AsiaIndia

Beaches and Bungalows in Goa, India

Goa Travel Blog

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Sunset on Palolem Beach in Goa, India

Goa is just what the doctor ordered!!! I have been traveling through India for almost two months and I NEED TO CHILL OUT.  I just need to be away from a city - away from the dirty hustle.  Trains, buses, hotels, rickshaws and taxis, PLEASE go away.  I need some peace and some alone time.  THAT has never sounded so nice.  

And Goa delivered.  It could NOT have been any better timing for me.  For those of you who don't know, Goa is the smallest of India's 28 states - spanning 200km along the west coast of south India.  Portuguese merchants first landed in Goa in the 15th century, annexing it soon after. The Portuguese colony existed for about 450 years (one of the longest held colonial possessions in the world), until it was taken over by India in 1961.

Sunset swim in Goa
  The mixture of south India and Portugal couldn't be sweeter.

As you can see from my photos, I finally shaved my face (leaving a little 'stache), took off my shirt, through my shoes in storage and chilled on the beach for a week.  I lived in a bamboo hut and slept on a mosquito netted-bed.  My bathroom was outside and consisted of a hole in the ground and a bucket full of water.  Believe it or not, it was ideal!!

Leading up to my time in Goa, EVERYONE warned me that this place was going to be a huge drug-infested-alcohol-drinking-college-party-town. Obviously those people have never been to Goa.  Our paradise only had one bar open past midnight.  I think they were talking about a tourist beach area about 3 hours north.  Our paradise was called Palolem Beach which is at the southern tip of Goa.

My bamboo bungalow hut for a week!
  It  consisted of a small row of temporary bamboo huts built on stilts and crammed between the ocean and a vast coconut forest.  This would NOT be a good place for a Tsunami.  Everyone who stayed here had their own little "hut" on the beach.  It felt like a dreamland.  The temperature was around 85*.  I spent the days reading, writing and relaxing.  We collected an amazing group of friends as you can see from the photos:  Kamilla, Wenche, Gabriel and Idun from Sweden - Pier and Rita from Italy - Melanie from Canada - and several more.  The local Indian people could not have been any kinder to us.  Each time we chose to chill at a restaurant, they seemed genuinely honored that 'their' restaurant was selected.
Gone with the beard. So, why not sport a 'stache!
   We became locals at Rendez-Vous restaurant where drinks started to flow for free and a comfortable feeling of being "local" actually started to exist.

There was yoga on the beach.  There were boat trips to explore.  There were obnoxiously gorgeous sunsets.  There was delicious and fresh fish!  Yes - fish!  I actually ate something besides vegetables, thali and dal (for the first time in India, well, except for the desert chicken and goat).  Yes - I ate fresh fish! 

We rented scooters to explore the coast.  We swam in remote beaches and coves.  We stayed up LATE into the night making friends from around the world.  And somehow India started to grow on me - right as I'm about to leave.....  Is this truely India - or is it a dreamland??  Yes, Goa is India.

Sunset on Palolem Beach in Goa, India
  And, so I think I know where I'd settle if....... 

So - Goa is amazing.  But, I'm not sure someone flying directly to Goa for a 7-day holiday will have the same extraordinary pleasure as someone who has drudged through the intensity of 2 months on the road in India.  So, if you plan to visit Goa, make sure it is NOT first on your itinerary.  It should be something you work for.  Only then will you enjoy it more than any other beach time in your life. 

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Sunset on Palolem Beach in Goa, In…
Sunset on Palolem Beach in Goa, I…
Sunset swim in Goa
Sunset swim in Goa
My bamboo bungalow hut for a week!
My bamboo bungalow hut for a week!
Gone with the beard.  So, why not …
Gone with the beard. So, why not…
Sunset on Palolem Beach in Goa, In…
Sunset on Palolem Beach in Goa, I…
Palolem Beach
Palolem Beach
Celebrating the second night of Ha…
Celebrating the second night of H…
Bearded and hairy
Bearded and hairy
Seconds before shaving it off.....
Seconds before shaving it off.....
Pineapple on the beach...
Pineapple on the beach...
Palolem Beach, Goa
Palolem Beach, Goa
Sunset soccer on the sand
Sunset soccer on the sand
Sporting a stache!
Sporting a 'stache!
Sunset in Goa
Sunset in Goa
Sunset in Goa
Sunset in Goa
My Canadians, Swedes and Italians!
My Canadians, Swedes and Italians!
My bed!
My bed!
Our kidnapped Swede.
Our kidnapped Swede.
Pier from Milan and Wenche from St…
Pier from Milan and Wenche from S…
Swedish Wenche!
Swedish Wenche!
Sporting a stache....
Sporting a 'stache....
That cant be safe.
That can't be safe.
Melanie playing the flute.
Melanie playing the flute.
Still sporting the stache.
Still sporting the 'stache.
Learning how to play Bonsuri flute.
Learning how to play Bonsuri flute.
The boys of Rendez-Vous.
The boys of Rendez-Vous.
Swedes are cool.
Swedes are cool.
low tide.
low tide.
from my seat at the Internet Cafe.…
from my seat at the Internet Cafe…
Sunset - again.
Sunset - again.
Sunset on Palolem Beach in Goa.
Sunset on Palolem Beach in Goa.
Our International crew!
Our International crew!
Why not?
Why not?
Scooters in Goa.
Scooters in Goa.
Jason and Idun.
Jason and Idun.
Swedish Kamilla and Wenche!
Swedish Kamilla and Wenche!
Sunset in Goa
Sunset in Goa
Sunset in Goa
Sunset in Goa
Bamboo huts on Palolem Beach in Go…
Bamboo huts on Palolem Beach in G…
My second hospital visit!!!
My second hospital visit!!!
Sunset in Goa
Sunset in Goa