Floral Occasions & Holidays

How to Celebrate Diwali, the Festival of Lights

November 2, 2020

Celebration Inspiration is all about bringing you top-notch advice and creative ideas to make the most of life’s special moments. Whether you’re celebrating a birthday or going all out for a holiday, we’re here to share decorating tips, gifting advice, and fun, festive ways you can make a lasting impression!

A look back at Diwali history

Once a year in the fall, during the darkest new moon in the Hindu month Kartik, Hindu communities and temples shine bright with millions of candles and lamps. Known as Diwali, or the festival of lights, this celebration dates back to ancient times. This year, Diwali is celebrated on November 14th and for several days after, depending on the family’s religion and traditions.

The traditional name of this holiday, “Deepawali,” originates from the Sanskrit word “deep,” meaning “light” and “avali,” meaning “row.” Depending on the region and religion, the duration of the festival as well as the history and origin of the holiday may vary. Although Diwali is mainly a family affair, it’s also a religious day for many Hindus. Many celebrate the holiday to bring prosperity and good health to their families.

Nine ways you can celebrate Diwali

Want to make the most of India’s biggest holiday of the year? Below, we’ve gathered eight ways to celebrate this important and meaningful occasion.

Donate to your favorite cause

Many versions of the Diwali celebrations include “washing your wealth.” This can mean literally washing your coins with milk and water, or sharing your wealth with those in need.

Add candles and lights around your house

The Festival of Lights simply calls for illumination! Candles — called “diyas”  — are filled with oil and displayed throughout homes. The vibrant display is an expression of respect to the deities for the prosperity in life.

Decorate with color

Many families will create floral art, known as rangoli, and display them in front of their house to add more vibrancy and color to the celebration.

Bake traditional foods

Diwali calls for sweets, and lots of them! Some of the most popular desserts for this holiday include Gulab Jalum — a fried, milk-based treat and Halwa — a dense, nut-based dessert.

Play games

Gambling and games are a common tradition in Diwali celebrations. Play for candy or simply for memories – invite the extended family and make it a family affair.

Plan a romantic night out

In many versions of the celebration, the fourth day of Diwali is dedicated to nurturing the marital relationship. Whisk your partner away with a carefully planned date they will never forget.

Catch up with siblings

One of the last days of the festival focuses on the brother-sister relationship. Grab your sibling(s) and plan an outing or activity you can all bond over.

Participate in local community events

For a truly authentic experience, research Diwali celebrations in your local community or Hindu Temple.

Send Diwali gifts and gourmet treats

Celebrate the festival of lights with our collection of Diwali gifts and gourmet treats to wish your loved ones a happy holiday! Send Diwali flowers to friends and family as the perfect Diwali decoration for the occasion!