Goa beaches Travel Guide
About Goa beaches
A former Portuguese colony, Goa has long been popular with overseas travellers and was part of the hippie trail between Europe and Asia from the mid-1950s to the late 1970s. Today, while modern hippies still congregate around Arambol and Anjuna in the north of Goa, beaches around Penaji (the capital of Goa) and further south tend to have more upmarket resorts. The best time to visit Goa is from November to March – Goa has long sunny days and an average high of 32°C (90°F) during this period. June to September is the monsoon season in Goa with heavy rains, so it is best avoided.
Goa is blessed with over 105km (65 miles) of coastline that is peppered with many beautiful beaches ranging from quiet hippie hangouts to bigger resorts.
Arambol and Anjuna in the far north of the state are still hippie strongholds and attract plenty of backpackers. Accommodations here are basic. Anjuna also attracts younger crowds who love to party when the sun goes down.
Around Penaji (the capital of Goa), there is a string of exotic seaside towns and resort villages with facilities where you can spend days lounging on the sandy beaches or quiet coves. The best include Baga, Calangute, Candolim, Dona Paula, Vainguinim and Bambolim.
Further south, luxury resorts tuck between Arossim and Palolem. Among the many beaches along this stretch, Agonda promises a calm atmosphere and is suitable for travellers looking to relax and unwind.
Beyond the beach:
While Goa's beaches are the state's crowning jewel, it is well worth taking a break from the sun lounger to explore the historic towns and verdant countryside.
Goa Velha (Old Goa) has plenty of churches and museums to tempt culture buffs. The Dr Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary on the island of Chorão is also well worth a visit. In the west of Goa on the border with the state of Karnataka is the Dudhsagar Waterfall. Most visitors tend to combine a visit to the Waterfall with the nearby Mollem National Park for a relaxing day trip.
While there aren't really any attractions specifically for children, there are still plenty of activities like jungle excursions and family-friendly water sports to keep younger visitors occupied. Another popular option is the Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary near Margao – it has a mini zoo, a deer park, botanical gardens, nature trails and bird-watching areas.
A two- or three-day stay on a houseboat as it gently cruises up the Mandovi River is a popular trip and a great way to experience less touristy parts of the state.
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