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Goa Attractions

Goa, lying on the western coast in south India, is well-known for endless beaches, attracting numerous travelers from home and abroad every year. The churches, mosques and monasteries are also the essence of Goa attractions, some of which are the UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites, including Basilica of Bom Jesus, and St Francis of Assisi Church. In addition, Goa is abound in wildlife resources, making it possible to explore and know more about Indian flora and fauna with a safari in sanctuaries and botanical gardens.

Top Attractions

1. Baga Beach

Situated in North Goa, around 16 km (10 miles) from the capital of Goa - Panjim, Baga Beach is named after the “Baga Creek” that flows into the Arabian Sea. It is a perfect destination to spend a joyful day from sunrise to sunset. Baga Beach is especially famous for brilliant nightlife, delicious seafood, bustling bazaar, relaxing ayurvedic massage and varieties of interesting water sports like scuba diving (See 5 Places for Scuba Diving in Goa), paddle boarding and Banana Boat riding. The night clubs and cafés are highlights of Baga Beach, where you may witness some international DJs, and you will definitely love to groove over the hit beats.

2. Basilica of Bom Jesus

With a history spanning over 420 years, Basilica of Bom Jesus is a splendid structure blending vintage architecture and modern renovation. It is home to the remains of St. Francis Xavier who was a remarkable Spanish missionary and one of the most important Christian pilgrimages in Asia. Due to its rich culture and religious significance, Basilica of Bom Jesus was inscribed on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Apart from the brilliant interior and attracting exterior, the complex also houses a modern art gallery, displaying some exquisite paintings that tell history of Basilica of Bom Jesus.

3. Se Cathedral

Se Cathedral is Goa’s most iconic monument during Portuguese colonial period, constructed to memorialize the victory of Portuguese army and capture of Goa. Dedicated to Alexandrian Saint Catherine, Se Cathedral is considered to be one of Asia’s largest churches, located in Old Goa. Listed under the UNESCO’s World Heritage Site, it is a magnificent landmark with the Portuguese-Manueline architectural style and blending the elements of Corinthian and Tuscan origins.

4. Calangute Beach

Known as the “Queen of Beaches”, Calangute Beach is the longest beach in North Beach. This place is a hub for tourists and backpackers to enjoy water sports, shacks and clubs that serving cocktails, drinks and seafood. Parasailing is one of the most popular activities of Calangute Beach, and you will love to experience the fresh air blowing on your face while you soaring up high tied to a boat. Here you can also find some amazing flea markets to purchase souvenirs like handicrafts, fabrics and jewelry. The nearby medicinal spring is beneficial to your health and helpful in relieving tiredness. Surrounded by palm trees and coconut trees, Calangute Beach is a must-visit holiday resort on your Goa travel.

5. Aguada Fort

Aguada Fort is an incredible Portuguese style structure built in the 17th century. Standing on the Sinquerim Beach, Aguada Fort provides an extremely stunning view of Mandovi River and the Arabian Sea. Aguada Fort is divided into two different segments: the upper part serving as a watering station, and the second and the lower part as a safe tie-up place for Portuguese ships. The highlight of the fort is a four-storey lighthouse that built in 1864 for directing the ships into safe harbor, which is perfect for photographers to take in the beautiful view of the sunset.

Read more about Top 10 Things to Do in Goa

Other Beaches to See in Goa

1. Anjuna Beach (North Goa): the best place to admire the azure Arabian Sea.

2. Benaulim Beach (South Goa): a never-crowded place to enjoy sunbathing, seascapes, bull fighting, kart racing, and splendid historical churches.

3. Butterfly Beach (South Goa): a secluded paradise for various butterflies and aquatic creatures.

4. Candolim Beach (North Goa): scattered with a wide range of beach shacks that serving superb Goa food and rave parties.

5. Dona Paula Beach (North Goa): apart from water sports, giving you an experience of shopping along the beachside for some items like straw hats, spices, and lace handkerchiefs.

6. Galgibaga Beach (South Goa): a quiet place for taking a walk along the shores under the golden shimmering sunlight.

7. Palolem Beach (South Goa): with a perfect mix of calm water and exciting nightlife

8. Vagator Beach (North Goa): stunning with palm groves, rocky outcrops, red cliff and Chapora Fort in the surrounding.

Read more about 6 Best Beaches in Goa     5 Resplendent South Goa Beaches     6 Gorgeous North Goa Beaches

More Sightseeing Attractions in Goa

1. Anjuna Flea Market, aka Hippies Paradise, is a place to enjoy the live performance by rising jazz bands and buy the Hippie-style headbands, DVDs and so on.

2. Bats Island with the clean environment is a hub for enjoying interesting water sports, the most popular of which are snorkeling and scuba diving.

3. Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary is home to some of exotic birds and animals of the Western Ghats. Deer safari is the one of the most popular activities in this zoological park.

4. Chapora Fort is a brilliant structure built by Portuguese colonists to defend against Maratha. Now it’s a perfect spot to capture the amazing views of sunset and sunrise.

5. Chapora River, one of five important rivers of Goa, divides the Northern town of Pernem and Bardez. Tourists can have a houseboat ride on the river, from which you can also see the Chapora Fort.

6. Divar Island is a little isle in North Goa, where visitors can enjoy a rich variety of water sports, colorful festivals as well as the picturesque seaside landscapes.

7. Dudhsagar Falls in South Goa, a part of the Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary, is a wonderful destination with fantastic natural beauty of white water and popular for trekking.

8. Grand Island is a quite secluded place to experience some amazing activities, such as dolphin seeing, swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving.

9. Lamgau Caves provides a chance for tourists to discover the extraordinary beauty of manmade caves with excellent infrastructure and splendid figures of Hinduism.

10. Mangeshi Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, features its Deepastambha, which is a round seven-storey lamp tower painted white and golden.

11. Mapusa Friday Market opens 9 o'clock sharp every day and remains in action until the sunset. You can find a huge collection of specialties like spices, strings of Goan home-made chorizo and varieties of nuts.

12. Museum of Christian Art houses various religious collections - vestments, chalices, receptacles and other pieces of valuable relics, showing past religion life in Goa.

13. Naval Aviation Museum, the only military museum in all of Asia, opened in 1998, displays some brilliant aircrafts created by the Indian Navy in the open-air gallery.

14. Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church was constructed in 1541 with a Portuguese colonial style.

15. Our Lady of the Rosary Church, dedicated to St. Mary, houses an architecture with an amalgamation of Corinthian and Tuscan style.

16. Reis Magos Fort was constructed as strategic bastions by the Portuguese army. It was converted into a prison in 1993 and now this fort has been converted as a cultural center.

17. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, spreading in the area of 440 acres, is a surprising destination for tourists to see flora and fauna, and to take a mangroves cruise.

18. St Francis of Assisi Church, one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites near the Se Cathedral in Old Goa, is a Roman Catholic Church with a museum housing artifacts, paintings, Hindu temple sculptures and so on.

19. St. Cajetan Church, also known as the Church of Divine Providence, is Goa’s only cathedral with a dome-like structure constructed in the shape of a Greek cross.

Popular Destinations to Travel in Goa

1. Agonda       2. Anjuna       3. Arambol       4. Baga       5. Bicholim       6. Calangute       7. Canacona       8. Candolim       9. Colva

10. Dona Paula      11. Fontainhas      12. Mapusa      13. Margao      14. Panjim      15. Ponda      16. Vagator      17. Valpoi      18. Vasco Da Gam