Goa, on the west coast of India is a land of swaying palms, miles of golden sand, lush greenery, an incredible cultural heritage, magnificent churches, temples and monuments and a unique cultural synthesis of the east and west. Variously known as “Pearl of the Orient” and a “Tourist Paradise”, the state of Goa is located on the western coast of India in the coastal belt known as Konkan.
The magnificent scenic beauty and the architectural splendors of its temples, churches and old houses have made Goa a firm favorite with travelers around the world. But then, Goa is much more than just beaches and sea. It has a soul, which goes deep into unique history, rich culture and some of the prettiest natural scenery that India has to offer. Much of the real Goa is in its interiors, both inside its buildings and in the hinterland away from the coastal area.
::::::::::: Popular Destinations In Goa :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
Panaji, the capital of Goa; is the most visited Goan destination by non-native as well as native tourists. It is the travel hub of Goa and Dabolim Airport located on the outskirts of Panaji, welcomes good number of charter flights directly flying from Europe. Panaji is famous for the Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception, and the Church of St. Francis of Assisi, along with the state museum situated at Patto, the Institute Menezes Bregenza Art Gallery, and the Se Cathedral.
Dedicated to the preservation of art, culture and environment and in order to preserve Goa's past and its rich traditions this magnificent project named "Ancestral Goa" is the result of a lot of meticulous research, planning and hard work. It opened to the public in April 1995. Ancestral Goa is a miniature of a Goan Village, as it would have existed 100 years ago. It is located on a nine acre verdant hillock at Loutulim in South Goa, about ten kilometers from Margao.
Graceful swans charm the entrance to the reception. Elephants carrying flowered pillars with multi-hued and decorated beams deck the entryway. A spacious room redolent of the Goan - Portuguese aura replete with a palanquin, sepia-toned photographs, domed lamps and a designed marble floor feeds one the anticipation of a moment when a whole treasure in the book of history will unfold. A sari-clad Goan girl performs the traditional 'aarti' as part of the greeted welcome.
Margao, located in the hinterland of southern Goa, is the second largest town and is a thriving commercial metropolis linked by rail and road to the rest of India. The Largo de Igreja, or the Church of the Holy Spirit, built by the Portuguese in 1675 dominates the entrance to the city. The church area is surrounded by beautiful old residential houses still in pristine condition. Just within walking distance of the Church, is the famous “House of Seven Gables” or “Sat Burzam Ghor”, built in 1790 by Sebastino da Silva, emissary and private secretary to the Portuguese Viceroy. Although only three of the seven gables remain today, they give the visitor an idea about the size of the original edifice.
Vasco is situated on the narrow western tip of the Marmagoa (also known as Mormugao) peninsula, southwest of Panjim. Portuguese captured this place in 1543 and built a fort at sada, near the tip of the peninsula, to control the smooth movement of ships to and from the Zuari River. At the base of the ruins of Sada fort, there is a small and beautiful beach. One can reach there via steps leading down the steep cliffside. The beach remains pretty isolated for most of the day except for a few locals who come for a dip in the sea. There is also a fresh-water spring in the hillside which has a constant flow of water round the year. Another attraction of Vasco is the naval museum, showcasing the history of Indian Naval Aviation, various aircrafts, weapons, sensors, safety equipment, rare photographs depicting Goa's liberation and artifacts.
Goa's balmy tropical weather means that temperatures don't fluctuate much, hovering between 24° C to 29° C all the year-round. But at the peak of summer in the month of May, noon temperatures often cross 33°C. The Goan monsoon, which lasts from June to September, adorns Goa with greenery all around and tourists are now coming in to see Goa at her beautiful best while taking advantage of monsoon discounts from the hotels and resorts.