Obviously you don't need a reason to visit Goa, but in case you are looking for a excuse to justify going there in the second month of the new year, here it is: the entire state will be immersed in festivities this coming weekend thanks to the Goa Carnival 2017! This yearly feature will be bigger and better this time around, which means unlimited dancing, singing and drinking for four days straight. If you are yet to start packing your bags and still reading this news piece, you deserve some information and hence you shall get it.
Viva Carnaval Goa 2017
What is the Goa Carnival about?
Started in the 18th century by the Portuguese, the Goa Carnival is the biggest and most important festival celebrated in the state. It is meant to be a precursor to the abstinence of Lent. Lent is a period of religious observance in Christianity in order to prepare a believer through prayer, penance, and repentance of sins. The traditional extravaganza takes place only in Goa and is marked by colours, banners, decorated vehicles moving throughout the city in a parade headed by King Momo (more on him below). Since this Goa festival takes place before the 40-day-long austerities of Lent, the primary purpose of the carnival is to make merry for 3 days and 3 nights straight through drinking and dancing. Thousands of tourists from India and abroad also participate in the festivities, irrespective of their religions.
When is it?
This year, the massive carnival starts on Saturday, February 25, and ends on Tuesday, February 28. So you need to quickly offload your work for Monday and Tuesday on a colleague and take off on Friday. Here's the full schedule:
Saturday, Feb 25
Panjim – Grand Parade to commence at the Santa Monica Jetty, at 3:30PM.
Sunday, Feb 26
Margao – 3:30 PM.
Monday, Feb 27 (South Goa)
Vasco, near the airport – 3:30 PM.
Curchorem – 3:30 PM.
Tuesday, Feb 28 (North Goa)
Mapusa – 3.30 PM.
Ponda – 3.30 PM.
Who is King Momo?
Derived from Momus, the Greek god of satire, King Momo is supposed to be the king of chaos during the period of festivities. The concept might have been borrowed from Latin carnivals, where a large man (usually) is crowned as King Momo at the beginning, and then he and his entourage lead the entire carnival parade throughout the state.
Although everyone can apply to be the king of the carnival, but for this year he has already been selected. 65-year-old Goan musician Roque Tome Fernandes was chosen on Sunday to be the king for the fifth time. He is a renowned personality in the Goa festival circuit.
If you wish to apply to lead next year's carnival, here's the link.
In case you are too lazy to look for them yourself, these are the best hotels, villas and homestays you can stay at during the Goa Carnival 2017. You can even book the cheapest flight tickets right here.
Also, here's a complete beginner's guide to having a good time in Goa. Thank us later.
Don't wait anymore! Apply for your office leaves already! In case you've already been to Goa, do tell us about your memorable experience. We'd love to hear it.