Colvá is a coastal village in Salcete, south Goa, on the west coast of India. Colva Beach stretches for around 2.4 kilometres (1.5 mi), part of a beach consisting of about 25 kilometres (16 mi) of powder white sand, lined along its shore by coconut palms and extending from Bogmalo in the north to Cabo de Rama in the south.
Colvá is a famous tourist destination, visited for its beaches, budget hotels, guest houses, beach shacks, food stalls, restaurants, pubs and bars. The beaches are constantly monitored by lifeguards, and the swimming areas are flagged for warnings.
The village had significant importance to Portugal and was the retreat for Goa’s high society, who would come to Colvá for their “Mundanca” or change of air. Today the Portuguese area is dotted with houses or villas, including many ruins. On weekends, huge crowds of tourists, visitors from around the world as well as local Indians, enjoy the sunset and various activities. The beach is particularly busy in October, when hordes of religious pilgrims come and visit Colvá Church, called Igreja de Nossa Senhora das Merces, that was founded in 1630 by the Roiz family and rebuilt in the eighteenth century on the village square.
The local people have been fishermen since the mid-16th century. They include Hindu converts as well as migrants from various Portuguese overseas territories such as Angola, Mozambique, Brazil, etc. as well as Portugal itself.
Colvá is still famous for the white-washed Our Lady Of Mercy church, also known as Igreja de Nossa Senhora das Merces, that was founded in 1630 and rebuilt in the eighteenth century in the village square. It houses the miraculous statue of ‘Menino Jesus’ (Baby Jesus), which was introduced by a Jesuit missionary and which is believed to have healing powers.
According to local legend, the statue at Our Lady of Mercy church was found in the mid-seventeenth century along the coast of Mozambique after Rev Fr. Bento Ferreira and his party had been shipwrecked off the coast. After swimming to safety, they spotted it as it was washed ashore after being dumped into the sea by Muslim pirates.
In 1648 when Father Ferreira was posted to Colvá, he placed the statue on the altar, and it soon started drawing large crowds of devotees as it granted their favours. The Menino Jesus statue is kept for public viewing in October for the annual Fama (‘Fame’) festival for which thousands of people assemble.
This is the only time that it is removed from the triple-vault locks of the Church. It is then dipped into a nearby river after a procession, and the pilgrims use this water for anointment and good luck
Hotels near Colva Beach
Goa Villagio Resort and Spa by Cryst
Silver Sand Beach Resort
Hotel Colva Kinara
Hotel Sea Coin
Beleza by the Beach
La Ben Resort
Location and Distance from Major Tourist Attractions in Goa
Colvá has an average elevation of 1.1 metres (3.6 ft). Its main village market is located behind the church, which is about 2.3 km (1.4 mi) away from the beach; there are various other shops at the cross road near the beach. Colvá recognises three beaches; firstly the main Colvá beach which is the prime beach, secondly Sunset beach (towards Betalbatim) which is less congested, and thirdly Baywatch beach (towards Benaulim at Sernabatim). Colvá is 8 km (5.0 mi) from Margao and 40 km (25 mi) from Panajim. The closest railway station is in Margao followed by Vasco da Gama, Goa. The airport is Dabolim Airport (GOI) at Vasco da Gama, Goa. The neighbouring villages are Betalbatim and Benaulim and the nearest city Margao.
Distances around Goa (from Colva): Margao – 8 km (5.0 mi), Vasco – 35 km (22 mi), Mapusa – 53 km (33 mi), Calangute – 56 km (35 mi), Ponda – 28 km (17 mi), Dabolim Airport – 28 km (17 mi), Panjim – 40 km (25 mi), Tiracol – 82 km (51 mi).
Colva beach stretches for around 2.4 km, part of a beach consisting of about 25 km of powder white sand, lined along its shore by coconut palms, and extending as far as Bogmalo Beach to the north and Cabo de rama Beach to the South Goa’s coastline.
Colva is now a famous tourist destination, enjoyed for its beach. The tourist industry is well developed with many budget hotels, guest houses, beach shacks, food stalls, small restaurants and pubs and bars, although these developments haven’t extended in any large degree to the nightlife. The beaches are constantly monitored by lifeguards and the swimming areas flagged with coloured flags accordingly. Being one of the famous beaches of Goa, this beach is highly crowded most of the time of the year. With a majority of its visitors being domestic Indian visitors this beach is mostly neglected by foreigners.
The nearest airport is Dabolim Airport which is about 21 km away. The nearest railway station is Madgoan junction railway station in just 17 minutes drive. Colva beach can be reached from Margao by bus. Private transport such as cabs, auto rickshaws are also available.
Colva Beach Photos