South Goa Travel Guide: Go On Soul Searching at These 8 Best Places to Visit in South Goa (2023)
Can’t decide between North Goa and South Goa? Well, North Goa is known for being home to nightlife places that will redefine your experience whereas South Goa is home to some of the most pristine beaches in the state. If you are taking this Goa trip to rejuvenate your senses and spend some quality time with your closed ones, South Goa is undoubtedly the best place to be. Here are some of the best places that you can’t miss during your stay in South Goa.
South Goa Travel Guide: Go On Soul Searching at These 8 Best Places to Visit in South Goa
1. Butterfly Beach: Want to witness breathtaking sunsets during your stay in Goa? Head to Butterfly Beach and capture what will become one of the best moments in your life. Adorning itself with a narrow stretch of sand, this semi-circular beach is home to a wide variety of beautiful butterflies. As the seashore widens during the low tides, you will be able to see crabs and gold fishes on the beach. You will be able to experience dolphin sighting too at this beach. Other things that you can do here include canoe riding, beach walking, rock climbing, etc.
Location: Butterfly Beach, Goa
Timings: 6 AM to 10 PM
2. Palolem Beach: Being one of the picturesque beaches in Goa, Palolem Beach attracts thousands of visitors every year. Surrounded by dense forests of coconut palm trees, this beach is semicircular. Unraveling the best opportunity for you to indulge in both relaxation and adventure, this beach is the best place to do kayaking and dolphin spotting. While the north side of the beach is filled with families, the center tends to attract backpackers. The south side of the beach is known for hosting parties. You will also find a number of shops here that sell a diverse range of clothes, souvenirs, and jewelry.
Location: Palolem Beach, Goa
Timings: Open All Day
3. Se Cathedral: Being the Latin Rite RC Cathedral of Archdiocese of Goa and Daman, Se Cathedral is known for being the largest cathedral in Asia. Built by the Portuguese, this church symbolizes the victory of the Portuguese in a battle with the invading Muslim army. The victory day is still celebrated and is popularly known as the Feast of Saint Catherine. Adorning itself with five bells, this church is home to the golden ball which is known for being the largest one in the world. Besides embellishing itself in Portuguese-Manueline style, this church decorates its interior with Corinthian style and exterior with Tuscan style.
Location: Velha, Goa
Timings: 7:30 AM to 6 PM
4. Church of St. Cajetan: Being one of the oldest churches in Goa, Church of St. Cajetan is known for being decorated in Corinthian style. Dedicated to Our Lady of Divine Providence, this church has a lot of similarities with the St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. During your visit here, don’t miss the main altar which adorns itself with an aesthetically pleasing altarpiece of Our Lady of Divine Providence. You will also get to see a number of paintings here that depict the life of St. Cajetan. After being built in 1665 by the Italian monks, this church attracts a large number of tourists every year.
Location: Goa Velha, Goa
Timings: 9 AM to 7 PM
5. Shantadurga Temple: Located in Ponda, Shantadurga Temple at the foothill of Kavalem village is dedicated to Goddess Shantadurga. After being built in 1738, this temple attracts locals and tourists alike. The goddess here meditates between Vishnu and Shiva. Popularly known as Santeri among the locals, the goddess Shantadurga is believed to be another form of Parvati who came in another form to stop the battle between Shiva and Vishnu. Built during the rulership of Maratha ruler Chattrapati Shahu, this temple is a must-visit spot in South Goa. The original temple in Salsete was destroyed by the Portuguese after which the goddess was transferred to the present location.
Location: Kapileswari – Kavlem Rd, Donshiwado, Ponda, Goa
Timings: 5 AM to 10 PM
6. Loutolim: Located in South Goa, Loutolim is popular for being the ancestral village of eminent cartoonist Mario de Miranda. Being a must-visit spot, Loutolim lets you revisit history. Unraveling the best opportunity for you to take a glimpse at rural life, this quaint village is known for its old charm. During your visit here, you must visit places such as Figueiredo Mansion, Ancestral Goa Museum, and Casa Araujo Alvares. Don’t forget to stop at Jila Bakery to try some of the most delectable savoury items.
Location: Loutolim, Salcete, Goa
7. Bhagwan Mahaveer Wildlife Sanctuary: Established in 1978, Bhagwan Mahaveer Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the most popular tourist spots in South Goa. Before being declared a wildlife sanctuary in 1969, this place used to be known as Mollem Game Sanctuary. Attracting a large number of nature lovers every year, this place is the best spot to watch a wide variety of plants, animals, and birds. If you are into bird-watching, this wildlife sanctuary will leave you amazed. Some of the birds that you can expect to see here include emerald dove, drongo, fairy bluebird, etc.
Location: NH 4A, Caranzol, Goa
Timings: 8 AM to 5:30 PM
8. Cabo de Rama: Located in Canacona, Cabo de Rama, also known as Cab de Ram, is one of the most beautiful wild beaches in the state. The water here adorns itself with a rich green hue. The beach embellishes itself with a strip of palm groves which altogether makes this beach ideal for a picnic. During your visit here, you should definitely visit the Cabo de Rama Fort which is one of the most widely visited tourist spots in South Goa. After serving as a fort for the Portuguese rulers, it served as a jail. Don’t miss visiting the Santo Antonio Church here.
Location: Taluka Cabo da Rama, Canacona, Goa
Timings: 9 AM to 5:30 PM
If you are done partying in North Goa, South Goa awaits for you with a diverse range of places that let you revisit history and experience serenity at pristine beaches. Being the ultimate destination for those who want to go on soul searching, South Goa is filled with places to unwind and rejuvenate your soul. Visit these 8 best places in South Goa to make your trip even more memorable.