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Celebrating International Museum Day: Exploring the rich heritage of Goa’s Museums

GOANS Museums

Goa’s museums, including Goa State Museum, Ancestral Goa Museum, and others, preserve and celebrate the state’s diverse cultural heritage, making significant contributions to education and cultural appreciation.

From being the dead poet’s poetry to being a tortured artist’s artwork, art reshapes itself in melancholy, despair, anguish, pain, doubt, hatred, love, compassion, desire, and euphoria to metamorphose into the history of museums. To preserve these museums is to rewrite the prophecy of the artist. As the world recognises International Museum Day on May 18th, Goa has a cluster of museums entitled to its stature.

The museums of Goa strengthen and lay a significantly diverse cultural infrastructure, accentuating the cultural roots of the state dating back centuries. The Department of Tourism significantly perpetuates the roots of Goan culture, drawing audience and renovative concepts. As we celebrate the 47th International Museum Day, let us take you to the state’s apprised museums.


Established in 1973, the Archaeology and Museum unit in Goa moved to various locations before settling in the Old Secretariat in Panaji in 2017. Housed within the historic Old Secretariat it is also known as the Adilshah Palace. Ranging from Padmanabha to Hopkinson and Copes’ Printing Press from 1860, the museum aims at preserving and centralising similar antiquities and art objects of cultural importance.


Ancestral Goa Museum, popularly known as “Bigfoot,” offers alluring glimpses into rural Goan life. Situated in Loutolim village and curated by artist Mahendra Jocelino Araujo Alvares, it showcases local and national artwork, authentic Goan handicrafts, and scenic attractions like Boca da Vaca spring. Highlighted by the impressive Sant Mirabai statue, the museum also features a model village.


The Archaeological Museum, situated near the Convent and Church of St. Francis of Assisi in Velha Goa, showcases significant artefacts from the Portuguese era in India. Divided into eight galleries, it features portraits of Viceroys and Governors of Goa, stamps, religious artefacts, and more. It serves as a window to Goa’s history from prehistoric times to Portuguese rule. Established by the Archaeological Survey of India in 1964, the museum underwent expansions in 1982.


The Museum of Christian Art (MoCA), situated in Old Goa’s Convent of Santa Monica, is Asia’s powering venture. Celebrated globally for its fusion of Indian and European cultures, its exhibits boast Indo-Portuguese influence. The museum underwent an upgrade from 2017-2020, modernising the museum to global standards, and preserving its unique collection through INTACH’s conservation efforts.


The Pilar Museum is located at Pilar Hillock in Goa. It encapsulates the region’s rich cultural and religious heritage, dating back to the Shilahara and Kadamba dynasties. Despite enduring Muslim and Portuguese conquests, artefacts reveal camaraderie among Goans, transcending religious affiliations. It focuses on communal harmony and spirituality.


India’s sole Naval Aviation Museum, located near Vasco-da-Gama, highlights the theme of this year’s International Museum Day – “Museums for Education and Research.” The museum was established in October 1998 and is divided into outdoor and indoor sections. It features various aircraft, engines, and armaments. The “Hall of Silence” adds a serene meditation room, while a photo gallery showcases naval aviation history. The museum serves as inspiration and knowledge, particularly for aspiring defence personnel.

The museums of Goa walk us down through time and heritage. These repositories of history educate and inspire the audience, nurturing a deeper appreciation for Goa’s rich tapestry of culture and tradition. For this International Museum Day, let’s create perseverance to regenerate the culture stored in our museums.

Co-Founder & Chief Editor - TravelDailyNews Media Network | + Articles

Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales. She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.