Image: Frederick Noronha/Creative Commons

Image: Frederick Noronha/Creative Commons

If you are in Goa in March and are witnessing processions on the road with loud music, colorful costumes and a display of cultural dance performances, then what you are seeing is the Shigmo festival. The 14-day celebrations of Shigmo coincide with Holi celebrations all over the country. For a good part of March, the streets of Goa transform into a cultural center full of dance and drama. This year, Shigmo will be celebrated from March 7 to March 20. Also Read - Marathi Language Day 2020: Govt to Table Bill For Making Marathi Compulsory in Schools Today



Image: Freredrick Noronha/Creative Commons

Image: Freredrick Noronha/Creative Commons

The Shigmo festival is significant in many ways. It commemorates the homecoming of the warriors who had left at the end of Dussera to fight the invaders. It is also the spring festival of Goa where farmers celebrate the harvest season. There are two forms of Shigmo celebrations in Goa. Dhakto Shigmo and Vhadlo Shigmo. Also Read - Indians Onboard Quarantined Cruise-liner Will be Back Soon: Envoy



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 Image: Freredrick Noronha/Creative Commons

Image: Freredrick Noronha/Creative Commons

While Dhakto Shigmo is generally celebrated by farmers and the rural population, Vhadlo Shigmo has a broader appeal and is celebrated by everyone together. Dhakto Shigmo is more about the singing, dancing and procession on the streets while Vhadlo is to do with celebrations inside temples.

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The processions carried out during Shigmotasav are characterized by colorful umbrellas or dindis, modern floats depicting ancient Hindu mythological episodes, and folk dancers in traditional costumes. One of the dances performed is the Ghode morni or the horse dance and the Phugdi dance.

Image: Freredrick Noronha/Creative Commons

Image: Freredrick Noronha/Creative Commons

It is widely known that the peak season in Goa is November to February on account of the Christmas and New Years parties held here. However, the festivals of Shigmo and Holi make Goa extremely happening and convivial during March. Not only do you get a slice of Goan culture, you also get to interact with locals, play the festival of colors with them and participate in various Holi events all across Goa. Riding on you scooter along the streets of Goa as locals throw colors on you, greet you with smiles and treat you as one of their own gives you a high.

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Goa-Holi

So, ditch the peak season and head to Goa during March for the time of your life!