Swaying palms, white sands and sparkling waters: the three essential elements that attract 2 million visitors annually to Goa’s balmy shores are plentiful in this tiny, glorious slice of India hugging the country’s western coastline and bounded by the Arabian Sea.
A solitary Portuguese outpost in India for almost 500 years, the influence of colonial rule can still be seen everywhere: in the exquisite, crumbling architecture; in the East-meets-West cuisine which combines coconut milk, palm vinegar and in the siesta-saturated joie de vivre that Goans themselves call susegad.
Not surprisingly, it’s the villages of Goa which hold both charm and character. Take an aimless ride on a relaxed evening or a languid morning – living in Goa can be tough and slow, but holidaying there is just fine — and surprise yourself with the charms of the Goan village.
Unlike urban areas, the villages tend to be neat and clean, friendly and even good value-for-money, except maybe in those areas where there are a lot of tourists already.
Goa has many different faces. The coast varies from the “hinterland”. Below is a list of some villages where you could find something unusual. But don’t restrict yourself to this list alone.
Assolna, Benaulim, Britona, Cortalim, Curtorim, Goa Velha, Mollem, Usgao, Reis Magos, Savoi Verem, Shiroda. But this list is far from complete. Please note that you wouldn’t necessarily be looking around for accommodation (though you can find it in some places), because these villages are often close to the places where most tourists stay.
North Goa- Bardez,Bicholim,Pernem,Ponda,Tiswadi,
Panjim,Margao,Vasco da Gama,Mapusa
Agonda or Turtle beach
Anjuna and Vagaor
Calangute and Baga-very popular with foreign tourists
There are many direct flights from Mumbai and Delhi.
Also Goa is well connected by train and luxury buses from Mumbai and takes about 12 hours to reach Panjim.