Golden Goa, known in the bygone era as Gomanchala, Gopakapattam, Gopakapuri, Govapuri, Govarashtra etc., abounds in a rich historical heritage. In the 1st century of the Christian era, it was a part of the Satvahana Empire followed by the Kadambas, the Rashtrakutas of Malkhed, the Chalukyas and the Silharas. The empire of Yadavas by the end of the 14th century was displaced by the emperor Khilji of Delhi and thus the Muslim rule came to this region. After the discovery of the sea route to India by Vasco-da-Gama in 1498, many Portuguese expeditions came to India. In 1510, Alfonso de Albuquerque with the help of the emperor of Vijayanagar attacked and captured Goa. The Portuguese continued to rule over the territory except for an interlude during the latter half of the 17th century when Shivaji conquered a few areas. Even after the independence of India, Goa continued to be in the hands of the Portuguese. However, they could not fulfil the aspirations of Goan people and ultimately on 19 December 1961, after 451 years, the State was liberated and made a composite Union Territory with Daman and Diu. On 30th May 1987, it was conferred statehood, separating it from old Union Territory of Goa, Daman and Diu after 25 years.
Goa is gifted with immense natural beauty and a rich historical past and it offers a host of attractions for the holiday makers. This is the land where memories of the past fuse with the present and every Goan feel proud of its heritage. The entire State is dotted with some of the most magnificent churches, temples and age old forts and beautiful beaches that draw the admiration of tourists.
Capital: Panaji (Panjim)
Main languages: Konkani, Marathi, English, Hindi
When to go: October to March
Getting There & Away: How to reach Goa
Road: Four National Highways criss-cross Goa - NH66 connecting Mumbai in the north and Mangalore in the south; NH-4A connecting Panaji to Belgaum and other cities like Bangalure and Kohlapur, NH-366 connecting NH-66 to Mormugao Port from Cortalim and NH-566 conecting Mormugao Port to NH-66 at Verna via Dabolim Airport.
Rail: Madgaon and Vaso Da Gama are two major railway stations in Goa. The state utilizes the services of two railway lines - the South Westerns Railway connecting Vaso Da Gama to Balgaum, Hubli etc. and the Konkan Railway connecting Madgaon to the cities along India's western coastline.
Air: The only airport in the state is the Dabolim Airport near Vasco Da Gama. There are regular domestic services from all parts of India and also has international services connecting cities like Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Muscat, Doha, Dubai and Kuwait in the Middle East.