If you are from Bombay, I am sure you have spent many Christmas holidays in Goa. If you are not from Goa and planning a Christmas vacation in Goa, I would suggest a few things you should try when in Goa during the Christmas break.
Goa during Christmas is lit up owing to the hundreds of churches all over the state and the lakhs of Goan Catholics celebrating Christmas with great joy! A weeklong of merriment and good food continues which sure will make your vacation in Goa a memorable one. And they DO NOT include chilling at the beach and letting your hair loose at the club.
Now that Sunburn and Supersonic aren't happening in Goa, you can consider celebrating Christmas the traditional way by:
#1 Attend the midnight mass
You need not be a Catholic to attend a mass. The midnight prayer service starts around 11 pm and continues well upto 2 am. singing of Christmas carols, Christmas installations and other activities happen in the church premises. Do not miss the Christmas cake and coffee as you greet random people 'Merry Christmas'. Everyone's all smiles regardless of whether they know you or not.
#2 Sing Christmas carols and check out cribs
Seranading begins a week in advance. You will see a bunch of youngsters wearing santa caps and singing Christmas carols as the Santa Claus distributes toffees and candy canes around the city. There are cribs made in almost every ward and church, make sure you check them out as well!
#3 Go to the Christmas Ball
Even though Goa is known as the party hotspot, the traditional Christmas ball is an experience in itself. Forget the club for a night and go to a 'Christmas Dance' dressed in your formal best. There are many balls organised at wedding venues, halls and sports clubs.
#4 Gorge on some Christmas food
May it be a Christmas lunch at a friend's or dinner at a fancy restaurant, try to ask for the Christmas special food. Indulge in local delicacies like pork sorpotel, chicken xacuti, tongue roast, pulav and everything Goan with wine or champagne. Save the beer for another time!
#5 Do not miss out on traditional Goan sweets
There are many desserts and confections you need to try if you're in Goa during Christmas. Neureos, dodol, bebinca, doce, bolinhas, fruit cake, marzipans, kulkuls and bhatt are sure some of the must try traditional sweets! Modern day sweets include cookies, Christmas theme pastries, pops and cakes, etc.
#6 Burn the old man
This isn't really a Christmas celebration, but the old man is burnt on New Year's eve. it's an age old tradition kept alive by the Goan community. Several effigies of old men made of hay and old clothes are set on fire to signify destruction of worries and ills of the previous year.
If you like this post, share it with your friends travelling to Goa during Christmas. Also, write to me if you need any assistance planning your Goa trip!
Image courtesy: Google Images