Viva Goa! This expression best explains the life and exuberance in Goa. Goa symbolizes the zeal not only for life but living it to the hilt. This explains why party never ends in Goa. Apart from the endless coastline of stunning beaches, the spirit and fun-loving nature of the people charm every visitor and everyone feels welcome in Goa. Goa is not just a place but a state of mind.
Four hundred and fifty years of Portuguese domination has given a unique identity to the Goans. But surprisingly, they are not all western having stubbornly clung to their Indian heritage blending the two to create a lifestyle evident nowhere else in India. Goa has that international vibe and at the same time it is as Indian as it gets.
Music, dance, food and feni, are few of the things Goans live for. Food is their first love and their favourite being Pao (bread) a legacy of the Portuguese. Other than this, fish is an everyday part of their plate. Goans will never live without their local drink, feni, prepared from cashew apple. They are also fanatical about music. It is an integral part of their daily life. So in Goa, one will hear all genres from Portuguese to techno to rave with the infamous Goa Trance being the recent craze.
Goans are friendly and hospitable and they can make friend with anyone. They are bohemian with an easy going nature and they will never miss their siesta. So during the afternoon between 1 to 4 pm, the whole state is inanimate and deep in sleep. Goans spend as much as they earn because they equate life with money. Despite their easy-going attitude, they are proud of their cultural heritage and they guard it zealously. Goans have no desire for the chaotic rat race of the world. But do not be misled they are very hard-working too. Many Goan fishermen resolutely stick to their old wooden boats and nets to earn their living and continue living in thatched huts kept to the bare minimum.
Nights in Goa are as lively as the day. Almost every third house has a bar-cum-restaurant, some are basic and some uber class. But whatever the standard, all are scintillating with loud music and dancing crowds.
Goa is free of any of the religious biases that smear most of India. Common bonds of language and Goan identity are strong among the people allowing different religions to co-exist. The people identify themselves as Goans first and second as Hindu, Christian or Muslim. Festivals are celebrated with equal fervor by all communities together.