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Floats, Street Dances & Mardi Gras-Like Celebrations At Goa's Carnival 2018

Nupura posted on 06 February

Ten-Second Takeaway

Come February, the hunt for a New Carnival King Momo will begin in Goa, as the Goa Carnival will soon kick off. A tradition that goes back to the 1500s when the Portuguese first arrived in Goa, is still followed not just by the Catholics but pretty much everyone in Goa, here’s why you need to be a part of it.

Tell Me More

This year the Carnival kicks off on February 10 in Panjim, and will continue till February 13 in Panjim and other parts of the state, too. The mythical King Momo is considered the King of Carnivals in numerous Latin American countries, and Goa follows this tradition every year by selecting a Goan for the role. He is symbolically given the key to Goa and is considered the ruler across the Carnival days. He as the symbolic King also gets to declare to his subjects to eat, drink and make merry {rather make the most of it}, before starting the month of Lent, which is meant to be a month of fasting and abstinence for a lot of the Catholics in the state.

Dressed up in a robe, crown and the pageantry that goes with it, the first float of the parade is always with the one with him on it starting the celebrations. And you don’t have to pay anything to join in the fun and watch the parade.

There will also be parades on the February 11 in Margao, February 12 in Vasco and February 13 in Mapusa, so in case you miss the one in Panjim, go check them out at these various locations. This year, the parade route will be from the Miramar circle to the Dona Paula circle, and will host a multitude of floats. The government every year runs competitions for the best floats and most villages compete for this coveted prize.

Anything Else?

The last day of the Carnival ends with the famous ‘Red & Black’ dance that takes place at the Gracia de Orta in Panjim {this is the garden near the famous White Church of Panjim}. Join in the late night dancing party that goes on right in the heart of Panjim city, with live bands, food counters and of course drinks on offer. This is one of the most important events on every Goan’s social calendar and a great way to experience a different sort of nightlife, so definitely skip the nightclubs and head here. Again a free to attend event, so get your dancing shoes on, and make sure you’re wearing red and black.


Miramar Circle, Miramar, Panjim, Goa


    Cunha Rivara Road, Altinho, Panjim, Goa

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    Remember to carry a hat, wear your most colourful outfit & jewellery and your enthusiasm to join in the celebrations.