Panaji (पणजी or Pangim) is the capital of the Indian state of Goa. It lies on the banks of the Mandovi estuary, in the district of North Goa. With a population of 65,000 in the city and approximately 100,000 in the metropolitan area, Panaji is Goa's third largest city after Vasco Da Gama and Margao. Panaji means “Land that never floods” [inconsistent]. Panaji is the capital of Goa and headquarters of North Goa District, located on the left bank of the Mandovi River. It has terraced hills, concrete buildings with balconies and red-tiled roofs, churches and a riverside promenade, with red-roofed houses built in Latin style. The are avenues lined with gulmohar, acacia and other trees.
The word Panaji is derived from the words panjani and khali, which mean a boat and a small creek respectively, in Sanskrit. Thus the modern word Panaji is a corrupt form of the old word Panjakhali as inscribed on the copper-plates found, belonging to the rule of Kadamba king Tribhuvanamalla. The official name is Panaji. The Portuguese name was Pangim. The city is called Panjim in English. It has been spelt as Panaji since the 1960s. The city is called paṇajé in Konkani. The Baroque church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception located overlooking the main square known as Praça da Igreja, pretty villas, cobbled streets and interesting buildings give Panaji a Portuguese ambience.
- The heart of the city is the Church Square or Municipal Garden with the Portuguese Baroque Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church, originally built in 1541. Other tourist attractions include the old and rebuilt Adilshahi Palace (or Idalçao palace), dating from the sixteenth century, the Menezes Braganza Institute, the Mahalaxmi Temple, the Jama Masjid mosque, the Chapel of St. Sebastian and the Fontainhas area-which is considered to be the old Latin Quarter-as well as the nearby beach of Miramar. Hanuman Mandir at Malā on hill top (altinho) and its annual zatrā in February are a major attraction of Panaji. Panaji hosted the relics of Saint John Bosco (also known as Don Bosco), till August 21, 2011, at the Don Bosco Oratory.
- The Carnival celebrations in February include a colorful parade on the streets. This is followed by the Shigmo/xigmo, or Holi. The Narkāsūr parade on the night before Diwali in the city is very colorful.
- Well-known places in Panaji are the 18th June Road (a busy thoroughfare in the heart of the town and a shopping area for tourists and locals), Mala area, Miramar Beach and the Kala Academy (a cultural center known for its structure built by architect Charles Correa). Kala Academy is a place where Goa showcases its art and culture.
- Miramar, Bambolim, and Dona Paula Beach: Goa is famous for its beaches, and Miramar, Bambolim, and Dona Paula are three popular beaches located near Panaji.
- Dona Paula: Dona Paula is the meeting point for two of Goa’s famous rivers, Zuari and Mandovi. These two rivers meet at the Arabian Sea. The official residence of the Governor of Goa, known as Cabo Raj Bhavan, is situated on the westernmost tip of Dona Paula.
- Miramar Beach: This beach is located in Panaji. It is one of the more crowded beaches in Goa, which remains full with local and international tourists throughout the year.