Tourist Places to visit in Goa (2024)

  • Post last modified:6 April 2023
  • Reading time:18 mins read
  • Post category:Places to Visit

Goa is famously known as the party capital of India. Dotted with sandy beaches and scenic routes, this state is a haven for vacationers. Goa is the first name that comes to anyone’s mind while planning a trip. Goa was the hub of Portuguese colonies and to date, this state stands as the representation of Portuguese infrastructure and culture. Goa is majorly divided into two parts — South Goa and North Goa.

While North Goa is more of a party and nightlife destination, South Goa is the face of Goa’s tranquillity and culture. Goa is the only state in India where gambling is legal. It is the smallest state in India and has been rated as the state with the best quality of life in India by India’s National Commission on Population.

Walk on the pristine beaches, visit age-old churches and forts, relish mouthwatering seafood while resting under any of the shacks or parties until you forget all the worries of life while in Goa. With countless places to choose from, we bring you a list of the best places to visit in Goa.

10 Places to Visit in Goa

  1. Dudhsagar Falls
  2. Palolem Beach
  3. Basilica of Bom Jesus
  4. Baga Beach
  5. Calangute Beach
  6. Aguada Fort
  7. Shree Mangesh Temple
  8. Immaculate Conception Church
  9. Chapora Fort
  10. Vagator Beach

Dudhsagar Falls

About 60 kilometres from the capital city of Panaji, one can find a breathtaking waterfall that goes by the name of Dudhsagar Falls. Literally translating to ‘Sea of Milk’, this 1,000 feet cascade carries roaring pristine white water onto the Mandovi River. Dudhsagar Falls is one of the most famous waterfalls in India.

This charming waterfall is situated inside the Bhagwan Mahavir wildlife sanctuary and is equally famous among tourists and locals. Dudhsagar Falls is also known as Tambdi Surla in the local language. Present yourself to the best view of this majestic waterfall by visiting during monsoon season. Dudhsagar Falls is one of the top places to visit in Goa.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 07:00 AM to 05:00 PM

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Photography

Palolem Beach

Beaches occupy a massive share of Goan tourist attractions. Among the countless beaches found in the state, Palolem Beach tops the list. Take a morning stroll to soak in vitamin D or in the evening to appreciate the beauty of the landscape shimmering under the orange sky. Palolem Beach is flocked by tourists. This is one of the crowded and most visited beaches in India.

Palolem Beach is nestled in Canacona in South Goa. The vibrant beach is a party destination. This beach experiences harsh to calm tides and is a hotspot for motorsports. If you are in search of some peace then find yourself a nice shack and enjoy the calming view with a refreshing mocktail or cocktail. Palolem Beach falls under the must-visit destinations in Goa.

Opening hours: 24 x 7

Major Attractions: Shacks, Seafood

Ideal duration to explore: 2 hours

Things to do: Water Sports, Nightlife

Basilica of Bom Jesus

The famous Basilica of Bom Jesus falls under UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites. Pilgrims and tourists from all over the world visit this massive shrine to appreciate its architectural beauty and to witness the mortal remains of St. Francis Xavier. Resembling largely to the churches in Pondicherry, the Basilica of Bom Jesus is India’s first minor basilica.

Construction of this shrine started around 1594 and took nearly 11 years to complete. Built-in baroque and Portuguese Colonial architectural styles, the Basilica of Bom Jesus is one of the Seven Wonders of Portuguese Origin in the World. The centuries-old church houses a statue and a chapel of St Francis Xavier. It also has a Modern art gallery. The Basilica of Bom Jesus is culturally and religiously significant.

The marble mosaic flooring studded with precious stones adds to the aesthetics of the church. The ceiling of the church is decorated with an image of St. Ignatius Loyola protecting an infant Jesus. The Basilica of Bom Jesus is one of the most famous attractions in Goa.

Opening hours: Monday to Saturday from 09:00 AM to 06:30 PM; Sunday from 10:30 AM to 06:30 PM

Major Attractions: Mortal remains of St. Francis Xavier, Modern art gallery

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Learn more about the life of St. Francis Xavier

Baga Beach

Seeming straight out of a postcard, Baga Beach’s beauty is second to none. Bespeckled with tall palm trees, Baga Beach is one of the top tourist places to visit in Goa with friends. Baga Beach embraces all sorts of tourists but even more if you have a thing for motorsports. The Beach comes to life during nighttime.

Nicknamed ‘The Hometown of Nightlife’, Baga Beach is one of the famous beaches in India. Make sure you vibe to the energetic music and taste the best of seafood in all of Goa. While a calm sea with soothing waves awaits you on one side, the other side is loaded with discos and tattoo shops. Paddle Boating and fishing are a few of the favourite activities at Baga Beach.

Opening hours: 24 x 7

Major Attractions: Discos, Tattoo shops

Ideal duration to explore: 4-6 hours

Things to do: Water Sports, Nightlife

Calangute Beach

Away from all the hustles and bustles of the party town that Goa is, calmly sits the Calangute Beach. Dubbed the ‘Queen of Beaches’, Calangute resembles one of those calm beaches in Pondicherry. Calangute Beach is a perfect retreat for those seeking some peaceful time. It is the biggest and the most popular beach in North Goa.

Calangute Beach is one of the ideal places to visit in Goa for couples. From Portuguese-styled old buildings to busy markets around, Calangute Beach has a lot to offer. Head down to this beach during the evening time to relax with an enchanting view of the sun escaping into the horizon.

