These local festivals take place in Goa during Carnival

Watch this video to discover two local festivals that take place in Goa during Carnival...

Experience more than just floats and parades at Goa's Carnival! Don't miss two unique local festivals, 'Potekar' on Divar Island and 'Mussoll Khel' in Chandor village that happen during Carnival.

The ‘Potekar’ festival takes place on the island of Divar. It began well before the Portuguese came to Goa and coincides with the Carnival festivities every year.

During the festival, islanders dress up as ‘Potekars’, donning scary costumes and masks similar to those at Halloween, and roam around the village scaring people. They often wear animal costumes and homemade masks while carrying a sack. In addition, they wear cowbells on their ankles and waists, and as they walk, the sound of these bells can be heard for miles around the village.

The celebrations are both fascinating and interesting at the same time. This year, the festival starts on Sunday, February 11, 2024, and ends on February 13, 2024. The best day to observe this festival is the last day, around afternoon time, when you will get a chance to see a lot of ‘potekars’.

The second unique local festival that takes place in Goa during Carnival time is the ‘Mussoll Khel’, which takes place in the village of Chandor. ‘Musallam khel’ or ‘Mussol nach’ is an ancient dance form that occurs in this village of South Goa and has been happening for several centuries, performed only by men.

A ‘mussol’ is basically a ‘pestle’, and hence this dance translates to ‘pestle dance’. It involves pounding using a pestle and is presented by the Christian ‘Chardo’ (Christian ‘Kshatriya’) community of Chandor. ‘Mussoll Khel’ takes place at night on Monday and Tuesday during Carnival.

This year it will be celebrated on February 12, 2024, at Cotta Chandor, and on the next day, February 13, 2024, in Cavorim.

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