India: Travelling in Goa

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India is officially known as Republic of India; is one of the largest country in South Asia. It is surrounded by the Indian Ocean, Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal. The name ‘INDIA’ was derived from the Sanskrit word “Sindhu” which means large body of water, representing the Indus River and ancient Greeks referred the Indians as Indoi, which also translates as “the people of Indus”.

India is home to the Indus Valley Civilisation and is very rich is culture during its long history. Four religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism) originates from India whereas Zoroantrianism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam made their mark in India in the 1st Millennium CE.

India can be accessed through air, water and land from various routes around the world.

Beautiful Goa, a state on India’s West Coast is a former Portugese colony with a unique mix of Indian and Portugese culture and architecture. Goa is actually a very small state which divides itself to North and South Goa district and it is further divided into 11 talukas (or better known as small towns).

People in Goa:

The culture in Goa is mainly shaped by the Hindu and Catholic population. You may find the people here is mostly easy going and you may find a lot of the people here mostly live in villages and travel to work.

The official language in Goa is Konkani but you may find that most Goans speaks Konkani, English, Hindi and Marathi.

Visiting Goa:

The best time to visit Goa is between mid-November to mid-February, so that you would be able to enjoy a comfortable and pleasant weather.

Goa can be accessed via its sole airport (Dabolim), by train and through the many buses connecting the state with other India cities – primarily Mumbai, Mangalore and Bangalore. Certain airlines has routes connecting to Goa or you may opt for domestic flights from Mumbai.

 

Travelling around Goa might be a little bit tricky as the town spread out with a considerable distance between them, and finding the way around could be challenging as certain park of Goa lacks sign boards. You may opt to travel around by motorbike, bus, and car. You may rent motorbikes and car to travel around but be prepared to expect surprises like domestic animals and little children darting across the road and unmarked speed bumps. Foreigners will need an International Driving Permit to be able to drive around in case you are stopped by the local police.

 

Goa’s Attractions:

Museums, Art Galleries and Libraries

Goa also has its fair share of museums, art galleries and libraries, such as Goa State museum, the Kala Academy, the Central Library and the Goa Science Centre, Old Goa and Christian Art Museum.

Beaches

Among the famous beaches are Arambol Beach – A quiet and virgin beach in North Goa with many water sports available with a very big beach market.

Palolem Beach is a scenic beach in south Goa with scenic rocks and islands off its shores.

Churches

It is no exaggeration to call Goa, a city of churches which are a proof of the rich history of the beach city. The churches in Goa are world-renowned as they have kept intact the old-world charm and thus are famous as tourist attractions.

Among the beautiful churches that has become tourist attractions in Goa is:

  • Bom Jesus Basilica (1605)- built in 1605, this Basilica has the mortal remains of St. Francis Xavier, one of the patron Saints of Goa.
  • Se Cathedral- built in 1619, one of cated to St. Catherine of Alexandria. It was built to remember the victory of the Portuguese over the Muslim rulers in the city. The building has a Golden bell that can be heard in the whole of Goa.
  • Church of St Francis of Assisi- built in 1661, located on the back of the Se Cathedral, this church is a beautiful piece of ancient workmanship.

Temples

Shree Manguesh Shantadurgai Prasanna Temple is dedicated to the deity of Lord Shiva. Shree Manguesh temple is famous for its pristine glory, which attracts thousands of visitors every year.

 

Things to do in Goa:

  • Relax at the beaches.
  • Chill out at the discos and pubs
  • Visit the Anjuna flea market
  • Browse the libraries
  • Diving: The season is between mid October to mid May. The local diving here consists of dive sites around Grande Island, just off the coast near Vasco da Gama. The dive sites are mostly 12-18 m deep, and the visibility varies through the season, averaging around 5-6 m. Marine life is abundant, with many species of reef fish, hard and soft corals, and several shipwrecks to dive.
  • Participate in water sports such as Jet-Ski, banana ride and paragliding. Goa has one of the cheapest beach adventure sports rates.
  • Visit the Butterfly Conservatory Of Goa.