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ASIA : INDIA : GOA

In addition to its famous beaches, Goa is blessed with rich flora and fauna - its location on the Western Ghats range is classified as a biodiversity hotspot, and a surprisingly substantial percentage of Goa is forested. Plan and book cheap holidays to Goa with Direct Flights's discount airfares from Australia to Goa.

Goa - The Pearl of the Orient

     

Goa, India's smallest state, is located on the scenic west coast in the region known as the Konkan, an escarpment that rises up to the Western Ghats mountains in the east. Bounded by the state of Maharashtra to the north, by Karnataka to the east and south, and by the Arabian Sea on the west, Goa's major cities include Vasco, Margao, Mormugao, Panjim (also known as Panaji) and Mapusa. Panaji is the state's capital, and Vasco da Gama (sometimes shortened to Vasco) is Goa's largest city.         
       
Small but beautiful, Goa's focus is firmly fixed on tourism. Goa's magnificentscenery, coupled with its compelling culture, unique history and arresting architectural splendour, have made discount travel to Goa a favourite with travellers all over the world. Some visitors limit their travel to the coastal areas of Goa and spend much of their time on the long, sandy beaches. But there is much more to Goa than just beaches and sea, and many of Goa's hidden treasures are further inland. This is a place where travellers on cheap holidays to Goa would do very well by venturing a bit outside the beaten path. Plan and book discount holidays to Goa with Direct Flights and take advantage of cheap flights from Australia to Goa, discount accommodation in Goa and cheap car hire options in Goa. Book each travel component individually, or combine them and add some destination activities for a discount holiday package to Goa, India.        
       
Goa is a veritable Mecca for travellers who love nature and the outdoors.  In addition to its famous beaches, Goa is blessed with rich flora and fauna - its location on the Western Ghats range is classified as a biodiversity hotspot, and a surprisingly substantial percentage of Goa is forested.  Several wildlife sanctuaries and National Parks await visitors on discount travel packages to Goa, including the renowned Salim Ali bird sanctuary.  Other wildlife sanctuaries include the Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary, the Molem Wildlife Sanctuary, and the Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary.        
       
But nature is just part of what Goa has to offer.  A unique history, World Heritage architecture, Hindu temples and Roman Catholic churches, forts, and fascinating local colour and culture are waiting for travellers on travel packages to Goa.  Visit the online booking system operated by Direct Flights to arrange your cheap flights to Goa as well as the accommodation in Goa that you'll need while you're there.       
       
Much of Goa's charm - and the reason it's so different from other Indian regions - derives from its history of being a Portuguese colony for more than 450 years. Other areas of India were colonised by the British, but not Goa, which remained a Portuguese colony until 1961, when it was annexed by India. Unlike other Indian regions, a large percentage of the population of Goa is Christian, without doubt due to the long period of Portuguese occupation. One of Goa's two World Heritage Sites is the Bom Jesus Basilica, which holds the remains of St. Francis Xavier.
       
In addition to Catholicism, the Portuguese brought to Goa the ambition of the West and its lofty goals.  The result is "The Pearl of the Orient" - a multi-hued, rich mixture of races, religions and cultures that's very different from the rest of India.  The architecture of Goa is a unique combination of Indian, Mughal and Portuguese styles, sometimes called Indo-Portuguese, which will delight visitors from everywhere. Book guided tours of Goa when you purchase discount holidays packages to Goa with Direct Flights.         
       
During the Portuguese colonisation, Goa's craftsmen played a major role in the creation of the exquisite furnishings and decorations used in colonial homes, churches and chapels. This art can still be seen at the Christian Art Museum in Old Goa. And local craftsmen still produce a wide variety of goods ranging from terracotta pottery and figures to superb brass lamps and decorative items.  These local handicrafts are popular souvenirs for travellers on cheap holidays to Goa.       
       
Despite the long Portuguese occupation, Goa has a large Hindu population and celebrates traditional Hindu cultural festivals such as Dussehra, Diwali and Holi throughout the year.  The traditional markets in Goa are another way for travellers to soak up the local culture and way of life. Plan and book cheap holidays to Goa with Direct Flights's discount airfares from Australia to Goa.        
       
Accommodation in Goa is plentiful with a variety of hotels, resorts and guest houses to suit every budget. And with a wide variety of foods ranging from prawns to sausages, chicken to beef, and numerous vegetarian dishes,         Goan cuisine is able to satisfy even the pickiest eaters, so don't forget to pack a healthy appetite. Goa receives international flights from Dubai, Sharjah and Kuwait in the Middle East, and from the United Kingdom, Germany and Russia during the charter flight tourist season. Goa is also connected to the rest of India with regular flights to Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai and Bangalore.
       
Based in Australia but serving the entire world, Direct Flights has an easy, safe and secure online booking system for all your travel needs, including cheap flights to Goa, accommodation in Goa and travel packages to other holiday destinations in India and elsewhere.
       
       
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