Stay at Shawnels Huts and see four of the seven "natural wonders" of Goa fall in or around the Canacona-Quepem area.

The 4 Natural Wonders


1. Morpila Sacred Grove.

In Quepem taluka there is a most interesting sacred grove at Morpila which protects the source of a mountain stream called Paikacho Vhal, a stream named after the forest spirit Paik. In view of the protection and optimum growth condition prevailing in the sacred groves some arboreal species exhibit their grandeur and become a fascinating sight. Ancient, sheltered forests are plentiful in interior Goa. Kamat feels the one at Morpila in Canacona's neighboring Quepem Taluka as the "most interesting of all".

2. Chandranath Hill


Chandranath hill is another topographically-interesting feature. It comprises two hillocks of near-uniform contour height. One hillock is 300m and the other is 350m high.

Scientists suggest a meteorite fell on Chandranath Mountain during the pre-historic period.

3. Largest Banyan Tree in Goa

There is a giant Vatavriksha (Banyan tree) about 200 meters to the north of the Partagal Jeevothan Mutt with 220 aerial roots and total area admeasuring 235 feet x 225 feet and is believed to be 2000 years old. It can accommodate about 1000 people in its shade.

4. South Goa's Straight Coastline

The coastline of South Goa according to Dr. Nandkumar Kamat is of a peculiar linear shape which stretches from Majorda to Betul, just north of the Canacona-Quepem coast. This could be a much "younger" coast (around 6,000-15,000 years young) compared to the rest of the Goan coast, and is a "trekker's dream-stretch".

Other Attractions Around Palolem

Chandranath Temple

The Shri Chandranath Temple at Quepem in Goa situated on top of 350 meters Chandranath Hill ,Paroda, Quepem and can be reached by climbing the huge granite steps.The main approach to the temple is metalled tar road and you have to enter the temple by alighting these granite steps.The presiding deity of the temple is Shri Bhutnath or Chandreshwar whom the Bhoja kings regarded as the titular deity. The Bhoja kings ruled South Goa before the Portuguese till the middle of 8th century. And in fact they named their capital Chandrapur after the deity.

In the Shri Chandranath Temple At Quepem in Goa , you will find the Shiva Linga carved out from the rock. The surprising and most amazing fact is that on full moon night ,water oozes out from the Shiva Linga whenever moon light falls on it and temple is so designed that Shiva Linga receives moonlight on every full moon.

The Shri Chandranath Temple at Quepem in Goa provides a breathtaking view of the picturesque green valley of Salcete and Quepem Taluka.

Natural Rock Formations

Between Palolem Beach and Agonda Beach lies a couple of hidden coves having natural rock formations which must have taken millions of years to get created naturally with the lashing of the sea waves. One can take a short hike during low tide from the right side of Palolem Beach in front of Conco Island. Natural small rocks and boulders make it an interesting walk along the coastline. Another way to see the rock formations is to hire a dug out canoe fitted with an outboard motor, cruising at a slow speed while soaking in the visual delights and virgin beaches like Butterfly Beach and Honeymoon Beach.

Butterfly Beach

Towards the north along the waters lies a natural marvel called the Butterfly Island. The distance from the main land is not more than 200 m and a short boat ride is good enough to reach the island. The isolation acts a blessing in disguise as the island offers a secluded beach to the visitors all with its solitary charm and the thrills of any other Goan beach sans the overcrowded and over polluted stretches of sand. The dolphins are extra acrobatic in the waters surrounding the island. Low tides would create a vast canvas on the beach which is painted by the designer footsteps of crabs and goldfishes. Canoe ride along the tiny water streams on the island provide a thrilling ride.

Pandava's drum

The area is full of legends of Pandava’s. On the southern end along the stream there is a large cup shaped rock. This is known as Pandava's drum.

Have to hire a dug out wooden canoe to take you in the backwaters to this Pandava’s drum. People throw stones at it, if they hit a particular spot, a resonating sound comes.


Figueiredo House

In Palolem village you will come across Figueiredo House. This house was built in early twentieth century by Figueiredo family. It now commercially exists as a hotel. Must visit if you like to appreciate Portuguese architecture.

Mallikarjun Temple

The Mallikarjun Temple is at Shristhal, some 2.5 km away from Chaudi on the main-road leading to Karwar and is one where devotees head for advice from oracles called the 'kaul'. The advice of the oracles is taken either from priests in a trance or by them interpreting the way flower petals drop down.

