Goa is a state within the coastal region known as the Konkan, in Western India, which is bounded by Maharashtra to the north and Karnataka to the east and south, and with the Arabian Sea forming its Western coast. It is India’s smallest state by area and the fourth smallest by population.
Largest City: Vasco da Gama
Goa is a multicolor blend of Indian and Portuguese cultures, as it was a former Portuguese province and the Portuguese overseas territory of Portuguese India existed for about 450 years until it was annexed by India in 1961. Goa is visited by a large numbers of international and domestic tourists each year for its golden-sand beaches, seafood, nightlife, spirituality and 300-year old Portuguese architecture. It has rich flora and fauna, owing to its location on the Western Ghats range, which is a biodiversity hotspot. There are numerous tourist attractions in Goa and one can visit any of them.
5 Popular Places to Visit
It is the most famous of all the beaches in Goa, and as a tourist visiting Goa you really haven’t been to Goa if you haven’t been to Baga. Baga Beach and its surrounding areas will not give you any chance to get bored. There is always something exciting there from soaking in sun to adventurous water sports in Goa. Foodies won’t be disappointed as you will find many restaurants that populate the beach which offer various dining options. You can also pick from some top restaurants of Goa for fine dining. Even if you’re just in casual food mood, there are some pretty good places near the beach which will please your appetite greatly. Top Beach-Side Restaurants: Jamie’s Restaurant, Britto’s Bar and Restaurant Fire and Ice, Chelsea Beach Shack, and Go With The Flow. During day, Baga Beach is best-known for water sports such as jet skiing, parasailing, banana ride, and boating water-sports. The Beach actually comes alive at night. Baga Beach is an amazing beach to party the night away as there are lots of great party options. Tito’s, Café Mambo, Kandy Club and many more clubs make Baga beach a party heaven every night.
How to Reach : Baga beach is located about 16 km from Panaji. You can hire a cab or rent a scooter which can serve you for the length of your trip.
It is the largest beach in Goa; also known has “Queen of the Beaches.” It is among the top ten beaches in the world, i.e. you should not miss it. Calangute Beach is a big and peaceful beach with activities enough to occupy your mind for the entirety of your trip. From just lying down in the sand to trying some water sports, it is the ideal beach and a great attraction for tourists with a lot of options to choose from. The distance of Calangute from Baga Beach is not great as both beaches are only separated from each other by some rocks. Some Sight-Seeing options near Calangute: Morjim Beach, River Betul & Betul Estuary, The Water Pond of Arambol, St. Alex Church, Ashvem Beach, the Aguada Lighthouse & Aguada Fort, Nerul River, the Friday Local Mapusa Market, and during day, Calangute offers the best options for water sports that you can indulge in, namely kayaking, sailing, wind-surfing, water snorkeling, water-skiing, parasailing, and fishing. At night, you will see Calangute changes to a party hub as good as Baga Beach. You can choose your stay near Calangute Beach as it is connected to most other important tourist spots in North Goa.
How to reach : Taking a taxi or cab from Panaji is the easiest option to reach here.
Top Beach Side Restaurants: Pousada by the Beach, Sousa Lobo, Zuperb, and The Chocolate Room.
Dudhsagar Waterfalls are one of the India’s must-see spot situated on the Goa-Karnataka border. They are amongst the tallest waterfalls in India and are located on the Madgaon-Belgavi rail route about 46 km east of Madgaon and 80 km south of Belgavi. The white water gushes down from a height of approximately 320 meters with an average width of 30 meters. The falls is located in the Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary and Mollem National Park, so the best way to reach them is by entering the national park and taking a van allocated by the park to the falls. The Dudhsagar trek inside the park is closed to the public but you can still reach the waterfalls by trekking from Kulem and following the jeep trail or trek from Castle Rock in Karnataka. It definitely won’t be an easy trek, but yes worth of every gram of effort that is put in. They are particularly spectacular during the monsoon season.
How to reach : From Panaji take a train up to Kulem railway station (Don’t expect a proper platform here).
Palolem is one of the Goa’s most pristine and beautiful beaches. It is a popular tourist attraction of South Goa. The Beach is sea calmer than others and you can walk almost 100 m into the sea easily. Palolem is the best option, if you wish to simply relax. There are many sightseeing options like the Monkey Island and the Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary. There are various water sports that you can enjoy at Palolem. Water Sports Options: Scuba diving, self-paddle kayaking, canyoning, and dolphin watching.
How to reach: You can either catch a bus or take a taxi from Panaji.
Famous Beach Side Restaurants: The Olive Room, Havana Cuba, Café Inn, Café Del Mar, and Canacona.
Grand Island also known as Bat Island is one of the most exotic location in Goa and it is a paradise for water-sports such as diving, snorkeling, and fishing. With scuba diving, you can visit some ship wrecks as well as some reefs. The “Suzy” wreck and the “Davy Jones Locker” are especially popular with divers along with Serge City, Bounty Rock, and Turbo Tunnel. Whether you are experienced or a beginner diver, you will find something to satisfy in Grand Island. Apart from scuba diving and snorkeling, bumper boats and banana boats are also popular around the island. You can just end your day with a fishing trip and a barbeque of the produce you caught. Make sure to carry all your swimming and beach essentials as well as spare clothes for the day.
How to reach: You can just get a ferry ride that can be arranged at the major jetties in South Goa.
Other Places to visit in Goa:
Dona Paula, Tito’s Street, Fort Aguada, Bom Jesus Basilica, Anjuna Beach and Flea market, Casino Cruise, Club Cubana, Candolim beach, Vagator Beach, Chapora Fort, Bondla wildlife sanctuary, Divar Island, Mobor Beach, Todo Falls, Chapora River, Colva Beach, Sinquerim Beach, Museum of Christian Art, Shiva Valley, Butterfly beach, Bambolim Beach, Mapusa Friday Market, Lamgau Caves, Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, Mollem National park, Galgibaga Beach, Fort Tiracol, Day out with Crocodiles at Cumbharjua, Ashvem Beach, Benaulim Beach, and Corjuem Fort.
So, Goa is a destination for both a nature lover as well as an adventure seeker. The best thing about Goa trip are the memories and the experience that you carry back home.