Onam is the harvest festival of Kerala.This year there may not be much to cheer about but the Malayali never lets anything come in the way of celebrating this festival. You find families coming together, gifts being given to friends, grand "sadyas"(feasts), children and girls playing on swings which are tied from trees, decorations of flowers in the front yard of houses on all 10 days of the festival.Traditional art forms like kaduvakali are in evidence on the streets. Snake boat races are part of the pageant.It is believed that the legendary king Mahabali who ruled Kerala in ancient times and was banished by Lord Vishnu into the netherworld is allowed to visit Kerala and his subjects every year in recognition of his nobility and concern for his welfare and erstwhile kingdom.
Onam is a great time to visit Kerala and would compare to visiting Brasil during the Carnival, though the celebrations are more restraint and conservative:)
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