and community centers after the earthquake and I will be going back in October this year to help out with the rebuilding as well.
So in conclusion, if you ever get the chance to go to this event, then GO, you will not be dissapointed. However a little friendly warning, be prepared to throw away any clothes you are wearing including underwear, shoes etc, as the stains by the powder are near on impossible to get out. You will get covered head to toe to Holi Powder. You will need to take at least 2 showers to get clean. Watch out for coloured water being thrown by kids in the streets, or the older generation from the tops of roof tops, Yes every one get involved. It is all part of the fun. If you are taking a camera wrap it up in plastic or get an underwater housing for it. as the powder is so fine. It somehow got underneath my glasses rim and I had to remove the lenses from the frames and scrape the powder from the glass and inside the frame.
Just go with the flow, buy some powder and follow what every one else is doing, and have fun I did and not sure if I can get back to another one in 2018, but I will try my hardest to do so.