|Fast facts -||It is the smallest state area wise and fourth smallest population wise|
|Did you know -||There are 224 officially recognized travel service providers in Goa. Known as "Tourist Paradise" and "Pearl of the Orient"|
|Must do -||Bird watching, Shopping, Attend festivals, Visit market|
Goa is the smallest state of India as far as area is concerned. It is also the fourth smallest as far as population is concerned. It is also known as "Pearl of the Orient" and "Tourist Paradise".
Accommodation in Goa is pretty convenient as there are various types of hotels that are suitable for people for various types of financial conditions and tastes. It is normally recommended to book rooms pretty well ahead in case the visit is being made from December to January, which is the peak season. There are four major categories -long-term rentals, inexpensive rooms, upmarket hotels and mid range hotels.
Getting to Goa via air is convenient as there are a number of airlines that are plying their services at fair rates. These are Indian Airlines, Air Deccan, Jet Airways, Kingfisher Airlines, Sahara Airlines, Air India and Spice Jet.
Apart from enjoying the luxuries of some of the best beaches of the world, Goa also offers visitors the opportunity to indulge in activities like bird watching. Main types of birds that are seen in Goa are eagles, pigeons, kites, doves, buzzards, cuckoos, kestrels, kingfishers, ospreys and woodpeckers. Important places in this regard are Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary at Chorao Island, Morjim beach, Shiroda, Bondla and Carambolim.
Shopping is an important activity when visiting Goa. The most important things to buy on a Goa trip are local handicrafts and cashew nuts. Two most important markets are Anjuna and Mapusa. The items sold in the Friday markets at Mapusa range from spices, curios, dried fish and old coins. In the Wednesday markets held at Anjuna the main items of sale are handicrafts, souvenirs, trinkets and beach ware.
The major places of interest in ancestral Goa are Art Gallery & Handicraft Center, The Fisherman's House, Mirabai Sculpture, Escola da Musica, Big Foot Dance Floor, Bhati - the feni distillery, Casa da Dona Maria, Tinto - the village market, Anand Lotlikar's Ghor, Taverna - the country liquor shop, Legend of Big Foot, Goan Artisans, The Farmer's House, Bird Habitat, Cross, Spring & Rakandar and Spice Yard and Rubber Plantation.
Some of the major festivals that are celebrated in Goa and should be attended to by visitors are Chovoth, Nagpanchami, Diwali, Gudi Padwa, Gokulashtami, Raksha Bandhan, Holi, Ram Navmi, Lairai Jatra and Vasco Saptah.