Opening hours: 24 x 7

Major Attractions: Sunset Point

Ideal duration to explore: 2-3 hours

Things to do: Evening walk, shopping

Aguada Fort

Aguada Fort is not just one of the top tourist places in Goa but that of the whole of India. Inspired from Aguada – meaning ‘watery’ in the Portuguese language, the fort got its name after serving as a major source of freshwater supply for the crews of passing ships. Aguada Fort was a strategically built fort and played a key role in the Portuguese’s defence against the Dutch. The mammoth fort was built on the banks of the Mandovi River.

Divided into two sections, the fort contains upper and lower parts that house a moat, underground water storage chamber, gunpowder room and a lighthouse. The Aguada Fort was once also used as a jail. Walk around this place to travel back to the times when the Portuguese colonized the entire state. Carry a pair of extra lenses to capture the picture-perfect view of the sea from the gigantic fort.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 09:00 AM to 06:00 PM

Major Attractions: Lighthouse

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Photography

Shree Mangesh Temple

Housing the mighty Hindu god Lord Shiva as its deity, the 450-year-old Mangeshi Temple is a renowned pilgrim spot in Goa. The simple yet elegant shrine consists of several domes and accommodates the famous Nandi Bull statue. Within the temple complex, one cannot miss the imposing seven-storied lamp tower or the deepasthambha.

Walk around the temple complex while appreciating its architectural marvel or visit the Sabha Griha hall to find a peaceful environment. The temple is decorated with beautiful chandeliers from the 19th century and can be included in the places to visit in Goa from a religious perspective.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 06:30 AM to 11:00 AM, Monday to Sunday from 03:00 PM to 06:00 PM

Major Attractions: Deepsthambha, Nandi statue, Sabha Griha hall

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Offer worship, meditate

Immaculate Conception Church

Climb through the zig-zag stairs to reach one of the most beautiful structural monuments in Goa that goes by the name — The Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception. Built in the 16th century, this holy place reflects the beauty of Portuguese-style architecture in every possible way. The pristine white church shines brightest under the noon sun and makes it difficult for the beholders to take their eyes off it.

Immaculate Conception Church is perched upon Church Square in Panaji. Nicknamed the ‘Crown of Panaji’, this holy place is home to the second-largest bell in Goa. One can find Goa’s deep history burning around this church. From the style of architecture to the folklore, there is a lot to explore around the Immaculate Conception Church.

The streets that lead to this shrine are filled with street hawkers and locals. Make sure you do not miss out on buying souvenirs or tasting famous Goan street food while here. The Immaculate Conception Church boasts tourists all around the year and is considered one of the popular tourist spots in Goa.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 09:30 AM to 12:30 PM, Monday to Sunday from 03:30 PM to 07:30 PM

Major Attractions: The second-largest bell in Goa, zig-zag stairs

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Offer prayers, try various street food, shopping

Chapora Fort

Chapora Fort or informally ‘The Dil Chahta Hai Fort’ is one of the top attractions in Goa. Overlooking the Chapora River, the fort was constructed by Muslim ruler Shahpura. The Chapora Fort later acted as an outpost for Mughal Emperor Akbar who formed an alliance with the Marathas. Thus this fort is a historically significant location in Goa.

Surrounded by steep walls, the Chapora Fort is at a stone’s throw distance from Vagator Beach. The path to this fort is well maintained, unlike earlier times. Take an easy hike to reach this fort and spend some relaxing moments while enjoying the stunning view. Chapora Fort is a photographers’ haven and you can easily spot a couple of drones hovering over you.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 10:00 AM to 05:30 PM

Major Attractions: Steep walls

Ideal duration to explore: 1 hour

Things to do: Sunset view, Photography

Vagator Beach

Undoubtedly, Vagator Beach comes among the best beaches in Goa. From sightseeing to water sports, shopping and partying, Vagator Beach caters to the needs of all sorts of travellers. Enjoy the company of the sun, sea and sand in the best possible way at Vagator Beach.

This beach is embellished with red cliffs that lie next to two freshwater springs. The beach is majorly divided into two sections called the ‘Big Vagator’ and the ‘Little Vagator’. One can choose from a wide variety of activities like parasailing, jet skiing, Dolphin sightings and boat riding over here.

Vagator is also a hotspot among night-party lovers and houses some of the famous restaurants in Goa.

Opening hours: 24 x 7

Major Attractions: Chapora Fort, Our Lady of Piety Chapel, Morjim Beach, Ozran Beach

Ideal duration to explore: 2-4 hours

Things to do: Nightlife, Water sports, Dolphin sightings and boat riding

In conclusion, Goa is undoubtedly a retreat that we all deserve from our mundane lives. The state of Goa is visited the most by city dwellers from Mumbai and Pune who seek a perfect weekend getaway. Goa is easily accessible by train and flight. However, many prefer doing a road trip to goa.

With countless beaches, majestic churches, monuments and forts, there are many places to visit in Goa. From peaceful locations to wild nightlife venues, you can find it all in this tourist haven. No matter if you are travelling in a group or solo, Goa embraces you equally.


Why is Goa so special?

Goa is renowned for its pristine beaches and deep-rooted Portuguese culture. It is one of the most visited tourist spots in India.

Is Goa safe?

Goa is as safe as any other famous city in India. A little bit of consciousness is all that you need while visiting Goa. The locals over here are pretty helpful and friendly as well.

Why is Goa a tourist spot?

Goa is a tourist hotspot for its mesmerizing beaches, Portuguese and Baroque styled buildings and monuments, nightlife and delicious seafood.

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