Gain a deeper insight of Goa’s cultural heritage, Hindu religion and robust cuisine on this private full-day tour. With your guide, visit Ancestral Goa, a center for preserving art, culture and the environment; two Hindu temples, displaying India’s many Portuguese influences; and a spice village, where you’ll discover India’s most important and iconic commodity. Enjoy an authentic Indian lunch and hotel pickup and drop-off.
In the morning, you’ll be picked up from your hotel in Goa and taken south to Ancestral Goa, known locally as the Big Foot Museum, in the village of Loutolim. Discover the Portuguese influences of this cultural center and learn how a local artist created the surrounding village to help preserve the culture and traditions of the region.With your guide, walk around the village to witness age-old customs and practices such as brewing feni, a local spirit made from coconut or cashew fruit. Visit Casa Araujo, a 250-year-old well-preserved Portuguese mansion. Inside, see its curving stairway, the elevated entrance, the imposing doorway and lavish rooms such as the chapel, dining hall, offices and bedrooms. Afterward, continue your tour to Shantadurga Temple, a complex constructed in 1738 AD. Admire the lush vegetation surrounding the temple and learn about its Indo-Portuguese structure as you explore inside. Notice the impressive facade, the vibrant colors of stained-glass windows and the palkhi, a golden palanquin on which the deity is carried on festive occasions.Then, visit Mangueshi Temple, a 400-year-old temple dedicated to the goddess Shiva and noted for its beautiful pillars. Your guide will tell you about Hinduism and the temple’s important role in the community.After touring the temples, drive to a nearby spice village, where you’ll be met by a professional biologist for an informative tour of the plantation and garden. Hear details about the herbs and discover their uses in medicine and cuisine. Then, make yourself comfortable around the table for a mouthwatering buffet lunch of authentic Indian cuisine. Test your newfound knowledge by tasting how the difference spices are used.You’ll head back to your hotel in Goa in the evening.