Anant Chaturdashi, marks the last and the biggest day of Ganesh Visarjan. On this day we respectfully ask the transitory embodiment of Lord Ganesh to depart and immerse the inert Ganesh idol in water. Thousands across the country celebrate the Visarjan on the beaches and banks of water bodies across the country with great pomp and flair. You too can join in the fun at some of the most beautiful beaches in the country.
Girgaum Chowpatty – Mumbai:
This iconic beach of Mumbai is the best place to view the Visarjan of the largest and most famous idols in the city including the star attraction –Lalbaugcha Raja. The best place to get in the action is near the sea. Ganesh Idols are transferred to a wheeled platform, pulled by organisers. For immersion, the idols are let lose on the platform as they travel to the sea at breakneck speed.
The energy and excitement of the crowds amidst a sea of beautifully decorated Ganesh idols is reason enough to make it here at least once during Ganesh Visarjan.
Juhu Chowpatty – Mumbai:
This beach in the suburbs of Mumbai is another fantastic place to catch all the action on the Day of the Visarjan. Small and big idols of the suburbs come for Visarjan on this stretch all the way unto Versova beach. The crowd chants “Ganpati bappa morya, Pudhcha Varshi lawkar yaa” ( meaning: See you soon next year dear Ganpati ) fill the air, while you stand and soak in the celebrations with awe.
Mula River – Pune:
Pune, the birthplace of Sarvajanik Ganeshotsava as visualized by Lokmanya Tilak, is a must-visit place during Ganesh festival. People here wholeheartedly celebrate the culture and traditions associated with the festival. The majority of the idols in Pune are immersed at home or in dedicated water tanks set up by Pune Municipality. The procession starts from Tilak street in downtown Pune and ends near Lakdi Pul at the banks of Mula river behind Deccan. Crowds dance to the beats of Pune Dhol Tasha, and everyone across caste, class and gender joins in the celebrations.
Diveagar – Shrivardhan
The Diveagar beach in Shrivardhan is a great place to see Ganesh Visarjan in Konkan Maharashtra. Unlike the city, the idols here are small and hand-made. They are lovingly carried to the sea in the hands and on the heads of their devotees. The passion and the fervour of the celebrations though are not small by any measure.
Ganpatiphule – Ratnagiri
Ganpatiphule, a small town in Ratnagiri has some of the best beaches in Konkan Maharashtra. The place is named after the 400-year-old Swayambhu Ganesh temple on the beach. The celebrations during the 10 days of Ganesh festival revolve around the temple. A separate idol is installed in the Palanquin and carried all over the village on the shoulders of the devotees. Villages and pilgrims from far and wide come here to see and feast on the vibrant celebrations.
Sabarmati River – Ahmedabad
In Gujarat, just like in Maharashtra, the Ganesh festival is celebrated with a lot of pomp and flair. In Ahmedabad, one must visit Gulbai tekra – the commercial hub of Ahmedabad, where devotees line up to buy the Ganesh idols. During Ganesh Visarjan one must make a point to visit the banks of the Sabarmati River. Small and big idols from everywhere in the city are lined here to be immersed in its waters.
Dandi Beach – Navsari
Navsari, situated right on the border between Gujarat and Maharashtra has become an NRI Hub. This has led to an upsurge in Ganesh celebrations in the nearby towns and villages. All the idols go for Visarjan at the Dandi Beach made famous by Gandhiji to abolish the salt tax imposed by the British colonial masters. Visiting the beach during Ganesh Visarjan is a nice way to soak in the local culture and festivities.
Mapusa – Goa
Ganesh festival holds a special place in the heart of Goans as it brings together entire families who rejoice and celebrate the birth of Ganesh. Mapusa and Marcela are the best places to visit in Goa during Ganesh festival as local artisans are engaged to make creative idols of Lord Ganesh. It is here that you can see Ganesh idols made of commercial crops like Coconut, Arecanut, Cane, Bamboo etc. During Ganesh Visarjan these beautiful idols are brought from the houses to be immersed at the beaches.