Special Things to do in Goa

Goa Beaches

Between all the things to do in Goa and all the things that you want to do in Goa, there are exactly 10 things that you simply must do when on Goa tour. Here’s a list of them all.

1. SEE DOLPHINS

You wouldn’t have thought Goa to be a dolphin-seeing kind of place. But, it is! There are many boat services on which you can embark to see dolphins frolic and play around in the sea. The experience is sure to be better than *any* video you’ve seen on National Geographic, trust me.

2. SHOP

There are some items that are best purchased in Goa. These include all kinds and varieties of swim-wear, jholas, harem pants and colourful of accessories + beads. There are numerous shops that line the streets, beaches of Goa and many places to see in Goa, so choice won’t ever be a problem.

3. GET A TATTOO

Seriously, what’s the harm? Temporary, henna or permanent – you can choose to get just the type of tattoo that you’d like.

4. EAT!

Given the high number of tourists that flock to Goa each year, the food scene here has grown multi-fold. While the sea-food options are to die-for, the numerous shacks are the perfect place to hang-out, chill with friends and have a good time + meal.

5. BEACHES

Undoubtedly, one of the best things to do in Goa is to visit its umpteen beaches. Lie down on the sand, bathe in the waters or go parasailing or gliding – Goa’s beaches are a joy. If you are in a large group, do spend the night at the beach. It will be an experience you won’t ever forget.

6. CRUISES

Exotic river cruises or sunset cruises that offer live music and dance performances are a sheer joy. Embark on one of these and see the fun song & dance side of Goa.

7. CHURCHES

Needless to say, Goa has some of the best and oldest churches in India. Make it a point to a visit a shrine or two and observe + appreciate their beautiful architecture.

8. RIDE A BIKE

The best way to see Goa is to hire a bike (Vespa) and to ride non-stop, all day on its roads and routes. So, hire one as soon as you reach your destination and explore this sunny + beachy state on a two-wheeler.

9. AYURVEDIC ANGLE

There are many ayurvedic centres in Goa. Head to one of these and allow the ancient healings & medicines to de-stress and re-energise you.

10. PARTY

The 10th item in the list of top 10 things to do in Goa is, not surprisingly, party. Go wild, get rid of your inhibitions and simply have a good time.

Amazing Facts About Goa

Goa Beaches

Goa is the smallest state in India by a considerable margin, and has the highest per capita income. The landscape of the state is surprisingly diverse, ranging from the beaches of its nearly 70-mile-long coast to the densely forested Western Ghats mountain range on its interior border through lush river valleys.

Its pocket-sized beautiful landscapes exert an influential allure. Soon after you land at the Goa airport or alight from a train at the railway station, you feel the difference – the familiar sub-continental hustle-bustle, the skies clear to a distant horizon and jostling gives way to a measured languor and broad smiles,

Below are 9 facts you don’t know about Goa that might just blow your mind:

1. Smallest but Richest State

Located on along the Arabian Sea, Goa is the smallest state in India. Despite it being the smallest state on the west coast of India, it is the richest state in the country, having a GDP per capita two and a half times that of India all together.

2. State of 8 Languages

Goa is a state where 8 languages are spoken. Among them 5 are the most common, which are: Portuguese, English, Konkani, Marathi and Hindi. The other main languages spoken in the state are Gujrati, Kannada, and Urdu. Konkani is Goa’s official language, which is written in five different scripts.

3. Destination of Tropical Climate

Goa offers travellers a hot and humid climate with average temperatures of 25 to 30c from November to April. And up to 40 degrees with high humidity in October and May.

4. Only Place to Hire Two Wheeler

Goa is the only place where you can hire a two wheeler taxi, which is called ‘pilots’. These motorcycle taxis are the best option for a local sightseeing. They are cheaper than the private transports and are recognized by their yellow license plates.

5. State of multiple religions

Goa has people of different culture and religions. About 65.7 percent of Goans practice Hinduism whereas 26.6 percent Christianity. 6.8 percent of population practices Islam and rest one percent is Buddhists, Sikh, and Jain.

6. India’s Most Forested State

Goa is the most forested state in India. 33 percent of the land is covered with forest.

