Ponda can be described as the Hindu heartland of Goa. It is famous for the five important temples that are situated around the town. Most of the areas of Ponda were originally part of the Quela Village. Attractions of this place centered on a number of unique Hindu temples in the surrounding area and several spice plantations that enthrall tourists during their visit to this place.
Some of the well-known attractions of this place are
Shri Mangesh Temple
This is 18th century temple situated on top of a hill at Priol in the northwest of Ponda. It is the most important temple in Goa in the typical Goan Hindu temple style of architecture. The temple has shrines of Parvati (consort of Shiva) and Ganesha (God of Prosperity and Wisdom). The architecture of this temple showcases the blend of the Hindu and the Portuguese style of decorations and construction. The most enthralling attraction of this temple is a beautiful seven-storied deepstambha (lamp tower). During the festival of Mangesh Jatra, the rath (temple chariot) is pulled by several devotees.
Mahalsa Narayani Temple
This is another well-known temple of Ponda dedicated to Goddess Laxmi (consort of Lord Vishnu). The temple is known for intricately carved columns and painting of the 10 avatars or incarnations of Lord Vishnu. Temple is known for the Garuda pillar (the half-man half-eagle vehicle of Vishnu), and deepstambha a finely carved pillar.
It is a temple dedicated to Goddess Durga situated amidst tranquil forests and hills. It is located 3 km from Ponda in Queula. Shantadurga, one of the consorts of Lord Shiva, is a form of Durga (the Goddess of War) and the Goddess of Peace. It is the biggest temple in Goa, which was built in 1738. It is known for six-storied deepstambha, ratha (chariot) and gilt work adorning the temple grounds.
This is another most visited temple situated 4 km west of Ponda. It is dedicated to the ‘God of Serpents’ which refers to Lord Shiva. The temple was built in 1413 and famous for woodcarvings that narrate stories from the Hindu epics Ramayana and Mahabharata.
Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary
It is the smallest Goa wildlife sanctuary spreading over an area of 8 sq km. This national park is famous for botanical garden, a rose garden and a small deer-park. The landscape of the Bondla wildlife sanctuary is beautiful with lush green vegetation that calls on a large number of tourists every year.
Dudhsagar falls is among the most impressive waterfalls of India. It is situated on the eastern border of Karnataka and Goa. This magnificent fall drops from a spectacular height of 600 meters above sea level. It is located in a blissful tropical jungle with crisscrossing streams that make it an ideal destination for a vacation in Goa.
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