Ways to Celebrate Deepavali Outside India

by Vinodkumar Sankranthi

We keep saying that Diwali is a Hindu festival celebrated in India. But, do you know that this festival of lights is celebrated around the world? Surprised? Yes, it is celebrated in the US, parts of Europe, UAE, Singapore, Japan, and other places. The nature of celebration however remains the same.

After all, Diwali is one such festival that brings people together irrespective of their caste, creed, color and religion. It is celebrated across the globe with the same enthusiasm and excitement.


Interested to know how Deepavali is celebrated outside India?

1. Diwali around the world

It is not possible to celebrate Diwali on the same date as in India by people living outside India. So they choose a weekend before or after Deepavali. The celebration is very similar to that of India. They buy new clothes from Indian garment stores and perform puja of Lakshmi Devi. Yes, even they do the ‘Cleaning of the House’ before Diwali. The Indian stores sell Indian sweets and different types of Puja ingredients. This makes the Diwali celebration easy for people outside India.

2. Diwali celebration as a community


The proverb says: Man is born free but he lives in chains. No one prefers staying alone and especially during festival time. It has been seen that people residing out of India celebrate Diwali as a community. They take a community hall on rent on a weekend following Diwali. All of them become a part of the get-together. They perform on songs, play cards, meet, and greet others. People also exchange gifts and distribute chocolates and sweets to their loved ones.

3. Potluck


A lot of Indian dishes are made for this celebration. The concept of Potluck is very famous among NRIs. Each of them prepares a dish for all. Then they display the food on a table. Everyone can taste food brought by different people. The main idea behind it is to have some fun and connect with people over food.

4. Playing Cards


Playing cards is very common on Diwali. It is common among NRIs as well. Friends get together and play cards, which is considered auspicious. It is believed that playing cards bring good luck and prosperity.

The celebration of Diwali is not much different from India. So, it is all about the spirit of the people.

Singapore is lit up as well during Diwali. Other than that, countries like Fiji, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Guyana, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, and more have national holidays. It’s common for loved ones to travel to their hometowns during these festivals. Well if you are planning on doing so too, then you can save on travel with these coupons for buses, trains, and flights.

Diwali Celebrations Around the World

Diwali, the festival of lights, is not just celebrated in India but also in several other countries with equal enthusiasm. Let’s take a closer look at how some of these countries celebrate Diwali just like we do.

  • Fiji: In Fiji, Diwali is a public holiday, and the celebration lasts for several days. People light oil lamps, decorate their homes with colorful rangoli designs, and exchange gifts and sweets. Fireworks light up the night sky, and traditional Indian sweets like ladoos and jalebis are prepared and shared.
  • Malaysia: Diwali, known as Deepavali in Malaysia, is a significant cultural celebration. Malaysian Hindus light oil lamps and candles to symbolize the triumph of light over darkness. They also visit temples and enjoy special feasts with family and friends. Traditional Indian attire is worn during the festivities.
  • Indonesia: In Indonesia, Diwali is celebrated mainly by the Indonesian-Indian community. The festival includes prayers at temples, cultural performances, and the lighting of lamps and candles. Traditional Indonesian and Indian dishes are prepared and enjoyed.
  • Nepal: Diwali in Nepal, known as Tihar, is a five-day festival that honors various animals, including crows, dogs, and cows. Each day has a special significance, and the festival culminates with the worship of the goddess Laxmi for wealth and prosperity. Homes are illuminated with lamps and oil lamps, and rangoli designs adorn doorsteps.
  • Mauritius: Mauritius boasts a diverse population with a significant Indian diaspora, and Diwali is a national holiday. People of different backgrounds come together to celebrate by lighting lamps, exchanging gifts, and preparing delicious Indian sweets. The festival is marked by vibrant processions and fireworks.
  • Canada: In Canada, Diwali is celebrated with great enthusiasm by the Indian community. Families and friends gather for puja (prayers), exchange gifts, and share traditional meals. Many cities in Canada also host public Diwali events featuring cultural performances and fireworks.
  • Singapore: Singapore’s Diwali celebrations are characterized by the lighting of oil lamps, decorating homes with colorful rangoli, and exchanging gifts and sweets. The Little India neighborhood in Singapore comes alive with vibrant decorations and bustling markets during Diwali.
  • Sri Lanka: Celebration: Diwali, known as Deepavali in Sri Lanka, is celebrated by the Tamil Hindu community. The festival involves lighting lamps, visiting temples, and preparing special meals. Fireworks and cultural events add to the festive atmosphere.

In these countries, Diwali is a time when families and communities come together to celebrate the triumph of light over darkness, good over evil, and the spirit of unity and togetherness. While the customs and traditions may vary, the essence of Diwali remains the same – spreading joy, positivity, and love.


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