Lohri is one of the hundreds of festivals, which tourists can attend through their classical India tour packages. The festival, having its origin in the state of Punjab, is celebrated throughout the country with pomp. Originally, it was celebrated on the Winter Solstice, which is the longest night and the shortest day of the year. However, during the course of time, it got linked to Makar Sankranti and, hence, is now celebrated on the last day of the month, in which the Winter Solstice comes. Lohri is associated with the cutting of the winter crops and is therefore seen as a harvest festival. Sugarcane is the main crop harvested between December and March, after being sown between January and March, the previous year. Farmers consider it as the start of the new financial year and collect revenue.
The children, during the day, roam around in the neighbourhood while singing folk songs. People give edible items and sometimes money to them as not giving anything is considered a bad omen. These items may include jaggery, gajak, sesame seeds, popcorns, crystallised sugar and peanuts. After sunset, a bonfire is lit on the ground or the centre of the village. The bonfire is the most important part of the celebration as it signifies the coming of longer days, following the solstice. Cow dung and wood or just wood may be used to be burnt, depending on the location and people. The items collected by children are also cast into the sacred fire.
As the festival is also dedicated to the universal element of fire, some people chant its praises while moving and dancing around it. Some Hindus pour milk and water in the fire as is done during a havan. The celebration is even bigger in houses where a childbirth or marriage has recently taken place. Everyone wears bright clothes and perform Bhangra and Gidda dances, accompanied by drum beats. If India tour packages are availed in January, tourists can attend this celebration, and savour the delicious combination of corn-bread and a gravy made of mustard leaves.