Goa is something else. We haven’t been to Vegas so can’t say about that. But in India, Goa is something else!
I Preeta Roy, the younger one, visited Goa a year ago. The experience was epic. Goa is known for so many things and there are so many things that you can do there and this is my journey of Goa for you.
First, of, Goa is one of the coolest places I have been so far. I mean there is a reason it is called ‘the fun capital of India’ and it does total justice to its nickname. There is no limit to fun whether it’s night or day. And something I would like to emphasize a lot is the fact that how safe Goa is. I live in Delhi and going out at night brings horrifying sensations followed by so many precautionary actions. But not in Goa. We roamed the roads of Goa throughout day and night and not for a second did I feel unsafe or worried.
And the Trip Begins!!
I started the trip from Delhi where I live. We booked a tour package me and my friends for 5 days and 4 nights trip to Goa. The package was surprisingly at a very low cost. When I say low, it is really really low. The package included two-way train tickets and stay for the entire duration.
My journey started at 5 am on a fine day. I woke up in the cosy of my home, got dressed, got my luggage and left to get a whole new journey! I reached Nizamuddin metro station in Delhi at around 8:15 to board the Mangla Lakshadweep Express(12618) departing at 9:15 am. The train whistled and with that my journey began.
My friends’ group was of 4 people but the tour package was a group-tour one, so we became a part of a 15-people crowd in about 5 seconds. The train was supposed to take 35 hours or so but the journey took a few more than that and as fun, as it felt, it was super exhausting too.
Arriving in Goa
We got down at Madgaon Station in Pune at around 10 in the night the next day. A bus was waiting for us there to take us to our hotel which took another 80 mins. Most of us fell asleep during the bus trip, 36 hours on a train is no joke. We finally reached our hotel Peninsula Resort in the heart of North Goa near Calangute beach.
Welcome to our lovely stay
I never expected to have such a brilliant accommodation. I expected a very normal and okayish hotel stay provided by the tour agency. But woah, they surprised me. The hotel was fabulous. It was in the heart of North Goa with a shore of the Calangute beach at only 10 mins walking distance. The hotel is surrounded by markets all around, there are restaurants right in front of the place, they have a swimming pool and what I mean in a gist is, it was epic. We checked in, and our rooms were simply astounding. Clean, tidy, spacious, and with a balcony having chairs to sit! The lobby area was roomy and they had an open hut near the pool for the buffet. Did I mention the food was included in the package? Yup, it was, 2 times meal for 5 days 4 nights stay.
As a cherry on top, the staff took our hearts. They were so very supportive! We had a party in our rooms with loud music and they turned a blind eye. We won’t say they would do that for everyone because all the guests on the floor were the people from our tour group, so that made it okay for us to party without disturbing anyone else. (they even helped us with our hangover)
So after reaching my hotel, I got freshened up, rested a bit and had dinner. There are many shops which stay open the entire night in Goa. The streets there are so strikingly clean and the local houses are so cute and colourful.
Day 2 means sand, sand & more sand
The next day which is the day 2 of my journey in Goa begun and the first thing we did was to hire a scooty. It is the most feasible way of commuting in Goa. You can also hire a jeep or any 4 wheeler but if you can manage a 2 wheeler, then get that, because, traffic and traffic and traffic.
We went to the main shore of Calangute beach where it is always very crowded and wonderful at the same time. In what words can I tell how much I love water? I guess I can’t, just can’t. I’m a Pisces and my love for water is evident. The moment I reached the beach I lost it. It was my first ever experience of a beach and a sea. I have always wished to go to a beach and just dance in the waves, and finally, the dream came true. I ran to the waves and when I say ran, I mean failed to run. The sand is no joke. One cannot run on sand, your slippers will cry, your feet will get submerged and you will regret having the bodyweight you have.
