The state of Sikkim is famed for its vibrant culture, of which the Saga Dawa Festival is one of the most prominent celebrations till date. It marks the birth of Gautam Buddha, his journey towards enlightenment, and his ultimate achievement of salvation from the physical world… A nod to his life’s most noteworthy moments.

About Saga Dawa Festival in Sikkim

Every year, the followers of Mahayana Buddhism commemorate Lord Buddha’s spiritual awakening during the full-moon period. The rituals begin in the fourth month of the Buddhist lunar calendar, which, according to the English calendar, falls between the end of May and early June.

For families seeking a culturally rich vacation to Sikkim, note that Saga Dawa is one of the best festivals in Sikkim. It grants unique insight into people, their customs, beliefs, and way of life. To top that off, it is also a visually magnificent event overflowing with a riot of colours, costumes and props.

Also Read: Lachung - A Complete Travel Guide to the Hidden Gem of Sikkim

History of Saga Dawa Festival

Saga Dawa has an illustrious history that dates back several centuries. Did you know that its date was officially formalised at the first conference of the World Fellowship of Buddhists, held in Sri Lanka, in the year 1950? Today, the festival is celebrated across the globe! And it enjoys many different representations and names.

Tibetans and Sikkimese celebrate it as Saga Dawa. In Tibetan, Saga means “fourth”, while Dawa translates to “month”. Other parts of India commonly refer to it as Buddha Purnima. South East Asian countries like Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia and Sri Lanka, on the other hand, celebrate it by the name of Vesak Day.

Also Read: Try These 5 Unique Things in Sikkim for an Adventurous Holiday

History of Saga Dawa Festival culture of Sikkim

Interesting Facts About Saga Dawa Festival

One of the most distinguishing rituals of Saga Dawa is the illumination of butter lamps in monasteries. This soothing, calming ceremony is performed by Mahayana Buddhists as a means of recognising Lord Buddha’s profound contribution and influence on their lives.

After the ceremony, a grand procession is held. Much like a carnival, the parade commences at Tsuk-La-Lang Monastery in Gangtok and is led by monks carrying holy scriptures and fine portraits of Lord Buddha. A chorus of Buddhist hymns fills the air, contributing to an enchanting atmosphere.

Saga Diwas is also called “Poor’s Day” because it encourages people to share food and gifts with the underprivileged.

What’s more, the festival is also deemed as a “Merit Day” because it is believed that all actions taken in the month of Saga Dawa will multiply.

People also tend to give up meat during the festival, allowing the animals to roam freely within nature.

The culture of Sikkim is unique; it is one of North East India’s most prized jewels. And the sacred Saga Dawa festival acts as a wonderful crowd puller, attracting tourists and pilgrims from across the world.

Also Read: 5 Things You Didn't Know About Sikkim

Facts About Saga Dawa Festival

About Mahindra Holidays

Mahindra Holidays & Resorts India Limited (MHRIL), India’s leading player in the leisure hospitality industry, offers quality family holidays as also stated by Club Mahindra Resort Reviews, primarily through vacation ownership memberships. While Club Mahindra Membership Fees gives you an opportunity to explore your holidays across the world, the other brands offered by the company are – Club Mahindra Resorts Fundays and Svaastha Spa. As on Mar 31, 2019, MHRIL has 100+ resorts across India and abroad and its subsidiary, Holiday Club Resorts Oy, Finland, a leading vacation ownership company in Europe has 33 resorts across Finland, Sweden and Spain. Visit us at

About Club Mahindra

Mahindra Holidays & Resorts India Ltd. (MHRIL), a part of Leisure and Hospitality sector of the Mahindra Group, offers quality family holidays primarily through vacation ownership memberships and brings to the industry values such as reliability, trust and customer satisfaction. Started in 1996, the company's flagship brand ‘Club Mahindra’, today has over 250,000 members , who can holiday at 100+ resorts in India and abroad.

Read More

Checkout our resorts