Lying on the west coast, Goa is one of India’s coolest places to visit with a hipster vibe, beautiful beaches, delicious food and Portuguese heritage. It doesn’t matter if you want to party, or are looking for wellness or simply want to unwind, Goa will embrace you with its love and warmth. Goa’s north and south have radically different personalities. While the north is more localized, with interesting art markets and cool party spots, the south is luxurious with private beaches.
Goa has one of the best nightlife in the country with trendy bars, beach shacks, elegant cafes and many clubs. Its relaxed way of life attracts a lot of young travellers, and its many beautiful beaches have become the perfect ground for yoga and meditation retreats.
1. What makes Goa an amazing tourist destination?
2. How to reach Goa from the UK?
3. Visa Information
4. Best Time to Visit
5. Things to do in Goa
6. A sample itinerary of Goa
7. About the food or cuisine
8. How to travel around in Goa?
9. Accommodation in Goa
10. Tips when travelling to Goa
11. Checklist to travel to Goa
12. FAQs for your Goa travel
What makes Goa an amazing tourist destination?
Goa’s beaches are its greatest draw. While Baga and Calangute are more popular among Indians, Anjuna and Arambol draw a lot of foreign tourists.
The other big thing in Goa is its nightlife. The blend of beaches and parties is the focal point of Goa’s nightlife and keeps drawing tourists year after year. Numerous bars and pubs are found near the beach, accompanied by food stalls and gift shops.
Tourists in Goa also indulge in a lot of shopping: local art, antique pieces, spices, shell work to junk jewellery and clothing are all very popular and there are many interesting flea markets to explore.
How to reach Goa from the UK?
There are no direct flights from London to Goa. You can take a flight from London to New Delhi or Mumbai and then a connecting flight to Goa.
How to apply for the Visa?
International travellers can apply for a visa through https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/
You need to upload the documents along with the application form on the official website and the e-Visa would be delivered on your email within 96 hours. The payment can be electronically made via debit/credit card. e-Tourist Visa fee is around 35 pounds per person excluding interchange charge for debit/credit cards. The e-Visa is valid from the date of arrival and cannot be extended.
Best Time to Visit
The peak tourist season to visit Goa is between November to March when the Goa weather is beautifully pleasant and clear with a cool sea breeze blowing through.
Things to do in Goa
From the natural beauty of the beaches to the Portuguese art and architecture, Goa is all-inclusive of a sublime holiday destination.
1. Visit the popular beaches of Goa
For travellers who love and surf, Goa gets you the very best. People flock to Goa for their beach holidays because of the stunning coastline and an endless list of idyllic beach settings.
Presenting the list of top beaches in Goa, ready to be enjoyed on a sun-filled holiday:
- Morjim- Located in the far North of the state, Morjim is backed by beach bars and shacks. The beach’s most famous characteristic is its role as a home for olive ridley sea turtles.
- Baga- Located a little further South of Morjim, consists of the fantastically vibrant atmosphere and beach shacks, all placed beside a long stretch of golden sand.
- Candolim & Calangute- Among the most popular beaches for British tourists, Candolim and Calangute’s long strips of golden sand invites stretches of coastline, friendly resorts and eye-catching beach shacks.
- Arossim- Located on the South of the state, it presents a wide stretch of golden sand and is backed by a dense forest of palms. Beach’s highlights include beach shack such as “Zeebop” serving up delicious and fresh seafood to hungry beachgoers.
- Majorda- One of the most picturesque beaches in the South of Goa, here you’ll find a small selection of beach shacks where you can try tasty Goan delicacies and enjoy a refreshing beer.
- Benaulim & Varca- It offers holidaymakers not just peaceful rest and relaxation, but also plenty of things to do in and around the area. If soaking up the sunshine not your cup of tea, you can get stuck into water sports and dolphin watching.
2. Visit Basilica of Bom Jesus
The oldest church in Goa is located in Old Goa in Bainguinim, about 10 km away from the capital city, Panjim. It’s a site with rich cultural and religious significance and is known for its exemplary baroque architecture. The Basilica of Bom Jesus is over 408 years old and is open to the tourist’s every day.
3. Water Sports in Goa
Even if you are not an adventure seeker, get ready for some thrilling water sports. These adventures are offered throughout the season while some are season specific.
Water Sports in Goa include:
- Windsurfing- The Dona Paula Bay is known to be the ideal destination for this popular sport. A number of beaches in Goa such as Bogmalo, Miramar, Calangute, Arossim, Vagator and Baga also attract visitors to embark on this adventure sport.
