Erakina

Panaji- The focal point of Goa tourism – Erakina

Published Date : February 17, 2022

With its serene beaches, quaint churches, and forts, the capital city of Goa is less with the stuff that one seeks for a vacation!

Mandovi bridge

A perfect holiday destination!

The picturesque streets of Panaji

Located on the banks of the mighty Mandovi River, the little city Panaji or Panjim is the administrative capital of Goa. The cobblestone streets of the city with vibrant shades and white borders and wooden framed doors and windows with long stretches of streets along with the carnival vibes set the mood for a perfect holiday! It is one of the most revered tourist attractions and is home to several colonial-era Portuguese buildings.

  • The shop signs of the city are still symbolic of colonial-era reminiscents.A shop sign at Panaji
  • With a cluster of terraced hills, the city bears the stamp of both Portuguese and Mughal rule and is often referred to as New Goa.
  •  Floating casinos and night cruises glitter along the banks of the Mandovi river with their bright neon signboards hence justifying Goa as the party capital of India. A few of the famous casinos include the Paradise Casino, The Casino pride, and the Deltin Casino. An offshore casino at Panjim
  • The streets are flanked by the lush acacia and Gulmohar trees that offer a scenic walk and the city is dotted with brightly painted buildings, old school cafes, and backstreet bars.
  • The beaches are the epicenter of tourism in Panaji. Miramar Beach, Dona Paula beach, Patnem- Colomb beach, Bambolim beach, and Rajbagh beach are amongst a few of the famous beaches.

Miramar Beach

An age-old city!

The city dates back to the beginning of the 11th century- the later classical period. It was then ruled by the Kadamba king, Shasta Deva. Various regimes like the Chalukyas, Kadambas, and Satavahanas have showcased their powers in the region. The reference to the rule of the Kadamba dynasty is found in a 12th-century inscription.

Panaji through the ages!

The entire city is laid down in a typical grid pattern that is centered around a church. The Portuguese influence is well reflected in the historical monuments like the churches and forts. The Konkan coast was ruled by the Marathas in medieval times. Several Maratha forts were reconstructed by the Portuguese. Architectural elements synthesize wonderfully in Panaji to make it worth all the hype!

  • The Aguada fort represents a wonderful amalgamation of Portuguese and Maratha cultures. It was designed to keep the prisoners and provide freshwater to the sailors. Each cell of the prison is designed in such a way that sunlight reaches the prisoners. The magnificent ocean can be viewed from the fort
  • The city was formerly called Pahajani Khali, the meaning being a boat and a creek respectively. 
  • Before the Portuguese took over the city, the Muslim ruler Adil shahi of Bijapur ruled the parts of the old goa.
  •  Panaji was converted to Panjim by the Portuguese in 1843. Panjim means the land that never floods. 
  • With the success of operation Vijay, Panaji acceded to the union of India along with Goa.

Aguada fort

  • Idalco is the oldest historical monument of Panaji. It was the palace of the Adil Shahi sultans of Bijapur and was rebuilt by the Portuguese. Thus, a blend of Portuguese and Muslim cultures is visible here. The monument was the residence of the viceroy and houses the Goan state legislature today.
  • Campal is a picturesque town located beside the secretariat.
  • There are several religious monuments in the city like the Church of Immaculate Conception, the Church of st. Sebastian,Jama masjid ,Jain temple , Mahalaxmi temple etc.Likewise, several monuments are present all around the church square. Archeological museum, Raj Nivas, Azad Maidan, Vasco da Gama institute, the statue of Abbe Faria are a few other attractions.

Statue of Abbe Faria

  • Campal is a picturesque town located beside the secretariat.
  • There are several religious monuments in the city like the Church of Immaculate Conception, the Church of st. Sebastian,Jama masjid ,Jain temple , Mahalaxmi temple etc.

And how can we forget the food?

Seafood is an integral part of the cuisines in Goa. With the immense use of spices, the Goan food looks incomplete without any seafood.

 Tandoori lobster

  • The Portuguese had a deep impact on the lifestyle of the natives of goa. And it was a deepening impact marked by the fact that several Goan dishes are incomplete without the spices. The Portuguese had transformed the city into a thriving spice market.
  • The innumerable sea beaches have blessed the coastal city with a booming fishing and seafood industry. 
  • Fish is cooked every other day in each household of Panaji and the rest of Goa.
  •  Apart from fish, seafood like lobster, squid, and mussels are quite popular in the city. 
  • Varieties of fish dishes are popular like the Goan fish curry, Goan prawn curry, fish suke, prawn masala, and the Visvan fish. All the dishes can be relished at any restaurant in the city.

Goan fish curry

  • The catholic cuisines are influenced by south Indian dishes in Goa. Goan catholic dishes include Balchao- a spicy curry, Chamuca-a unique samosa, Croquettes- a popular snack, Xacuti-a curry, Sanna-an idli popular in Goa, and Bebik which is a Christmas pudding.
  • Coconut finds immense use in the Goan recipes. Goan cuisine is the only Indian cuisine that blends the Indian and European flavors!

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6 thoughts on “Panaji- The focal point of Goa tourism – Erakina”

  1. Writer’s at Erakina are doing great… I appreciate Erakina for uploading such a informative content for making us aware about the nature…. Great work

  2. Aditya Jaiswal

    Panaji would be in everyone’s wishlist after reading this such was the beauty of this article

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