Onam is a Hindu festival that originated from the state of Kerala in India. It falls in the Malayalam calendar month of Chingam, which is in August - September in the Gregorian calendar. Onam marks the New Year for Malayali Hindus. The celebration of Onam commemorates the homecoming of King Mahabali who is believed to be the greatest king in Kerala. He was a very fair and just king. The king sacrificed himself along with everything else he had in order to stand true to his words. His people and followers remember him and honour him with the Onam Festival, which spans over a period of ten days. The celebration includes designing beautiful flower carpets called Pookalam, preparing banquet lunches, organising snake boat races, dance the Puli Kali (a traditional folk art, in which the performers are painted like tigers and hunters) and participate in the Kaikottikali dance.