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Old 10th April 2012, 22:42   #1
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Default Goa Again!!

This is my first post in Travelogue section – Never thought I will be able to post in this section because I am not much of a traveler. I will try my best to make this post informative for anyone planning to go to GOA.

I went there with three of my hostel friends. Strange as it may sound we stayed together for 5 years in the same hostel and we did not make even a single trip out of Bombay! Somehow we all regretted the fact that we have never travelled together much and since we had all started working now (we graduated from college in June 2011), planning a trip after passing out of college was becoming more difficult. However GOOD FRIDAY weekend came upon us and what started as a stupid suggestion of going to GOA for just 3 days actually became a reality. I had been to GOA in March 2010, so I had some idea about the place. People told me to abandon GOA plan as it would be too hot there but we had decided not to cancel the plan because this trip was not just a trip for us – It was a commitment that no matter what we friends will always be together even if we are based in different cities.

Since Friday was a holiday we decided to leave late Thursday night, stay in GOA till Sunday evening and then touch Bombay early Monday morning so that we could go to office. We decided to go to GOA by bus. Other options were going by train/air. We did not research much into the other options for some reason. I called up NEETA Travels and booked the tickets. One way travel was around 13 hours and costs Rs 1300 per head. Seats were semi-sleeper type as we did not get sleeper seats as per the timings we wanted. Note that you should always book sleeper or semi-sleeper seats as the chair only seats were really comfortable. NEETA Mercedez Benz has both types of seats in the same bus – Semi sleeper and Chair only seats. Bus would drop us at two points in Goa – Mapusa or Panjim. We decided to get down at Mapusa as it was near to Baga/Calangute (where we planned to stay).

After getting down at Mapusa, one can reach BAGA/Calangute either by a Taxi or a Bus. Taxi would cost Rs 250-300 and Bus would cost Rs 10 only. Of course the bus was crowded but if you have travelled in BEST buses of Bombay you would have no problems with GOA buses. We took a bus and got down at Calangute.

We had not made any hotel reservations. We searched online for some hotels and selected some hotels based on their reviews/price and decided we would look at the rooms and then decide where to stay. Since we were going in an off-season period getting a room was not an issue but pre-booking is advised in case you plan to go during peak season. I will list down all the places which I had selected (for budget hotels) below.

After getting down at Calangute bus stop we went to a store, asking for the address to a hotel in our list. The shop owner told us that he could show us a flat where we can stay and that was just 5 minutes away from the shop. He quoted a price of Rs 1500 per day for the AC room. Since there were four of us we decided a flat would be better than taking two rooms in a hotel. We walked to that place, saw it, liked it and took it at a price of Rs 1400 for two days.

There are lots of places to go in Goa. Traveling within the city is best done on a two-wheeler. We hired two Activa’s for Rs 300 each per day. Note that you would need two id proofs – one would be the driving license which you would need to keep with you all the time and another to deposit with the activa owner. We gave our College Alumni id as the deposit. I would definitely recommend using Google maps in Goa for directions to various beaches. Even if you do not have them there are plenty of sign boards and the locals too are very helpful. Following are the places worth mentioning:

1. Chapora Fort

This is the fort where Dil Chahta hain were shot. It is near Vagator beach in North Goa. This is one the place I would definitely recommend everyone to go. The fort is situated at a height and climbing to this fort might be difficult for older people. Climbing will hardly take 15-20 minutes.

2. Beaches

Of all the beaches we went here are our findings – there are two kinds of beaches in Goa – Crowded and not crowded. Calangute & Baga belong to the crowded category. Have you ever been to Juhu Beach in Mumbai? – Well Calangute is worse than that. Water is brown and just too crowded. Please stay away from those beaches. The other category of beaches include: Arambol/Vagator/Palolem/Anjuna (not the rocky one). Here there are very less people, water is much better and place more peaceful. I would recommend going to the following beaches in North Goa - Vagator, Arambol & Anjuna.

At Vagator one should have breakfast/lunch at Alcove’s. The resort overlooks Vagator and is really good. One can also think of staying here – AC room tariff was Rs 2700 – You will get swimming pools/TT tables/Pool tables etc. The resort was clean and the atmosphere was very calm and soothing.

There is also a Go-karting track while going from Calangute to Anjuna. You will have to pay Rs 200 for 10 laps. We could not try it out as we were short of time but it is worth trying once – especially for Mumbai Junta who can no longer do Go-karting at Powai.

3. Night life at Baga

Many people told me that BAGA is the place to party at night. While going towards Baga, there is a street where you will find dozens of pubs/bars. Tito’s was the one mentioned by many people so we decided to visit that. It was closed on Friday on account of Good Friday so we went there again on Saturday only to be disappointed on seeing that rates were Rs 1500 (with some drinks free) per head. Ladies of course had free entry but then we were all boys and we thought Rs 1500 was too costly. There are other pubs too in that street like Mambo’s, Café Capetown etc. I do not know why people are so crazy about these places; for me there are like just any other clubs. The only reason to visit these places might be the food IMO. We did try out one restaurant at Baga – Tito’s Backyard – Live music/brilliant ambience – Perfect restaurant for having a nice meal.

