Goa, Goa Travel Guide :
Goa is located on the western coast of India. It was a union territory of the Indian Government earlier and now, it has become a state. It goes without saying that Goa has been a popular tourist destination of India. Goa is known for beaches, and churches. It is a small state. Karnataka and Maharashtra are its border states.
About Goa Goa is a fusion of Hindu, Catholic and Portuguese traditions. Goa is divided into two parts: one is the Northern Goa and the other one is the Southern Goa. Panjim is the state capital. Tourists can make Panjim or Margao as their starting point. Goa has been ruled by Satavahanas, Rashtrakuta, Sultanate of Delhi, Vijayanagarra kings and the Bahamani Sultans. It was lost to the Portuguese from the Bahamani Sultans in the 15th century. The Porutuguese ruled Goa till 1961, even after India got Independence and Goa was annexed with the Indian Government by the Indian Army in 1961.
Goa has a tropical climate. So the tourists have two seasons in Goa: one in winter for the foreigners and another in summer for the Indians. Tourism is an important industry in Goa apart from agriculture, fisheries, mining and beverages. Konkani is the spoken and official language of Goa, though people do speak Portuguese, Kannada, Hindi, English and Marathi. Goan culture is a confluence of Konkani speaking GSBs (Gouda Saraswat Brahmins), Catholics, Portuguese, Hindu and the local Koli tradition (native fishing community). People are friendly and of easy going type. The fusion is visible in art, architecture and music. Goa hosts Carnivals, Yearend celebrations, and Christmas festival with all grandeur.
Places to visit
» Beaches: Beaches are divided into two sectors: Northern beaches stating from Panjim and southern beaches staring from Margao. If you want to have a relaxed time on clean sands then go towards the South. You get less crowded beaches there. If you are on a family picnic then go towards North. Northern beaches provide water sports and other amusements for the whole family. Some of the popular beaches are: Anjuna Beach, Baga, Calangute, Dona-Paula, Colva, Palolem Beach.
» Forts: Goa is known for Portuguese style forts. To name some of them: Aguada Fort, Chapora Fort, Carjuem Fort, and Reis Magos Fort.
» Churches: During the rule of Portuguese Goa was transformed into a Christian hub. Many churches were built during that time. Churches played an important role in educating the Goan population. St. Francis Xavier church, St.Paul church, old church of St. Augustine and Se Cathedral Church are the well known churches.
»Temples: In Goa, there are Hindu temples having devotees in large number. Shanta Durga Temple is one such temple which is an ancient temple of Godess Parvathi. It is located in Kavlem. Other temples are: Shri Manguesh temple, Naguesh temple, Mahalasa temple and Shri Damodar temple. The famous singer Latha Mangeshkar is a regular devotee of Shri Manguesh Temple.
Goa should be visited during its carnivals. One can see the true colors of Goan culture. It is held in the month of February. Goa is worth visiting during the celebrations of Christmas and the New Year. People just enthrall in unrestricted fun and wine. In Goa one can buy decorative items made of sea shells, bags, cashew nut, and importantly Goan Fenny! Goa serves best quality sea food. One can opt for dhabhas on the beach side to relish sea food. Goa can be reached by road/rail and air and by sea route. To travel in and around Goa guests can opt for taxi cabs. Self-driven taxis are also available. Goan people are very friendly and love to treat their guests.