Locally, Mallikarjun is a popular deity, as visible from the names of local educational institutions. This centuries-old temple was renovated in 1778.


Chaudi Saturday local market

Chaudi also known as Chauri or Canacona is situated at about 33 km south of Margao. It is the main center of the Canacona district. It is mainly visited when one wants to get to Palolem, which is situated 2 km west. To the northeast of the town at about 1.5 km stands the new railway station.

Chaudi has a church known as the Saint Theresa of Jesus Church. It also has a famous market where one can get a lot of spices and all other necessary provisions. There are a number of restaurants that serve good South Indian food and other tasty dishes and drinks. There are some good hotels also for accommodation nearby.

Dolphin Sighting

Dolphins frequent the waters around Palolem and can often be seen showing off their acrobatics from the beach. Dolphin trips can be arranged where the boat trip organizers can guarantee a sighting - if you are lucky enough you may even find them swimming in the sea with you!


Honeymoon Beach

A little ahead of Butterfly Beach lies another exotic cove hidden excellently between two hills. Locally and Popularly known as Honeymoon Beach because it is not accessible by foot and only the adventurous few venture to discover it.

This hidden beach is favourite amongst lovers and newly weds because the whole beach is to oneself where one can dare to do skinny dipping, full body tan or just do something wild amidst nature.

Conco Island ( Canacona Island or Monkey Island)

Conco Island is a wooded island, which is pre-aged to the bay of Palolem. The island is also under the name of Canacona Island or Monkey Island, since over there monkeys live, which withdraw themselves into the adjacent forests. The island can be reached at low-tide simply by a very short swim or by wading across in knee deep waters during low tide. Also there are regular boat rides to Monkey Island, for those who don’t want to get their feet wet.

Talpona River

The Talpona river mouth area comprises a unique ecosystem with prominent sand dunes and associated Casuarina vegetation along the northern sea front, a luxuriant growth of mangroves within the estuary and a headland with a thick forest cover in the south. The entire belt is characterized by majestic sand dunes, some as high as 6 – 8 m. At some places, close to the existing parallel road, high dunes have been blatantly razed and obliterated. Talpona River originates in the dense, mixed jungles of Ravan Dongor (Demon Hill) in between Nane and Kuskem on the Sahyadri Mountains. It comes down by passing Bhatpal, fed by the tributary, and drains into the Arabian Sea near the village of Talpona in Canacona Taluka. The river develops a length of around 31 kms. It has three other tributaries named Nadke, Gaondongrem, and Khalwade.

Chapoli Dam

The place surrounding the Chapoli Dam in Canacona is a wonderful eco – tourist spot. Chapoli in Canacona is blessed with natural beauty. This is a very small dam surrounded by small rolling hills in the backdrop.  Lot of fishing activity goes on around these dam waters. The Chapoli Dam is situated 1 km north-east of Chaudi in Canacona. It is approximately 40 km from Margao.

The dam is located in a scenic spot extending westward from the Sahyadris. It makes it an excellent spot to take a break as it lies deep in the valley between hills.  The Chapoli dam supplies drinking water to a part of the Canacona taluka. It is not much frequented even though it is only a kilometer from the Canacona town. However it is visited by those who intend to take a good break.

Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary

Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the Canacona Taluka of South Goa. The sanctuary has eight well laid out nature trails traversing it. There are six watchtowers in the sanctuary. Also there is one 'tree top', it is situated about 20 meters high on a tree overlooking a waterhole. Both the Gal and Talpona rivers of Canacona Taluka originate from the sanctuary. At the entrance to the sanctuary there is an ecotourism complex which houses the nature interpretation centre, cottages, toilets, library, reception area, rescue centre, canteen and Range Forest Office.  The lesser-known animals in the sanctuary include the Flying Squirrel, Slender Loris, Indian Pangolin, Mouse Deer, Four-horned Antelope, Malabar Pit Viper, Hump-Nosed Pit Viper, White-bellied Woodpecker, Malabar Trogon, Velvet-fronted Nuthatch, Heart-spotted Woodpecker, Speckled Piculet, Malayan Bittern, Draco or Flying Lizard, Golden-back Gliding Snake and Malabar Tree Toad.


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