The tiny piece of paradise- Goa, lies in the West Coast of India and is spread over an area of 3,702 sq. kms. With a coastline of 105 kms it is washed by the Arabian Sea. Goa's outstanding attractions are its serene and scenic beauty, diverse landscape- wide, sandy, palm - fringed beaches, clean waters, delicious food and hospitable people with a rich cultural milieu.
Goan culture is a confluence of many religions, faiths and traditions. People from various religions live in absolute communal harmony and participate wholeheartedly in the religious festivals of others. The Portuguese invaders destroyed many temples and mosques. As a result most of the temples are relatively new, though some date back to over 400 years.
There is no sea food like the Goan sea food. The shoreline stretched over miles, numerous river streams and the ponds produce the most amazing variety of fishes and other sea food. Delicious tiger prawns, oysters, shellfish, and black river crabs are available in plenty. The variety in fishes includes king fish, tuna, shark, rock fish and sardines. You can never have enough of the delectable Squids, cuttlefish, sea prawns, lobsters and mussels available here.
Donot miss out on the fabulous Feni, an alcohol produced only in Goa from the coconut and cashew tree.
Goan churches are absolutely peaceful and beautiful. The Church of St Francis of Assisi, with its gilded and carved woodwork, murals and a floor made of grave stones, it is one of the most interesting buildings of Goa. The Church of St Monica is as old as the 17th century. Se Cathedral is the largest church of Old Goa. Built for the Dominicans in 1562, it still retains its old splendor
Places to visit:
Old Goa - is located nine km east of Panajim and is famous for its churches and cathedrals. The Archaeological Survey of India has given some of the old buildings a facelift by converting them into museums maintained. The spiritual heart of Christian Goa, Old Goa has been given World Heritage Status by Unesco for its extraordinarily grand churches and convents.
Basilica of Bom Jesus - The 1605 church of Bom Jesus, "Good" or "Menino Jesus", is known principally for the tomb of St Francis Xavier. In 1946, it became the first church in India to be granted the status of Minor Basilica. On the west, the three-storey Renaissance facade combines Corinthian, Doric, Ionic and Composite styles. The church can be entered from beneath the choir, supported by columns. On the northern wall, in the centre of the nave, is a cenotaph in gilded bronze to Dom Jeronimo Mascaranhas, the Captain of Cochin and benefactor of the church. The main altar, beautifully engraved in gold, projects the infant Jesus under the protection of St Ignatius Loyola.