Have you ever visited Goa during Carnival? Trust me! There’s no other place you’d rather be.
The annual 4 day Goa carnival is organized in the first quarter of the year and it is one of the most exciting times to be in Goa. Larger than life floats, colorful costumes, music, dance and sprightly performances are witnessed by millions of tourists that throng this place to be part of this public celebration.
And if that hasn’t convinced you, here are 9 reasons you absolutely must visit Goa Carnival…
1. One of a Kind Celebration in India
Goa is the only Indian state to host a carnival, much on the lines of those organized across the world. It brings India on the world map with this great cultural fest. Over years, Goa Carnival has increased its scale to become one of India’s most celebrated parades and the fervor is unmatched.
2. Piece of Portuguese History
Portuguese ruled Goa until 1961, and under their rule, Carnival was introduced. Goa embraced this Portuguese cultural tradition and it continues to be celebrated with great enthusiasm, till date.
3. A Travelling Fest
While Panjim remains the most popular city to witness Goa carnival, this cultural extravaganza travels to four other prominent cities across Goa – Vasco, Margao, Mapusa and Ponda. So, everyone gets their share of Carnival fun.
4. Most Exciting Time of the Year
Goa Carnival is the most exciting time of the year to witness Goa’s true Spirit. People register to participate way ahead of time. Event calendars are marked well in advance, and suddenly Goa seems the most populated during this season. The state bursts with tourists that really is a cultural potpourri of travellers from right across the globe and India.
5. It’s just like Carnivals Across the World
Apart from the departed Portuguese rule, Goa is a world tourist destination. Call it influence or merger of cultures but Goa Carnival manages to carry an international stamp. The music, the costumes and the enthusiasm is at par with carnivals abroad. Crowd from every corner of the world comes cheering during this grand public celebration.
6. Goa Beyond Beaches
A lot is said about Goa being the ultimate beach destination, conveniently ignoring other rich cultural facets of the state. Goa Carnival is the most important of them all and a cultural symbol of Goa.
7. Traditional yet Modern
Not only was the Portuguese tradition of Carnival embraced by Goa with open arms, but they also successfully managed to add modern touches without tweaking its true essence. Goa Carnival is a great example of east meets west, traditional meets modern, and they even squeeze in pressing social issues for impact.
8. Most Amazing People
I’ve met some of the most amazingly friendly people, I could have ever met, at the Goa Carnival. They are sporting, smile for cameras, click photos with you and overall a very tolerant bunch. Go ahead and mingle with them (do it over a mug of beer, even better :P).
9. It’s Free
Goa Carnival is a free for all celebration. No ticket charges, no religion, caste and creed restrictions, and absolutely no invitation needed. Come one, come all.
Have you visited a Goa Carnival yet? How was the experience? Tell me in the comments….
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