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Fast Facts
Location : 32 kms south east of Panaji.
Attractions : Mormugao Port, Pilot Point, Japanese Garden, Naval Aviation Museum and Saptah Festival.
Best Time To Visit : October to March.

Introducing Vasco da Gama
Church of Our Lady of Desterro Vasco da Gama Goa Vasco is a bustling city always on the move, because it home to Goa's natural harbour Mormugao Port and Dabolim airport, the only airport of Goa. In fact, Vasco is bestowed with a lot of water, swaying palms, sunshine and soothing climate, but the town doesn't provoke you to laze around and savor it all in. This Portuguese port city is also home to people from across India, so wherever you come to Vasco, you will feel that you are in mini-India.

The history states that Vasco came under the rule of Portuguese in 1543 and within a span of few years it became one of the important ports of India. A fort named as Sada Fort was constructed here to monitor the movements of ships into the Zuari river. Soon after its construction, the fort was abandoned and today some remnants of the ramparts can be seen. At the base of the ruined fort is a picturesque beach, which can be reached via steps leading down the steep rock.

Named after Portugal's greatest sailor Vasco-da-Gama, Vasco missed being the capital of Goa by a whisker. In 1684, the Viceroy D Francisco de Tavora, decided to shift the capital from Old Goa to Mormugao peninsula. A number of buildings were built that include the Viceroy's House, offices and warehouses, but the Lisbon Court cancelled the plan in 1712. Despite the fact, Vasco remains the only city in Goa which has air, rail, road and sea links. Today, Vasco is a well-planned city with a geometric road network, with two main avenues interlinked by small bylanes.

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How to Reach
By Air : Vasco is located at a distance of 7 kms from Dabolim airport. The airport has flights for the major cities of India and also from gulf countries like Kuwait and Sharjah. Pre-paid taxis and private taxis are available from the airport to Vasco town.

By Train : Apart from Margao, Vasco is the main station of Goa. Trains from all over India are available to Vasco. The railway station is just one km away from the Vasco city centre and Margao railhed is 28 kms away from Vasco.

By Bus : The interstate Kadamba Bus Stand is 3 kms east of the city centre where all buses from Dabolim airport and other places reach. Regular buses ply from Panaji (32 kms) and Margao (28 kms) to Vasco town.

By Ferry : You may reach to Vasco from Dona Paula by ferry launch.

Local Transport : For local transport auto-rickshaws and motorcycle taxis are available. Local minibuses are also available which carry passengers from the bus stand to the city area.

Places Where You Can Stay
Vasco is a port city that caters to the needs of business as well as leisure travellers. The town offers some good options for accommodation, ranging from luxury hotels to mid-range and budget hotels. Most of the hotels in Vasco da Gama are concentrated around the railway station.

5 Star Hotel : Bogmalo Beach Park Plaza Resort (Near Dabolim airport).

3 Star Hotel : Hotel La Paz Gardens.

Other Hotels : GTDC Tourist Hotel, Hotel Bismark, Hotel Kamakshi.

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Tourist Attractions in Vasco da Gama
Mormugao Port Trust dock at Vasco in South West Goa Mormugao Port : One of India's few natural harbours, Mormugao Port has its importance as an export point for Goa's mining industry. In the recent years the tourism industry has flourished here alongwith the mining. From Mormugao Port a number of cruise ships sail in morning and steam out in the late evening. You can take a quick tour of Goa's beaches, churches, temples and several other destinations by these cruise ships.

Pilot Point : Take the Mormugao Port Trust Road, which climbs uphill to the Pilot Point. It is an open space with small benches and concreted decoration. Pilot Point provides a spectacular view of the port city, Vasco da Gama and bustling Mormugao Port.

Japanese Garden : Move further ahead the road from Pilot Point, at the top of the Mormugao Ridge is the picturesque Japanese Garden. This garden is famous for housing the ruins of the Fortaleza Santa Catarina. The magnificent wall of the fort runs through the garden and it was of immense significance for defence during the colonial era. Fortaleza Santa Catarina affords a splendid view of the Zuari river. Other attractions of this garden are a small beach and the Shri Durgamata Shiv Mandir.