Waves are love
However, moving on, I ran to the waves and just hugged it, literally. Oh the moment, I can’t put enough words to describe it. Being in a swimming pool is nothing compared to a sea or ocean. The waves were so rapid and strong, it was very difficult for anybody to stand firmly. I fell a thousand times and my friends got many mini heart attacks standing back on the beach as I was in deep. But I know how to swim and was unafraid to the core. It’s the sea and I don’t believe the sea can hurt me!
The Aguada Fort
We all enjoyed the waves and sand and just had fun there for the morning. In the afternoon we decided to go to the Aguada Fort which was approx 7km away from hour hotel and it took us about 20mins to reach. The place is so stunning I tell you. It is a very old Portuguese fort built to guard against the Marathas and the Dutch and a port for the vessels coming from Europe. The fort is situated on the south of the Candolim beach, on the banks of the Mandovi river. The Aguada fort which also means ‘watery’ has a 4 story Portuguese lighthouse, one of the oldest in Asia.
The entire fort complex is divided into sections. You need to climb many stairs to reach the top, the view from there is sensational. The lighthouse is stunning and serves its purpose. We stayed there for the afternoon, roamed around, clicked some awesome sunset pictures, took in the view and by 7 we got back to our hotel.
Don’t think the day ends here because it so does not!
After coming back to our hotel, we got freshened up a bit. Had a little drink of the famous Fenny among other things and got our party shoes out.
Party all night
I got all dolled up, got some food for my belly, took my scooty and went to a party at the Habana Beach Resort and club. This was a shack party at the Baga beach and was also included in my package. They had food their and insanely good music. We enjoyed the Goan nightlife for the entire night. As it was a shack party, it was on the beach so we got to dance indoors on the floor and outdoors in the water. It was wild and amazing.
The night ended in the morning. And we got back to our hotel.
Day 3 is a long ride…..
The third day started and it was time we went for a long drive, well technically long ride, on our beloved scooty.
The journey from North Goa to South Goa is a long one. The distance is approx. 72kms. The distance between our Hotel and Palolem Beach in the South was approx. 82kms and with traffic added it took us more than 6 hours to reach there.
I have to tell you if North Goa is fun and chaos then South Goa is peace and calm. It is bewildering how different the two parts of this same place is. We were so astonished to see hilly roads while on our way to South. Due to the Western Ghats, the roads connecting North and South are hilly and gives you a slight feel of the mountains while you are headed to a beach! How unusual! We reached Palolem at about 5 in the evening. Went to The Butterfly beach from there which was even more beautiful. Butterfly beach comes under one of the lesser-known places in Goa and people should keep it that way.
Oh The Cruise Ships
We started our journey back from the South at about 7 and it took us around 4 hours to reach our hotel. Riding a vehicle at night in Goa is a bliss truly. The thing which blew my mind and can only be seen in Goa in all of India is the cruise casino. I didn’t go inside as I’m underage still, but while on our way back, the cruise ships were sailed and the view, I don’t know how to describe that, I’ll give it a try. There are several bridges in Goa due to the presence of many rivers. The one that falls in between north and south is the Zuari Bridge which carries the NH-66 over the parts of Zuari River.
While on our way back at the night time we saw those cruise ships. The ships were enormous. They were moving at a minimal speed on the river, had so much glitz and glimmer on that it made everybody on the road turn their heads around. The ships were of different sizes and the bigger the ship was the more spectacular it looked. On the port, there were booking centres or offices of each cruise ship equally decorated as the cruise, where there was a huge queue of people waiting to have their turn on the ship. Music was loud, people’s excitement was loud and seeing all that I became loud with happiness so damn much. If you don’t feel like going on a cruise ship then I would say just go to that bridge and take in the view. It is worth it if not more.
Seashore at night
After reaching our hotel, I had my dinner, took a cold bath and decided to head to the shore near my hotel to relax.
I went there in the night at about 12 and stayed there for about 2 hours. It is so unnerving that a place known as the ‘fun capital’ of the country can be so peaceful concurrently.
