Goa is a small place and the main attraction is the pristine and serene beaches, liquor and the food. Goa is divided into 3 regions North, Central and South
North Goa has lots of beautiful beaches, luxurious resorts, water sports and restaurants. Anjuna Beach, Aramol Beach, Ashwem Beach, Baga Beach, Candolim Beach, Calangute Beach, Dono Paula Beach, Keri Beach, Morjim Beach, Mandrem Beach, Miramar Beach, Sinquerim Beach, Siridao Beach,Vagator Beach etc are the beaches in North Goa.
In Central Goa The Mandovi and Zuari rivers greet you with spice plantations, cruises, temples, churches waterfalls etc. Panaji the state capital is also here.
South Goa has the maximum number of beaches. Chillax yourself in the quiter beaches. Colva, Betalbatim, Majorda, Varca, Palolem, Betul, Benaulim, Agonda, Bogmalo beaches are located here.
Panjim or Panaji
This beautiful small capital is the venue for street festivals especially the Feast of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception in December and in November the International Film Festival of India. In Panjim you should not miss The Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception datinng back to 1541. The Goa State Museum is open from 9.30 am to 5.30pm (Mon-Sat) it has a collection of sculptures, goan freedom fighters(less known), portugese furniture, wooden cristian sculptures and more.The entry is free. Sunday is closed.The Houses of Goa Museum has a entry fee of Rs 100 for adults and Rs 25 for kids. Its open from 10.30 to 7.30, alldays except Monday. The old Goan and British building architecture are displayed, the Mario gallery next door has the works of the famous cartoonist Mario Miranda. Its open from 10.00 to 5.30 and is closed on Sunday.The Secretariat building, Campal gardens etc can be viewed around.
The largest church in Old Goa - Se cathedral dating to 1562 has the golden bell the largest in Asia, the chapel of the cross miracles and the screen dedicted St Caterine behind the altar. The Kristu Kala Mandir Art Gallery has an entry fee of Rs 10/- open from 9.30am to 5.30pm, Monday closed has ancient wall frescoes and paintings. Church of St Francis of Assisi is as old as 1661 and depicts the life of St Francis with an Archeological museum entry fee Rs 10/- open 8pm to 5pm. Museum of Christian Art has an entry fee of Rs 30/-and is opne from 9.30am to 5pm and has a beautiful collection of paintings, lamps, and other objects. Basilica of Bom Jesus is the resting place of St Francis Xavier and the glass sided coffin can be viewed here. Capela de Monte has a hilltop church - Church of Our Lady of the Mount, the sunset here is very beautiful. There are many churches around to see.
Ponda is 29 kms away from Panaji and has spice plantations and temples. The Maungeshi temple is dedicated to Manguesh a local god. The Shantadurga temple is dedicated to Shantadurga the goddess of peace. The Tropical Spice plantation has a high entry fee of Rs 400/- and is open from 9am to 4pm gives you a 45 minute tour of the plantation. Elephant rides extra for Rs 600/-. Other plantations nearby are Sahakari Spice farm and Savoi plantation (cottages also found here).
60kms away from Panaji on the border of Karnataka is the 2nd highest in India and the best time to visit here is after the rains.
Mapusa has the Friday market from 8am to 6.30pm.
Fort Aguada is open from 8.30am to 5.30pm can be visited for good views, the Portugese light house is not accessible but there is a lighthouse with an entry fee of Rs 10/- which can be climbed for a good view. There is the Fort Aguada jail and Johnny's masion below the fort but it is not open for public. Calizz is a national award winning museum with Goan style houses which tell you about the Goan culture and life. Entry fee Rs 300/-, kids free and timings are from 10am to 7pm.
Water sports like jet skiing and parasailing can be done in Baga beach. H2o adventures costs Rs 600 to Rs 1200. Barracuda diving school offers 'try scuba' family diving classes on Mondays. In Baga dont miss the Mackie's Saturday night bazaar and the Ingo's Saturday Nite baazar in Arpora which start from 6pm. Apart from this the beach shacks offer good food and drinks. For bakery try Infantaria in Calangute for pasteries.
Anjuna beach has paragliding for Rs 1500/-. Andy's tattoo studio open from noon to 7.00 except sundays is much popular. Yoga classes at Brahmani yoga.
Margao is the capital of Salcette and it is a good town to explore. The MMC new market open till 9am is good to visit. Swad is a good veg retaurant here.
Chandor is 15 kms away from Margao. The festival Feast of the three kings is held here in in January. The Braganza house the ancient 17th century building is open from 9-5. The building has 2 wings, the east and the west. There are many souveniers and antiques to look around here, the priced possssession is the finger nail of St Farncis Xavier in the east wing. The buildings are maintained on donations given by the visitors. Fernandes house has an entry fee of Rs 200/- open from 9 to 6pm is also around 500 years old.
Colva is a happening beach flooded with Indian tourists. The Our Lady of Mercy Church is worth a visit in Colva, many miracles have happened here by 'Menino Jesus'. In October there is a festival where the idol is dipped in water and placed in the altar for devotees to pray.
Kayaks can be rented here. Take a boat to butterfly beach and wander around.
Cotigo Wildlife Sanctuary
9 kms away from Palolem, and open from 7 to 5pm it has a entry fee of Rs 5/-. Birds, frogs, monkeys, snakes atc are visible.Try Cafe Inn and German bakery at Palolem beach.
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