It is no exaggeration if said that Goa is truly a heaven on the Western Coast of India. The best things to do in Goa include exciting nightlife of clubs, splendid sands of beaches, finger-licking food, free-flowing booze, and more! This beach state is popular amid holidaymakers from all across the globe. Goa tourism remains at an all-time high due to varied unforgettable experiences it has to offer.
Placed on the Konkan coastal belt, Goa has coastline of over 100 km, rich Portuguese legacy, and superb cuisine. One of the most popular beach destinations of India, Goa has been receiving domestic and international tourists from several years. The relaxed and laid-back feel of this place is infectious. The state receives more than 2 million tourists on a yearly basis. The list of attractions in Goa include
- Splendid beaches
- Old Churches
- Historic forts
- Wildlife and Bird sanctuaries
- Water Sports
- Electric nightclubs and Casinos
- Flea markets
To cater to needs and preferences of all kinds of tourists, there are lots of hotels and other accommodation options, falling in varied budget categories. You can take a pick as per your pocket-size. If you are visiting the state during Christmas and New Year time, make it a point that you make hotel booking well in advance. Making online hotel booking is going to be beneficial in terms of money and otherwise also. Nevertheless, during the non-peak season, things are different. Here is the categorization of Goa Hotels:
Luxury hotels in Goa
Goa has no dearth of luxury properties. The luxury hotels in Goa include 4 star and 5-star hotels, along with long-term rental private villas. These options are ideal for short-term tourists, honeymooning couples as well as family vacationers.
Though these hotels are quite expensive but the standard and level of their hospitality is unparalleled. Some of these priorities are quite close to the beaches or have their private beaches, and offer a wonderful view of the sea waters sports. Guests can enjoy an easy access to the local markets and other attractions. The room-sizes, the facilities, the amenities, dining venues and everything else is world-class.
Medium-Range Hotels in Goa
Goa has innumerable medium-range hotel, which are reasonable priced an d have all the modern comforts, sans high-end luxury. Such hotels have clean and good rooms, room service, internet facility, comfortable bed, attached bathroom, a balcony and restaurants. The rate of these hotels is quite lower than luxury properties but the services are memorable.
Budget Hotels in Goa
Budget hotels in Goa are ideal for backpackers and for those who travel on a tight budget. These hotels have rooms with very basic necessities and are like normal guest houses, run by local families. Such hotels do not have a restaurant or a bar, and home-cooked meal is served to the guests. Sometimes, the price of the meals is includes in the room rent.
If you do not wish to splurge in luxury and can manage in minimum facilities, you can get good cheap hotel or backpacker homestays at extremely affordable prices. A normal room would have a bed, a standard bathroom and a fan. It is important for you to know that such properties most of times are away from main city area and beaches.
Do check-out the condition of the room and the bathroom before you make the booking. However, a stay at such hotels gives you a chance to get the real taste of real Goa and its culture.
Long- Term Rental Properties
Goa also gets such guests that stay here for weeks and months, for such people long-term renal options are available. Such properties offer bookings are affordable prices, without burning a hole in the pocket. Rent vary from place to place and according to the facilities offered. Accommodation is offered for a large group of people in such facilities. If booking is done well in advance, the owner might offer an amazing discount.
Food in Goa has variety and several options, which can clearly be termed has fusion foods. When in Goa, do not miss the local staple delicacies including fruit rice and fish curries. Goan food is known for its different flavors. Sea-food, prepared from freshest pf catches, is another item that is also not be missed. Food of this beach state is also an important display of its vibrant culture.
Goa was a Portuguese colony till 1961 and this can still be felt in air, mannerism, architecture and everything else including food. When Indian and Portuguese cooking styles are clubbed with aromatic spices, the result is finger-licking food.
There are a variety of options to eat, from high-end restaurants, to buzzing beach shacks, to small eating joints and streets vendors. Goa serves food from world-over, suiting the taste buds of all. Goa has an eating joint at every nook and corner. You get North Indian, Mughlai, South Indian, Chinese, Continental, Sea-food, local Goan and other cuisines you wish to savor. Take a pick as per your taste buds.
Eat it Out!
If you are searching for a place that serves healthy food, head to Plantain Leaf, one of the most popular vegetarian restaurants in Goa. It is located in the middle of the market area, very close to the Calangute beach. The restaurant serves South Indian dishes along with the popular vegetable Uttapam.
Another popular eatery is Greenland Bar & Restaurant at Utorda beach, just a few minutes away. This restaurant has a British owner and serves delicacies of Greenland, prepared by a Goan chef. Banana fritters is the specialty.
