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Ankita Sinha, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, November 09, 2012
Diwali is round the corner! Here are few tips on what to do this Diwali to make it memorable: 1. Skydive in Mysore:  If you were impressed by a 43-year-old Austrian daredevil Felix Baumgartner's recent skydive from the edge of space, how about taking on your own skydiving mission? Skydiving in India, a division of Kakini Enterprises, offers skydiving jumps in India like Tandem Jump, Static Jump and Accelerated Free Fall (AFF). First time in Karnataka ,Kakini is organising Skydiving camp in Mysore during Diwali from 9th-15th Nov.

2. See fireworks in Varanasi: Diwali is celebrated twice in Varanasi. Diwali round 13th November, which is celebrated everywhere in India, and Dev Deepavali round 28th November, which is special to Varanasi. Dev Deepavali is a major festival in Varanasi. During this festival all the ghats are decorated with the earthen lamps and there are musical recitals on the bank of River Ganges.These lamps are lit as a mark of welcome to the Gods as they descend on earth. The little sparks of fire flicker elegantly and is a wonderful sight to watch. Diwali is also celebrated with a constant stream of firecrackers and fireworks going off all night long.

3. A sacred Diwali In Amritsar: Diwali is also the anniversary of Guru Hargobind ji being released from the prison at Gwalior Fort. It is always said - Dal roti ghar ki, Diwali Amritsar ki (while there's nothing like the food cooked at home, there is also nothing that compares celebrating Diwali at Amritsar). Diwali is celebrated in a grand way in Amritsar. The Golden Temple complex is draped in lights, and the edge of the lake fringed with countless oil lamps and candles, lit by devotees.

4. Go gambling in Goa or burn the demon:  Lord Krishna killed demon Narakasura on the pre-Diwali night and in Goa people re-enact the scene by building straw Narakasuras and then burning them down amidst celebrations.People in every neighborhood build their very own Narakasura for this festival. Competitions of making the biggest and scariest effigy of the demon Narakasura are held.Gambling is a popular activity during Diwali in Goa.On this day, many people try their luck in gambling.

5. Admire the brilliantly lit markets at Jaipur or Join Ragasthan: Diwali is perhaps the most popular of all Rajasthan festivals but Jaipur, The Pink City, is renowned for celebrating Diwali in its own unique way. Markets of Jaipur like Jhowri Bazar, Trirpoli Bazar, Chandpole, Indira Bazar, etc are decorated with colorful lights which flourish the beauty of Jaipur at its zenith during Diwali. In Jaipur this occasion is celebrated for five days. Ragasthan a cultural and musical event is scheduled from 16th - 18th of November in the dunes of the Jaisalmer desert.A host of cultural treats will be on offer at India's first holistic International music festival including camping, adventure sports, film and art from within India and across the globe.

6. Join Kali Puja celebrations in Kolkata: The much celebrated Kali Pooja of West Bengal coincides with the Diwali Festival. Kali Puja is one of the major  festival for people in West Bengal and they celebrate the occasion with much gusto and enthusiasm. Just as people in North India light lamps to honor Lakshmi Ma during Lakshmi Puja, people in West Bengal celebrate Kali Puja by lighting lamps in honor of Goddess Kali. Houses are decorated and Rangoli patterns are drawn in front of houses and courtyards. Kali Puja is carried out during the evening.

7. Get tickets for Bollywood Diwali releases:  Almost every year the most awaited movies of the year will be mostly released during Diwali. Some of the earlier Diwali blockbusters were Baazigar (1993), Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995), Dil To Pagal Hai (1997), Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998), Mohabbatein (2000), Veer Zaara (2004), Don (2006), Om Shanti Om (2007) and Ra.One (2011). All of these movies have created history in one way or the other. 'Jab Tak Hai Jaan' and 'Son Of Sardar' are scheduled for a Diwali 2012 release.

8. Go Ethnic:  Ethnic is the flavour of the festival of lights.Diwali is the perfect time to take out that priceless sari belonging to your home state or your favorite traditional clothes with kundan jewellary and authentic juti's. Wear them for Diwali parties, events and poojas. However, make sure your Diwali outfit is safe. Diwali would have lights, diyas and fire all around, so opt for fabrics that are non inflammable.

9. Give your house a makeover: Indians say Goddess Lakshmi visits every house this Diwali. Revamp, refresh, clean and beautify your home to ensure fresh and positive home environment.Try giving your walls a new color, fill the house with flowers,earthen lamps or Rangoli to create a festive aura around you. 

10. Meet friends and family:  Diwali is traditionally celebrated by meeting friends and family. It's the best time to pay a visit to their homes or invite them to your own. You can also play a few card games to celebrate the get together.

Ankita Sinha is a 20-something travel and adventure blogger with a penchant for offbeat and adventurous travel experiences. She blogs at Ankionthemove.com, tweets @ankionthemove, and can be reached at ankionthemove@gmail.com.