Goa is perhaps the party capital of India and almost throughout the year, visitors from far and near are to be seen in a mad scramble to bag cheap flight tickets to the destination. The entire year sees the celebration of some or the other merry festival and it is prudent to book one’s tickets with extreme planning as airfares tend to soar during quite a few of these festivals. Here are some of the hottest festivals from Goa.
Food & Cultural Festival of Goa
Anyone, planning to take a flight to India and visiting Goa during the five day Food & Cultural Festival can look forward to some hearty feasting. The finesse of Goan cuisines, inspired by both Indian and Western influences is for all to see and taste. Some of the top hotels, restaurants, and even housewives and amateur cooking aficionados put up stalls. Although, there is no dearth of the varieties of cuisines, seafood assumes dominance over the other fares. In fact, this is one of the best times to sample Goa’s fresh lip smacking sea food. A lot of snacks, alcoholic beverages, soft drinks, and ice creams are served as well.
The Goa Carnival is probably the most colourful and most eagerly awaited festival in Goa. Celebrated during the month of February, the carnival spells as three days of hysterical celebrations full of dance and music. Goa’s streets turn into a veritable circus and play host to thousands of visitors from different parts of the world. The fact that the austere days of Lent follow the carnival prompts Goa’s fun loving denizens to make the most of the event. The festive mood becomes so infectious that visitors also join the merrymaking with added gusto. Happy crowds smear colour on each other and there are spontaneous good humoured anti establishment banters. Nursery rhymes and lullabies are depicted through floats and scores of street plays all add to the fun and frolic. However, visitors planning to take a cheap flight to India during February should buy their air tickets well in advance. With February weather being a comfortable month for travel, many airlines tend to jack up airfares.
On 24th June, Sao Joao or the feast of St. John the Baptist is celebrated with great aplomb in Goa. Newly wedded men visit their in-law’s homes and mothers present their married daughters a basket of exotic fruits like pineapples, mangoes, and jackfruits. The festival also has a more exuberant side. The sons-in-laws along with village youths form a boisterous procession, which weaves it way to village ponds for a dip. Many of the youths wear leaves like crowns on their heads. Everyone gets high on the potent local wine, Feni and there is a lot of jolliness and boisterous merry making. During June, air tickets to Goa can also work out to be quite affordable. In fact, with Goa being easily accessible from Mumbai, one can choose from quite a few airlines operating cheap flights between the two destinations during June as well as other times of the year.
St. Francis Day
The Church of Bom Jesus in Goa serves as the final resting place of St. Francis, the revered champion of Christianity. Elaborate ceremonies are held every year on 3rd December to honour St. Francis. With Goa being the home of hundreds of native converted Christians as well as descendants of Portuguese settlers, St. Francis Day is a special occasion in the destination. Many travellers, visiting India during this time make it a point to pay their respects to the memory of St. Francis. The atmosphere at the church is festive and many visiting families also attend the special St. Francis day fair to buy trinkets and other souvenirs.