Margao is a city in West India, situated on the banks of Sal river, in the smallest state Goa. With population around 90 thousand people, Margao is the second largest and one of the oldest cities of the state. Called a door towards South Goa, Margao appears its trade and cultural capital.
The city is at a distance only of 6 km from Arabian sea, where there are magnificent beaches with golden sand and this makes it visited by many tourists. A big part of the buildings in city of Margao are with remarkable architecture, left from the Portugueses, who came here in 1543 and remained here nearly 400 years. The Goa state was liberated from the settlers in 1961.
Coming in Margao the settlers have destroyed many of the Hindu temples, substituting them with Christian churches. At the church square Largo da Igreja is situated the church “The Holy Ghost“, which is built on the place of the ancient Damodar temple. The beautiful white building in style Indian baroque impresses with its exquisiteness. The other church on this square is „Sab Banzam Ghor“ or the Home of the seven guards. This is one house in the estate of Enriko de Silva, which has always attracted the tourists.
The road after „Largo Da Igreja“ splits in two as the one leads towards the city, and the other one – towards the small chapel on the Monte hill. From the top of the hill the view towards the city and the vicinity is fantastic.
The city square of Margao is proud of its two gardens – the Municipal one and Aga Han, which are ideal places for a walk. The gardens are masterpieces of the gardening art. Even at the entrance is written „GARDEN“ with evergreen touch. Here can be seen very rare flowers, bushes and mango trees. The alleys are wide, there are children’s nooks, and the gorgeous rose tree shelters the visitors beneath its fragrant blossomed roses. At this square is located the municipality – a two-storey building with arch-like niches, which remained from the Portuguese presence. The municipal library is accommodated in a part of the building of the municipality. At the City square is towering the statue of Luis de Menezes Braganza (1878-1938), a leading Indian journalist, writer, politician and anti-colonial fighter of Goa. There is a beautiful composition of flowers around the monument.
In city of Margao two churches deserve interest. The one is the Greek church, which preserves one rare crucifix of the risen from the dead Christ, whose image is covered by a leaf, but there misses the crown of thorns. The second church „Saint Sebastian“ is also popular as „Pandova“, because of the ancient caves right behind the church.
There are two temples in Margao, which are worth visiting. The one of them is „Shri Damodar“, situated in the house of Nike family and it is famous for the fact, that here has stayed Swami Vivekananda before he departed for Chicago to the religious congress. The other temple Hari Mandir is located in a part of an office building.
The Rachol seminary is situated at 8 km from Margao and it is perched on one hill. Initially here there was a temple of Shayete. Later on, over it was built a Muslim fortress, which was destroyed by the Portugueses. A ditch and a gate have remained of it. The church built in 1521 by the colonists is for training of monks for dissemination of the Christianity.
An interesting tourist destination is the settlement Loutolim, at 10 km from Margao. This is one museum among the nature, which shows the life of the villagers from Goa. There is also a restaurant, where the tourist may taste the exotic Goan cuisine.
The estate Menezes Braganza is the most gorgeous in the vicinity. In the small village Chandor, at 13 km from Margao, it was created by the rich family Braganza during 16 century. The house in the estate is at two storeys with 28 beautiful small windows, looking at the entrance. At the house are preserved a part of the elegant pieces of furniture and Chinese porcelain.
City of Margao is an interesting tourist destination. Besides the landmarks, for the tourist is interesting the beach and sea with its crystal clear waters. Arabian sea is ideal for diving – the under-water world is abundant of corals, tropical fish, sharks and sea turtles.
The visit of the old fish market around the City square is interesting experience. But the visit of the Covered market is the most exotic experience. So many things! Such abundance of fruits, vegetables, spices, excellent scarfs, jewelry, souvenirs, sarees and a separate premise for fish.
Margao is one fascinating Indian city, which is worth visiting. Here as well as in all cities of India, the trip with a rickshaw is shocking experience.
The most appropriate time for visit of Margao is from October until March. The railway station Madgaon is the largest and busiest in the state Goa. All trains stop in Margao and pass through important tourist objects, near Margao. The closest airport to Margao is Dabolim, which is situated at 23 km from city of Margao.
Margao – a city with exciting past, beautiful present and dreamt future!