Naval Aviation Museum : Situated on the Bogmalo Road, Naval Aviation Museum is probably only of its kind in India and one of the few in Asia. Set against the superb backdrop of the Bogmalo beach, the museum exhibits various kinds of aircrafts and the weapons utilized by Indian Naval Air Arm. When you will visit this museum, a guide will accompany you to explain about the exhibits. Visit the Armament room and see a collection of various bombs used against surface targets and torpedos which target submarines. Further, move to virtual reality centre which offers flight simulator video games and a Sea Harrier cockpit model simulator.

The Safety room of the museum houses pilot flying gear, while the Archive Hall has a large model of the INS Viraat Ship. In the Archive Hall, you will also see the photographs of the Indian Naval Aviation and the liberation of Bangladesh in 1971. Besides, the museum has other interesting collections like Super Constellation and a Sea Hawk. The museum is open from 10 am to 5 pm all weekdays, closed on Mondays. Entry fees for the museum is Rs. 15.

Saptah Festival : Vasco da Gama is renowned for its Saptah Festival, celebrated at the Damodar Temple. The 15 day festival is perhaps the biggest festival in Goa, which is organized in the month of September. During this time, the commercial town of Vasco comes alive with colourful parades and devotional music.

Legend goes that, in 1898 an epidemic in Vasco drove residents to the temple of Lord 'Dam Bab' in Zambaulim for help. A coconut was brought from Zambaulim and installed in Vasco. The result - the epidemic obligingly died out. Vasco never forgot the debt to Lord, since then, the people have been installing a coconut annually at the temple. Saptah Festival begins with a coconut being carried by a procession to the Damodar Temple.

Tourist Attractions around Vasco da Gama
Bogmalo Beach : Bogmalo Beach is just 8 kms south east of Vasco town. The less crowded beach is certainly the most serene beaches of Goa. The green hills on its three sides, golden sand and gentle surf make Bogmalo nothing short of paradise. Out at sea is the Grande Island around which many diving sites are located.

Issorcim Beach : Just 1.5 kms ahead, before you reach Bogmalo is Issorcim Beach. This beach is smaller in size and is good for fishing or passing some lonely moments.

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Vasco da Gama Tour Packages


Vagator Beach in Goa
Features : On day two of Goa Tour, you can visit the port town Vasco-da-Gama. One of the major cities of Goa, Vasco-da-Gama is a busy city, remains always on move due to its closeness to Goa's only airport Dabolim airport. Among the various attractions, Mormugao Port - the natural harbour is Vasco's prime attraction. Other attractions of Vasco are Japanese Garden, Pilot Point, Naval Museum, Bogmalo Beach and Issorcim Beach. You may also plan your visit around the famous Saptah Festival, celebrated in September.


Goa Beach
Features : On India by Day and Night package, visit the famous town of Vasco-da-Gama. India by Day and Night takes you to Vasco-da-Gama on ninth day of your trip. You can visit this town on this tour, which has the tourist attractions like Mormugao Port, Naval Aviation Museum, Pilot Point and Japanese Garden.


Se Cathedral Church
Features : After taking you round the attractions of Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Udaipur, Jaisalmer etc, the tour brings you to Goa on day 15. On 17th day of your trip, Rajasthan Heritage and Goa takes you to Vasco-da-Gama, one of the important tourist destinations of Goa. In fact, during your Goa trip you have to land at Dabolim Airport, located close to the Vasco-da-Gama. Visit this town on this package and explore the major attractions like Mormugao Port, Naval Aviation Museum, Japanese Garden and Pilot Point.


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Features : Best of South India, a 13 days tour, takes you to the beautiful state of Goa on very first Day of your trip. Popularly known as tropical paradise, Goa is home to enchanting tourist destinations namely Panaji, Old Goa, Mapusa, Vasco da Gama, Margao, Canacona and Ponda. Each of these destinations has a gamut of attractions, both in terms of sightseeing and activities. Visit these tourist destinations on this tour and avail a good chance to explore and enjoy these attractions.





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