Durbar Festival 2016

Among other local festivals of Nigeria Durbar festival has major significance as it is celebrated at the culmination of two major Muslim festivals Eid-el-Fitr (commemorating the end of the holy month of Ramadan) and Eid-el-Kabir (as a remembrance to Prophet Ibrahim who sacrificed a ram instead of his son).

Durbar festival is a great tourist attraction and generally takes place in the cities of Kano, Katsina and Bida. The celebration typically begins with prayers outside the town, followed by a parade of the Emir and his military on horses into the town, accompanied by villagers and band of performers drumming and dancing, and ending at the Emir's palace.

History of Durbar Festival

The evolution of Durbar festival dates back to hundreds of years ago before the arrival of any major religions when horses were used by the Emirates in the combats. Earlier, this festival was intended to be the parade of military soldiers of various northern regiments riding in defense of the Emir showcasing their horsemanship, loyalty and preparedness to the war. Even today the Durbar festival is organized in the honor of visiting heads of the state and displays the rich northern Nigerian culture and tradition.

Major Attractions of Durbar Festival

  • With so many cultures and tribes in Nigeria the Durbar festival is a wonderful and breathtaking event to attend in major cities, towns and villages. The procession of villagers and horsemen follow to the public square or in front of the Emir’s palace where this spectacular and amazing event takes place every year. On this day people enjoy the fabulous view of horse race at full gallop across the public squares, especially the fierce riding acts by the Emir’s household and reg­imental guards, the Dogari.
  • Even the modern Durbar festival incorporates the ancient traditions of showcasing the horsemanship, glistening of swords, singing and dancing, and paying homage to the present State Governors during each Sallah period.

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