7. Asia’s Largest Church

The Se Cathedral, located in Old Goa, is the largest church in Asia. This 16th century cathedral house stretches in 250 feet in length and 181 feet in breadth. It has eight chapels within its confines. The final edifice is larger than any church in Portugal itself.

8. India’s Most Popular Resort Place

Goa is India’s most popular resort destination – not just for tourists from Israel, Europe, and Russia, but ever more for India’s middle class family, for whom Goa is a destination of ‘relaxed’ or ‘laid-back’.

9. A Place Of 6,000 Licensed Bars

Goa has 6,000 bars which are licensed to sell alcohol. The more interesting thing is that, there is a low excise duty on alcohol. So the prices of wine, beer and spirits are lower.

List of Beaches in Goa. Famous Beaches in Goa.

Beaches in Goa

Well, all the beaches mentioned below have the magnificence and audacity to keep you glaring throughout the day. Each beach is best enjoyed only if one could spend a minimum 2 days around the place.

Most of the beaches in Goa have different activities happening within the vicinity. Like Watersports, Retreat resorts, Massage centres, Beach Shacks, Beach huts, Restaurants, Boat ride, Scooter ride, Night Markets, Disco clubs, Shopping Stalls, Sightseeing’s etc.

So here are the top 10 beaches in Goa, selected among the best of the best. Please make sure to admire every little aspect when you visit these gorgeous beaches, as they indeed are absolutely adorable.

1. Palolem Beach – 25 kms from Margao city

A scenic beach in extreme south Goa, with scenic rocks and islands off its shores. Good eat­ing options. Watersports activity can be enjoyed at its Best on this beach. It is becom­ing pricey (by local stan­dards) and get­ting a bit crowded, but still less crowded com­pared to other pop­u­lar beaches. A lot of people say that I’m addicted to this place but I would rather say I’m in love with it.

2. Baga Beach – 2 kms from Calangute Beach

Baga Beach looks as if it has come straight out of a painting. The serenity of this wooded headland coupled with its scenic beauty in itself an attraction of Baga beach. The beach is named after the Baga Creek, which empties into the Arabian Sea at the north end of the beach. Definitely a number 2 on my list cos it simply has the best of amenities around it.

3. Benaulim Beach – 6 kms from Margao city

Benaulim beach is the beach to be, when you just want to relax. One can just laze the day off soaking in the sun, It gives you the pleasure and satisfaction of being in Goa. The best thing about Benaulim beach is that it is still rather undiscovered by domestic tourists even though it is a famous beach for fishing. A candle light dinner amidst the setting is an excellent add-on to the perfect vacation.

4. Miramar Beach – 3 kms from Panjim city

A 2 km long coast of excellent, soft silvery sand bed, a mesmerizing vast blue sea in front of it, the Miramar Beach is a beautiful expanse of fine golden sands girdled with palm trees facing the blue Arabian Sea. Miramar beach is the sort of beach where you sit down and watch the sunset in its entire splendour.

5. Colva Beach – 5 kms from Margao city

Its stretch is around 2.4 km; the beach consists of the finest powder white sand and is lined along its shore by coconut palms. It has been one of the famous beaches of Goa, and is a threat to those who want to have a lovely sunbathe and a peaceful relaxed moment. This beach is a spec­ta­cle of sea, sand and sky, the perfect blend of an enchant­ing nat­ural har­mony, weav­ing their magic spell on the vis­i­tors.

6. Calangute Beach – 8 kms from Mapusa city

An ultimate destination to spend the most exquisite experience of one’s life, Calangute sees an influx of charter tourists, as well as low budget tourists and backpackers year after year. Bordered on the western coast of Goa, Calangute is India’s best known beach as a touristic destination. Popularized by the hippies in the 60’s including The Beatles who used to come to Calangute in the late sixties to rest and enjoy beach life.

7. Majorda Beach – 5 kms from Colva Beach

Situated in the south of Goa, Majorda beach is one that will sweep you off your feet with its canopy of palm trees, soft white-sands, clear waters & mere bliss. I’ve been living here since a kid and trust me I love this place for its serenity and peaceful atmosphere. It is one of the most marvelous beaches in Goa that I know for certain. Majorda beach can be regarded as one of Goa’s best kept secret, which is relatively unknown and offers visitors to Goa the paradise like surroundings they have come to experience.

