Feel the pulse of Goa in more ways than one.
While beach therapy may be the best therapy, if you dig a little deeper, you’ll find you can also feel so alive splashing water on majestic tuskers on a spice farm tour, sipping some Goan feni while exploring Chapora Fort or picking up hippie twinkies at a flea market.
Happy camper testimonials let you know Goa plays host to a number of different experiences for all kinds of moods. Rent a scooter when you’re there, experience the susegaad life, and soak in the best of all that Goa has to offer.
So here are some of the most amazing experiences that one must include in their exploration of the ultimate tourist destination of Goa:
Beach Hopping in South Goa
South Goa is home to some of the more secluded beaches of the party capital. If you wish to get away from the city din and rowdy tourists flocking the beaches of Baga, Anjuna and the like in the north of Goa, make your way over to Palolem or Agonda beach – to witness the exotic and be part of a leisurely pace of life. Mosey on over to Silent Noise and plug in those headphones. The coconut groves lining Colva Beach near Margao is a most perfect backdrop for honeymoon snapshots. The historic villages here call out to calm-seeking travelers from around the world. The second most important city of Margao begins the beach circuit of South Goa. Take a turn towards Old Goa on a ferry ride – this area has been designated a World Heritage site so the baroque style of the buildings around is sure to interest history lovers. Sightseeing in Old Goa is all about visiting its various churches, chapels, and cathedrals that are an architectural delight.
Get Giddy with Feasts and Festivities
Goa is a place that sees unending celebrations and fetes. A journey through the party capital’s flea markets is a heady mix of music, food and shopping. Rush to the Carnival for pomp and show, or the Saturday Night Flea Market at Arpora – a party all on its own. Welcome a veritable feast for your eyes, ears and taste buds in the maze of colorful meandering. The festivity of the flea and night markets kicks in and shifts into high gear as soon as visitor numbers start to swell. The Anjuna beach flea market on Wednesdays is usually one of the first to open its doors, followed by the Friday night market at Mapusa and Saturdays at Baga and Arpora. Mapusa is a fun area in North Goa. The Friday market is special because it resembles a farmer’s market – the fresh produce of farmers from across Goa all on display for sale. Shopping at the Saturday Night Bazaar at Arpora is a great weekend activity, as the market offers an exciting mix of shopping opportunities ranging from jewelry, trinkets and clothes to curious artefacts, spices, musical instruments and linen. So, shop till you drop, and catch some live music along the way. Not to mention a Goan specialty such as chicken cafreal. The Ingos night market at Arpora has become incredibly popular over the years. Grab a mouthwatering Sicilian Pizza or grilled shrimp served piping hot and fresh. Lights and lamps festoon every nook and alley, to treat visitors to a kaleidoscope of colors and hues.
Take a Stroll on Aromatic Spice Plantations
One of the more offbeat experiences to have in Goa, the popular spice plantations of Savoi and Sahakar are a delight and an absolute must-visit. Walk through aromatic fresh plantation and learn about various spices. Find yourself getting closer to nature, and make sure splash some water on those precious majestic tuskers J
These spice farms on the foothills of the Western Ghats grow a number of herbs, tropical fruits, medicinal trees, and spices which include cardamom, vanilla, saffron, nutmeg, coffee, cloves, cinnamon, turmeric, ginger, mango, papaya, pineapple, jackfruit, aeracanut, coconut, etc. Phew. An excursion to these farms is an educative experience for sure. Most of these spice farms offer a conducted tour which would include a traditional welcome and a welcome drink, a tour of the spice farm, a traditional meal. Some also offer accommodation facilities for a fuller experience.
Do an Imitation at Chapora Fort
Close to Vagator Beach, Chapora fort has grown to be a very popular tourist attraction of Goa. Known for its spectacular views and sunset vistas, this is a popular spot for tourists to go to at the time of dusk, specially. How can you deny yourself a commanding view of the beaches of Vagator, Ozran and Morjim from over here? It also helps that Bollywood movie Dil Chahta Hai (2001) shot a scene here and made everyone yearn for the same experience of the fort. The fort has wide walls with ramparts over which one can walk and go around the fort. The walls are lined with arrow slits, gun ports and murder holes at regular intervals. The fort can be reached by road from Mapusa. To reach here one has to take the road branching to the right just two kilometers before the Vagator beach. A small road leads to the base of a hill atop which the fort lies. Tourists can also reach the fort by climbing the hill from Vagator beach. This ancient laterite fort on the Chapora river, although long abandoned from a military standpoint, is nevertheless majestic and an enduring historical monument.
A truly amazing activity here that not a lot of people are aware of, is dolphin sighting – one of the most wonderfully offbeat things to do in Goa. The cruises usually start from Fort Aguada, Sinquerim or Panaji Jetty. A dolphin cruise in Goa is exciting for the old, the young, the honeymooners, everybody! Dolphins diving in and out of the sea around your boat is a most wonderful vision. For a peaceful picnic, round off your cruise with a day-long tour of Grand Island.
Get Amazing Photographs of the Sea of Milk
Dudhsagar Falls is a four-tiered waterfall perched high on the peaks of the Western Ghats on Sanguem Taluka, located on the Mandovi River in the Indian state of Goa. The magnificent Dudhsagar is a sight to behold, especially in the monsoons when the falls are fed by the rain and it is in full and furious flow. From a distance, the waterfall appears as if streams of milk are purposefully gushing down before furiously splashing down on cut rocks. Guess that explains why it has been named ‘the sea of milk’ in local Konkani language. The height of these falls is about 600 meters and is considered to be one of the tallest falls in the country. While you are in Mandovi, go on a river sunset cruise.