Here's what happens in Goa during Navratri

Venita Gomes

The festival of Navratri is a joyous celebration, and Goa puts on a very festive look during the nine days of the occasion.

Sarvajanik Durga Puja|Panjim | Picture Courtesy: KD

People religiously prepare and clean their homes and temples premises to welcome Goddess Durga. During the nine days, they worship the nine forms of the goddess.

Navratri|Goa|Durga Puja | Picture Courtesy: KD

On the first day, in temples, the ghattstapana is performed, wherein nine types of seeds are sown and a copper pitcher (kalash) is placed on the top.

Navratri|Goa|Durga Puja | Picture Courtesy: Atharv Ratnakar Salgaonkar

Bhajans and kirtans are performed every night on all nine days of the festival.

Navratri|Goa|Durga Puja|Bhajan|Bhajan group | Picture Courtesy: Atharv Ratnakar Salgaonkar

Devotees chant Navratri mantras and offer prayers to the goddess.

Navratri|Goa|Durga Puja|Bhajan|Bhajan group|Ponda | Picture Courtesy: Atharv Ratnakar Salgaonkar

Temple premises and other mandals across Goa are elaborately and artistically decorated, in various mythological themes, around the statue of Goddess Durga.

Navratri|Goa|Durga Puja|Bhajan|mandal|Panjim | Picture Courtesy: Sandeep Desai

Another interesting aspect is the makhorotsav, in which traditional wooden frames are intricately decorated with flowers and colourful elements. These makhars are movable and the deity is placed in them, and function as a seat which is swayed during the puja.


The makharaostav is prominently seen in temples of Ponda, Shirgao and other places.


The Guajarati community, which has made Goa home, hosts various dandiya and other festive events during Navratri.