Panjim Travel Guide

Panjim Overview

Panjim (or Panaji) is the laidback Goan state capital and sits proudly on the banks of the Mandovi River. With its tranquil cobbled streets, colonial houses and squares, and spectacular whitewashed churches, the town has a touch of the Mediterranean lifestyle and is a refreshing change from the hustle of most Indian state capitals.

 
With everything located within close proximity, the town is easy to negotiate on foot. The Ourem Creek, running south out from the Mandovi River, divides the town. On the east side is the Kadamba bus stand and the road leading to Old Goa. To the west is the town centre, old town of Fontainhas and Altinho neighborhood. Running along the banks of the Mandovi River is Dayanand Bandodkar (DB) Marg, a promenade stretching 3km to Miramar Beach.
 
Panjim is the perfect place to wander aimlessly through the collection of colorful old-fashioned streets and admire the magnificent churches and architecture, especially around the heavily Portuguese influenced Fontainhas and Sao Tome areas. With an array of colonial buildings, staying in Panjim is a pleasure and certainly a place to indulge in luxury. Quiet at the best of times, be warned that on Sundays many cafes and restaurants close for the day.
 
Alike other Indian towns and cities, Panjim has its fair share of festivals taking place throughout the year. Sabado Gordo, or Fat Saturday, held on the Saturday before Lent, is the start of the 3 day Goa Carnival and showcases the fun loving nature of Goans. Later in the year, during November and December, the Konkani Drama Festival takes place, which is a vibrant celebration of Konkani dance, music and theatre.
 
Due to its central location, Panjim has excellent transport links across Goa and interstate. Buses to most Goan towns depart from the Kadamba bus stand, as well as long haul services to Bangalore, Mangalore and Mumbai. However, for long distance travel, trains are a better option. Karmali station, close to Old Goa, has services to Mumbai and Mangalore, to the north, and destinations in the south. The nearest airport, Dabolim, 29km south, serves the major cities and a number of charter flights to the UK and Europe.
 
Often overlooked by tourists heading directly for the beaches, Panjim has a great deal to offer and discover. Taking a few days to explore the highlights of this unique town is worth its weight in gold and will leave long lasting memories.

Things to do in Panjim

Church of our Lady of the Immaculate Conception - Dominating the skyline of Panjim and standing spectacularly above Church Square, this church is the towns proudest monument. Reached via 4 tiers of zigzagging steps, the church was built in 1541 and is a former landmark for sailors.
 
Maruti Temple - At the top of Altinho hill is this majestic pink temple, dedicated to Hanuman, the monkey God. Beautifully lit up at night, the temple provides excellent views of the Mandovi River.
 
Goa State Museum - An interesting array of artifacts, including stone sculptures, bronzes and ancient coins, amongst others. The collection currently houses c8000 objects, in 12 galleries, and is well known for its Hindu and Jain pieces. Behind the Kadamba Bus Stand. Opening times are 9.30am - 5.30pm, Monday to Friday. Entrance free.
 
River Cruises - An entertaining way to watch the sun go down and enjoy the surroundings of the Mandovi River. Live song and Goan dance performances entertain the crowds and involve passenger participation, the perfect opportunity to show off your Bhangra dancing talents to the locals. Royal Cruises (Tel (91) (832) 2435599) and other operators depart from the jetty by Mandovi Bridge.
 
Miramar Beach - The closest beach to Panjim and although not being Goas finest still provides a tranquil place to watch the sunset. Located 3km southwest of town, it is within walking or cycling distance along the DB Marg promenade.
 
Old Goa - The former capital of Portuguese Goa lies 10km east of Panjim. Today the UNESCO World Heritage Site is a collection of fascinating churches and cathedrals and uncountable historical monuments. Buses run frequently from Kadamba bus stand.

Hotels in Panjim

Budget Hotels Panjim

 
Republica Hotel - Cheep and cheerful budget option with friendly staff. Some rooms have balconies with good views of the river. 18th June Road. Tel (91) (832) 2223958.
 
Alfonso Guest House - Set in an Old Portuguese house, this homely guesthouse has spotless rooms and welcoming staff. St Sebastian Chapel Square. Tel (91) (832) 2222359.
 
 
Midrange Hotels Panjim
 
Panjim Inn - Elegantly decorated rooms in a romantic hotel, housed in a Goan mansion from the 1880s. Ideal location for honeymooners. E-212 31st January Road. Tel (91) (832) 2226523.
 
Mayfair Hotel - In the town centre, this well kept hotel caters for tourist, backpackers and business needs. Dr. Dada Vaidhya Road. Tel (91) (832) 2223317.
 
 
Luxury Hotels Panjim
 
Hotel Mandovi - Business like hotel set on the riverbank, with stunning views of surrounding countryside. Walking distance to all sights and amenities. DB Marg. Tel (91) (832) 2426270.
 
Panjim Peoples - Run by the same people as the Panjim Inn, this is Panjims most charismatic hotel with stunningly decorated rooms fit for a Maharaja. 31st January Road. Tel (91) (832) 2226523.

Panjim Weather

Panjim Travel Resources

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This page was last modified on 24 Sep 2011 by Matt