With its fluorescent painted palm trees and infamous full-moon parties, Anjuna, 8 km west of Mapusa is Goa at its alternative. World famous for its trance parties held on the beach during the tourist season. Anjuna also hosts the famous flea market wherein you can purchase many things ranging from fruits to jewelry, clothes and electronic devices. The Anjuna Beach is known for its soft white sands and shoreline dotted with exotic palm trees. Since the Anjuna beach has a rocky promontory, the ocean currents are not very strong and it offers the perfect backdrop for bathing and playing in the water. In Anjuna, there is everything a traveler may need like, ATM, cyber cafes, bikes, rooms and houses on rent. Also numerous restaurants offering different kinds of food to tackle your taste (Goan, Indian, continental, Israeli, Italian, French, etc.).
Anjuna Flea Market
Without doubt the most important day in the Anjuna diary. The Flea market day sees scores of local and expat vendors descending on the market site at the far south of the beach, to haggle the day away over clothing, jewellery, souvenirs and a good deal, these days, of usual tourist tat. Pick through the rubbish (underfoot, quite literally) to seek out treasure, including sparkling ceiling hangings, dancing dolls, and posh frocks made from dazzling saris. Even if you don’t come home loaded with shopping, it’s an unmissable event, where you’ll find Goa’s old faithful hippies mingling with I Heart Goa–clad Indian tourists, package-holiday Brits and Russians, and young backpackers
Sunset boat cruise
A host of floats sets out each evening just before sunset to ply the Mandovi waters and entertain tourists with nothing more sophisticated than the view, a beer or two and a dash of traditional Goan dancing. A number of companies run competing tours from the Santa Monica Jetty, with the GTDC’s being the most serene and least raucous of the bunch. So pick up your tickets and head to the jetty to experience and compare these watery offerings.
Basilica of Bom Jesus
The Basilica of Bom Jesus is famous throughout the Roman Catholic world. It contains the tomb and mortal remains of St Francis Xavier who, in 1541, was given the task of spreading Christianity among the subjects of the Portuguese colonies in the East.
A former pupil of St Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Jesuit order, St Francis Xavier embarked on missionary voyages that became legendary and, considering the state of transport at the time, were nothing short of miraculous.
Apart from the richly gilded altars, the interior of the church is remarkable for its simplicity. Construction began in 1594 and was completed in 1605. This old monument is a must see when in Goa
The Mangesh Linga is said to have been consecrated on the mountain of Mangireesh (Mongir) on the banks of river Bhagirathi by Lord Brahma, from where the Saraswat Brahmins brought it to Trihotrapuri in Bihar. They carried the linga to Gomantaka and settled at Mathagrama, the present-day Margao, establishing their most sacred and ancient temple of Mangesh on the banks of the river Gomati or Zuari as it is called today.
The 450-year-old Shri Mangesh temple dedicated to Shiva stands out with its simple and yet exquisitely elegant structure. The temple architecture consists of several domes, pilasters and balustrades. There is a prominent Nandi Bull and a beautiful seven-story deepstambha (lamp tower), which stands inside the temple complex. The temple also has a magnificent water tank, which is believed to be the oldest part of the temple.
Like most temples in Goa, Mangueshi Temple has a large number of pujas being performed daily. Every morning, Shodshopchar pujas, namely Abhisheka Laghurudra and Maharudra, are performed. This is followed by Maha-Aarti at noon and Panchopchar pooja at night.
Every Monday, the idol of Manguesh is taken out for a precession in the Palakhi accompanied by music before the evening Aarti
The Mapusa market goes about its business daily, except Sundays, but really gets going on Friday’s. It’s a raucous affair that attracts vendors and shoppers from all over Goa (and interstate) with an entirely different vibe to the Mapusa market. Here you’ll find locals haggling for clothing and produce, and you can also find antiques, souvenirs and textiles. So significant is the market locally that the town’s name is derived from the Konkani words map meaning ‘measure’ and sa meaning ‘fill up’, in reference to the trade in spices, vegetables and fruit that’s plied here daily.
Church of our lady of the immaculate conception
Panaji’s spiritual, as well as geographical centre is its gleamingly picturesque main church, built in 1619 over an older, smaller 1540 chapel and stacked like a fancy white wedding cake to the southeast of the ragged municipal gardens. When Panaji was little more than a sleepy fishing village, this place was the first port of call for sailors from Lisbon, who would clamber up here to thank their lucky stars for a safe crossing, before continuing to Ela (Old Goa), the state’s capital until the 19th century, further east up the river.
Dudhsagar Waterfalls, at 2,000 feet high, are the highest falls in India. Dudhsagar means “sea of milk” and the name comes from the white foam created from the force of the water as it drops. From the parking lot, it’s about a 5-10 minute hike down to the falls. It can be a little rough for anyone with mobility problems. You’ll pass through 3 of its tributaries, lush forests and will finally arrive at the bottom of the falls. Bring a bathing suit to swim under them and pack some snacks or lunch. Watch the monkeys. Most are harmless and just want to share your lunch.
The Vagator beach is said to be one of the most beautiful beaches in the whole world and I have absolutely no doubt about this saying. It is really beautiful. It is made up of a number of small beaches. Red cliffs and rocks, palm and coconut trees, red sandy beaches, the chapora fort, all these make it almost like a paradise. Its picture perfect.
Ancestral Goa Museum Big foot
The Ancestral Goa museum/ exhibition is situated in the small Village of Loutolim which is about 10 km from Margao and 25 km from Panaji. The musuem is also known as big foot. It is privately run by an artist called Maendra Jocelino Araujo Alvares. The open-air museum recreates Goan rural life as it was a hundred years ago. At Ancestral Goa there are a number of places to visit such as an art gallery where one can see work done by local children and artists of State and National fame. There is a handicraft centre where one can get some locally made Goan artificats, Big Foot dance floor, Big Foot restaurant, a cross, a spring known as Boca da Vaca, a bird habitat, a spice yard, rubber plantations and lots more
Maya Lake also known as Mayem Lake is situated in Mayem in the Bicholim taluka of North Goa. It is a popular tourist spot in Goa for boating. The beautiful Maya lake is located 7 kms from the Saptakoteshwar Temple and is a famous picnic spot for the locals of Goa and tourists alike. On the roadside there are vendors dealing in Goan handicrafts and refreshments boasting of delicious coconut water.
When visiting the Mayem Lake, a trip to the famous Chamundi temple at Piligao is worth a visit. The image of the Chamunda goddess was originally brought from a temple in Goa Velha which was ruined by the invasions of the Muslim ruler, Malik Kafur in 1312. This temple is very old, although having been rebuilt a number of times. The temple tank is quite large and in its centre is a platform stone with ancient carvings