Posted 29 July 2022
Top four reasons to discover Goa - a perfect destination for beach lovers
Known for being a perfect place for party lovers and pristine white beaches, Goa is the smallest state of India nestled on the western coast of the country. Thousands of tourists both from India and across the world visit this tiny but beautiful state every year for a perfect beach vacation.
Goa has a rich history of being under Portuguese rule till 1961. Portuguese influence can be seen in whitewashed churches, old forts and cathedrals. It became a separate state in June 1987. This small green land is not just a party destination for tourists, but also offers something to every kind of traveller. From pristine beaches and active nightlife to famous churches, Goa has it all.
If you want to loosen up and spend your time away from the hustle-bustle, Goa can be a perfect host. Explore Goa’s cultural places, churches and museums to know more about its history and culture. Nature lovers find this place a paradise as it is rich in flora and fauna.
Apart from its touristic places and exquisite locale, Goa is also famous for its food. One can experience an Indo-Portuguese mix of flavours, aromas and spices.
Below are the four reasons to visit and explore Goa -
1. Perfect Beach Destination in Goa
What comes to your mind when someone asks you to name a party destination in India?
Probably Goa would rank number one on your list. The tiny land has all the ingredients of a perfect beach destination. From hosting beach parties to having beaches with emerald green water, Goa has it all that makes it a perfect destination for beach lovers.
Some of the famous and most beautiful beaches in Goa are:
- Baga Beach: Located in North Goa, Baga Beach is one of the most sought-after destinations in the state. Thousands of national and international tourists flock to Goa to visit this beach. The beach is a rage among water sports lovers. Some of the major water sports that tourists can indulge in at Baga Beach are windsurfing, parasailing, kite surfing, wakeboarding and jet skiing. Apart from its water sports activities, Baga Beach is famous for its nightlife and clubs. Bollywood styled parties and dance parties are some of the main attractions of this beach.
- Calangute Beach: Calangute Beach is regarded as the world’s prettiest beach for its pristine seawater and an array of water sports activities like banana rides, parasailing and jet-skiing. The beach is known to be a favourite of both international and domestic visitors. Calangute Beach attracts tourists from all over the world and is one of the major tourist attractions of Goa. The beach is located at a distance of 8 km from Baga Beach and can be covered within 30 minutes drive.
- Miramar Beach: Located at a distance of just 2 km from Panaji, capital of Goa, Miramar Beach offers impressive oceanic views. It is the longest beach in Goa. It is one of the best locations to watch the sunset. Miramar Beach is the place where the Mandovi River merges with the Arabian Sea. Visitors can also witness the beauty of several palm trees present at the beach.
- Patnem Beach: Patnem Beach is located in the Palolem area of Goa. The beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in Asia and is lined with some of the best sea-facing restaurants, huts for cocktail and yoga classes. Patnem Beach is perfect for swimming and basking in the place’s natural beauty. The beach is not long like the other beaches in Goa but is the best spot for tourists looking for some tranquillity.
2. A Plethora of tourist places in Goa
- Chapora Fort: Chapora Fort is also known as the place where the movie Dil Chahta Hai was shot. It became a major tourist attraction after the iconic shot was filmed at the fort. Chapora Fort is located just in front of the Chapora River and overlooks it. The best time to visit this place is in the evening when the sun is setting, and it gives a seamless background for beautiful pictures.
- Fort Aguada: Fort Aguada has a significant history. It is famous for the lighthouse and cellular jail which is now a tourist destination. The fort was built in the 17th century by the Portuguese. Fort Aguada overlooks the scenic Arabian Sea and is located on the Sinquerim Beach in Goa. Built in 1612, the fort is popular for housing the first lighthouse in Asia.
- Bom Jesus Cathedral: Also known as the Basilica of Bom Jesus, the cathedral is one of the major tourist attractions located in Goa. Built in 1605 AD, the cathedral is home to St. Francis Xavier’s mortal remains. One can also witness different architectural styles at the cathedral. Other than these reasons, Bom Jesus Cathedral is a World Heritage Site recognised by UNESCO.
- Goa State Museum: Goa State Museum is situated in Panajiat Adil Shah's Palace. The museum, established in 1977, is also known as State Archaeology Museum. The museum houses around 8000 artefacts, including wooden artefacts, paintings, carvings, rare coins, manuscripts and anthropological items on display. The departments of the museum include art and craft, ancient history and archaeology and geology.
- Dudhsagar Falls: It is a waterfall nestled in the Mollem National Park and Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary. The Dudhsagar Waterfall is one of the most loved tourist destinations of Goa. With a height of 310 metres, it is one of the tallest waterfalls in India. The four-tiered waterfall is fenced with deciduous forests.
