Nikkis Goa Holidays
Nikkis Goa Holidays
Nikkis Goa Holidays
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INFORMATION ON GOA


Prettier than a postcard, India's tiniest state Goa remains the vacationer's hottest spot. If you are looking for a seductive atmosphere to relax and rejuvenate your spirits on dazzling sun-drenched beaches, then a visit to Goa is a perfect choice. With its natural scenic beauty and superb beaches, this tropical paradise on the western coast of India is famous for its architecture, feasts and festivals and above all, its hospitable people with a rich cultural milieu.

Goa is one of the youngest states to attain statehood after 451 years of colonial rule and 26 years as a Union territory. Today, Goa has a one of the most developed tourism infrastructures in India

Being a small state, Goa has just three major cities, two towns & lots of villages to visit.

  
PANAJI - THE CAPITAL


For most Panaji is simply a busy bus terminal, however it is worth spending a few hours exploring this most sedate of State Capitals. Situated on the southern banks of the Mandovi River, Panaji only became the capital of Goa in 1843 by when the harbour at Old Goa had silted up and disease had driven its inhabitants out.

 
 

Panaji welcomes the tourists not with tourist sites but with its character. Apart from being the capital of Goa, it is also the focal point of tourism in Goa and a small and charming city on the banks of silvery Mandovi River. Panaji has beautiful, red-roofed houses, built in the Latin style, however the city does not lack in modern infrastructure and you can find modern houses, well laid gardens, statues and avenues lined with Gulmohar, Acassia and other trees.

The best way to explore the city is by foot, wandering around the old cobbled alleyways, colonial villas, red-roofed houses, taverns and cafes, much like any small Portuguese town. There are some wonderful old government buildings; some dating to before colonisation, and some elegant churches. Most memorable is the Church of the Immaculate Conception, which was built in 1541; it is topped with a huge bell that sits between two delicate Baroque-style towers.

The high street called the 18th June Road is also famous for its modern shops & boutiques.

 
MARGAO


Margao is the second large city in Goa and a bustling commercial center. It is a typically crowded Goan city with chaotic, noisy traffic and quite a few architectural reminders of its Portuguese past. Margao has an old-worldly charm about it because of its Portuguese churches, and some magnificent specimens of old Portuguese houses complete with shady balcaos (porches) and oyster-shell windows in its Borda area.

 
 

The Largo de Igreja, or the Church of the Holy Spirit as it is also known, dominates the entrance to the city, just north of the Municipal Garden Square. Beautiful old residential houses still in pristine condition surround the church area. The church was built by the Portuguese in 1675 and is one of the finest examples of late-Baroque architecture in Goa, boasting a pristine white façade and an interior dripping with gilt crystal and stucco.

The city has an excellent market area stretching from the south edge of the main square to within a stone's throw of the old railway station. The Bazaar centers on a labyrinthine covered area that's a rich source of authentic souvenirs and a good place to browse for some bargain shopping.

The famous Colva beach is just 6 kms away from Margao, so most travellers coming to this area of Goa, tend to spend their time in the beach area, rather than enjoy the charms of Margao town itself.

 
VASCO-DA-GAMA - THE PORT CITY


30 kms. From Panaji this is a modem, well laid out city close to Mormugao Harbour. It has beautiful and extensive avenues. The air terminus of Goa at Dabolim lies on the outskirts of the city. It is also the railway terminus for passenger service in the South Central Railway.

The main city of Vasco is well laid out pretty much in a straight line along parallel roads interlinked by small by lanes. There is hardly any landmark worth making a visit to Vasco, except for the 400-year old St. Andrews Church, which lies at the entrance to the city. In recent times, the city has been attracting local visitors, to what is easily the best cinema theatre in the whole of Goa.

There are two beaches near the city. The bigger and the more famous is the Bogmalo beach, which is about 8 kms southeast of the town and the smaller one named Hollant lies just about halfway along the same road. Bogmalo beach has luxury and mid-range hotels in the neighbourhood along with quite a few shacks where you can sample some tasty seafood dishes.

 
MAPUSA


13 Kms. from Panaji lies Mapusa town, the capital of Bardez Taluka, on the national highway NH 17, which joins Goa to Mumbai. Mapusa is Goa's third largest town. It is mainly a market town for the surrounding beach areas of Calangute, Candolim, Anjuna and Baga among others. Even its name is thought to be derived from the Konkani word for a measure - "map" and the phrase fill up - "sa". It is a fairly small town with mostly modern building spread around the slopes of a small hillock called Altinho.

Every Friday, the whole town has a lively look when the famous weekly Friday Market begins. The market attracts people from all over Goa who come here to buy and sell their wares. Everything from fresh and dried fish, incense, spices, fruits and vegetables to souvenirs from other states of India is available here.

 
PONDA

Ponda is a singularly drab town in the interior of Goa. The only reason to go to Ponda is if you are visiting the wildlife reserves or the nearby Hindu temples. Ponda is the Hindu heartland of Goa. Near the town are the five most famous Hindu Temples and the 'largest' mosque of Goa. The deities of most of these temples are ancient. Hindus fleeing from the coastal areas shifted these deities during the Portuguese Inquisition. The Bijapur ruler Ibrahim Adil Shah built the Safa Masjid, a relatively small mosque, in 1560. This is one of the few Muslim shrines not destroyed by the Portuguese.

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