When Does Raksha Bandhan Begin?

Find the Date for This Hindu Festival in This and Other Years

Rakhi / Raksha Bandhan
Hemant Mehta / Getty Images

Rakhi, or Raksha Bandhan, is an auspicious event in the Hindu calendar when siblings celebrate their love and respect for one another. It celebrated most commonly in India and it is observed on different dates each year, based on the Hindu lunar calendar.

How Is Rakhi Celebrated?

During Raksha Bandhan, a sister ties a sacred thread (called a rakhi) around her brother's wrist and prays that he will live a long, healthy life.

In return, a brother bestows gifts upon his sister and vows to honor and protect her always, no matter the circumstances. Rakhi can be celebrated between non-siblings as well, such as cousins or even friends, or any male-female relationship that is one of value and respect. 

The rakhi thread may be just a few simple silk strands or it may be elaborately braided and embellished with beads or charms. As with the Christian holiday of Christmas, shopping for a rakhi in the days and weeks leading up to the festival is a major event in India and other large Hindu communities.

When Is It Observed?

Like other Hindu holy days and celebrations, Rakhi's date is determined by the lunar cycle, rather than the Gregorian calendar used in the West. The holiday occurs on the night of the full moon in the Hindu lunar month of Shraavana (sometimes called Sravana), which typically falls between late July and late August.

Shraavana is the fifth month in the 12-month Hindu calendar. Based on the lunisolar cycle, each month begins on the day of the full moon. For many Hindus, it is a month for fasting to honor the deities Shiva and Parvati.

When Will Raksha Bandhan Take Place?

Here are the dates for Raksha Bandhan for this year and in future years:

  • 2017: Monday, August 7
  • 2018: Saturday, August 25
  • 2019: Wednesday, August 14
  • 2020: Monday, August 3
  • 2021: Saturday, August 21
  • 2022: Thursday, August 11
  • 2023: Wednesday, August 23
  • 2024: Monday, August 19
  • 2025: Friday, August 8
  • 2026: Thursday, August 27
  • 2027: Monday, August 16
  • 2028: Friday, August 4
  • 2029: Thursday, August 23
  • 2030: Monday, August 12

When Did The Festival Take Place In Previous Years?

Here are the dates for Rakhi in past years back to 2007:

  • 2016: Wednesday, August 17
  • 2015: Saturday, August 29
  • 2014: Sunday, August 10
  • 2013: Tuesday, August 20
  • 2012: Wednesday, August 1
  • 2011: Saturday, August 13
  • 2010: Tuesday, August 24
  • 2009: Wednesday, August 5
  • 2008: Saturday, August 16
  • 2007: Monday, August 27