If you were to ask us, where to head for New Year , we will certainly say that you must visit Kerala for New Year Celebrations. Kerala is one of the most happening New Year party destinations not only in India but across the world. Kerala also offers a chance to celebrate New Year and Xmas in the sunny outdoors in hill stations, beaches or backwaters . Tourists from across the globe can be seen in Kerala if you are here during New Year Celebrations.
Kochi celebrates the Pappanji Burning
Kochi celebrates the Pappanji Burning Festival every year on the night of 31st of December as part of the New Year bash. This celebration is unique to Kochi. Thousands of people gather at Fort Kochi beach to take part in the festival. Crowds gather from noon, and at 12 o’clock the effigy of Pappanji is burnt to welcome the New Year.
There is no one authentic explanation on how this festival started. The word pappanji is from Portuguese, which means grandfather. Till the beginning of the 16th Century, Kochi was under Portuguese rule and descendants from that period still live at Fort Kochi. In the Pappanji Burning Festival, the organisers make an effigy of an old man in European attire. He wears a suit, boots, a hat, glasses, and holds a walking stick. His long white beard is prominent. The effigy of Pappanji is filled with crackers.
Cochin Carnival also has a competitive element to it. There are various games to compete in including beach football, beach volleyball, a bike race, sea swimming and even a tug a war. The events are good spirited fun and while the winners get prizes, the competition is more about the spirit of participation.