Beyond bountiful greens and coastal coral lines, Goa is an ideal destination for nature lovers and foreign visitors. Adventure freaks will also have an exciting holiday in Goa. But party lovers, too, tend to have an enthralling experience since the town is filled with parties and barbeque nights every day and night. Endless stretches of beaches, serene seas and ravishing nightlife are the major attractions of Goa. So let’s look at places to visit in Goya where you can feel the positive vibes and festive mood throughout the day.
Happy-Go Culture Of Goans!
Goa has a deep-rooted history and goes back to the 3rd century. Since this was once colonised by the Portuguese, the Goan culture is an amalgamation of Portuguese and Indian heritage. This charming state is witnessing a deep rise in tourism and travel.
Tourists from all over the world swarm Goa for its unique culture and heritage. Goan culture is known for its exceptional style, and the people celebrate life in every possible way. The people here are harmonious and love to mingle with everyone.
Being passionate lovers of food, music and arts, Goans relish the good things in life and enjoy the laid-back life. Hence, traditional coconut carved shells, jute crafts, pottery, and terracotta items are in high demand in Goa. Apart from enjoying dub-step, trance and techno music, Goans are also good at some traditional music.
Goa’s positive culture has led to many fairs and festivals in town. Apart from major festivals like Christmas, Holi and Good Friday, countless fairs and carnivals are happening on the famous beaches of Goa. Moreover, the flea market happening every Tuesday and Saturday offer excellent varieties of products at a steal price.
Places to visit in Goa: Hit the beach
If you land in Goa in the morning, pry open your knapsack, take out your beach gear and hit the waters. The beach is the primary attraction of this place, and the other attractions have differing shades and tastes though associated with the beach but relatively further inside Goa territory. There are the North and South Goa beaches, and the experience has differences. North Goa beaches like Calangute, Baga and Anjuna are busy with lots of people, partying, open discotheques, bars and have a bustling ambience. South Goa beaches, like Arossim Beach and Utorda beach near Majorda town, are much quieter and more serene.
Located close to Tiracol Fort, Keri or Kerim beach is one of the unexplored beaches in North Goa. The old fort is now revamped into an eatery that a ferry can reach.
Nuzzling near the cliffs and chirpy markets, Arambol beach is one of the most renowned beaches in Goa. If you’re into extreme sports, go for daring paragliding; that brings an adrenaline rush.
Morjim beach is one of the isolated beaches in Goa and an excellent place for bird watching as a wide variety of birds visit this beach. In addition, you can spot many Olive Ridley Turtles on this most beautiful beach.
Located 19 km from Panaji, Baga beach is one of Goa’s most fun-filled beaches. Water sports, paragliding, parties, karaoke evening, good food and a scenic beach are some of the most fascinating happenings in Goa. Overlooking the Aguada fort, Candolim beach is one of the laidback beaches, and it hosts the Sunburn festival every December.
Places to visit in Goa: Spice farms
The geography and natural features of Goa and its surroundings are conducive to spice plantations and cultivating various native and non-native spices. Besides the beach, the second major tourist attraction is the spice farms, with their sheer natural beauty, the massive scale of spice plantation and spice processing and the variety of different spices. The Sahakari plantation, the spice plantations near Ponda etc., are breathtakingly beautiful. One should not miss out on these in-land beauties of Goa. The environment at these spice plantation farms surrounded by hills and lush greenery is worth surrendering to.
Places to visit in Goa: Panjim
To experience ancestral Goa and the relics of Goan history, drive down to Panjim. The history of Goa is captured in Panjim to its entire essence. The state capital was known as the ‘Rome of the east’. The churches, museums, promenades, cathedrals, steeples, tombs, art galleries, government buildings, bungalows etc., make it a tough decision what to choose and what to miss in South Goa.
The Basilica of Bom Jesus, for its architectural splendour and the Se de Satna Catarina, for its scale of construction, are the most visited sites. Old Goa is currently a UNESCO world heritage site.
Places to visit in Goa for nature lovers
Goa has diverse wildlife intertwined and nestled in its forests on the hilly terrain of the western slopes of the Western Ghats.
Roosting on the mountaintops of the Western Ghats, the glorious Dudhsagar Waterfalls are a picturesque sight to look at. Located on the Goa border, this mesmerising beauty attracts many visitors all around the globe.
The Bhagwan Mahavir wildlife sanctuary near Molem has various animal kingdoms, from panthers, sloth bears, and mouse deer to mountain lions and barking deer.
The bird species in Goan forests are even more intriguing, with over 200 species inhabiting the woods. The Indian great black woodpecker, Malabar pied hornbill, fairy bluebird, emerald dove, paradise flycatcher and the all-important kingfisher.
The quiet and serene sanctuary known as Sahyadri in Konkani, located in the foothills of the Western Ghats, can be visited between 8:30 am and 5:30 pm throughout the week.
Hop on a dolphin cruise
A dolphin sighted right next to you is an experience worth capturing. The dolphin drive takes you through a course where the Dolphin population is high. While on the cruise, dolphins pop out of the sea gracefully. The Dolphin cruise is part of a more extensive day-long tour of the Grand Island, ideal for a peaceful picnic.
Places to visit in Goa for palate pleasures
Goan food has a lot of variety. One must make sure to free their taste buds on a tasting spree, exposing one’s palate perceptions to traditional Goan food. Restaurants in the capital Panjim offer delicious Goan cuisine.
- St Anthony’s
Located at the beginning of the Baga beach, St. Anthony’s is a restaurant and shack on the coast. It is famous for its ambience and its food. The dining experience is taken to a new high with love music playing and candlelight.
- Martin’s Corner
Located near Majorda, Martin’s Corner offers legendary seafood tossed and grilled by expert chefs. King crabs, tiger prawns, lobsters, prawn vindaloo, garlic chicken, and seafood fried, grilled, roasted and spiced is the specialty of Martin’s Corner. This place’s variety, authenticity and preparation attract tourists, celebrities, and food connoisseurs from all across the globe.
Museums and shopping places to visit in Goa
At the time, not so long back, a German name Ingo started a new market on a rented property known as Ingo’s Saturday Night Bazaar. The market would be predominantly a night bazaar selling Indian and foreign merchandise from imported accessories, jewellery, apparel, and Indian and global cuisine from places like Kashmir and Rajasthan. For the non-shopper, there is a DJ bar where one can enjoy food, drinks and melodic music. Music also flows throughout the market at all times, making it one of the hippest places for shopaholics.
The museums in Goa, with their sheer liveliness expressed through the blend of rich Indian history, Portuguese saga on Indian soil, Muslim rule over Goa and a combination of various settlements and influences on Goa, make it a vibrant place. The Archaeological Museum of Old Goa, The Naval Aviation Museum and Institute Menezes Braganza etc., are some museums one can’t afford to miss.
How to Reach Goa?
Goa is connected by major cities and can be reached through trains, flights and roadways. Depending upon your choice and comfort, you can choose your mode of transport.
Goa is one such place on the world map of international tourism that cannot be sufficiently experienced in one visit. There are myriad possible ways to enjoy one’s time and innumerable things to do in Goa. This makes the place unique and repeatedly demands visits, each underscored with a new experience and a new dimension explored.