The Paradise of Beaches - Goa
Goa, which is the smallest state in India is located on the Western Ghats. Goa is famous for its nightlife, white sand beaches, drooling seafood, and its heritage architecture. Goa, which lies in the Konkan region is a destination that welcomes its tourists 24x7 and is spread in the area of 3702 km. Goa attracts many International, National, and local tourists, each year. There are various festivals that are celebrated in Goa and attract a large number of tourists. The most famous festivals of Goa are Goa Carnival and The New Year’s, there are some trendy clubs, discotheques, exotic bars, with good beachy shacks and all this promotes a good and happening nightlife in Goa. Goa is having a huge variety of alcohol with cheap pieces which attracts a lot of young tourists that are having tighter pockets.
Goa is divided into two parts north goa and south goa, north goa is famous among the tourists for its exotic beaches nightlife, and vibrant flea market while south goa is famous among wealthy tourists for its luxurious resorts and laid back beaches. Panjim is located in the center and is referred to as the capital city of Goa. There is good connectivity to transport as it has a railway station, International airport, and local road transport, which runs from south goa to north goa. There are many endless beaches in goa such as Calangute beach, Baga Beach, Dona Paula Beach, to name a few. The beaches that attract the interest of foreigners are Arambol and Anjuna beach.
Formation / History of Goa
Goa was the leading center for trade work in India and it used to attract merchants, missionaries, dynasties, seafarers, traders, and monks. In the past few years, Goa has put a phenomenal impression on the transformation and development of economical and cultural parts. Saraswats or the brahmin was the first one to get settled in Goa. The name Saraswat was given to them as they used to live on the banks of river Saraswati which is located in the northern part of India. In the third century BC, Goa was declared as a part of the Mauryan empire but later it was taken over by Chalukyas of Badami, as Satavahanas of Kolhapur dominated over Mauryan.
Later in the year, 1312 Muslims took control over Goa, but as they were not so fond of beaches so they left this place in 1370. After that in the year 1510, Goa was taken over by seafaring Portuguese from the spice route from the east. As Goa is having natural harbors and wide rivers so it became the ideal place for them and they ruled over Goa for a longer period of time.
Even today you can witness the architecture of buildings, churches, forts, and edifices in Portuguese manners. But in 1961 when the Indian army entered Goa the trade practice of Portuguese came to end. In the year 1987 Goa was officially declared as the 25th state of India by the late prime minister Rajiv Gandhi. Konkani, which is the local language of Goa, became the 22nd official regional language of India. Currently, Goa is generating the highest per capita income in India by practicing activities like iron or mining, farming, tourism, and fishing,
During the summer season: 20°C to 45°C
During the rainy/ monsoon season: 14°C to 35°C
During the winter season: 20°C to 03°C
Things to do in Goa
There are many fun activities that can be enjoyed on the beaches or in the bars of North and South Goa. One can visit Bagha beach that is located in North Goa which is the busiest and the popular beach in Goa. You can enjoy the exciting nightlife and various pubs, clubs, and bars that are enjoyed by tourists and locals as well. You can also study the historic times of Goa at Goa State Museum. There is a vast collection of artifacts, religious texts, precious coins, statues that are made up of bronze, wood, and stones. You can also explore the 400 years old Chapora fort which was the watch post for the Portuguese who used to rule over Goa. You can also visit Dona Paula which is located in Panjim. This place is famous for the national institute of oceanography in India. You can also visit a Hindu temple that is dedicated to God Mangesh who was the Avtar of Lord Shiva. This Mangueshi Temple is about 500 years old but still well maintained.
You can also enjoy your stay in the houseboats that drifted along the backwaters of Goa. Other than this you can also enjoy some watersports like Banana Boat Ride, Dolphins Spotting, Parasailing at Calangute. One can also visit Borea Jezuchi Bajilika which is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site that is having the ruins of st. Francis Xavier. A trip to Goa is always incomplete without visiting Aguada Fort. This is a Portuguese fort that was constructed in the 17th century and is located on Sinquerim Beach.
