Canacona | India
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Canacona

Canacona is in South Goa. Located in the extreme south of Goa, Canacona was outside the Goa boundaries until the eighteenth century.

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Canacona's beach belt, 'discovered' only after the 1990s, is among the most scenic. Palolem is a freaky recreation of an east-meets-west Goan beach, with a rich variety of exotic food and accommodation to cater to the international palate. Beyond the better-known Palolem and Agonda, there are nearly 20 lesser-known (or even hidden) beaches. So what if you don't find hotels or restaurants there, the idea is fine if you want to escape from it all. In some cases, the road to the beach is nothing but a narrow track. Canacona and neighbouring Quepem are rustic areas, with only small towns in the area. These are not the place to go shopping, though Palolem has a growing number of touristy outlets. Mallikarjun Temple, 2.5 km away from Chaudi on the main-road leading to Karwar (take road going left) is where devotees head for advice from the oracles, interpreted on where flower-petals drop. Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary is located within this area. Parthagal math is a five centuries-old monastery. Dolphin-watching and fishing trips are what attract foreign visitors to the area. Palolem, Agonda and the more deserted Cabo de Rama Fort are current hot-favourites. The first two are still not overdeveloped beach-villages. Cabo de Rama is a place for scenic views of the coast. You need your own transport to reach these places, since public buses are few and far between. Loliem has a couple of centuries-old 'hero' stones, etchings on stone to record historic events of the time dating back many centuries. This village's statue of Betal, possibly a pre-Hindu deity, itself goes back to the seventh century if not earlier, according to cultural-historian Phaldessai. Canacona has a total of four Betal deities, according to him. Canacona's contribution to Goan tourism is the idea of beach-huts—temporary beachside thatched huts built on coconut trees usually above ground level, right on the beach, during the fair weather (October–May) season.

Canacona