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Panjim is one of the best planned cities in the country, with a neat network of main avenues and connecting roads, a sewerage system, gardens and excellent Indo-Portuguese architecture. Panjim is a microcosm of Goa with a river and the Arabian Sea lapping at its feet, Khazan and salt pan lands which have now turned into the bus terminus and Patto Plaza the corporate district of Goa., from the salt pans to the coconut groves and Panjim rises up in an extremely picturesque manner to its hilltop at Altinho.

Panjim was originally a small fishing village with lots of coconut groves between creeks and fields. This capital city was a ward of Taleigao village. It so enamoured Adil Shah that he built his summer palace surrounded by a moat which was later filled up by the Portuguese when they came in to power and left Old Goa with its pestilence and disease to build a new city or Nova Goa as Panjim was called. But it was only during the early 19 th century that the city was enlarged, public sewerage, tree-lined avenues, gardens and ornamental park benches etc. The city was elevated to the status of city and became the capital of Goa by a royal decree and was known as Nova Goa.

The magnificent edifices of Old Goa were dismantled and the stones were reused to build smaller but very elegant houses for the people of Panjim and sturdy but again, elegant government buildings. Panjim with its broad tree lined avenues, gardens and beautiful buildings earned her the sobriquet, “Princess of the Mandovi”.

But all things must end, especially those who had to protect this beautiful city from the ravages of time. After Liberation the buildings of Panjim, began to lose their sparkle as those entrusted with their maintenance allowed the city to go to wrack and ruin.

Now Panjimites realize the value of its heritage and the Goa Heritage Action Group has been in the forefront of restoring Panjim to its earlier glory.

Architect Raya Shankwalker has taken photographs of some of Panjim’s old structures which have been renovated. His photographs prove that sometimes city fathers and city people can come together to bring a city to life. Raya too has played a large part in the beautification of Panjim city.

Goa Statistics

Co-ordinates: 15o29’35’’N 73o49’05’’E / 15.493oN 73.818oE

Area: 3702 km2

Capital: Panaji

Official language: Konkani

Altitude: sea level up to 1022 mts

Climate: max 36oC, min 17oC

Annual rainfall: 300 cms (average)

Population: 13, 43,998

Population density: 363/km2

Literacy rate: 82.32%

Time zone: IST (UTC+5.30)

Districts: 2

Established: 30th may 1987

 
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Places in Goa



























 
ANIMAL HOMETOWN! the sanctuaries of Goa...

Goa is home to vibrant and varied wildlife. The Sahyadri’s are an asylum for innumerable birds and animals like deer and gaurs (Indian bison), Malayan giant squirrels, monkeys, cobras and pythons, black panthers ,tigers and elephants. Goa is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts with the vibrant flora and fauna found here.

DR. SALIM ALI BIRD SANCTUARY
Goa’s only bird sanctuary, the Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary is situated on the western most tip of the Chorao Island on the banks of the river Mandovi. Named after India’s famed ornithologist Dr. Salim Ali, the sanctuary boasts of over 400 species of local and exotic migratory birds. Dense, fertile mangroves surrounding the sanctuary provide a nesting area for the various species of birds, insects and animals. In order to catch a glimpse of the delightful winged creatures, the permission of the Chief Wildlife Warden, Forest Department of Panaji. A rare glimpse of a crocodile, jackals or foxes is also in order during a visit to the sanctuary.

BONDLA WILDLIFE SANCTUARY
Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the abundant foothills of the Western Ghats. It houses a botanical garden, a rose garden, a sprawling deer safari park and a zoo which are major attractions for the tourists and the locals. The lush vegetation in the sanctuary consists of moist deciduous trees, evergreens and canes. The botanical garden houses a large number of exotic plants. Gaurs, panthers, leopards, deer, boars, Malabar giant squirrels, langurs and elephants are some of the animals sheltered at the Bondla sanctuary. The Nature Education Center at Bondla puts in a lot of effort in bringing nature closer to the people by organizing exhibits and screening videos on nature.

 

 

BHAGWAN MAHAVIR SANCTUARY, MOLEM
Rich in wildlife the Bhagwan Mahavir Sanctuary, Molem lies on the eastern border of Goa. The rare species of birds make it a paradise for the bird watchers. Stealthy panthers and dangerous doles (wild dogs) are a common sight at the Molem Sanctuary.

 

COTIGAO WILDLIFE SANCTUARY
Established to protect the forests of Goa, the Cotigao supports diverse life forms. Some of the fauna found here are the Flying Squirrel, Slender Loris, Indian Pangolin, Mouse Deer, Four-horned Antelope, Malabar Pit Viper, Hump-Nosed Pit Viper, White-bellied Woodpecker, Malabar Trogon, Velvet-fronted Nuthatch, Heart-spotted Woodpecker, Speckled Piculet, Malayan Bittern, Draco or Flying Lizard, Golden-back Gliding Snake, Sloth Bear, Wild Boars, Hyenas, Indian Bison, Rufus Woodpecker, White-eyed eagle, Malabar Crested eagle and Malabar Tree Toad.


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