South India  |  Travel In Goa   |  Tourist Destination of Goa

Tourist Destination of Goa

Goa is undoubtedly one of the most sought after tourist destinations in India. The state is divided into two halves namely north Goa and south Goa. The various towns and cities of Goa are known for their historical monuments and many other tourist attractions. The administrative headquarters and capital city of Goa is Panaji. The cities of Goa are a unique blend of sophistication as well as tradition. You will find modern buildings, historical monuments, temples, churches, beaches, sanctuaries, etc. all blending perfectly into the scenic landscape of Goa.

Bicholim

Bicholim is a small city located in North Goa. It is also a headquarters of the Bicholim district. Bicholim forms the Novas Conquistas or new conquests, along with six other areas. These areas were added to the territory of Goa relatively later. The district is known as the mining center of Goa. The region is also known for its traditional handicrafts. Bicholim is sometimes referred to as the educational and cultural center of north Goa.

Margao

Margao is an important city in Goa and is also the second largest. It is a major commercial center of Goa. Margao is also the administrative capital of south Goa and is the capital of Salcete Taluka. When you travel to Margao, you will definitely feel the old world charm that still lingers in this place. Margao is well known for its rich historical past and diverse cultural heritage. It is also a
major tourism center of Goa.Margao was the center of a fish market which was very famous in Goa. The market used to assemble near the Municipal Office Building, which was a very amusing and entertaining sight. Lots of fisherwomen used to assemble and set up their stalls and would attract customers by announcing it on top of their voices. These fisherwomen used to be dressed in some of the brightest colors and would look very pretty in those clothes.

Mapusa

Mapusa is a favorite tourism destination among those who travel to Goa. This is because Mapusa city is closest to all popular beaches in Goa. This place is the headquarters of the Bardez Taluka and is at a distance of around 13 kilometers from Panaji. The best time to travel to Mapusa is from October to April. The weather is just fine to let you enjoy your trip. Since it is a
commercial town, the number of deluxe hotels and resorts is limited. The rich historical legacy of the Portugal rule in India is seen in the form of historical monuments and forts. Mapusa is famous among not just tourists but locals as well. Every week, on Friday, Mapusa comes alive with the weekly market that is set up here. One can find almost everything over here. Right from trinkets to spices to dried fish to clothes; it gives 'shopping under one roof' a new meaning! This weekly market does not have the aspect of a tourism oriented fair but has that typical local Goan flavor, which is what gives it more brownie points.

Mormugao Harbor

Located about 4 kms from the port city of Vasco da Gama and 34 kms from Panaji, Mormugao Harbor is one of the famous natural harbors on the west coast of the Indian subcontinent. Located on the mouth of the river Zuari, Mormugao is among the well known cities & townships in Goa. Tourists are drawn to the town by its pleasant atmosphere, old-world charm, the spectacular beaches,
and the scenic sunsets. Built by the Portuguese in 1624 as a fortified town on the headland overlooking Mormugao harbor, Mormugao in Goa is an indication of Portuguese maritime supremacy in the 17th century. The harbor is served by the Zuari River and Mandovi River. A hub of immense maritime activity, Mormugao harbor handles passenger and cargo ships from the world over. It handles mineral ore, coal, petroleum, and international containers. The harbor possesses facilities for pilotage, lighterage, towage, bunkering, loading, unloading, warehousing, transit sheds, freightage, medical aid and supplies.

Mollem

Mollem is a small village located along the eastern border of Goa. The nearest town, Ponda, is situated about 29 kilometers away. Mollem is famous for the Bhagwan Mahavir Sanctuary, which was earlier known as the Mollem game sanctuary. This wildlife park has given this otherwise quaint and nondescript village the status of one of the major tourist destinations in Goa. The sanctuary is among the four biggest sanctuaries of the state.

