Gorgeous Goa is one of the most idyllic beach holiday destinations in India. Breathtakingly beautiful blue beaches, sensuous silvery sands, fabulous flora and fauna, rich cultural heritage, captivating churches, and terrific temples, Goa has it all!
Fort of Aguada is situated in north Goa, 18 km from Panaji. The Fort of Aguada was built by the Portuguese to control enemy entry into River Mandovi and to protect old Goa from attacks. The fortification skirts the seashore. At the center of the fort is a circular lighthouse tower which was built in 1864. The Fort presently houses the central jail of Goa.
The church of Bom Jesus, "Good" or "Infant" Jesus, is known principally for the tomb of St. Francis Xavier. In 1946, it became the first church of India to be elevated to the status of Minor Basilica. The basilica, where the mortal remains of St. Francis Xavier are kept, is the best specimen of baroque architecture in India. St. Francis's body was brought to Goa almost 150 years after his death.
Situated on the northern most tip of Goa on a hillock overlooking the Arabian sea, Tiracol Fort was an ideal vantage point for soldiers who had to keep a look-out for enemy warships. In its courtyard is the century old church of St. Anthony. If the urge to escape to the ends of the earth strikes you, visit Fort Tiracol. Once an armed fortress that belonged to the Portuguese, Fort Tiracol is now content to spend the rest of its days on a cliff enjoying the kaleidoscopic view of the Arabian Sea and the spectacular estuary of the Tiracol River - the fort is now converted into a tourist resort.
Located at Laoulim, 10-km from Margao, ancestral Goa is a mock up village dating back a century. Built in a verdant hillside, a guided trek takes one down the Goan memory lane. This sprawling village has a natural spring, a fisherman's hut, marketplace, mansion of 'Dona Maria' and traditional Goan artisans at work. One can stop by the 'Traverena', the country liquor shop, warm up with a peg of Goan Feni distilled at the 'Bhatti' and play an ancient game of 'tabla'.
Among the temples of Goa, the Saraswati temples hold much significance amongst the local people. Besides, the Shanta Durga temple, the Ganapati temple, the Maha lakshmi temple, the Shri Nagesh Maharudra temple are also important places of visit.
The Menezes Braganza Institute, formerly known as the Institute Vasco da Gama was built to impart knowledge in arts and sciences. It is an excellent example of 19th century Portuguese civic architecture. The present name of the institute derives from philanthropist Luis de Menezes Braganza. Today it is Goa’s central library with a good collection of rare books. The Institute also houses an art gallery with works by late 19th and early 20th century European artists. The exhibits are now housed in the State Museum.
Goa’s beaches are justly famous all around the world, for they are alive with activity all around the day and well into the night, swinging to the rhythm of Goan trance that augments with every bottle of feni.
The emerald waters of Goan Beaches offer a lot of hot-blooded water sport opportunities including snorkeling, kayaking, water-skiing, sailing, wind-surfing and fishing.
Enjoy sailing towards Grande Island watching Dolphins do their morning dance, snorkel and fish in clear waters and wind up your day on a deserted beach with a sea-food Bar-be-Que. Start your tour on fiber glass canoes which take you towards the Grande Island, known for its clear waters and marine life. After an hour of spotting dolphins, go onwards to try your luck at Fishing and Snorkeling. Dock by a des erted beach where you can swim or top up your tan whilst our crew prepares a hot Bar-be-que lunch with the catch of the day. After lunch you return back to your hotel.
On this tour we take you to experience Goa’s beautiful backwaters, to meet the crocs and sight some beautiful bird life. Most Crocodiles that live in the Cumbarjua canal spend their day sunbathing on the muddy banks of the canal. This marine-life-rich ecosystem also sustains a healthy population of birdlife. We sail past some ancient and undeveloped Goan villages where you can watch fishermen and locals at work. We go onwards to a rustic Goan farm on the backwaters, where there’s a hot lunch ready for you. After lunch drive back to your hotel.
Morning visit Panaji, the capital of the state of Goa, it is a tiny city that packs in a large punch. The official name for the Panjim is Panaji, though in Konkani it is often pronounced as ‘Ponnji’. Panaji means ‘the land that does not flood’. Visit Fontainhas a quaint little settlement located on the western bank of the Ourem Creek in Panjim. It got its name from the Phonex fountain which supplied water to the area. It is also referred to as the Latin Quarter because of its elegant houses of the Portuguese era. Later visit the Mapusa Market (only on Friday). Evening enjoy entertainment with live bands, electronic music or the typical Goan brass band along with authetic Goan Cuisine. If you happen to take this tour on Saturday, don’t miss the famous Goan Saturday night bazaar!
The market has developed into a sort of souvenir bazaar where hawkers from Gujarat, Rajasthan and Kashmir sell handicraft items such as embroidered and mirror work tote bags, waist pouches, bedspreads, waistcoats and costume jewelry. There are no price tags on any article, allowing you to hone your bargaining skills!
The weekly Mapusa Friday market is full of wooden carvings, coir mats, wood furniture, straw hats and freshly baked bread. It is also more typically Goan, with fish, fruit, vegetables and other fresh produce sold alongside tourist goods. It wraps up by evening without a trace and is a delightful place to visit on a Friday!
When in Goa, don’t leave without tasting the famous Goan shack food. You will find shack restaurants scattered around everywhere in Goa. Savour some mouth watering Portuguese inspired sea food, highlights being the Goan coconut fish curry or the exotic chilli prawns, crabs and lobsters.
Goanese : Midas Touch,Souza Lobo, Martin’s Corner, Zeebop, Mum’s Kitchen
Seafood : Xavier’s, Sea Pearl
Multi Cuisine : Quarterdeck, Sublime, Cavala, Mikes Place