Wildlife Safari can also be enjoyed in Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary located in Ponda Taluka. Dudhsagar Waterfall, which is also known as the sea of milk, can be enjoyed on the Goa - Karnataka Border. If you want to be away from the crowd and still want to enjoy on beaches, then you can visit Palolem Beach which is famous for Dolphins watching which will leave you awestruck. You can also enjoy kayaking, Snorkeling, Parasailing, and many such water spots at Vasco Da Gama.
If you are a party animal and love to party, then you can enjoy some silent headphone party that starts at 9 pm and goes on till early morning. An adventure Enthusiast can also enjoy a two-hour-long trek from Palolem Beach to Butterfly Beach. Some other activities such as Rock Climbing, Sun Bathing, Canoeing can also be enjoyed.
Places to visit in Goa
1. Agonda Beach
This beach is located in South Goa, at a distance of 43 km from Margao and 76 km from Panjim. You can spend some leisure time and relax on Agonda beach. This is a two miles long bridge. There is a lane of huts and shacks. There were few illegal structures that were ordered to disrupted in 2019.
2. Fort Aguada
This is a 400 years old fort that enhances the landscape of this place. It is located in North Goa, in Candolim. Aguada fort’s constructed in the year 1609 and got completed in 1612 by Viceroy Ruy Tavara. Aguada is a Portuguese word that means freshwater. It is named so because of the freshwater present inside the fort.
3. Chapora Fort
This fort became famous after the blockbuster hit of Bollywood movie “Dil Chahta Hai” which was released in 2001. The best time to visit this fort is during sunset time when the orange color paints the complete area, the fort, river, beaches, etc. you can reach this fort from Mapusa which is located at a distance of 10 km.
4. Dudhsagar Falls
Dudhsagar waterfall is located on the Karnataka-Goa border and is a four-tired waterfall. This water is named Dudh Sagar due because the falling water seems to be completely white and feels like the cloud is falling from heaven. It is located at an elevation of 1017 feet above sea level.
5. Baga Beach
This is the mesmerizing beach located in North Goa, with crystal white sand and beautiful palm trees and sweet tone beach waves. Baga beach is located between Calangute and Anjuna beach. Most of the tourists enjoy fishing at this beach. There are various clubs and complex that attracts a huge number of tourists.
6. Anjuna Wednesday Market
This is a flea market that is the most famous market near Anjuna beach, which opens every Wednesday from 9 am in the morning till 6 pm in the evening. Other than artifacts and souvenirs that are sold here you can also enjoy the live rock to jazz performances of singers and bands.
7. Basilica of Bom Jesus
This is one of the oldest Churches that is famous for its architecture and is also a UNESCO world heritage site. Southwest India is the place where Christianity was first introduced. This is a 400 years old church, whose construction was completed in the year 1605. The Baroque architecture was given to this church.
8. Thalassa Restaurant
This is a scenic restaurant that is located in North Goa, in Vagator. This restaurant offers a view of the ocean with some mouthwatering food. You can enjoy the Greek menu with some local alcohol and can enjoy that atmosphere of Greek here in India itself.
9. Mapusa Market
The true essence of Goa can be felt in this market only. This market opens on each day in a week but on Fridays, this market becomes really crowded and full of people. This is the famous market where you can get different types of spices that are available in Goa and is located near Mapusa Bus stand.
10. Church Of Our Lady Of Immaculate Conception
This is the most famous church of Goa and can also be represented as the symbol of Goa. you might have seen this Church in Various Bollywood movies. It is located in the capital city that is in Panaji. This church is having the second largest bell in Goa, the first being the Golden bell in Se Cathedral.
11. Latin Quarter
This is a Heritage building that is located in the capital city of Goa, which is Panaji. This church is having fascinating and colorful sights that catch the eye of tourists. It was founded by Antonio Joao de Sequeira, who was a wealthy Portuguese in the 18th century. This site was recognized by UNESCO in 1984 as a heritage site of Goa.
12. Naval Aviation Museum
Naval Aviation Museum is located in South Goa, in Bogmalo which is at a distance of 6km from Vasco de Gama. There are two parts of this museum, a two-story interior exhibition, and an exterior exhibition. The inauguration of this museum was done in October 1998.