- Old Goa: Old Goa was previously known as the Rome of the East and a well-off capital of the Bahmani Sultan Adil Shah. Old Goa was a glorious city when the Portuguese conquered it in 1510. It attracted travellers and traders across Europe. Currently, Old Goa is a World Heritage Site under UNESCO. It houses some of the most beautiful churches and convents, making it one of the best tourist places in Goa. It is a perfect place for tourists who are interested in art, culture and history.
3. Goan Cuisine
Goan cuisine is significantly influenced by Portuguese colonialism. Tourists can witness the blend of modern techniques and Hindu origins in Goan cuisine. It is difficult to find such a blend in any cuisine of India. The major ingredients of Goan cuisine are rice, spices, seafood and coconut milk.
Some of the must-try dishes of the Goan cuisine are:
- Goan fish curry: It is a popular and staple dish of Goa. One can taste an authentic fish curry made with coconut gravy in Goa. Goan fish curry is made of Pomfret, raw mango for the tangy flavour, coconut and spices. Mainly, the dish is served with rice.
- Chicken Xacuti: This popular Goan dish is influenced by Portuguese style cooking. The main ingredients of Chicken Xacuti are chicken, poppy seeds, coconuts, potatoes and Kashmiri chillies. Kashmiri chillies are used to give red colour to the dish.
- Ambot Tik: Ambot Tik is another Goan dish influenced by the Portuguese. The dish means sour and spicy. Cooks in Goa use Kokum to make it taste sour, and Kashmiri chillies are used to make it spicy. One of the popular dishes of Goan cuisine, Ambot Tik is made with Shark fish.
- Sorak: This dish is one of the popular vegetarian dishes found in Goa. It is a vegetarian curry with tomatoes and onions. It can be served with rice or fish fry. The curry tastes delectable particularly during the monsoon season.
- Samarachi Kodi: This Goan dish consists of prawn, coconut, onions, tamarind and tomatoes. Mainly prepared during the monsoon season, Samarachi Kodi is served with rice. To give an authentic taste to the dish, coconut milk is added to the gravy.
4. Shop like a local in Goa
- Keep the memories of Goa with you by taking back some of the popular items home with yourself. Goa is popular for some funky jewellery, fancy clothes, cashew nuts, spices, hats, bags and beachwear.
- One can buy some of the best types of cashew nuts in Goa at Zantye, Shree Krishna Cashews in Panaji.
- Some of the places where tourists can shop for these items are Anjuna’s Wednesday Market, Baga’s Saturday-night Market, Friday Market in Mapusa and Malini Ramani’s in Calangute.
Travel tips for Goa
- Goa boasts of plenty of beautiful beaches. However, do not only visit the popular ones. The secluded ones are sometimes the underrated ones and more beautiful.
- As Goa has a tropical climate, visitors can get sunburns and tanning after roaming around the city. Always carry sunscreen with you.
- If you can ride a bike, then it is advisable to rent a bike to travel around in the city. It is an affordable and hassle-free mode of transportation.
- Shopping is a must while in Goa. Be sure to bargain right at flea markets in the city.
- Goa is a beach destination, so pack wisely. Some of the packing essentials while travelling to Goa are sun blocks, crocs, hats, goggles and light clothes.
How to reach Goa?
- By Air: Goa is connected to major cities of the country and across the world with its Dabolim Airport, also known as Goa International Airport. It is the only international airport in the state. Dabolim Airport is located at a distance of 26 km from the city centre. All the major airlines operate from the airport. Only IndiGo operates over 150 non-stop flights to Goa and major locations.
- By Rail: Madgaon Railway Station is the main railway station that connects Goa to major cities of the country.
- By Road: Goa is well-connected to its neighbouring states by road. There are a sufficient number of private and public buses available in the state that will take you to neighbouring states and major cities of the country.
Climate in Goa
Goa is near to the Arabian Sea and thus has a tropical season. The winter season does not affect Goa because of the state being in the tropical zone. For most of the months, Goa is humid and hot. May is the hottest month of the year.
Best time to visit Goa
The ideal time to visit Goa is from November to February. Winter months are not extreme and have the perfect temperatures for roaming around Goa.
December, January and February are crowded as these months are the peak tourist season. The monsoon season from June to September is ideally the worst season to visit Goa. Some national parks, clubs, hotels and other tourist businesses close during these months.
Goa is one of the popular places to visit in India. Not just Indians, but foreigners visit this beach destination too for a vacation. The climate of the state is perfect for any weather. Visit Goa in any season and you won’t be disappointed.
One of the best things to enjoy in Goa apart from its beaches is its cuisine. With its plenty of tourist attractions and beaches, one must plan accordingly. At least a week-long vacation can do justice to this place.
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