Garlanding guests is an integral part of Indian tradition. This article explains the significance of garlanding in India.


Playing the perfect host is an integral part of the Indian culture and tradition. As such, Indian people go to great lengths to make their guests feel welcome. Garlanding, aarti and applying tilak, or a red vermillion mark, on the forehead of the guest is, thus, an important part of the reception ritual. There are basically two reasons behind the garlanding tradition of India. Firstly, it showcases one's happiness at receiving the particular guest and secondly, it is a form of publicly acknowledging the guest's importance.

The fact that apart from guests, it's only the various gods and goddesses, who are garlanded, shows the significance attached to this garlanding tradition in India. And it's almost always accompanied by application of tilak and arti. There are many kinds of garlands available in the Indian markets for this purpose. One kind of garlands comprises of those made of freshly plucked red roses, which are mostly used in Indian weddings by brides and grooms to garland each other. There are even such garlands that are made by weaving together currency notes, usually worn by the bridegroom when he sits on the mare.