The state of Goa has a very long history. The state derived its name from the Sanskrit name ?Gomantak? which means a land of fertility. At the mouth of River Mandovi was the old port town known as Gowapura. After the Portuguese captured it and made it their capital (now Old Goa) it came to be known as Goa.
Goa was ruled by different people in different eras. During the early period it was ruled by the Mauryan Empire. After that the Hindu dynasties took over. Then came the Muslim rulers who controlled Goa for a long time. It was after the discovery of Goa by Vasco da Gama that the Portuguese came here. Goa was finally liberated in the year 1961 and became an independent Union Territory.
Languages - Konkani is the mother tongue and most widely spoken language, Marathi is very popular too. English is the widely spoken language in bigger cities. Goa has a large number of tourists all year around and hence many local people have learnt English to be able to communicate with them. Though the Portuguese have ruled Goa for a long time, very few people actually speak Portuguese.
Religion - Hinduism and Christianity are the major religions accounting for about 95% of the population. The remaining 5% comprises of Islam, Buddhism etc.
Climate - Goa has a temperate climate almost throughout the year except the monsoon season which starts from June and lasts till September. The weather is moderate, neither too hot nor too cold. The sun shines brightly in the Goan sky almost throughout the year. The average daily temperature is between 23°C to 32°C. Goa receives a rainfall of about 200 ? 250 cms annually.