Following are some pictures worth showing:

Arambol Beach:
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Anjuna Beach:

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Chapora Fort:

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Old 10th April 2012, 22:50   #2
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Default Re: Goa Again!!

Some more pictures from the Chapora Fort:

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My attempt at taking a Panorama shot from my camera:

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The Vagator beach is next to Chapora fort as you can see from the pictures. We actually climbed down the Chapora fort from the beach side (away from the normal exit) and directly landed onto the beach. Going downhill was quite adventurous as we had to make our own way and we landed directly onto the beach (rather than taking the long route)

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Last edited by Saanil : 10th April 2012 at 23:07.
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Old 11th April 2012, 12:30   #3
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Nice pics there ! These photos reminded me of the trip we undertook while I was doing my graduation. Didn't you go to the Calangute beach ? I personally liked that one. Goa is one heck of a place just to chill out and enjoy.
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Old 11th April 2012, 13:28   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HorsPwr
Didn't you go to the Calangute beach ?
Thanks for your appreciation for my pictures. We did go to Calangute beach but frankly that beach cannot be compared to beaches like Vagator, Palolem and Arambol. If you are looking for a peaceful beach then you will be disappointed with calangute.
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Old 11th April 2012, 15:24   #5
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@saanil,

Nice pics, reminded me of my recent trip to Goa. I conciously avoided Calangute and stuck to Baga. But even Baga I found too crowded with a lot of litter on the beach. BTW did you visit Britto's?

IMO the best beach of Goa is Colva - for less crowd, cheap water sports and for long walks.
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Old 11th April 2012, 15:32   #6
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Originally Posted by ghodlur
@saanil,

Nice pics, reminded me of my recent trip to Goa. I conciously avoided Calangute and stuck to Baga.
Thanks ghodlur. I did not visit Britto's. We were in Goa for roughly two days and it was not possible to visit many places. Plus we wasted one evening near tito's.

I am listing below some hotels for staying on a strict budget (Note that these hotels do not have anything fancy but are good for youngsters who are on a tight budget). I went through a number of reviews on Tripadvisor and shortlisted these hotels.

1. Angels Resort

Address: Chogm Road, Alto De Porvorim, Bardez , Porvorim, North Goa

Contact: +91-832 - 2414784 / 2412403 /2410438

2. Casa Mia, Goa

Address: A1-189/D, Holiday Street, Gaura Vaddo | Gaura Vaddo, Calangute 403516, India

Contact: +91 9314443003

3. Renzo's Inn

Address: E/139, Adventure Street, Opp Kamath Holiday Home, Phase II, Gauro Vaddo, Calangute, Goa, India - 403516.

Contact Numbers: +(91)-(832)-2275555, 2275550, +(91)9821068543.

4. Santiago Hotel

Address: Cobrawaddo Calangute, Goa 403516, India

Contact: 0832 2276564

5. Cavala Resort

Address: Baga - Saunta Vaddo Calangute Goa - 403516 India

Contact: +91 832 2276090/7587

6. Zinho's Beach Resort

Address: H No. 7/3, Tito's Rd,, Baga, India

Contact: 0832 – 2276344/ 9822982560

7. Veronica Guest House

Address: House Number 933 Tivai Vaddo, Calangute

Contact: 0832-2277844 / +919890288061

Sorry but I am not able to make the hotel names bold (posting from my mobile). Apologies if the post is not readable.

Last edited by Saanil : 11th April 2012 at 15:35.
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Old 11th April 2012, 22:31   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HorsPwr View Post
Didn't you go to the Calangute beach ? I personally liked that one.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saanil View Post
We did go to Calangute beach but frankly that beach cannot be compared to beaches like Vagator, Palolem and Arambol. If you are looking for a peaceful beach then you will be disappointed with Calangute.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
I conciously avoided Calangute and stuck to Baga. But even Baga I found too crowded with a lot of litter on the beach. IMO the best beach of Goa is Colva - for less crowd, cheap water sports and for long walks.
To be honest, ALL of the beaches mentioned above -- Calangute, Baga, Colva, Vagator, Palolem and Arambol -- are best avoided if one desires a "peaceful and cleaner beach".

I would, instead recommend beaches like Ashwem and Keri in North Goa, Utorda, Velsao, southern Benaulim (Waddy), Sernabatim, Galgibaga, Agonda and Polem in South Goa.

I would easily avoid the Sinquerim-Candolim-Calangute-Baga stretch. Reason: More the crowd, more the disturbance/litter.

However, if beach activities are important, then beaches like Calangute, Candolim, Baga, Colva, Vagator and Palolem are great. Reason: More the crowd, more the activities.

