Goa Tour

Goa Introduction

It is the Iberian aura, the cultural allot of Latin and Oriental, the coexistence of Hinduism and Christianity that epitomizes the distinct identity of Goa. The Portuguese invested a hitherto predominantly Hindu society with their religions, attitudes and lifestyles, and Goaâs ethos and élan are consequences of this encounter.
Cocooned within its natural boundaries and that colonial cloister of Portuguese rule, this tiny pocket of the Indian Sub continent lay slumbering for several centauries, bypassed by history. While rest of the country progressed towards independence and the 20th century, Goa remained a Portuguese, suspended in a web of Nostalgia.

Since Goaâs absorption into the Indian union in 1961, there have been many changes. Yet, sleepy villages and myriads of white churches still characterized this lotus-eaterâs paradise, where the romance of the past lingers on and the mood is as gentle and unhurried as the undulating country side.

Goa's coastline provides endless sun drenched crescents of sand. Vagator, Anjuna, Baga, Calangute and Candolim stretch out in an unbroken palm fringed line. 451 years of Portuguese rule has imbued Goa's towns and villages with a unique culture. Whitewashed chapels and churches that dot the landscape are surrounded by sleepy villages and rice fields.

Goa is a tourist's paradise with its sprawling, sun-spangled, silvery beaches, cool, calm and endless azure horizons, palm-lined rivers, sea-resorts, ancient temples, ornate churches, forts, waterfalls, picnic spots, carnival, sumptuous cuisine and languid fun-filled life.

Fair and Festivals

Dussehra is generally considered as the triumph of good over evil. It is celebrated with a lot of color, particularly with garlands of marigold flowers. Virtually, everything from the vehicle, house to the cow is garlanded with marigolds on the auspicious occasion. It was also an occasion for the Hindu community to buy new household goods as well as other items such as vehicles etc.

Pilar Feast
The feast of Our Lady of Pilar is celebrated at the Monastery of the same name. They say that St Tiago, who was disappointed with his failures in preaching the gospel, saw the vision of Our Lady on a pillar, being taken by angels. The miraculous pillar is still there in Saragossa in Spain. Of course, the angels are missing.

Art and Handicraft

Pottery & Terra-cotta
In last twenty-five years the artisans have the knowledge and experience to make molded sculptures, decorative vases, floor and claddings titles besides murals. Bicholim is the center for artistic pottery. Water cooler called "Gurguleta"' had water pouring out of the beak. Round bottom small mouthed rice cooking pots are called "Budkule", "Kudnim" with wider mouth stirring are used for making curry and cooking vegetables on firewood. "Tovo" was gently shaped for frying fish, roasting 'chappatis' the local unleavened bread or cooking rice pancakes called "sullodeo". The alcohol Feni is made in large terra-cotta stills. 'Donn' a vase like container is used to store paddy and rice. Roof titles "Nodde" are used for roofing.

Bamboo Craft
Bamboos when cut and stripped can be woven into various types of baskets and mats. These can be used for carrying head load of coconut, rice, paddy, fish, flower baskets and letter-holders, pen stands, fans and other decorative items. Along the Goa's beaches, restaurant shacks have sprung up in style of huts of fishermen or agriculturists of yesteryears where matting and weavings is essential.

Coir Products
The Coir generated on husking the abundant coconuts grown locally is used in making rope. 'Morjim' a seaside village in Pernem has a number of families who are thus occupied. Rope of all sizes is made and used for drawing water from well, plucking mangoes, tying together planks of woods in the construction of traditional fishing craft. Thin rope woven with midribs of coconut leaves and bound together make rather efficient broom. As an matter of facts coconuts mask carving is done on coconut shells.

Sea Shell craft
The items produced include ashtrays, lamp shades, coasters, chandeliers, curtains, pot hangers, table mats, clocks, mirror frame,etc.

Jute Macrame craft
Decorative bags, belts, wall hanging, lampshades, flower pots, hanger etc.

How to get there

Goa (Dabolim Airport) is well connected by Air with Bombay, Bangalore, Cochin, Delhi, Madras and Ahmedabad.

Vasco-da-Gama and Margoa are connected by train with Bangalore, Belgaum, Hospet, Hubli and Hyderabad and via Miraj to Bombay, Delhi and Agra.

Goa is Well connected by Ship with Bombay

Places of interest

Panjim, the capital city, situated on the southern bank of the Mandovi river has a population of about 40,000, is centred on a church and the square in front of it. It in fact, has several squares, the houses lining them rising directly above the wide streets. Most of these villas, painted in pale yellow, green or deep rose.

How to get there

Panjim is well connected by air with Bombay and all other major cities

Panaji is connected by road to Bangalore-598 km, Belgaum-157 km, Bombay-594 km, Gokarn-154 km, Hospet-315 km, Hubli-184 km, Karwar- 103 km, Kolhapur-246 km, Malwan-150 km, Mangalore-371 kms, Mysore-696 km, Pune-458 km, Ratnagiri-263 kms, Vengurla-73 km.

In and around

Old Goa
10 km away also had known as the Golden Goa of the 16th century, when it was the "Rome of the Orient", with its Basilica of Bom Jesus, the focus of interest for many visitors to Goa. Se Cathedral (Cathedral of St. Catherine) remains one of the greatest monuments of the period. Completed in 1619, it is the largest Christian church in Asia.Mangesh Temple 22 kms dedicated to Lord Shiva, Shanta Durga Temple 33 km, dedicated to goddess Parvati in the Ponda neighbourhood are among the most frequented in Goa.

The second largest town in Goa and the principal commercial center, is one of the few linked to the rest of India by a railway line. It is home of several prominent landowning families who have built themselves town as well as country houses. A few other towns are sprinkled around the territory: Vasco da Gama is slowly developing in to an industrial center; Marmagoa, Goa's port, one of the India's finest natural harbors; Mapusa in the north is an interesting traditional market town.

As the riverside boulevard is called, is one of the most picturesque spots in Panjim. One can see in a single glance an astounding chunk of history: in the far distance, the ramparts of the Aguada fort â once one of the main bastions commanding the entrance into the Mandovi, with powder rooms, barracks , a church and a light house.

Betul Village
A drive south from Margao through heavily wooded teak plantations and deep green ravines brings the visitor to Betul village where a varied and almost inexhaustible supply of seafood.

An unbroken 7 km crescent of sun drenched sand marks the twin beaches of Candolim and Calangute, north Panjim and the Aguada head land. Colva beach, with its broad brow of silver gray scale, powder-fine sand that has been the inspiration for many folk tales and songs.

General information

Population 1,343,998
Area 3702 sq km
Capital Panaji
Languages Spoken Konkani and Marathi
District 2
People Per Sq. km 363
Literacy 82.32%
Best Season October to May (Peak season December to February).
STD Code 0631