Romance is there in the air at Dona Paula. Dona Paula is one of the most interestingly captivating monuments of Goa that glorify the immortal love. Dona Paula is among the Goan beaches that attract most of the crowd. It is located at a distance of 7 km from Panaji.
From Dona Paula, you may enjoy an extensive view of Mormugao harbour. It is a beautiful gateway. There is a magnificent sculpture representing a man and a woman that stands tall on the top of a rock. With a number of stories surrounding it, the statue seems to be wrapped in a mysterious charm.
The woman represented by the statue is Dona Paula. There are a number of stories related to her. However, all of them narrate an unfulfilled love in between her and a Goan man. Many believe that he came from a lower caste whereas a considerable majority is also of the opinion that he was the governor.
Most of the tourists make it a point to visit Dona Paula when they come to Goa. Mandovi and Zuari Rivers also meet here. The silver beach sand and the Palm trees add to the beauty of the beach.
You may enjoy numerous water sports and it is safe to swim. You may swim, shop, eat and indulge in a number of activities. Naturally, most of the tourists feel like prolonging their stay.
More on Dona Paula
Dona Paula View Point
The Casuarina Woods and Palm trees make Dona Paula highly scenic, attracting tourists from across the globe. You may enjoy a stroll by the coastline. The cool breeze will compel you to enjoy the blues of the sky and the greens of the landscape endlessly. The experience of visiting Dona Paula is likely to be unforgettable.
The Dona Paula View Point is picturesque at the sunset. It is advisable to reach the View Point half an hour before the sunset as it can accommodate only 50 people. There are quite a number of stalls at the beach that offer local delicacies and the seafood is simply freshly delicious at the local restaurants.
The Story of Dona Paula
One of the many legends that surround Dona Paula narrates that Dona Paula was the lady-in-waiting for the wife of the Governor-General. The husband fell in love with the charmingly beautiful Dona Paula. It infuriated the wife to no limits. And she commanded Dona to be stripped, tied and thrown over the cliff into the deep sea. Dona was allowed to wear the pearls’ string that her beau, the Governor had gifted her.
Moreover, the local fishermen come up with enthralling ghost stories. Some are of the opinion that Dona’s ghost rises at the midnight from the sea when it is a dark night wearing the pearl string. Others say that the spirit does come up, but during the bright moon lit nights.
Things to Do at Dona Paula Beach
There are a number of water sports to be enjoyed including water-skiing, parasailing, water-skiing, windsurfing, ski-bob, swimming, yachting, kayaking, snorkeling, toboggan ski-biscuit and sports fishing, etc. Besides, there is the Dona Paula Sports Club. Water-scooter, motorboat and cycle rides.
The beach side market makes the shopping an interesting experience. You will find local vendors selling lace handkerchiefs, straw hats and spices. The Goan liquor including Port Wine and Feni are also available here including other varieties of liquor. Besides, the Indian Arts Emporium is the right place to be visited by those looking for the Indian jewellery and handicrafts.
Accomodation at Dona Paula
There are almost all types of accommodations including luxury hotels, deluxe, standard ones etc., that suit various budgets. There are Hotel Bernardo, Dona Paula Beach Resort, Cidade de Goa, Hotel O’Pescador, Cabana Dempo, Sandalwood Hotel & Retreat, and Hotel Fidalgo etc.
Sightseeing around Dona Paula
Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary: It is a mangrove forest where you may observe an interestingly rich variety of the domestic and even the migratory birds. You have to reach the western end at the Choro Island at the Mandovi River in order to reach the sanctuary which lies at 9 km from Dona Paula.
Reis Magos Church: It is situated at a distance of 10 km from the beach of Dona Paula. The church is dedicated to the three wise men from the East. They are known to have brought gifts including frankincense, myrrh and gold for the baby Jesus.
Ruins of the Cabo de Rama Fort: The Fort was built in 1540. The ruins are a must visit. Also, there is a cemetery that is 180 years old with the memorial tomb of Dona Paula de Menzes.
National Oceanography Institute: The institute aiming at the study of marine life of Goa came into existence in 1960. Besides, the Taxonomy Reference Centre and the Marine Biology Museum attract museums from all across the world.
Fairs and Festivals at Dona Paula
There is colourful water sports festival held in the month of November. Surfing competitions, cycle races and water scooter are the major attractions of this festival. Besides, the Feast of St. Lawrence and Janmashtami are celebrated every year with great enthusiasm.
Restaurants near Dona Paula
The shacks at Dona Paula offer varieties of seafood. There are Sea Pebble, Martin’s Beach Corner, Sea View, Sorpotel, Vindaloo, Cafreal etc.
How to Reach Dona Paula?
Dona Paula is situated at a distance of 7 km from the Goan Capital, Panaji. You may catch a bus or go by taxi. Besides, there is a bus to the beach from the Kadamba bus stand after every 15 minutes. You can also reach by bike.
San Diego International Airport
Please arrive by 10:20 AM for a prompt departure at 10:50 AM