13. Grande Island
Grande island is also known as the bat island of Ilha Grande. You can enjoy warriors water sports activities like snorkeling, fishing, and many more at this place. This island can be reached through a boat and the best time to visit this place is from October till March month. You can also spot Dolphins twirling in their natural place.
14. Go Kart Racing
This is the best place for adventure seekers in Goa, located in Arpora. You need to cover the distance of 340 meters by trekking and on the way, you will find various u shaped turns that will make this trekking more interesting. You need to have a minimum height of 4.4 feet and need to pay INR 300 to enjoy this activity.
15. Paragliding in Arambol
Arambol is a popular destination for experiencing paragliding among the adventure seekers that is located in Goa. the takeoff view is of the rocky headland and also the “sweet water lake”. This place is also considered to be religious by some people who visit this place to offer the Puja to the Holy Banyan tree.
16. Hill Top club in Anjuna
This is the top party destination in Goa. this is the place for all trance aficionados and people from all around the world come at this place to enjoy the neon palm grove. On Sunday a weekly event is held at this place from 5 pm evening till 10 pm in the night. On Christmas and New year’s eve, special raves are arranged for thousands of people.
17. Arambol Hippie Festival
This is a Hippie festival that is held on Arambol where one can enjoy the local foods and specialties of Goa. the nightlife can also be enjoyed in the UV bar, Cape Town cafe, Casino Royal and many more such places. You can also be part of the music festival and the most famous Sunburn festival that is held in Goa every year.
18. Fort Cabo De Rama
This fort is located in the Canacona region of South Goa, which is located at a distance of 30km from Margao. It is located between the famous two beaches such as Agonda and Cavelossim. This fort was constructed in 1763 by Local Soonda Ruler, who use to rule from this place.
19. Terekhol Fort
This fort is also known as Tiracol Fort, which was constructed during the 17th century. The Portuguese attacked this fort to overpower the Sawantwadi Kingdom in the year 1746. Currently, this fort has been converted into a heritage hotel where people can enjoy their stay.
20. Amboli Waterfalls
This waterfall is located on Sahyadri hill that is located in the western part of India in Amboli. It is located at an elevation of 690 meters above sea level. This waterfall is having other numerous waterfalls in its surroundings. This is the best place to be enjoyed with family, friends, and children.
21. Palolem Beach
This Palolem beach is located in South Goa is a free-spirited area for Indians. If you want to spend some leisure time with your family members then you can prefer the northern side of this beach, which experiences low tide. If you want to experience some adventure and enjoy activities like Kayaking, boat riding, and many more then you can opt for the southern part of this beach.
Where to stay in Goa
As we all know that North Goa is the more preferred place to spend your holidays over South Goa, as North Goa is having More beaches in party areas so you can stay in hotels that are located near the famous beaches. Calangute beach, Candolim Beach are having some good hotels to stay in.
If you are wealthy or someone who is having a good budget then you can spend your night in Hyatt Hotel or Novotel Hotel that are located on Candolim road. If you are a student or someone who is having a budget trip then you can plan your stay in hostels such as red door hostel, wonderland hostel, the bucket list Goa, Pappi Chulo, the Nest by histology, Woke Morjim and many more such hostel which are budget-friendly and comfortable to stay with your folks.
How to reach Goa
If you are going by road then you can opt for the bus that is driven on the highway having the best connectivity of Goa to other states. There is a Panaji bus stand that can be found in Goa which makes traveling to vicinities of goa easy. Though you can also opt for a direct private taxi system from your place to Goa. motorcycles and scooters are also the most preferred means to commute in Goa.
For trains, Goa is having good connectivity with major cities like Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai, Rajasthan, and other major cities. There are two railway stations in Goa which are Margao Railway station and Vasco da Gama Railway station being the major one. The railways are the most preferred mode, which makes traveling to Goa easy.
The Dabolim Airport of Goa is well connected with all domestic flights. This airport is located in Vasco da Gama and you need to cover the distance of 29 km to reach the airport from Panaji. There is a domestic Palam Airport that connects Goa to other states within India.
Best time to visit Goa
The best time to visit Goa is during the month of November till March as the temperature during this time period remains very pleasant. You can enjoy the beautiful balmy weather with the cool breeze of the beaches. Most of the tourists are attracted during this time period only.