There are innumerable options of eating joints in Goa including St. Anthony’s beach shack, Souza Lobo, Calamari, Sunny Side Up, Café Del Mar, Fisherman’s Cove, La Plage, Sublime, Villa Blanche, Brittos, Curlies, and many more.
Goa is extremely popular for its paradisiacal beaches, stretching themselves in the coastline of around 125 km. The beaches in Goa are ideal for all kinds of tourists, be it families, honeymooners, adventure lovers, or leisure vacationers. The core spirit of Goa lies in its treasure of the beaches it owns.
Goan beaches can be divided in North Goa Beaches and South Goa Beaches, as they differ from each other in what they offer. While the former ones see more of tourist activity and offer water sports, the latter ones are known for their tranquility. Here are some of the popular beaches of Goa:
Palolem beach is known to be the one of the most popular tourist hangouts in Goa. The beach has a chilled-out vibe. You can simply laze-out on the beach or enjoy early morning yoga. Dolphin spotting is also one of the most famous activities at Palolem beach. The beach is a peaceful shoreline.
Morjim and Ashvem beaches
Morjim and Ashvem beaches offer you a chance to get close to nature. Savor your eyes to the wonderful scenery and relish the serene surroundings. These beaches are just a short drive away from north Goa. They are also the site of where Olive Ridley turtles lay their eggs each year.
Around 18 km from Panaji, Anjuna beach offers several delights. The southern point of the beach has rocky headlands. The sea is calm here and so one can enjoy swimming. Towards the northern end, you can enjoy bungee jumping and similar other activities. Every Wednesday night, a flea market is organized here. The beach also has several popular beach shacks. Popular attractions near Anjuna beach, which be visited include Chapora Fort and the Albuquerque Mansion.
Other popular beaches here are Calangute beach, Baga beach, Candolim beach and Vagator beach.
Safety on the beaches
Most of the Goan beaches have lifeguards for the safety of tourists. Swimming during mornings is safe at most of the beaches. However, swimming at night time or visiting the beach alone during late hours is not recommended. The places which are not safe for swimming, you will find warning flags. Water sport activity is one of the best things to do in Goa
The nightlife of Goa has attracted millions of tourists from decades, offering spaces like beaches and nightclubs. After sunset, plenty of great live music, favorite drink, sumptuous food, wonderful ambiance, sets the mood perfect for the party.
Parties on Goa beach:
Parties on Baga beach
Baga has an eclectic nightlife offering vacationers a chance to party all night long. Tito’s Road is the most happening road where there are restaurants, bars, pubs, souvenir shops, tattoo artists and small eating joints. Each play music, while there are live performances at many. Each day is a busy day but the action gets higher on weekends when people have come here from all around the country.
Some stylish lounges in Baga are Club Hype, and Cocktails and Dreams. Both of these have open air and covered sitting area, with an amazing vibe. Then, there are Café Mambo and Café Titos. The menu offers a vast variety of drinks and food items. Dance on gyrating music till the wee hours of the morning. The beach shacks are in no way behind in offering entertainment.
Parties on Anjuna Beach
Anjuna in day and Anjuna at night is completely different. Anjuna during the day is peaceful. But as the sun sets, Anjuna lights up completely and attracts partygoers. Curlies is a fantastic place to party here and for special occasions. In fact, the whole ambiance and décor is simply breathtaking.
Love Passion Karma (LPK), SinQ, Club Cabana, Leopord Valley, and Cohiba are also other famous night clubs in Goa. Even, the Casinos and Flea markets are also an important part of the Goan nightlife.
Budget Travel Tips for Your Goa Trip
Best Time to Visit Goa
Goa is one of those destinations in India, which can be visited all around the year. The state has to offer something happening during all time. However, if you are particularly visiting Goa for water sports, avoid the rainy season, between June to September.
Nevertheless, the peak season in Goa can be said from early December to February as far as festivals are concerned. Moreover, Christmas, New Year and Goa Carnival are celebrated here with huge pomp and show. The number of tourists go sky-high and the prices of everything from accommodation to bike on rent and food also shoot up.
Cost of a Goa Trip
The cost of a Goa trip also depends on the season you are travelling. During peak-season, the cost of everything- food, accommodation, entertainment, water sports, and vehicles on rent is going to be quite high. Similarly, the prices come to moderate level during other times of the year. Before you make any booking, always check the prices and your budget.
Getting Around in Goa
Travelling in Goa is very easy. The condition of the roads is also good. Avoid local buses as they are quite crowded and the service is also limited. Similarly, booking a taxi would prove costly. Therefore, the best option of travelling within Goa is renting a motorbike or a scooty. If you have luggage, you can also go for shared taxis. Bikes are easily available on rent but the rent does not includes the cost of fuel. When you rent a bike, any of your identity card is kept as a security.