Panjim is the capital city of Goa and its academic, cultural and commercial heartland. The name is said to have derived from the Konkani term ‘Ponjy’, which means ‘the land that never floods’.
The Portuguese took to calling the city ‘Panjim’.After the liberation of Goa following India’s military intervention in 1961, the name was changed to ‘Panaji’.Its history as the capital of Portuguese Goa began in 1759 with the shifting here of the residence of the Viceroy from Panelim in Old Goa, which had experienced decades of chronic commercial and political decline.
Panaji soon became one of the biggest metropolises of its day.A royal decree in 1843 officially granted it the status of a city and declared it to be the capital of Nova Goa.Â Some of Goa’s most historical Portuguese-era constructions can still be seen today in Panaji. These include churches such as the Church of the Immaculate Conception, mansions, residential streets and many heritage structures
Miramar Beach is situated 1 kilometer ahead of the confluence of Mandovi River and the Arabian Sea. It is situated on the way towards Dona Paula, about 3 kilometers from Panjim, the capital city of Goa. Miramar Beach of Goa is also known as ‘Gasper Dias’The Miramar Beach in Goa begins at the gulf and then culminates in the Emerald Coast Parkway. It is a golden beach fringed with palm trees. The soft sands of the beach makes it the best site for evening walks. Moreover, ‘miramar’ in Portuguese implies ‘viewing the sea’. Tourists can get a glimpse of the majesty of the Arabian Sea from the Miramar Beach at Goa.
Furthermore, the Miramar Beach of Goa possesses a 2 kilometers long coast and silvery sand bed. The silver sand beds of the beach are said to sparkle in the moonlight. The beach also provides a kaleidoscopic view of the Aguada fort, which is known for its peaceful surroundings and solitude.
The best time to visit Miramar Beach is between the months of November and March. During this time, a large number of migratory birds come to the beach. One can see migratory birds such as gulls and plovers at the beach from November to March. The beach also provides a various options for accommodations. Tourists coming to Miramar Beach can put up at the hotels and resorts located at the beach. One can also come across many shopping and tourist destinations at a proximity to the hotel. Thus, Miramar Beach seems to be the perfect location for holidaying in Goa.
The place is named after Paula Amaral Antonio de Souto Maior, a historical figure in Portuguese India. She was the daughter of the Portuguese Viceroy of Jaffnapatnam, in Sri Lanka. She and her family arrived in Goa in 1644 and she married a Fidalgo from Spain in 1656. Her husband was Dom Antonio Souto Maior. They were an extremely affluent family, and the entire property from the present day Cabo Raj Nivas all the way to Caranzalem belonged to the Souto Maiors. She died on December 16, 1682.Dona Paula was a woman of charity and is known to have helped the villagers and worked a lot for their betterment, so after her death, the villagers decided to rename the village as Dona Paula. Initially the village was called Oddavell.The Dona Paula Beach is also a major tourist attraction. According to a local myth, Dona Paula entombed in the Cabo Chapel, the residence of the Governor of Goa and is supposed to be seen emerging from the moonlit waves wearing only a pearl necklace. Several tourists as well as locals guided by this myth visit the beach for a glimpse of Dona Paula. The Cabo Raj Bhavan is situated at a scenic spot of Dona Paula. It is also home of a historic British war-graves cemetery. After the end of Portuguese rule in Goa in 1961, Dona Paula became a fashionable residential area and address.
The fort was constructed in 1613 to guard against the Dutch and the Marathas. It was a reference point for the vessels coming fromEurope at that time. This old Portuguese fort stands on the beach south of Candolim, at the shore of the Mandovi River. It was initially tasked with defense of shipping and the nearby Bardez sub district.A freshwater spring within the fort provided water supply to the ships that used to stop by. This is how the fort got its name: Aguada, meaning Water. Crews of passing ships would often visit to replenish their fresh water stores. On the fort stands a four-storey Portuguese lighthouse, erected in 1864 and the oldest of its kind in Asia. Built in 1612, it was once the grandstand of 79 cannons. It has the capacity of storing 2,376,000 gallons of water, one of the biggest freshwater storages of the time in whole of Asia. This fort is divided in two segments: the upper part acted as fort and watering station, while the lower part served as a safe berth for Portuguese ships. Whereas the upper part has a moat, underground water storage chamber, gunpowder room, light house and bastions, it also has a secret escape passage to use during time of war and emergency. The lighthouse at initial stage is used to emit light once in 7 minutes. In 1834 it was changed to emit light creating eclipse every 30 seconds, however it was abandoned in 1976.Fort Aguada was the most prized and crucial fort of Portuguese. The fort is so large that it envelops the entire peninsula at the south western tip of Bardez. Built on the mouth of river Mandovi, it was strategically located and was the chief defence of Portuguese against the Dutch and Marathas.
Sinquerim is a village in Bardez sub-district, North Goa where one can enjoy different type of water sports like parasailing, banana boat ride, jetski, Dolphin trip and many more.
Calangute is a census town with a permanent population of approximately 16,000 (2001) in North Goa. It is famous for its beach, the largest in north Goa, visited by thousands of domestic and international tourists alike. The peak tourist season is during Christmas and New Year, and during the summer in May. During the monsoon season, from June through September, the sea can be rough and swimming is prohibited. The beach offers water sport activities like parasailing and water skiing, among others.