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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

Calangute Beach

Perhaps none of the other lovely beaches of Goa is so deserving of the epithet "Queen of Beaches" as Calangute. Endearingly referred to as the "Queen of Beaches" by its fond admirers, Calangute Beach is kissed by the sun and enjoys the pampering of palm trees too.

According to popular opinion, Calangute is actually a distortion of the word "Koli-gutti", meaning land of fishermen. There are some who maintain that it may have been derived either from "Kalyangutti" or from "Konvallo-ghott", the former meaning village of art and the latter strong pit of coconut trees. The second appears to be more plausible considering that it is indeed dotted with coconut trees. However ever since the coming of the Portuguese, it is known as Calangute.
Discovered in the late 1960's by the hippies, Calangute Beach is a haven for all those who love the sand and the surf. Laze in the sun kissed beach or else go for a bath in the sea. The cool sea breeze from the sea is sure to lull any tired soul to sleep.
The carnival never seems to end at Calangute Beach. It makes a very pretty picture with the presence of so many holiday makers right from old couples to newly wed honeymooners to small children busy building small sand castles crowding it. There are also many stalls in Calangute Beach, some selling lip smacking snacks and some small trinkets made of sea shells. They have a certain charm and frequenting them is a memorable experience.
How to reach :
Calangute Beach is well connected to Panaji, the state capital and to Mapusa. Buses ply frequently from both these places. The nearest rail head is Karmali and the nearest airport Dabolim.
City Info :
Lovingly referred to as the Pearl of the Orient, this erstwhile Portuguese colony is an integral part of India since the year 1961. Goa is indeed a great place to head to for a blissful holiday. The golden beaches, the vast expanse of sea, the beautiful temples and the marvelous churches are great tourist attractions.

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