Old Goa

Old Goa is the town that served as the Portuguese colonial capital for three and a half centuries. It is home to some of the best known churches and historic monuments of Goa and has been declared a world heritage site by the UNESCO. Old Goa came up after the defeat of Adil Shah by Admiral Afonso de Albuquerque in 1510. Soon, the missionaries followed and the religious buildings came up.

Panaji

Panaji is the capital city of Goa and is the third largest city in Goa. The city of Panaji was known by the name of Panjim during the Portugal rule. The official name now is Panaji, though it is known as Panjim among locals even today. Though it is a small city, people travel to Panaji just to relax and watch time go by slowly. This city still has an old world charm about it which is what boosts
tourism here. While on one hand, it looks like time has left this place untouched and urbanization is a word unheard of, you will find some of the most well known educational institutes and commercial complexes here.Panaji city is out an out an entertaining city that will keep you fascinated for days at end. You will not find skyscrapers, fast cars and sleek buildings here; instead you will find some of the most beautiful churches and Portuguese style houses that have hanging balconies, red tiled roofs and perfect gardens with tall Gulmohar trees. It is known for its historical monuments and beaches that are a must visit for all those who want to see the better things that a city has to offer. You may find plush malls, showrooms, etc. in every urban metro, but Panaji offers you unadulterated legacy that is rich in beauty, culture and tradition. The people of Panaji sure know how to take it easy and are extremely warm people. They know how to enjoy life and will go to any lengths to make a guest feel at home.

Ponda

Ponda city in Goa is the place where Hinduism is at its maximum. It can be easily tagged as the heart of Hinduism in Goa. During the Portugal rule, many Hindus abandoned their houses located near the coasts and proceeded towards the interiors of Goa. A large number of them went to Ponda and settled there. The population grew in size and today Ponda has the maximum number of Hindus
dwelling in Goa. This is the reason why Ponda is also known as the "Temple Town of Goa". When you travel to Ponda, make sure you visit all the temples which give a boost to tourism in Ponda. Apart from temples and other places of worship, you can visit the two important wildlife sanctuaries that are located here. They are Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary and Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary. The sanctuaries make the perfect getaway for all you nature enthusiasts. Explore the wild side of Goa and spend quiet moments with untouched nature. The sanctuaries have a rich variety of flora and fauna and are the perfect place for you to indulge in some soul searching. Also, do visit the Dudhsagar Waterfalls that are ranked as one of the highest waterfalls in the world.

Vasco Da Gama

Vasco Da Gama is an important town that is located in south Goa district in the Marmagoa Taluka. It is located at a distance of around 30 kilometers from Panaji, the capital city of Goa. The location of Vasco Da Gama is such that it overlooks the Zuari River. It was one of the busiest ports on the west coast of the Indian sub continent when the Portuguese acquired it in 1543. Today, Vasco De Gama is a busy shipping center where huge container vessels come to deposit raw materials and other items.Tourists travel to Vasco da Gama to explorethe famous Bogmalo beach, the ports, Naval Aviation Center, etc.Tourism in Vasco Da Gama has not really caught up because it is mainly a busy commercial hub and an important trade center. But still, it has its own popular tourist attractions that show a different aspect of Goa. Vasco Da Gama has quite good hotels and provide decent lodging and accommodation.

Valpoi

Valpoi is a small village located in the Sattari taluka in north Goa. This quaint place is known for a number of temples and the festivals celebrated here. Valpoi is among the well known cities and villages in India and showcases remains from the Portuguese past that entire Goa has. Tourists looking to go off the beaten track will find this place an interesting spot where you will be able to get a first hand experience on the village life of Goa. The name is derived from two words - Val, meaning River, and Poi, meaning the other side.

Tiracol

Tiracol is located at the northernmost tip of Goa. It is known for the Tiracol fort which has been converted into a famous hotel, the Hotel Tiracol Heritage. The fort was built by the Portuguese for the defense of this part outdoor games Goa. It is built on the banks of the Tirakhol River.