- Jet Skiing- One of the most thrilling adventure Water Sport in Goa, it is simple to operate during the winter season. Experience gliding on the waters in the popular beaches of Aguada, Colva, Candolim, Calangute and Benaulim offer the sport.
- Scuba Diving & Snorkeling- Explore the beautiful marine world. Underwater visibility ranges for five to ten meters, but ensure complete fitness before embarking on an underwater expedition. Calangute, Baga, Grande Island etc. offers scuba diving and snorkelling opportunities.
- Kayaking- Paddle through waters along the backwaters, mangroves and mini bays. The sport requires balance and fitness. The places to go kayaking are Palolem Beach, Dona Paula and Hollant beach.
4. Cruises in Goa
Cruise in Goa allows one to explore exotic scenery, pristine waters and breathtaking views of the sunset. There are several types of cruises in Goa and each of them offers a unique experience. These ranges from simple evening cruises, romantic dinner cruises, backwater cruises and casino cruises. All of these are usually generated from Miramar beach in Panjim. Booking a cruise getaway in Goa is fairly simple as a number of them also offer online booking options. Depending on your requirements and time that you want to spend on the boats, you can choose the package that suits you the best.
5. Dudhsagar Falls, Goa
Dudhsagar Falls in Goa is a landscape which is known for its sunny beaches and inviting waves. These are one of the highest waterfalls in the country. The majestic falls are located 60 km from Panaji on the Goa-Karnataka border. You can take a jeep or taxis to commute to this place. The noise of the water hitting the rocks, the cold breeze and endless flows of the whitewashed falls are sure to captivate you.
6. Visit Dona Paula
Dona Paula is Goa’s most enduring monument. It’s also one of the most happening beaches in North Goa. The air is filled with romance, stories and legends of eternal love. There’s also a statue of a man and a woman perched on the top of the rock. It signifies the passionate, forbidden and unfulfilled love affair of Dona Paula with a local Goan man. The place has captured the heart of every tourist. It is located 7 km away from the capital city, Panaji. It could be reached by local buses and taxis very easily. You can enjoy shopping, eating, swimming and water sports in this beautiful place.
Goa is one of those places where gambling is legal. You can visit Casinos in Goa at any time of the day or night. Casinos in Goa offer a thrilling time. The popular casinos in Goa you must surely visit once are Maharajah Casino by Big Daddy, Deltin Royale Casino, Casino Pride, Deltin Caravela Casino, Deltin Jaqk, Casino Pride 2, Casino Carnival, Casino strike, Las Vegas Casino, Treasures Casino etc.
8. Anjuna Flea Market
Every Wednesday, not only artisans from India but all over the World set up stalls here. It stretches from the beach shacks area of Anjuna to the other side of the main road where there are paddy fields. You can check out the massive collection of clothes, jewellery, bed sheets, wall hangings etc. The market starts at 9 am and ends at 6 pm every Wednesday. This market exists only during the main season- November to March. Even if you don’t like to shop, visit this market for a good experience.
9. Nightlife in Goa
Goa is inclusive of the most exciting nightlife options in the country. Goa nightlife is all about great music, international DJs, delicious food that makes for the perfect ambience. Beach parties are common, and so is having a beachside bonfire-barbeque night. Beach discos are also popular in Goa at night. The best nightclubs in Goa are Tito’s Bar and Club, Club Cubana, Club LPK (Love, Passion, Karma), SinQ Night Club, Café Mambos, Leopard Valley etc.
10. Bungee Jumping
Bungee Jumping has been added to the craziest things to do in Goa. You can go Bungee Jumping over Mayem Lake, North Goa. It has been recently started by the Goa Tourism Board. You will leap from a height of 55 metres above the edge of the lake. The adventure will be open to anyone above the age of 12 and below the age of 40. You must be physically fit for the adventure. Tickets are priced at INR 4850 including taxes.
A sample itinerary of Goa
Here’s a sample itinerary of 5 nights and 6 days to Goa:
Day 1: Arrival at Goa. Check in to the hotel. In the afternoon, go to Anjuna Beach. After that, enjoy a picturesque sunset at Vagator Beach. Enjoy a night party at Arambol Beach.
Day 2: Visit Fort Aguada and Basilica of Bom Jesus followed by dinner.
Day 3: Enjoy water sports at Sinquerim beach. At night you can visit Candolim beach for nightlife.
Day 4: Take a ferry ride across the Mandovi River. Visit famous Divar Island for a peaceful retreat. Enjoy authentic Goan cuisine at the shack. You can visit Baga Beach if you want to party all night.
