Goa, the smallest state in India, has umpteen surprises in every corner, and is world-renowned for its lovely beaches. Bounded by the Arabian Sea on one side and land on the other, this region is home to numerous picturesque and vibrant beaches. The stellar nightlife and parties in Goa are an intrinsic aspect of Goan vibes and the hippie culture.
Goa is the exemplary holiday paradise full of amusement. The charm of the seashore and the beaches allure the tourists' souls to spend a vacation in the land of sun, sand, and surf. While there are numerous places to visit in India in December, tourists from world over head during the year end to Goa to revel in this exciting destination.
Be it the parties, pulsating clubs and pubs, beach shacks, adventurous water sports, gaming casinos or the buzzing flea markets; all come together to invoke an exhilarated ambience. Goa offers a plethora of beaches for youngsters, family and couples, with innumerable shacks, quaint cafes, a slew of budget hotels and luxurious resorts lined up along the coastline.
The Historical Significance of Goa
The old name of Goa according to ancient literature, are Gomanchala, Gopakapattana, Gopakapattam, Govapuri, Gopakapuri, Govem, Gomantak, Sandabur, Sindapur, and Mahassapatam.
Did you know that Goa didn't always belong to independent India? Yes, after being liberated in 1961, it became an Indian state. The Portuguese ruled Goa for 450 years until it was liberated from the Portuguese to form a part of India on December 19, 1961. It is known that the whole military operation took almost three days to successfully liberate Goa. The Portuguese heavily influenced Goan culture, cuisine, and architecture.
Goa Liberation Day is one of the most important days in the history of Goa. It is celebrated every year on December 19 in Goa with numerous events and festivities in the city. This day of celebration is marked to remember the struggle of Indian armed forces that freed Goa from Portuguese rule on December 19, 1961.
How to Reach Goa by Air
Dabolim Airport is the major airport in Goa, which makes it accessible from major cities within the country and also from abroad. The Dabolim Airport is an international airport that handles international flights and regular domestic flights as well with a large inflow of foreign and domestic travellers. Goa's Dabolim Airport is almost 26km from Panaji.
The Nearest Airport: Dabolim Airport, Goa
How to Reach Goa by Road
You can reach Goa by road through two major highways. Follow the National Highway 4 (NH 4) to travel to Goa from Mumbai or Bengaluru by road. The drive to Goa by road is a scenic route that turns lush green during monsoon. There are many bus services from major cities to Goa for travellers.
The Nearest & Main Bus Station in Goa: Kadamba bus stand, Panaji.
How to Reach Goa by Sea
Reaching Goa by sea is a unique way to travel Goa. You can catch a cruise from Mumbai to go to Panaji, which will take you along the coasts of Maharashtra and Goa.
How to Reach Goa by Train
Reaching Goa by train is the most comfortable and convenient mode of travel. There are two major railway stations in Goa- Madgaon and Vasco-da-Gama. Goa enjoys extensive rail connectivity with other major cities of the country. Goa's rail route is a relaxing journey that takes you through some of the Western Ghats' most beautiful landscapes.
Goa Railway Station Name & code: Madgaon Junction (MAO), Vasco-Da-Gama Railway station (VSG).
You can also order your favourite food in train online from RailRestro while travelling to Goa by a train.
The rail journey from Mumbai to Goa is one of the most scenic train rides in India. The train routes connecting these cities give you an incredible experience intersecting through the gorges, Sahyadri hills and the Arabian Sea. Riding through 92 tunnels and on 2000 bridges, this route offers beautiful sceneries with jaw-dropping sight of scenic landscapes, dazzling rivers, rugged coastline and lush green meadows. Mandovi Express train, a part of the Konkan Railway network, runs between Mumbai and Goa.
The journey from Vasco Da Gama to Londa offers you one of the most thrilling and enchanting train journeys in India. It traverses through the Western Ghats laced with lush green forests, thriving villages and sparkling waterfalls that add to the charm of this rail route in Goa. The train pass along many serene beaches and the magnificent Dudhsagar waterfalls, cascading beauty gushing in full vigour.
If you want to enjoy this thrilling train journey from Vasco Da Gama to Londa closely, get down at Londa junction, which is the nearest station to Dudhsagar falls.
If you don't want to miss the most scenic rail journey in India, always check the PNR status to know the current booking status and live train delay information. RailMitra is the best train enquiry app for checking Train PNR status and live train status along with a set of other features for which you don't need to install any other Indian Railway app. The RailMitra app is free and is available for Android devices. Other exclusive features include food delivery in train and booking hotels at affordable rates.
Baga resides a little farther south of Morjim, exhibiting a very different atmosphere to that of its neighbour. It has a stunningly vibrant atmosphere characterized by an unbroken line of exotic and pleasant beach shacks situated beside a long golden sand stretch. It is one of the most popular beaches among the Indian family crowd.
Things to do in Baga beach: Scuba diving, motorboat rides, banana Boat Ride, jet skiing, dolphin rides, diving, and spas.
These are considered one of the most popular beaches among European tourists who spend their holidays in Goa. The long strips of golden sands of Candolim and Calangute lead to one of the most welcoming stretches of coastline in the state. You can also relish the delicious Goan curry at one of the eye-catchy beach shacks. Calangute Beach is renowned as the "Queen of beaches" for its alluring sandy landscapes.
Things to do in Candolim beach: Snorkelling, kite surfing, windsurfing, diving, jet-skiing, parasailing.
Palolem beach is often marked as one of Goa's finest beache due to its breathtaking view. Let your worries take a back seat and lose yourself on Palolem Beach. If you enjoy socializing with crowds, this is just the place for you. Palolem Beach offers one of the best swimming locations in Goa with a long curve of palm-fringed sandy stretch. The beach huts here serve tasty local grub.
Things to do in Palolem beach: Shopping, food, partying and diving.
Benaulim Beach offers holidaymakers not only a splendid retreat for rest and relaxation but also lots of things to do around the city. A breathtakingly beautiful setting for sunbathers, it is a long stretch of soft white sand with verdant palm trees. But, if soaking up the rays on a sun lounger doesn't suit you, do explore water sports or try your luck sighting dolphins here.
Things to do in Benaulim & Varca: Water sports, bar hopping and food.
The calm and peaceful ambience of Morjim Beach will soothe all your travel fatigue. Embrace your Goa holidays by walking on this unsurpassed beauty that only a few beaches in Goa can be compared with. Apart from enticing beach bars and shacks, Morjim also attracts olive ridley sea turtles, the most popular attraction at this beach.
Things to do in Morjim: Bird sightseeing, adventure activities.
Goan cuisine is a perfect blend of Konkani, French, Malaysian, Portuguese and Catholic influence!
Goan cuisine is blisteringly rich and delicious. The traditional Goan food is a favourite with Indians as well as foreign tourists. Rice, seafood, coconut milk, meat, pork and local spices are the main elements of the Goan cuisine. Fish curry and rice are Goa's staple food. Due to its long coastline, the magic of Goan cuisine encompasses seafood dishes that are highly influenced by the Portuguese culture.
Kingfish is the most prominent seafood commonly present in most Goan meals. Other seafood cuisines of Goa include prawns, shark, tuna, mackerel, crabs, lobsters, squids, etc. Some specific Goan specialties are Goan fish curry, Fish Caldine, Xacuti, Pork vindaloo, Sannas, Sorpotel, and Bebinca. Try Feni- the local Goan alcohol prepared from cashew or palm toddy.
P.S.: This is a collaborative post