Finalising a plan to Goa, especially if it’s with your friends can be daunting enough! Who really pays attention to how unique the itinerary is? Isn’t it just easier to ask someone who visited lately what the coolest places are to go to? Or at the most, read a few blogs on ‘offbeat’ itineraries for Goa (...Click here for our latest one)
Experiential. Inspiring. Liberating. Breathtaking... the words we often use in our Instagram captions when we do visit these offbeat places. But in many cases aren’t these just pretty and isolated beaches, which Goa will have when you move to the less crowded south side. Everyone knows that! So what’s genuinely new in the city? What awaits you that will truly give you a unique and memorable experience like no other?
One of the upcoming highlights is India’s largest multidisciplinary arts festival that will take place in December. The third edition of Serendipity Arts Festival is coming to Goa from 15-22nd December, bringing a power-packed lineup of performances, workshops and experiences over 8 days, spread across 10+ venues in the cultural capital of Panjim. To top it all, the festival has free entry! If by now you’ve already made up your mind on how art is not your cup of your tea, and hence neither is this article, then by all means, do read on because you’re in for a change of heart!
Let’s start with one of your many possible itineraries at Serendipity! If you’re an early riser who likes to be with nature then the ecological walks organised by The Travelling Dome, taking you to springs, creeks, secluded beaches etc are the ultimate kickstarters! Now that you’ve worked up some appetite, you can head over to Old GMC for some exciting culinary workshops! From chai, to coffee to honey, to pickles there are an many such exotic food workshops that will be conducted by specialists! While learning about food, if you’re looking to step up your Instagram food game, you could even go for the #Foodstagram workshop, conducted by Shivesh Bhatia, Roshni Bajaj and Anoothi Vishal! And for those looking to start the party early, there are workshops for beer, wine and the local favorite- feni that will enhance your understanding of these spirits with taste, smells, techniques, complimented with some age-old secrets!
Hop on one of the festival shuttles and head straight for the Kala Academy hosting some exciting and exuberant theatrical, musical and dance performances. Make sure to keep an eye on the streets to not miss out murals or street arts works done by St+art India Foundation! At the venue you have a variety of performances to choose from, based on a range of themes like religion, reinterpretation of epics, LGBTQ, performances experimenting with technology and space and many more! One can also witness unique folk, tribal and classical art forms of our country! After spending a couple of hours at these mesmerising performances take a stroll down to the Adil Shah Palace which is Panaji’s oldest surviving building, that was recently renovated by Serendipity Arts Foundation in collaboration with the Government of Goa and reopened to the public after 12 years in 2016. The palace will be brimming with visual arts, craft and photography exhibitions curated by specialists like Ranjit Hoskote, Rashmi Varma and Rahaab Allana respectively, exploring the heritage of our country along with contemporary art practices, amongst others.
Next stop is the Children’s (Art) Park where hungry souls can find solace at Tinto- a recreation of a local market serving the best delicacies of Goan cuisine! While at the park you might chance upon some charpais, giving you an insight into this iconic piece of Indian furniture! You can also try out your hand at some DIY craft workshops being organised by Curioso along with the support of Camlin for children and adults. As the evening sets in head to DB Ground, for the concert of the night! The festival has a fantastic line-up of gigs with artists like Raja Kumari, Coke Studio, Boombay Djembe Folas, The Bartender, and many more! And that’s a wrap for day one!
And these were just the tip of the iceberg! There are over 90 different projects running at the Festival, distributed over performances, workshops, experiences and talks! From musical cruises, to performances on streets and people’s homes, to film screenings, the choices are not only offbeat but endless! The Festival is accessible to differently abled audiences and also has curated workshops for special needs audiences to experience the dynamic world of arts!
Serendipity Arts Festival is the coming alive of a dream- a world of arts that is not just restricted to the gallery spaces or movie theatres, but one that is for all, relatable and integrated with the lives of the very people that it celebrates. It is a world that showcases our heritage, and the best of talents from the country and beyond. It is a platform where artists can collaborate and innovate. It is a space for children to learn and have fun! It is a platform for adults to become more aware, test out new waters, and rejuvenate themselves. It is an occasion to sway along and laugh out loud, to have goosebumps and be moved to tears, to celebrate communities and their diversity, but more importantly to give back by listening, observing, learning, and being inspired!