8 Museums Of Goa That Will Amaze You

Do you know about the interesting (sometimes not so pleasant) history of Goa or the fact that Goa is also home to the Naval Aviation Command of the Indian Navy or about the science museum and planetarium in Goa? Here is a list of 8 interesting museums and heritage houses of Goa that tell you about  the state, its history, its culture and its uniqueness like no one else does. Here is a link to this list on google maps

1. Museum Of Goa, Pilerne, Bardez

A museum of contemporary art, barely 6 km from Fun Holidays Goa- Calangute and 8 km from Fun Holidays Goa- Arpora, this three-storied museum has colourful exhibits, paintings, photographs and other forms of interesting contemporary art. I was specially intrigued by his collection on Mahatma Gandhi, on the third floor.

replica of nuts of a laterite statue
An exact replica of a laterite statue made by joining metal nuts together. In the background is a photo for sale

It is interesting to see how Dr. Subodh Kerkar experiments with sand, light, sound, mundane things like nuts and bolts to create art. There is an auditorium showing clips of interview with Dr Subodh Kerkar and photos of his artwork with sand and lights on the beach.

Coral grown on an iron cage immersing it in the sea
Coral grown on an iron cage by immersing it in the sea for 6 months

The museum has most of its artwork for sale. They also have a small shop for products by them and other artists that go for much lesser than the artworks. The museum also has a cafe which was closed when I was visiting, a lift and restrooms for the convenience of its visitors.

Shop at Museum of Goa
Decorative items, clothes and accessories for sale at their shop

The museum has various events going on always from music concerts, open art classes, pottery classes and other workshops. The most porminent of them is MOG Sundays from 11 am to 1 pm where prominent figures from the field of psychology, culture, journalism, philosophy etc are invited for lectures. Entry to these events is free. Apart from that, they have workshops for kids and grown ups and walks by Dr Subodh Kerkar.

The museum is open from 10 am to 6 pm everyday. There is an entry ticket of ₹100 per Indian adult and ₹300 per foreigner adult. For Students ₹50 per Indian student and ₹150 per foreigner student.To visit their website, please click here.

Click here for the exact location of this place on google maps.

2. Benz Celebrity Wax Museum, Arpora

Barely 1 km from Fun Holidays Goa- Arpora and 2 km from Fun Holidays Goa- Calangute is Benz celebrity wax museum with wax statues of  famous personalities.

Get yourself clicked with Hollywood personalities like Will Smith, Tom Cruise, Jackie Chan, Bruce Willis or with leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Narendra Modi, Barrack Obama and Vladimir Putin.

Iron Man at Benz Celebrity Wax Museum
A treat for all Marvel fans!!

My kids loved getting themselves clicked with Harry Potter, Mr Bean and superheros like Captain America and Iron Man.

Indian Celebrities like Amir Khan, Amitabh Bachhan will also pose with you.

Turn back time and meet Einstein and Steve Jobs or celebrate a goal with Lionel Messi.

Amir Khan and Jackie Chan at Benz Celebrity art Museum
Strike a pose with Amir khan and Jackie Chan

They also have a 9D cinema theater and dashing cars also.

The museum is open 365 days a year, from 10 am to 10 pm on weekdays and 10 am to 11 pm on Mondays.

There is separate ticket pricing for the museum, 9D theatre and Dashing cars. The place has some parking also. A must go for people looking for some fun.

You can visit their website here.

Click here for the exact location of this place on google maps.

3. House of Goa, Porvorim

This museum is privately owned and run by the Goan architect Gerard De Cunha. House of Goa, as the name suggests, is all about old and new, Indian and Portuguese, Hindu and Christian, belonging to the rich or the poor, the normal and extra ordinary -houses of Goa. From their structure to things used in them like the keys, tiles etc to the uniqueness of different houses like the  Tusli plant in the courtyard of Hindu houses and the cock on top of Portuguese ones, everything is shown through pictures, diagram and sometimes real samples.

Houses of Goa
Pictorial display of various types of houses of Goa in this interestingly shaped room

A pleasure for architecture enthusiasts and others alike, this place also has a small curios shop and cafeteria.

What makes it more interesting is the structure of this museum itself and the buildings around it. I was specially intrigued by a playschool next to it. These different, colourful, yet somehow earthy structures really get you inspired.

