While the festival of Holi is still some days away, the towns of Barsana and Nandgaon in India have already smeared themselves in the colours of Lathmar Holi. It is a vibrant spring festival celebrated ahead of the Holi festival. Lathmar Holi sees women from the village of Barsana use bamboo sticks to beat men from the neighbouring village of Nandgaon. The men, in turn, tease the women and daub them with coloured powders.
The festival is said to be a recreation of a famous Hindu legend, that says that on this day Lord Krishna, who hailed from the Nandgaon village, visited his beloved Radha's town, Barsana. If legend is to be believed, Krishna teased Radha and her friends, who in turn responded by taking offence at his advances and chased him out of Barsana.
The festivities take place at the sprawling campus of the Radha Rani temple in Barsana, which is said to be the only temple in the country that is dedicated to Radha. The Lathmar Holi festivities last for over a week. The participants dance, sing and immerse themselves in colour and consume 'thandai', a traditional drink synonymous to the festival of Holi. IBTimes Singapore takes a look at some of the best pictures from the festival.