6 Facts About Goa

In the western region of India, the small state of Goa is located. This state, which was colonised by the Portuguese for 450 years, has an almost unbroken 70 km of coastline, which stretches along the Arabian Sea.

With its crystal clear, idyllic beaches, 54 to be precise, bustling nightlife, and world-renowned historical architecture, Goa is a very popular destination. Each year, it hosts over 2 million international and domestic tourists. Luckily for us, Goa is our second port of call on the Ship Ahoy’s group ‘2018 Arabian Sea and India Cruise’. So, before we set sail, let’s check out six interesting facts about Goa.

1. Small But Mighty

Goa is part of India’s richest state, Maharashtra. Even though the state of Goa is only 3,702 sq. km – 3 times the size of London, Goa has a GDP per capita two and a half times that of India as a whole.

beer

2. Blame It On The Alcohol

The state of Goa has an astonishing number of bars. According to a 2013 count, the number of licensed bars in Goa was 7,078. However, the number of unlicensed bars is far beyond that.

nuts

3. The Nut Job

The Portuguese discovered the cashew nut in Brazil in 1558. It was taken to the colonies of Portugal, such as Goa, to reduce erosion in the soil and thus help crops grow. However, it wasn’t until 1752 that a Goan prisoner, who was exiled to the Portuguese territory of Mozambique, Africa, discovered that the cashew nut was, in fact, edible. Since then, India has become the world’s third-largest producer of cashew nuts (after Vietnam and Nigeria). India exports 753,000 metric tonnes of cashew nuts, of which Goa contributes 10,000 metric tonnes to those exports.

plane

4. Plane & Simple ✈️

Goa is the first and only state in Asia to open a Naval Aviation Museum. There are only five other such museums in the world, Germany, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and Hawaii. Established in October 1998, the Goan museum displays the history and the evolution of India’s naval force and even displays India’s first naval aircraft.

goa

5. Old But Gold ⛪

The Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception (COLIC) is the second oldest and the most beautiful church in Goa. In 1541 COLIC was a chapel built for the Portuguese sailors so that they could take mass; however, in 1609, it was rebuilt and became the large Parish Church that you see today. Located in the heart of Goa, this Roman Catholic Church features the second largest church bell in the world.

6. And He Said To Them, “Go Into All The World And Preach The Gospel To All Creation” Mark 16:15 ✝️

In the 1500s, St. Francis Xavier [above right] was the first missionary to spread the gospel in Japan, Borneo, China, and parts of Indonesia. In December 1552, the Spanish Saint died on the Chinese island of Shangchuan, and it was his wish to be buried in Goa. His miraculously non-decomposed body is enshrined in a glass case and is placed in the Basilica of Bom Jesus in the Se Cathedral (the oldest church in Goa). His remains aren’t entirely intact; however, for a person who died over 400 years ago, it’s astonishing that his body hasn’t completely turned into dust.

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