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Chorao Island In Goa

Chorao Island also know as Choddnnem or Chodna Island. It is the largest Island among other 17 Islands of Goa. It is located along the river Mandovi, 5 km away from the capital of the State, the city of Panaji and 10 km away from the city of Marisa. The local citizens call the Island Chodan or Chodna.

There are several legends connected to this place. One of them tells about the Islands emerging from diamonds that were thrown away by the Mother of Lord Krishna -the Goodness Yashoda.

The Chorao Island is attractive primarily because of its amazing flora and fauna. Here you will see lots of mangroves -the amazing and beautiful forests growing in the water. In the western part of the Island, on an area of 178 hectares, the largest bird sanctuary of Goa is located. The reserve has got its name from the famous Indian ornithologist Dr. Salim Ali and now it proudly bears the name of “Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary “.

The territory of the National Park is inhabited by migratory and local birds of over 400 species. The crocodiles can be seen among the aquatic inhabitants of Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary.

The transportation of visitors is conducted one by boats with accommodation of guides due to the fact that the National Park has no roads at all -just numerous water channels which cut the firm ground. To get to the reserve you should pay at the gate: the entrance ticket costs 50 rupees. You should pay the guide separately about 1000 rupees as well. The best time for excursions around the Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary is in the early morning and two hours before the sunset, when the birds are the most active.

The Chorao Island also preserves the traces of a very interesting ancient history, Indian Brahmin and Portuguese colonizers. The Island has several old houses, Catholic churches of the 16th century and dozens of Hindu temples. It is also well known that once the branch of famous University of Sanskrit and History of Literature was build on the territory of the Island.

You can reach the Island by any water transportation unit or on a regular ferry-boat from the village of Ribandar (the Ribandar ferry). The Chorao Island is recommended to visit during the touristic season (from November till April) when there are no rains in this part of Goa.

Anjadiva Island In Goa

Anjadiva Island, also known as Anjidiva Island, Anjediva Island and Anjadip Island, due to its area of 1,5 squire kilometers length in the largest island of archipelago which consists of five islands: Anjadiva, kurnagal, Mudlingud, Devgad and Devagad. With its strategic and economic importance this Island played a significant role in the history of Goa.

Anjidiva Island is located in the Arabian Sea, near canacona seashore, in South Goa. Due to the fact that the Island situates about two kilometers from Binaga Village (Karnataka state) it is widely believed that Anjadiva belongs to this State. But legally Anjadiva Island is the part of Goa State. The place is known to Indian culture since the puranic period. In the poetry it is described as “resting place of Venus and her lover”. Since ancient times local people adored here the famous Arya Devi Goddess (the wife of Shiva God), later known as Anji Devi Goddess.

In 1498 and later in 1502 the Anjadiva Island was visited by Vasco Da Gama, Who stayed here for some period of time. The Island was strategically important for Portuguese defense, as well as it was an important sea port for Greek, Arab, Egyptian and Portuguese merchant and trade ships during centuries. That’s why the Fortress and the Church, which is considered to be the oldest Roman Catholic Church in Asia, were built here (the Church was build in 1502).

Till now a days the Island carefully keeps and protects the remains of those bygone eras: you will be able to see several ancient houses and buildings, the ruins of Fort and Church. The Indian Navy Forces headquarters and base are placed at Anjadiva Island too.

The Island is also well known and famous for its annual Nossa Senhora da Brotas Fest which is hold on February 2 and with the celebration of the Day of St. Francis D’Assizi Chapel which is taking place on October 4.

To reach the Island you should first go to the City of karat. The closest railway station in Shirwad station which is located 6km from karwar (Conan railway route). If you are planning to travel to Anjadiva Island by car, than you should drive NH17 Highway. Numerous buses are running from Goa to Karwar regularl. You can also travel by water transportation from the main port of Kawar City directly to Anjadiva Island. Keep in mind that sometimes the access to Island is forbidden, so before going there, please, contact Station Commander Sea Bird Project to find out if the Island is open and there is a possibility to visit it.

Sao Jacinto Island In Goa

One of the most exotic places of South Goa — the San Jacinto Island is located just few kilometers north-east from the Dabolim International Airport. People say that in the 30’s years of the 20 thcentury, the San Jacinto inhabitants made a vow never to give the island on a lease and let construction companies to built touristic or industrial facilities on their land. That’s why nowadays this small island is a lovely green area, which has preserved the purity and charm of amazing Goa nature.

Most of the island is covered with forests and just the south-western coast is dotted with old houses, among which a beautiful old white church is overlooked above. It can be seen far away from the NH-17 Vasco – Panaji coastal highway. Local citizens call this church the St. Hyacinthi Cathedral and celebrate its birthday on the last Sunday of September

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Due to the legend, the underground tunnel connects the old chapel with Siridao Beach resort, which is located on the far bank of Mormugao Bay. The island is connected with the nearest part of the mainland by the bridge with romantic name of Silver Gate Bridge. San Jacinto can be reached by a rented boat. Travel agencies organize different tours and excursions to the island at a regular basis.

On the San Jacinto Island you can also find a well-preserved old Portuguese lighthouse, from the top of which you can enjoy the breathtakingly beautiful views onto the Indian Ocean and the Goa coast.

It is one of the few inhabited islands of this tiny state on the west coast of the Indian peninsula.The island is closest to the southern banks of the estuary and is connected to the mainland via a causeway. The island houses an abandoned lighthouse that is fiercely protected by the islanders. A church dedicated to St. Hyacinth overlooks the waters of the river towards the east.

Divar Island In Goa

The beautiful Divar Island that is rarely visited is situated across the Mandovi River from Old Goa. A ferry connects the southern end of the island with Old Goa. The ferry wharf is situated near the Viceroy’s Arch at Old Goa.

Another ferry links the northern end of the Divar Island to the Narve or Naroa village in the Bicholim subdivision which is known for the Saptkoteshwar temple that is one of the most sacred temples of Hindus in Goa. From Panaji to visit the Mayem Lake the Divar Island offers a shortcut.

The picturesque Piedade that has a hill top church built in early 16th century called the Our Lady of Compassion Church is Divar’s main and largest village. Here one can have views of the churches of Old Goa. Also during the Kadamba time on this site an ancient Ganesh temple existed.

The Divar Island is also well known in Goa due to a festival celebrated here known as the Bonderam festival. The villagers observe this feast on the last Saturday of August. This feast is also known as the feast of the harvest or the festival of flags. Here after returning home the emigrant workers wave the flags of their adopted countries while marching through the village.