Goa, India

Goa, a place in the Konkan coast of India & is an “Addictive” one, no matter how many times one visits here, the Nostalgia remains with a wistful desire to return to this place.

It’s a place which offers option and space for most notable category of travelers, be it a bachelor, honeymooner, family, business, fun or adventure trips. This has got a special place in the itinerary of European and Russian tourists.

Ashvem Beach – Evening

Goa has a variety of lifestyle on beaches, restaurants, churches, riverside, casinos, discos and many more. But, what I vouch for, is search for birds, kids playing on white sand, pre-noon swimming sessions in clear ocean, sea-food and beer in lunch continued by long walks on empty and silky beaches while sunset followed by romantic corny dinner, are the major fairy-concise which entices me to visit GOA again and again.

Bogmalo Beach

North Goa offers the landscape and scenery carrying a distinctive charm of their own, it also offers fun filled beaches like Anjuna, Baga and Calangute. On the flip side it also has calm & clean ones like Querim, Arambol, Mandrem, Ashvem and Morjhim. North Goa also has low-lying river basins and the coastal plains. The water-divide acts as a source region for most of the Goan rivers. The scarp face is furrowed by ungraded streams, many of which in the steep fall, have waterfalls.

The central portion of North Goa consists by and large, of plateaus at varying levels. The major riverine plains in North Goa are those of Mandovi river which offers Casinos and some exotic backwater locations. It locates a small Bird Sanctuary named after Dr. Salim Ali alongside Divar Island.

There are some must visit restaurants in North Goa: Thalassa on Vagator, Britto’s on Baga and Souza Lobo on Calangute beach. Fisherman’s Wharf in Panjim and Martin’s Corner in Betalbatim.

Among the best places to visit in South Central Goa, spice plantation is becoming popular because of the history involved. The spice trade in Goa began with the entry of the Portugese in India.

These spices are used to add flavour to some of the authentic Goan dishes like Goan Fish Curry, Xhacuti, Cafreal, Vindaloo etc. A spice plantation tour will allow you to have a better idea as what, how and when they are grown, harvested and processed before being sold locally or internationally.

Tropical Spice Garden or Sahkari Spice Farm in Ponda is a must visit, where @ INR 400/- per adult, you will get half an hour tour inside the garden followed by buffet lunch and trust me the food is so delicious that cannot be expressed in words. This place is also be suitable for Bird Watchers, who can have a walkover inside after the delicious lunch and exactly that’s what I did.

The churches in Goa reflects Portuguese architecture and style and still reflects in their homes made even today. Some of the popular churches in Goa are The Basilica of Bom Jesus, Se Cathedral, Church of Holy Spirit and St. Francis of Assissi Church. In The Basilica of Bom Jesus, the mummified body of St. Francis Xavier is kept.

Once you break away from happening and full of activity beaches of North Goa and head towards South of Goa where it owns its pristine beaches with the peaceful aura. Providing the perfect escape where worries melt into the golden sand, the groovy land is the ideal antidote to break away from the busy schedules of everyday life.

Once Palolem was considered as one of the unspoiled beaches of South Goa, but now the crowd and water games have taken it over, but Agonda Beach is still largely an unspoiled and is inhabited by both local fishermen and by foreign tourists who live in shacks along the shore or in the main village itself. It is about a mile long in curved shape where one can view the entire beach from either end. Both ends of the beach consist of rocks jutting out into the sea. The depth of the sea increases gradually, making it safe for average swimmers, and the currents are not fast.

Agonda Beach

Following are the list of beaches from North to South

Querim and Arambol: Its located at a distance of 60 – 65 kms. from the Airport. Since these beaches are not so developed there are only few good accommodations. However, once can easily find accommodation in guest houses and homes with the locals. These are in list for next trip.

Mandrem, Ashvem, Morjim: Ashvem beach is a small, calm and flat sandy beach located in between Mandrem and Morjim. Its 50 -55 kms from Airport and a very clam place with almost no local visitors. The beach has many shacks that serve good food and refreshments, a peaceful afternoon can be spent at the beach itself.

Chapora, Vagator, Ozran: These are rocky beaches with shades of coconut trees on the beach side and little extra crowd.

Anjuna, Baga, Calangute: These are the most crowed beaches of Goa with almost every thing to offer, right from beach shacks, water games, hawkers and a lot of crowd enjoying them.

Some other beaches with relatively something new to offer on Candolim, Sinquerim, Coco, Kegdole, Miramar, Caranzalem.

Dona Paula: Dona Paula is a small beach with a Dona Paula point with panoramic view of Arabian Sea. The point has a statue which relates to the story of a Portuguese girl Donna, who supposedly committed suicide here after years of wait for his fisherman beloved.

Vaiguinim, Bambolim, Siridao and Bogmalo are few calm beaches if one want to just lie down and relax.

Cansaulim, Arossim, Utorda and Majorda are somewhat interconnected and forms a big bed of white sand and one can observe a very scattered crowd on these beaches. Similarly beaches like Consua, Betalbatim, Benaulim, Varca, Zalor, Cavelossim, Mobor, Betul, Canaiguinim and Cola have similar offering and not too popular.

Colva is Calangute of South Goa and have similar landscapes and activities.

Agonda White Sand, an awesome beach side Hotel and Restaurant.

Agonda, is undoubtedly the best beach in South Goa and my personal favourite as well. The beauty calmness and hotels right on the beach are too good. One can also have a boat ride for half a day, Dolphins can be seen and in-fact we saw a Dolphin right at the same place from where I just returned after a long swim. The bat trip will let you see Butterfly beach and up to Palolem Beach, which is one of the most famous beach in South Goa but I think Palolem has lost his charm over last few years because of Crowd.

Further south there are few more, but very less visitors like Patnem, Rajbag, Galgibag, Polem Beach

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