Goa is by far, one of the most popular tourist destinations of India. There is just something about it that just draws people there. From amazing, sprawling beaches, water sports, scrumptious food, the laid back setting to the nightlife & the booze, Goa has something for everyone.
For me, its the peace, calm & tranquil Goa that calls to me. The fact that its so close to home made it the perfect get away place, when I found myself craving some time off from my hectic life & routine of being a Lawyer. So in the month of Oct 2014 , I visited Goa with my family.
We landed in Goa early morning at around 8.30 after a 40 minutes flight of Air India.
Goa offers both private as well as Government sponsored taxis from the Airport to your destination at fixed prices.
The drive from the Airport to our hotel in Calangute was amazing. The weather was chilly and the surroundings lush green and amazing.
The ride itself is an introduction of the various aspects of Goa.
One cannot miss the varying influences of architectures in the tiny houses which you come across as you drive through.
We had a reservation at Hotel Park Avenue near Calangute beach.
The hotel is amazing in terms of its location. Only 5 mins away from the beach. It had a Swimming pool, a Restaurant & Tattoo Parlor in its premises.The room was cozy and spacious, almost like an apartment without a kitchen.
We settled in quickly & took a nap for an hour as we had had been up since 4 in the morning.
After waking up, we went on for Lunch at a nearby Restaurant, I had the most amazing veggie soup.
We decided to do some local exploration that day, so checked out the local market. Did some hippie clothes shopping 😉 & spent the rest of the evening at the beach.
I cannot even begin to describe the immediate sense of calm that came upon me as soon as we settled down at the beach.
The setting sun, the people, each in their own way making the most of their time, the para- sailing, the waves of the sea, the cool evening breeze. There is just something about being at the beach that relaxes me. This was exactly why I chose to come to Goa, away from the hustle & bustle of my daily life. Even the locals just have this sense of ease in their being & it is quite infectious!
I also remember my previous trips here as a child, making sand castles was my favorite thing to do! If only I had my tools with me 😉 I collected a few shells & took a walk along the sea shore before returning back to hotel room for Dinner. The very first day was the best out of the entire trip.
We decided to explore the Southern part of Goa, also known as Old Goa.
We booked ourselves seats in a Volvo, which was very comfortable.
We had a tour guide to show us around and brief us about the history of the place.
Our first halt was Miramar beach, where we were asked to get down and get into a tiny boat that would take us around to see the Dolphins!
I did see them but could not capture them on camera 😦
We were also shown the house of some famous smuggler! What a sprawling piece of property that was!
After that we were taken to see the old churches of Goa, namely Basilica of Bom Jesus , Se Cathedral. It was beautifulllll beyond words.
We visited Dona Paula, one of my favorite of the entire trip! Had the most amazing view of the Sea!
We stopped for lunch before heading to the ancient temples of Goddess Shantadurga & Lord Mangesh. N also a quick stop specially for my family to see a family friend of ours, that was special 🙂
Anyway the temple it is!
The last stop of the tour of South Goa was the most amazing of all. An evening River cruise over River Mandvi!
A perfect end of the tour for the day 🙂
I was so tired after an amazing tour of the previous day that I was in no mood to venture out for a day long trip!
And I dint have to. When we headed for our lunch we met a local cabbie called Ashu ( a local Goanise with awesome info on food & local hangouts) who offered to take us around North Goa! Perfect!!!!!
We started with Agauda Fort, (the place where Dil Chahta Hai, a popular Bollywood movie was shot! )
On the way back from Agauda Fort, we saw the famous Kingfisher Villa & Taj Vivanta – where I intend to stay the next time I come to Goa. The Vivanta by Taj is located at a spectacular location. Gotta explore it the next time. Anyway, Next we travelled to all the beautiful beaches, namely Baga, Anjuna, Vagator..
Each more beautiful than the other.
We wrapped up our evening watching the beautiful sunset.
Vagator Beach Sunset
This was to be our last day in Goa. Finally I went for a swim at the beach! The wavessssssss! Felt like heaven. I was now ready to head back home. ( Reluctantly )
We had a gud lunch of Fish & chips with Beer to mark the end of out trip!!!had Ashu come pick us up & drop us at the Airport. ( with a complimentary cocunut water on the way ) 🙂
It was an amazing four day trip! Goa always has a way of relaxing whoever visits it.
I am a lover of Goa to the core & can’t wait to return soon!!