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Panaji

Travel Guide
Panaji featuring street scenes

Low-rise and laid-back, this characterful riverside city has a distinct European flavor and a range of Indo-Portuguese architecture.

Goa’s capital, Panaji, is still commonly referred to by its Portuguese name, Panjim, and the legacy of its old colonial rulers doesn’t end there. Aesthetically, it is reminiscent of Portugal with ample green spaces, whitewashed churches and atmospheric old colonial quarters.

Panaji was a small and sleepy riverfront village up until the mid-19th century, when it replaced Old Goa as the capital of Portuguese India. Most of its development was orchestrated by its Portuguese rulers and the wide streets, neat layout and Portuguese-inspired architecture all act as evidence of this. Look for pastel-painted classic colonial buildings which have been given a characteristic Goan injection of color.

Be sure to climb up Altinho Hill to enjoy the views of the city and get your bearings. The surrounding neighborhood, known as Altinho, is worth wandering about. Seek out interesting old buildings including the sprawling Bishop’s Palace, the 17th-century Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception and the Secretariat Building, the one-time home of Portuguese viceroys. The labyrinthine heritage quarter of Fontainhas and Sao Tome also has clusters of colonial architecture, while monuments like the Mahalaxmi Temple act as reminders of its Hindu heritage.

Don’t forget to sample traditional Goan cuisine while here. Be sure to try much-loved local staples, such as piri piri shrimp or sorpotel, which is a spicy pork and offal stew.

Panjim can also make a great base for exploring Old Goa, which is located just 5.6 miles (9 kilometers) from the city. The once-thriving and grand colonial capital was abandoned in the 19th century after several bouts of plague struck its inhabitants. Other worthwhile excursions include boat trips to the nearby picturesque islands, such as Chorão and Divar, and to the popular Miramar Beach.

Some of the best times of the year to visit Panaji are between late October and early April when temperatures are warm but pleasant. The nearest airport is in Dabolim, which is about a 40-minute drive from Panaji. The city is also connected by bus to many other major Indian centers, including Mumbai, Mangalore and Bangalore. Much of Panaji is walkable, but should you need to go further, local bus services and auto-rickshaws can help.

Where to stay in Panaji

Vivanta Goa, Panaji
Vivanta Goa, Panaji
5 out of 5
Dr D B Bandodkar Road, Panaji, Goa
The price is Rs4,675 per night from 25 Jul to 25 Jul
This family-friendly Panaji hotel is located in the business district, within a 15-minute walk of Kala Academy and Bishop's Palace. Church of Our Lady of Immaculate ...
4.6/5Exceptional! (333 reviews)
"Everything is fine and we enjoyed stay a lot. Hygiene bis maintained at all the places"

Reviewed on 12 Dec 2020

Vivanta Goa, Panaji
Goa Marriott Resort & Spa
Goa Marriott Resort & Spa
5 out of 5
Miramar Beach, Panaji, Goa
The price is Rs7,901 per night from 17 Aug to 17 Aug
Located in Panaji, this beachfront resort is in the city centre and within 2 mi (3 km) of Miramar Beach and Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception. Salim ...
4.5/5Wonderful! (362 reviews)
"The Bay view room we had was excellent. We could enjoy the patio, look out even walk out on the beach with easy access. The staff is wonderful. They looked after us with great cheer, warmth and hospitality. It is also a centrally located Panjim hotel."

Reviewed on 28 Jun 2021

Goa Marriott Resort & Spa
Deltin Caravela
Deltin Caravela
4 out of 5
Noah's Ark, RND Jetty, Dayanand Bandodkar Road, Panaji, Goa
This vessel pulls anchor and sets sail from Panaji for at least part of your stay.
Deltin Caravela
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Riviera Hermitage
Riviera Hermitage
3 out of 5
Double Tree by Hilton Compound, Arpora,0, Arpora, Goa
The price is Rs999 per night from 25 Jul to 25 Jul
Situated in Arpora, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Saturday Night Market and Splashdown Waterpark. Baga Night Market and St. Michael's ...
Riviera Hermitage
OYO 24037 Home Spacious 2BHK Panjim Ferry
OYO 24037 Home Spacious 2BHK Panjim Ferry
2.5 out of 5
Malacca Rd, Ozari Malacca Rd, Ozari, \N, Panaji, Goa
Situated in Panaji, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of 18th June Road and Deltin Royale Casino. Miramar Beach is 1.7 mi (2.7 km) away.
OYO 24037 Home Spacious 2BHK Panjim Ferry
La Quinta by Iksha
La Quinta by Iksha
3.5 out of 5
Villa No. 4, Saipem Hills, Candolim, GA
The price is Rs8,500 per night from 25 Jul to 25 Jul
Situated in Candolim, this villa is within 3 miles (5 km) of Candolim Beach, Calangute Beach and Fort Aguada. Nerul River and Sinquerim Beach are also within ...
La Quinta by Iksha
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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