8. Bogmalo Beach – 5 Kms from Dabolim Airport

The most attractive thing about this beach is the sunset. The yellow orange tinged sun with a pinkish hue, dipping at the horizon is a sight you cannot miss in this lifetime. Bogmalo originally was a small fishing hamlet but now is a growing tourist hub. Many locals in the village depend upon fishing for their livelihood. Quality time can be spent with family, friends and loved ones. Surely a tour of the Bogmalo beach will be etched in your memory for a very long time.

9. Vagator Beach – 9 kms from Mapusa city

Vagator beach resembles a crescent as it meets the Chapora estuary. This beach boasts of white sand that are beautifully contrasted with black rocks. The lush greenery all around, the swaying palms and aquamarine water of the Arabian Sea of Vagator Beach takes your breath away. Yes, the very famous Sunburn Festival has been relocated to this beautiful spot. Spend some time on the cliffs overlooking the beach for a spectacular view. Sunsets on Vagator are beautiful, and the rocky headlands make for a dramatic sea scape.

10. Dona Paula Beach – 4 Kms from Panjim city

Tranquil and blue, Dona Paula unravels the ultimate in aquatic sport and fun. Apart from enjoying the great view from atop the hillock, you can simply relax in benches enjoying the evening sea breeze and sunset. So watch the difference in the water color. See the Arabian sea far into the horizon. And make sure you sip the refreshing lemon drink the locals sell.

How to reach Goa by Bus, Train, Car and Flight? How to reach Goa?

How to reach Goa?

Goa is very well-connected by rail, road and air. But one of the reasons why the beach state is so popular not just among foreign travellers but also Indian tourists is the freedom its local transport offers. Every hotel, small and large, has a tie-up with a scooter/bike/car rental, a service that isn’t very common in other states. All you need is a driver’s license and Goa is yours! Two-wheelers are particularly popular among locals too. Motorcycle taxis, which transport a single pillion rider, are the cheapest mode of local transport.. This is how to reach Goa:

How to reach Goa by Air?

Goa International Airport at Dabolim near Vasco da Gama is the state’s only airport. It caters to domestic and international air services with at least two dozen arrivals from India and middle-eastern countries such as Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Muscat, Doha, Dubai and Kuwait. Jet Airways, GoAir, Indigo, Air India, Qatar Airways and Air Arabia are among the major airlines that have scheduled flights to Goa. Several tourists from the UK and Russia avail of charter air services to Goa. In January 2016, the ministry of civil aviation relaxed the rules for charter airlines. Earlier chartered aircraft had to return empty after dropping off their passengers. With the change in the policy, these aircraft need not fly out with the same set of passengers thus cutting operating costs for airlines and reducing the tour package costs for travellers.

How to reach Goa by Train?

The South Western Railway and the Konkan Railway lines service the state of Goa. The former is a colonial era line that connects the port town of Vasco with Belgaum, Hubli etc. The more recent (and a pleasant) addition is the Konkan Railway line that was constructed in the ‘90s and connects Margao to cities along India’s western coast. Before the Konkan Railway line became operational, roadways were the most preferred mode of transport for people traveling from cities along the west coast, such as Mumbai. Panaji, the state capital, does not have a railway station. Madgaon and Vasco Da Gama are two major railway junctions in Goa.

How to reach Goa by Road?

With the absence of a regular train service within the state, much of Goa depends upon privately-operated buses and government-run buses maintained by the Kadamba Transport Corporation to travel from one place to another. Even though the buses connect major towns and remote villages, several Goans depend on private transport to get around.

Four National Highways - some of the narrowest in the country - run through Goa:

NH66 connects Goa to Mumbai in the north and Mangalore to the south.

NH-4A connects Panaji to Belgaum in the east and other cities such as Bangalore, Kolhapur etc.

NH-366 connects NH-66 to Mormugao Port from Cortalim.

Constructed to ease pressure on NH 366 for traffic towards Dabolim Airport and Vasco da Gama is the brand new four-lane NH-566 that connects Mormugao Port to NH-66 at Verna via Dabolim Airport.