Dona Paula Beach is one of the most busy beaches in Goa. Geographically it is secluded but mankind has found this remote beach and made it a commercial hub full of life and activities. For those who love company this is one beach to choose from the many Goa offers. It's a typical tourist beach that you can get.
Set in tropical ambience, Dona Paula beach is indeed a visual treat. There are very few beaches in the world quite like Dona Paula, and that is why so many tourists have a holiday in Dona Paula as top of their wish lists while travelling to Goa.
One of the most famous beaches of Goa, the western Indian state rightly called the country's beach capital, Dona Paula offering astounding view of the Marmagoa horbour.
The bay of Dona Paula is the meeting point of the Arabian Sea and the Mandovi and Zuari rivers. Situated 7 km away from the Goan capital of Panaji, the Dona Paula beach is known for being the base to explore the ruins of the 16th century Cabo Fort which was built in 1540. Cabo Raj Bhavan, the official residence of the Governor of the state, is situated on the westernmost tip of the beach.
When you happen to be in Dona Paula, take a trip down to the memory lane by visiting the 19th century English cemetery where you can find the memorial tomb of Dona Paula de Menezes after whom the place is named. Tradition has it that Dona Paula de Menezes, a daughter of a Portuguese govern, committed sucide by throwing herself into the seat after being denied by her father to marry her love.
Some 9 kms from Dona Paula is the famed wildlife sanctuary of Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary which boasts around 400 species of birds, both local and migratory. Occupying an area of 2 sq km in the Choro island, the sanctuary is named after Salim Ali, the famous Indian ornithologist, and is a favourite haunt of the birdwatchers.
For the spiritual seekers, Reis Magos church is the place to be. One of the oldest churches of Goa, it is located 10 km from Dona Paula in the small hamlet of Reis Magos which also houses the Reis Magos fort. Lying on banks of the Mandovi river, the Reis Magos plays host to the unique Feast of the Three Wise Men.
Another highlight of Dona Paula is the National Oceanography Institute (NIO) which is located on the way to Cabo Raj Niwas. The institute was established in 1960 to study the marine life and houses Taxonomy Reference Center and Marine Biology Museum.