Location of Goa
Goa has a total area of 3,702 sq.km, and geographically, its
position is marked by 15° 48'00" N and 14° 53'54" N latitude and
74° 20'13"E and 73°40'33E longitude. In the north, Goa has a
common boundary with Rat-nagiri district of Maharashtra and
Kolhapur district also from the same state; to the west, Goa has
a 100km long coastline washed by the waters of the Arabian Sea;
and, to the east, Goa shares a boundary with Karna-taka State
and its districts of Bel gaum, Dharwar and North Kanara.
Goa by Air:
Goa is well connected by airline services to most major cities
in India. All flights, national and international, to and from
Goa, operate from the Goa Airport at Dabolim near the port town
The airport is about 30 kms from the capital city of Panaji and
is owned by the Indian Navy. Major airline operators such as
Indian Airlines, Jet Airways and Sahara Airlines have flights
carrying passengers and cargo in and out of Goa. Besides these,
a number of chartered flights land in Goa from UK and other
European countries. The national airline Air India also lands a
few international flights, especially from the Gulf countries.
Most of the local airlines have a contact phone number in the
city as well as at the airport where the latest information
about flight status is always available. The list of phone
numbers is available in the travel services section of the
It is advisable to book your tickets well in advance, especially
during the high peak tourist season of October to January when
most flights run full. It is also essential to re-confirm your
flight timings at least 24 hours before departure.
Most major international airlines usually have agreements with
one or more of their domestic counterparts in India, so if you
are arriving from abroad it is possible to book your onward
domestic flight at the same time as you pay for your
Goa by Rail:
There was a time when the train journey from Mumbai took nearly
twenty-four hours, on the winding route via Miraj and Pune,
involving a change of trains too. Today, the high-speed Konkan
Railway has a daily train which hardly takes around 8-9 hours
for the same journey. Other trains between Mumbai and Panaji
take typically around 10-12 hours.
The rail route also has trains which travel past Mumbai to other
northern areas of India right upto Delhi as well as down south
to Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala. The Konkan Railway has special
reservation facility via the internet for foreigners which
allows payment to be made by credit cards. There are also
computerized reservation systems in most metros.
As the demand for the rail journey is quite high and most trains
run filled to capacity, it is highly advisable to reserve the
tickets well in advance of your actual journey to Goa. Goa has
two major railway stations — Margao and Vasco-da-Gama, both
located in the southern area of the state. The South Central
Railway terminus is at Vasco-da-Gama and the Konkan Railway
terminus is at Margao. Besides the two main stations, the trains
usually halt for a few minutes at a number of other smaller
stations in Goa.
The Konkan Railway has trains which ply between Mumbai and Goa
and other destinations. The latest updated schedules for these
are available on the official Konkan Railway website. The South
Central Railway has one train, the Nizamuddin Goa Express coming
in daily in the early morning. This train departs from Delhi and
comes to Goa via Pune.
The Konkan Railway undoubtedly offers the quickest and cheapest
route to Goa from Mumbai. In Mumbai there are two booking
offices: one is on the upper floor of the Western Railways
booking office in Churchgate Station and the second is at the
Central Railway booking office, at the rear of Chatrapati
Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus or VT).
Goa by Road:
Goa is connected with all the major towns in India via the
National Highways NH4A, NH17 and NH17A. In most places along the
way, the highway roads are in excellent condition and motorable
at fairly good speeds.
There are bus services operating from Goa to most towns and
cities in neighbouring states, such as Mumbai, Pune, Belgaum,
Hubli, Bangalore, Mangalore etc. at fairly regular intervals
throughout the day. These services are operated by the state
owned Kadamba Transport Corporation (white and blue buses) as
well as the respective transport corporations of the
neighbouring states. Besides there are numerous private bus
operators who provide all kinds of bus services from special to
deluxe AC to sleeper coaches along these routes.
The bus services operate from the huge Kadamba bus stand at
Panaji and from similar but much smaller bus stands in other
Goan towns. Most buses tend to arrive in Goa in the early hours
of the morning. The departures are in the early afternoon as
well as early evening. The buses usually stop along the way for
dinner and breakfast at roadside restaurants. Ticket charges
vary from Rs 250 to Rs 650, depending upon the distance, the
season, the demand and the quality of bus service. A journey to
Mumbai, takes around 12-16 hours.
The tickets can be obtained through recognized travel agents or
the offices of the state transport corporations. The private
buses usually depart from the Fort area and make stops at a
number of places around Mumbai before leaving the city.
Ensure that you have your seat and the bus registration number,
and confirm the exact time and place of departure with the
travel agent, as these frequently vary between companies.
The drive down from Mumbai, if you are coming by car, is along
the beautiful highway which hugs the Konkan coastline, with
excellent scenic beauty and typical small towns and villages
along the entire route. There are a few winding and steep routes
(called 'ghats') across the mountain ranges which add to the
charm of the journey.
Goa by Sea:
In the sixties and seventies, there was actually a pair of
steamers which used to ply between Panaji and Mumbai, carrying
loads of passengers on a charming journey along the Konkan
A catamaran service was started by Damania Shipping in 1994,
between Mumbai and Goa, using a beautiful Scandinavian-built
vessel, with aeroplane-style reclining seats. The trip from
Mumbai used to take seven hours to reach Panaji. The catamaran
too, travelled around 40 km offshore, giving travellers a
glimpse of the palm-fringed Konkan coast.
The service was later taken over by another company, Frank
Shipping before being closed down due to technical reasons.
A new service by Sa mlink has started in Dec. 2004 and plies
thrice weekly from Mumbai to Goa. Departures are at around 9 am
and arrivals at around 6.30 in the evening.