India is not just all about temples, culture and heritage. This country also takes pride about their serene nature and beautiful beaches. One of the places in India that we were able to visit which has a numerous nice beaches to boast about is Goa.
Goa, with Panaji as the state’s capital, is located in West India. It is renowned for its world heritage architecture, places of worship and its beaches. The state is divided into two districts: North Goa and South Goa. Although, both districts seem to have equally nice beach sites, we have decided to visit the beaches in the northern part where the most popular destinations are situated.
The Bus Ride to Goa
There are numerous bus companies in Bangalore that caters bus trip to Goa with schedules from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM in an hour interval.
We booked our bus ticket in one of the travel agencies in Bangalore. Since we will be travelling during the night with travel time of almost 12 hours, we booked a sleeper coach which cost around Rs 800 per person.
The coach was nothing but the basic. There’s a curtain that separates each coaches which made it easier for us to fall into sleep.
The Paulo Travels bus picks up its passenger at their office in Race Course Road and drops off at Panjim nearby the Mandovi Bridge.
Arrival in Goa
At around 10:00 AM, we had finally arrived in our destination. While we were all still inside the bus, I noticed some taxi drivers are coming in to get passengers. One of them had approached us and offered his taxi. He even flashed a brochure which has ‘Paulo Travels’ name on it claiming that they are authorised taxi service of the bus company. We know that it wasn’t true but we still asked him for the taxi rate as I was already tired to look for another or to search for a public bus going to our guesthouse, which is located in Candolim.
He quoted us Rs 600 for the taxi ride from the drop off point in Panjim to Candolim. We then asked him how many minutes… and will it take that long for us to reach the place as he was asking for a huge price. The driver told us that it was far and they (yes they are three – one negotiated us and two drove us to our guesthouse) won’t be able to get passengers from our destination back to the city. Without further arguments, we then hopped into the regular taxi.
It didn’t take us that long to reach our destination; it was just about half an hour ride. We figured we had been fooled. The price that we paid seems too much for the ride but we didn’t complain anymore as we were so exhausted by then and getting into our guesthouse was such a relief for us already.
Staying in Candolim
We stayed in one of the guesthouses situated in the main road in Candolim.
The beach is about 10 minutes away from the main road taking the nearby alley from where we had stayed.
We planned to take a swim but the outrageous waves didn’t permit us. There were only few tourists around making it be more of a laid back part of this famous beach destination. There were no commercial buildings nor shops in the beach front and commercial activities in the beach aside from some water activities. Even the villages are quite spread out so there isn’t any centre to it.
Since we couldn’t able to take a swim nor dip in the shallow water, we’ve decided to take a walk to reach the end part of the coastline where a historical fort is situated.
Candolim beach is said the be one of the longest beaches in the state. The walk took us about an hour to reach a popular site situated in the end part of the coastline.
It was already nearing sunset when we had reached the fort. We planned to sneak in one of the resorts to get into the fort area easily but we were stopped by the resort personnel and was advised to take the shore to get to the fort area. I was so hesitant to take that way as it feels hard to pass through the boulders and waves crashing to the shore but there’s no any other option left so we walked through it as safely and quickly as possible.
The fort was said to be built by the Portuguese way back in 1612 for defence against the Dutch and the Maratha invaders. The fort also has a lighthouse overlooking the Arabian Sea.
We were left with few minutes to explore the fort area before the darkness strikes, so we roamed around the fort area and took photographs as fast as we can.
It was already dark when we had left the fort area. We didn’t walk along the shore anymore and had decided to take the main road to go back to our guesthouse.
The Crowded Calanguete Beach
It was late afternoon the next day when we had decided to explore the other end part of the long coastline where the beaches of Calangute and Baga are. From Candolim, we took a public bus going to Calangute Beach.
Calangute is a town situated in the northern coast of Goa. It is among the most popular tourist destinations in the state which is located 13 km from Panaji.
We reached the beach after a few minutes travel by bus. The town of Calangute seems to be an opposite of Candolim. It is crowded and streets are full of commercial buildings, shops and restaurants.
Candolim beach is also known as the queen of beaches in Goa but it is rather crowded nowadays.
In India, not only people walk along the shore but cows as well.
We walked the shore away from the crowded Calangute beach.
In about half an hour, we then reached another famous beach sites in the region – Baga beach. Baga is said to be an extension of the adjoining town of Calangute and nobody seems to be sure where one ends and the other begins.
The beach is moderately crowded in Baga. The place seems to be more relaxing to the eye compared to the previous crowded beach that we’ve been to.
You’ll see how happy and joyful the local people here. Just like anyone else, these people enjoys being in the beach and taking their to time to spend it most with family, friends and loved ones.
The shore also has numerous shacks that sell food and drinks.
With numerous bars and restaurants situated in the shore, it feels enjoyable to spend the late afternoon here; sipping a fresh smoothies while waiting for the sunset.
We left the area and went back to Calungete by taking a public bus.
We then looked for a restaurant to eat. After roaming around the town, we couldn’t find any restaurant appealing so we ended up having our dinner in KFC. After finishing our food, we immediately went back to our guesthouse by riding a moped.