Houses of Goa
The shape of the building of Houses of Goa and they way it has been amalgamated with nature is very interesting

Definitely worth a visit. Here is a link to Houses of Goa Website They are open from 10 am to 7:30 pm on all days except Mondays and 1 Jan, 26 Jan, 15 Aug, 25 Dec. They charge a ticket of ₹100 for adults and ₹25 for kids.

Click here for the exact location of this place on google maps.

4. Goa Science Center, Panjim

My kids just love this place. Apart from the planetarium and science museum, they have a whole section on fun with mirrors and science for kids.

The fun starts outside itself with big statues of dinosaurs and other extinct animals, interactive structures explaining gears, weight, sound, light etc.

Inside, there are various sections on oceans, geology, history and more. The ocean section has a computerised quiz kiosk where you can assess your knowledge of the oceans. The museum has many interactive exhibits explaining electricity, winds, water pressure and a lot more.

An illuminated model showing the layers of the ocean and the creatures found there at Goa science centre
An illuminated model showing the layers of the ocean and the creatures found there

My kids enjoy the kids section and mirrors section the most. The way they play with reflections for illusions and making meaningful images of seemingly distorted things, this place is fun for kids and adults alike. They even have a maze of mirrors.

Shapes that make sense only in reflection on a special surface
Shapes that make sense only in reflection on a special surface, like this lion over here

Their planetarium has daily shows till 4 pm and you need to buy tickets for the same separately. For a small extra charge, they also have a 3D show on climate change.

Ticket prices and concessions for Goa Science Center

The museum is open from 10 am to 6 pm daily except Holi and Diwali and has a ticket of ₹20 per head. click here for their website.

A visit to this museum can be clubbed with Miramar beach and the street food kiosks near it. Click here for the exact location of this place on google maps.

5. Indian Naval Aviation Museum, Vasco

Goa is also home to the Head quarters of Naval Aviation Arm of the Indian Navy called INS Hansa. Infact, the runway that you land on belongs to the Indian Navy and you can see their fighter aircraft from your airplane window as you go on the runway.

About 5 km from the airport is Aisa’s only Naval Aviation Museum-  Naval Aviation Museum of Goa.

Naval Aviation Museum, Goa
An Indian Navy helicopter at display at Naval Aviation Museum, Goa

I think the coolest attraction here are real aircraft that have been or are being flown by the Indian Navy. On display in the open area are also, their engine parts, torpedoes, radars etc.

The museum also has a model of INS Kolkata and INS Viraat on display.

A fighter pilot's suit
A fighter pilot’s suit

Clothes and kit of Indian Naval officers and fighter pilots, details of various Naval Aviation squadrons of Indian Navy, ejection seat of a fighter plane, gyros of the aircraft, parachutes and a lot more make this place a do-not-miss.

An ejection seat from a fighter plane
A real ejection seat from a fighter plane

The museum is open from 10 am to 5 pm on all days except Monday. There is a ticket of ₹ 30 for adults and ₹ 10 for kids. You need to buy tickets for your camera too. There is a cafe and some lockable baggage racks for the convenience of travellers. You can also buy souvenirs from the souvenir shop. Here is a link to the website of the website of the Naval Aviation Museum.

Click here for the exact location of this place on google maps.

6. Archaeological Museum, Old Goa

Situated right behind Se Cathedral in Old Goa, in the same complex is the Archaeological Museum of Goa, exhibiting things that have been excavated right here, in Goa. It will amaze you how much more there is to Goa than you knew.

From exhibits of equipment used by the Portuguese to prehistoric stone tools used by early humans and everything in between that belongs to Goa.

mill stone of Gun powder facotry
Those huge mill stones were used to make gun powder but the Portuguese

There are basalt statues of Hindu Gods and Goddess from the 12th century. Also on display are hero stones (stones erected between 3rd century BC and 18th century AD depicting martyrdom of a hero in battle)  and Sati stones (stones depicting women sacrificing their life for a certain purpose) along with photos of the excavation sites during excavation.

One section has huge  portraits of various Portuguese governors of Goa from 1505 to 1961. Various currencies used in Goa through time. A museum of nautical instruments also gives details of various instruments used by the Portuguese for navigation. There is an “Archaeoastronomical Walk” conducted by Make It Happen which explains Portuguese Astronavigation. There is a section with life size aerial photos of various heritage monuments of Goa- the ruins of St Augustine, St Cajetan Church, Tambdi Surla, Fort Aguada, lower fort aguada, Church complex of Old Goa etc.