I laid down on the beach benches there, behind me was a shack with soft music playing and people dining on the fabulous seafood. In the 2 hours that I was there, I saw the sea level rising and the waves changing from meek to moderate to rough. It got so cold in mere 2 hours that from sweating in the day I was shivering in the night. Shivering to the teeth. I ran to my hotel, got into my blanket and slept. Of course, after a while, I got hot inside the blanket and threw it away.
And here comes Day 4!
Day 4 started and it was time for some adventure. Before running off to do adventure we decided to have some fun of our own and played water volleyball in the pool at our hotel (Chlorine water sucks). After an hour or so, I got all dressed up in my proper water-sporty clothes and went off to the rides which were calling me.
We decided to go to Calangute beach to do water sports because it is one of the most famous beaches in Goa. There are many places and beaches where water sports occur, you can decide depending on what you want to do and the place that’s feasible for you.
The fun began. I did parasailing, banana ride, water scooter, boating, and bumper ride and I can’t just describe how awesome it all was ( I have said this a lot in this blog and the reason being, Goa makes me speechless!)
I’m a sucker for adventure sports and rides. Ask me to go on a ride in the middle of the night and I’ll be jumping up and down with joy. The morning and afternoon were occupied by water sports and beach fun. Beach is good but nevertheless, I was exhausted. I went back to my hotel at about 4 and rested a bit.
Party in the house!
In the evening we decided to eat out and ditch the hotel food which was pretty tasty for records. We all took our two-wheelers and went on a food hunt in the markets. Decided at the end to have Biryani which is a rice dish made with chicken and spices. Had our delicious dinner and after that roamed around the city for a while enjoying the nightlife of Goa and breathing in the smell of booze, seafood and cashew. Oh did I tell you that Goa is very famous for cashews? It is! If you ever go there, must try the very popular red cashew.
After our tiny tour, we thought why not have a party of our own! So we got ourselves loads of booze, got into one room, pushed aside the bed, fired up the speakers and partied. The entire night we danced and drank and danced and it just got happier and happier until we fell on the bed and slept.
And alas the final day arrives… Day 5(sighh)
In the morning the next day, which was also the day 5 of my journey, woke up with some serious headaches and nausea. Lemons saved me. We decided to chill in the pool. Relaxed for 2 to 3 hours in there with our swimsuits on. It was the last day of the trip so we hadn’t much planned. We just decided to go with the flow. We checked out of our hotel room. Stashed our luggage in the locker room at the hotel and went for some shopping. We shopped our hearts away at the Tibetan Market on Baga road and the Candolim market. Visited a few churches nearby including The Lady of the Immaculate Church.
Then in the afternoon, we went to Anjuna Beach, relaxed there and enjoyed the warm Sun and Coconut tree shade. Later we decided to go watch a movie as we didn’t have any place to unwind in the evening and because our train was at 12 in the night.
After that, we came to our hotel to change in the common washroom the hotel has and got our belongings. At about 10 our bus arrived which took us to the railway station.
It was a tad of weird luck that our train was 4 hours late. We sat at the railway station. Slept, crawled, laughed, cried, and just enjoyed our time sitting in an empty railway station in the middle of the night. I expected it to be absurd but surprisingly it was not that bad. I felt quite amazing sitting in that station so late in the night with all those people who 5 days ago I didn’t even know existed and now were so dear to me. It felt a different kind of adventure.
Going back home….
At 4 the train arrived and we hopped in. Hustled a little for our seats and then just drowsed off.
The train took sweet 35 hours to reach Delhi Nizamuddin Station. From there we all departed and the journey to Goa came to an end.
Tips: Carry a lot of cash with you. There are no digital payment methods used in Goa such as Paytm, Phonepay, Bhim etc.
Commute with a two-wheeler. Due to heavy tourism, there is constant traffic in Goa.
If someone offers you a coupon package with many water sports at a very low price, don’t take it. It’s not worth it.
Recommendations: Visit the butterfly beach in South Goa
Visit any beach at night to have a peaceful time.
Must try Kaju (Cashew) fenny.
Stay in a hotel/ hostel near any beach