Goa was colonized by the Portuguese in the 1500s, until the 1960s. Although destroying all the Hindu architecture, they left behind a beautiful infrastructure of ports, canals and of course, exquisite churches. Goa was then rediscovered in the 1970s by the hippies, many of who settled here. The next phase was the 1990s "rave" beach parties.

The new face of Goa has an up market feel to it, since being declared the permanent host for the "International Indian Film Festival" starting every 24th of November, drawing the biggest names in Bollywood and some from Hollywood.

Unlike any other part of India, Goa lies between the Arabian Sea and the Western Ghats (mountains); it is famed for its beauty and prosperity. It enjoys a relatively mild climate, with temperatures rarely exceeding 32 degrees C.

Most tourists stay on the beach belt, but once inland, there are wild mangrove swamps, rainforests, waterfalls and temples.

Latin quarters of Panjim (Capital of Goa)

Above all, the Goans are warm and friendly, and siestas and smiles are high on the agenda!

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