Day 5: Take a short trip to Vagator beach and enjoy Greek cuisine at a restaurant. You can head to Arambol Beach, North Goa to relax and watch the sunset. At night, you can visit a club at Arpora, as it is the perfect place to party.
Day 6: Arrival at Airport to fly back home.
Must-try dishes in Goa
- Goan fish curry- Loaded with various spices along with coconut, Goan fish curry is the staple diet of every Goan. This Goan dish is served along with rice.
- Shark Ambot Tik- A Portuguese influenced Goan dish, it’s a blend of spicy and sour. Shark fish is diced and tossed with onions, tomatoes and masala.
- Chicken Xacuti- One of the most popular Goan food, Chicken Xacuti consists of poppy seeds and Kashmiri red chillies.
- Goan Pork Vindaloo- The dish consists of pork, onions, chillies, garlic along with vinegar and other spices. The mixture is stored overnight, as it is said the older the dish gets, the better it tastes.
- Sorpotel- Pork and beef, or mutton liver is used for this dish. The meat is parboiled and the fat is fried. People prefer to have it for breakfast.
How to travel around in Goa?
There are multiple options for those who want to travel around Goa. You can rent a bike or car, take a bus, ride a ferry, or opt for a motorcycle taxi- a unique mode of transport. You can also take auto rickshaws or cabs.
Accommodation in Goa
- The Lalit Golf and Spa Resort Goa- prices starting from INR 8,000 per night.
- Royal Orchid Beach Resort and Spa- prices starting from INR 6,500 per night.
- Whispering Palms Beach Resort- prices starting from INR 6,000 per night.
- Goa Marriott Resort & Spa- prices starting from INR 10,000 per night.
- Hyatt Centric Candolim Goa- prices starting from INR 7,000 per night.
Tips when travelling to Goa
- Currency- The currency of India is Indian Rupee (INR). 1 pound can roughly be bought for 92.71 INR. It is preferable to carry currency with you.
- Weather- November to February are the coldest season, summers can be extremely hot from April to June with monsoon rainfall between mid-June and mid-September.
- Safety- Take safety precautions in Goa, avoid walking along back lanes or beach areas alone at night. Beware of undertow when swimming. Avoid consumption of drugs to not land into legal trouble. Go to a well-known restaurant and have your food.
- Mobile network and sim card- The major mobile service providers are Airtel and Vodafone. You can purchase a sim card at the airport itself.
- Power plugs- You need power plugs and socket of C and D type.
Checklist for your travel to Goa
- Travel Documents- Passport, Visa, Travel insurance, tickets, medical documents and relevant ID cards.
- Money- Indian Rupee.
- Clothes- Comfortable flip flops, beachwear, sunglasses and hats.
- Electronics- Mobile phone, camera and travel adapter.
- Health and Hygiene- Medications that you are on, basic medical kit, women hygiene items, toiletries, insect spray, hand sanitizers.
FAQs for your Goa travel
What is the best time to visit Goa for honeymoon couples?
The best time to visit Goa is between November to February, but it is also the peak season. All the beaches usually remain crowded during this time. For honeymoon goers, the best time to visit Goa would be between October and April. By going a little earlier or later than the peak season, you can avoid the usual rush.
How are the people in Goa?
You will find Indian people very kind and friendly, you can feel free to talk to them. Do not go around photographing the people; ask first, show some respect. Buy some local products and encourage them, they are cheaper. Don’t talk about sensitive topics like politics and religious things!
How much should you tip?
Tipping is a custom in India. However, as tourism develops, tour guides, drivers, and hotel staff do expect tips. If the service is satisfactory, a few dollars to the guide and the driver will be appreciated. While in restaurants and taxis, tips are not necessary.
Do travellers need to ask permission before taking photos of Indians?
It is always good to ask permission first. Indians are very friendly. However, it might arouse the upset feelings of local Indians by photo-taking without asking permission first.
What are the commonly used phone numbers for emergencies in India?
The following phone calls can be directly made from any other telephones in India once the emergency happens.
- Police emergency: 100
- Medical emergency:108
GOA- A must try destination for the British travellers
Goa is synonymous to many things- be it the parties, the casinos, the flea markets or the beach shacks- Goa is what Ibiza is to the world. Here, we take you on a trail along the best beaches in Goa. These places are varied in nature and a visit here will expose you to the best beach in Goa for family and the best beaches in Goa for couples.
Gear up for this amazing vacation to Goa, all that you need to do is get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at +91 3340525777.