The Onam celebrations in the capital city and suburbs peaked on Wednesday as citizens celebrated Thiruvonam in the traditional style.

Right from dawn, devotees flocked to temples to offer ‘Onakodi’ to their favourite deities. Many temples had special poojas for Thiruvonam.

Most people preferred to spend the day with family for the customary Thiruvonam feast (Onasadya) in the afternoon. A large number of citizens turned up for the Onasadya at hotels, while others depended on catering services for packed, ready-to-eat Onasadya.

Residents associations in various parts of the city organised Thiruvonam celebrations with contests and cultural programmes. In some colonies and apartment complexes, the traditional Onasadya turned out to be a family get-together.

The Sree Padmanabha Swamy temple at East Fort saw a steady stream of devotees to witness the `Onavillu’ offering to the deity. The Attukal Devi temple, the Ganapathy temple at Pazhavangady and the Sreekanteswaram temple witnessed large crowds.

The footpath vendors who were doing brisk business in the hawker zones designated by the City Corporation started winding up their trade by Wednesday evening. Most shops and commercial establishments remained closed.

Holiday crowds

By evening, holiday crowds were heading to tourist spots for a quiet getaway. The Sanghumukhom beach, the tourist villages at Veli and Aakulam and the Nisagandhi open- air auditorium and Sooryakanthi exhibition grounds in the Kanakakunnu palace premises were the favourite destinations.

The area around the Sreevaraham lake wore a festive look. Cultural performances were organised at the venue. Various cultural programmes were staged at the Chandrasekharan Nair stadium, VJT hall, Poojappura maidan, Gandhi park and theerthapada mandapam as part of the government- sponsored Onam celebrations.

Law Minister M.Vijayakumar inaugurated the Onam celebrations at the Aakulam tourist village. A cultural pageantry from Pulayanarkotta to Aakulam preceded the inaugural function.