Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Goa: Experiencing the charm of Goa in the monsoons -2

Overview: Today was the day of forts, starting off with Reis Magos fort, which was unfortunately closed. However we explored the fort from the exterior. This was built in 1551 by the Portuguese, later occupied by the Marathas. The other two forts in the vicinity are Fort Aguada and Sinqeurim. Sinquerim Fort acts as the wall for Hotel Taj Aguada. From here we went to Aguada Fort, one of the most scenic forts in Goa. The entrance to the fort has a massive doorway, and the walls can be scaled by climbing a series of stairs. One can have a spectacular view of North Goa from this fort.
Reis Magos Fort 
Sinquerim Fort


Fort Aguada
 From Aguada, we proceeded towards Vagator beach in search of 'Shiva's Face', which we had seen on Google Maps. We parked our vehicle and climbed down towards the beach. Being monsoon, the beach wore a deserted look and the shacks were empty. We immediately spotted the image of Shiva carved on a rock. It was beautiful, with the serpent which could be seen on Shiva's right. Further excavation may yield interesting results. It was told by the experts that this image was carved during the Hippie era.
From here we went to Chapora Fort, most of which is in ruins, but offers a scenic view of the sea from the top. One of the scenes in the movie 'Dil Chahta Hai' was filmed at this location.
Next was Corjuem Fort, this one a bit away from the coast of Goa. This fort predates the Portuguese and was built by the Desais of Sankhali.
Shiva's Face

Chapora Fort

Corjeum Fort
We next proceeded to Aravelam Caves, but before that, we stopped at the beautiful Radha Krishna temple built in Konkani style. Aravelam Caves are calculated to date back to 2nd century BC, carved out of a laterite hill, and having 3 shrines with Shiva Lingas in them. Some inscriptions can also be seen in one of the shrines in Brahmi script. There is also a beautiful waterfall near this cave. From here, we saw the ancient Jain temple at Kudnem, which is now protected by ASI. The temple complex is in ruins, and hardly anyone can be seen around.
Aravelam Caves

Aravelam Falls

Kudnem Digambar Jain temple
With this, we decided to wrap up for the day and proceeded to our hotel for the rest of the evening.

To be continued..

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