This museum has two floors with some wooden benches to sit if you get tired. You can also get headphone guides for a charge. There are video shows on world heritage sites at 10:30 am, 1 pm and 3:30 pm

This museum is open from 9 am to 5 pm except on Fridays. There is a ticket of ₹10 for people above 15 years. My only complain is that you can’t use cameras in here. Hell! they wont even let you take out your phone.

Visitors Information Archaeological Museum Goa

Even then, this place is a no-miss if you are the slightest of history enthusiast.

Click here for the exact location of this place on google maps.

7. Bigfoot/ Ancestral Goa, Lutolim

Big Foot museum is also called Ancestral Goa. A privately owned open air museum owned and run by artist Maendra Jocelino Araujo Alvares.

You are welcomed by the statue of Lord Parshurama, an avatar of Lord Vishnu, who is supposed to have created Goa by shooting an arrow from the Sahyadris into the Arabian Sea.

Laterite sculpture of Sant Mira, in the Limca book of records
This 30 m sculpture of Sant Mira was made on a single laterite stone in 30 days and has also been included in the Limca book of records.

The museum boasts of a 30 meter laterite sculpture of Sant Mira which Mr Maendra created himself in record time of 30 days. He and his sculpture are now in Limca Book of Records for this.

The museum gets its name “Big Foot” after the giant human footprint on a rock that they display and is also worshiped. There is also this legend of a very kind man who lost everything and then meditated on this rock standing on one foot, to have left this giant footprint.

The Giant human food print in the museum
The Giant human food print in the museum

This open air museum is also known as Ancestral Goa because they have villages with model homes and human statues depicting the lifestyle, social structure, professions, clothes etc of Goans during the past few centuries. From music schools to salt pans to Feni (the local Goan alcoholic drink) making, to local markets to music schools. There is a lot on display with automated voices giving you details about each exhibit.

A model home of a Goan fisherman
The museum has many model homes of Goans like this one of a Goan fisherman

They also have a small aviary which gets the kids very excited. A garden showing off 12 varieties of Tulsi among other plants native to Goa, are worth some time.

The place also sports many other exhibits by children, and local artists. Shops aplenty to by local produce and souvenirs.

Big Foot is open 365 days a year and tickets are available for ₹50 for adults and ₹ 30 for kids from 3 to 10 years. Please note that they are still a “cash only” place.

Here is a link to their website 

Click here for the exact location of this place on google maps.

8. Casa Araujo Alvares, Lutolim

Just across the road from Big foot is Casa Araujo Alvares. This 250 year old heritage mansion showcases the lifestyle of the rich and powerful of those days. You enter the house from the main door and are guided by staff from room to room. Explaining of exhibits is done by recorded voices, light and the staff assigned to that room. You get to see the office of the lawyer who once owned this house and how they worked in those days. I really found their inside-the-bedroom-toilet  for emergencies, very interesting.

An emergency in-house toilet of the olden days
Toilets used be outside the house, hence they had this emergency in-house toilet in their bedrooms.

The gallery with a hidden strongroom where the family hid with gunmen during any attack by looters. These rooms had tiny holes to peep from and shoot at the attackers. The wine shelf and kitchen have many things that you can still remember in your village house of have seen your grandmothers using.

The house has an cross museum which has photos of 300 crosses from across the world and the room of a Hindu servant which displays more than 1000 statues of Lord Ganesha.

A collection of 300 crosses
The house also has room with a collection of about 300 crosses from all over the world

The richly decorated ball room and dining room with imported cutlery, furniture and decoration show the affluence this house has once seen.

The dining room
The dining room

The tickets to this place can also be bought from the big foot museum. They cost ₹ 100 for adults and ₹ 50 for kids. It is open everyday from 9 am to 5:30 pm and has a tour every 15 min. Photography is allowed but you need to buy tickets for your camera. You can visit their website here.

Click here for the exact location of this place on google maps.

To Sum Up

Unlike what many think, Goa is not only a party destination but also a place to connect with history, art, culture and science. A visit to those museums inspires you to know more. Benz celebrity Wax museum, Houses of Goa and Museum of Goa are very close to Fun Holidays Goa.

Did this piece help you plan your trip better or inspire you to plan a trip to Goa? Do you have any queries or suggestions? Do tell me, in the comment section below. Do like and share this with your friends and family. Remember, sharing is caring 🙂

Do subscribe to my blog to stay updated with my latest posts about Goa. Next week, I’ll talk about historical places  in Goa to visit. Till then dream, explore and be amazed!

 

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