Goa is known for its beaches on the shores of the Arabian Sea. The coastline of soft white sand stretches to about 105 kms. There are so many beaches to visit, each with its unique character. Here are some of the favourites and our best.
- Vagator: Overlooked by steep red soil hills, this semi-circular shaped beach has become a favourite destination among tourists for parties. The beach is sub-divided by headland and the respective parts are known as ‘Big Vagator’ and ‘Little Vagator’. Big Vagator is lined up with dense palm plantations and glistening sand. At the end of Little Vagator, you can see a face sculpted on a rock. At walking distance, the 500 year old Portuguese fort of Chapora can be seen
- Miramar: Miramar in Portuguese means ‘View of the sea’. Lying on the bay of the Mandovi River, where it meets the Arabian Sea, the Miramar beach was originally known as the ‘Gaspar Dias Beach’. This is the closest beach to the state’s capital, Panjim. One will often see a mixed crowd of visitors and locals here as most people go there to hang out and watch beautiful sunsets.
- Anjuna: Made famous by the hippies in the 60s, is now trendy with the youngsters. Anjuna beach became widespread popular because of its trance parties when the hippies fused the spiritual traditions of the east and the west. These parties have attracted thousands of tourists and the gaiety continues until late night besides the fire. It is just the right place for party freaks. There is also an opportunity to take a bungee jump from an 80-feet tower for the thrill seekers!
- Arambol: Boasting both rocky and sandy areas, and set within a peaceful, serene and relaxed environment, this beach in North Goa attracts many tourists seeking stress-free time under the sun. It is excellent for swimming. A spring feeding a fresh water lake produces silt on the beach and many locals and tourists smear it on their bodies to exfoliate – so think of it as a natural spa!
- Calangute:One of the most popular beaches in Goa; subsequently it has been labelled as the ‘Queen of Beaches’. Calangute beach is a perfect tourist haven, with a horde of amenities that cater to the visitors; shacks and stalls under the shade of palm trees that sell everything ranging from fried prawns to beer, to adornments made of seashells. You can enjoy it all here!
- Morjim:Famous for the Olive Ridley sea turtles that come to nest here. The strong breeze that blows here is known as the ‘the turtle wind’ among locals. Morjim is by tradition a fishing village, where fishermen catch to feed their family and sell dry fish to be used as fertiliser for palm trees. It possesses some of the prettiest beaches and is home to Goa’s traditional folk dances – Godhe Modni (meaning Horse Gyrations) & Maddachem Godd (meaning Coconut Jaggery)
- Agonda: If you are looking for quiet moments, then this is place to be. Agonda beach is special because there are fewer visitors, relic stalls or eateries. Agonda offers an abode of scenic charm with trees, the beach, the beautiful ocean and you. The beach is long and deserted, with the palms outlining the peripheral and surrounded by a large hill to the south
- Palolem: Fondly known as the ‘Paradise Beach’, one of Palolem’s claim to fame is the blockbuster movie ‘Bourne Supremacy’ as shots of this film were taken here with the Western Ghats in the backdrop. Here one can reside in small huts, enjoying the simple way of living. The sandy beach provides privacy and pleasant scenery for those who truly want a break.
- Cavelossim: Bursting with soft white sands and speckled with black lava rocks, this beach is squeezed in between the Arabian Sea and River Sal. Cavelossim beach is much larger, unpolluted and quieter than most beaches in Goa. There are several beach shacks providing a variety of Goan dishes and seafood at reasonable rates. The River Sal flows just behind the beach and some shops around the beach or the river offer water sports as well as fishing trips, dolphin viewing or bird-watching. At the entrance of the River, one can see a lot of fishermen collecting oysters, mussels and clams from the river sludge during the low tide.