Last edited by misquitas : 11th April 2012 at 22:35.
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Old 11th April 2012, 22:37   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by misquitas View Post
To be honest, ALL of the beaches mentioned above -- Calangute, Baga, Colva, Vagator, Palolem and Arambol -- are best avoided if one desires a "peaceful and cleaner beach".
I would like to thank you misquitas - Remember I was the one asking you questions about travelling inside Goa the day before I was about to leave. You were really helpful in answering all my questions

We would definitely go to the beaches recommended by you whenever we go to Goa next time.

I did not go towards Panjim side otherwise would have loved to meet you in person.
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Old 11th April 2012, 23:02   #9
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Originally Posted by Saanil View Post
I would like to thank you misquitas - Remember I was the one asking you questions about travelling inside Goa the day before I was about to leave. You were really helpful in answering all my questions

We would definitely go to the beaches recommended by you whenever we go to Goa next time.

I did not go towards Panjim side otherwise would have loved to meet you in person.
No need to thank me. I have benefited a lot from team-bhp. In fact, my holiday in Mysore in Oct 2011 was largely successful due to the valuable information and assistance of many team-bhp members. My travelogue on Mysore acknowledges all of them.

The least that I can do for fellow team-bhp members is to provide as much information on Goa as I can, as and when the need arises.

Last edited by misquitas : 11th April 2012 at 23:07.
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Old 17th April 2012, 13:12   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saanil View Post
Tito’s was the one mentioned by many people so we decided to visit that. It was closed on Friday on account of Good Friday so we went there again on Saturday only to be disappointed on seeing that rates were Rs 1500 (with some drinks free) per head. Ladies of course had free entry but then we were all boys and we thought Rs 1500 was too costly. There are other pubs too in that street like Mambo’s, Café Capetown etc.
Thanks for sharing.
I will be driving to Goa in May.
Is there any age limit for these clubs?
I just wanted to show my children so would they allow teenagers?
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Old 17th April 2012, 23:22   #11
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Thanks for sharing.
I will be driving to Goa in May.
Is there any age limit for these clubs?
I just wanted to show my children so would they allow teenagers?
Well I am not sure whether they will be allowed or not as I myself did not go inside - I am not much into clubbing. I think you can give these clubs a miss. It would be better to spend time with them at a peaceful beach - Misquitas above has given number of beaches which would be worth going. There is also a Go-Karting track in Goa (On the way from Calangute to Anjuna) which I think your kids will like (Rs 200 for 10 laps and it begins at 4pm in the evening- Not sure about the morning timings).
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Old 25th April 2012, 10:18   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saanil View Post
I would like to thank you misquitas - Remember I was the one asking you questions about travelling inside Goa the day before I was about to leave. You were really helpful in answering all my questions

We would definitely go to the beaches recommended by you whenever we go to Goa next time.

I did not go towards Panjim side otherwise would have loved to meet you in person.
I am going to Goa in 2nd week of May for 3 days and it was good to read your travelogue. How was the climate during your stay - very hot and humid?

Quote:
Originally Posted by misquitas View Post

The least that I can do for fellow team-bhp members is to provide as much information on Goa as I can, as and when the need arises.
@ Misquitas - will it be worth going to Dudhsagar falls during May 2nd week?
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Old 25th April 2012, 12:13   #13
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Originally Posted by Sandy28

I am going to Goa in 2nd week of May for 3 days and it was good to read your travelogue. How was the climate during your stay - very hot and humid?
I went to Goa in the first week of April. Many people had told me that it would be too hot during that time so I was prepared for the extreme heat. However when I actually went there I did not feel the temperature to be too high. In fact it was much more comfortable than what it was when I went there a couple of years back in March. Probably this is because I was expecting it. It was not humid though. Heat will be an issue in the afternoon. It would be good to be in the waters during that time. Are you travelling with family??
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Old 25th April 2012, 13:55   #14
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Quote:
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I went to Goa in the first week of April. Many people had told me that it would be too hot during that time so I was prepared for the extreme heat. However when I actually went there I did not feel the temperature to be too high. In fact it was much more comfortable than what it was when I went there a couple of years back in March. Probably this is because I was expecting it. It was not humid though. Heat will be an issue in the afternoon. It would be good to be in the waters during that time. Are you travelling with family??
Yea. I will be with wife and 3 yr old son. I know MAy is not the idle time for Goa but then if I dont do this trip now, it will get postponed indefinetly. Plan is to spend the evenings on the beach and the mornings siteseeing around Goa. Depending on the situation, we may either stay indoor in the afternoons or check out places like Old Goa churches which should be relatively cooler.
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Old 5th May 2012, 18:37   #15
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@ Misquitas - will it be worth going to Dudhsagar falls during May 2nd week?
Sorry for the delayed reply. I just spoke to my correspondent in Collem (a village not far from the Dudhsagar falls) and he informed me that the while water flows the year round, the water level drops a bit in May.
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