North Goa Travel Guide & Hotels

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Travel Guide : Goa : North Goa

North Goa is a district of Goa with its head quarters located at Panaji which is also the capital of the state. Prior to 1987 there was a single district as Goa. But after getting the status of a separate state on 30th May 1987 Goa two districts were created for administrative purpose.

North Goa is surrounded by Ratnagiri and Kolhapur districts of Maharashtra state in the north and east respectively.

For administrative purposes this district has been divided into four sub-divisions namely Panaji, Mapusa, Bicholim, and Ponda, and six taluks namely, Bardez, Bicholim, Pernem, Ponda, Sattari and Tiswadi.

Places to see in North Goa

North Goa Beaches
Miramar
Miramar is at a distance of 3km from Panaji. Although it is the beach that is closest to the capital, it is not the most spectacular. But if you feel that a beach with a name straight out of Top Gun is worth trying out, then accommodation should not be a problem. A range of budget hotels and a youth hostel are available here.

Dona Paula
Baga beach
Sprinkled with palm trees and casuarina plantations, the beach of Dona Paula in North Goa is a peaceful stretch next to the little town and fishing village of Dona Paula. It is also a popular picnic spot. You can take a ferry from here to Vasco da Gama. Resorts with swimming pools and beach cottages are available in Dona Paula.

Vainguinim
The five-star deluxe hotel – Cidade de Goa, stands on the lovely Vainguinim Beach. Their USP is that their hotel is run by Goans, so they give you the complete Goan experience, coupled with all the five star frills.

Sinquerim and Candolim
The Sinquerim Beach in North Goa has a dramatic backdrop in the form of the 16th century Fort Aguada. Sinquerim and Candolim beaches in North Goa are both popular with backpackers, and tend to be a little more sober compared to the Calangute Beach. Built in 1612 by the Portuguese, the Fort Aguada is pretty much in ruins, but the view from the top of the fort as you look down to the mouth of the Mandovi River, is simply breathtaking.

Calangute and Baga
Ever since the 60’s, the flower children have not looked at another beach. They’ve headed straight for Calangute; their abode, their psychedelia, and their Mecca. God knows if they ever found their existential-or-otherwise, ‘meaning in life’ but in their quest to do so, some of them went too far for the local sensibilities. The result was police clampdowns, and other drastic measures taken to control the ‘bunch of hippies’ of the lost generation.

Though the beach is still pretty ‘active’ and the ‘Om Namah Shivai trance’ continues to linger; today, Calangute is a far cry from what it used to be. The shacks and palms have given way to a rapidly-growing, package-tourist market, rows of shops, guesthouses and other budget hotels. The tidy little fish market in town is worth a visit.

Baga formed a twin beach with Calangute, and therefore shares Calangute’s colourful past. Nestling close to the estuary, this beach has more character.

Anjuna Beach in North Goa
Anjuna Beach Anjuna Beach in North Goa is a stretch of straight sand, with a backdrop of feathery coconut groves. It’s a big favourite with backpackers and travellers staying on for a long time. Anjuna beach took the relay from Calangute, and became the next haven of the flower children. The beach still has an intoxicating atmosphere and draws a motley crowd of passover hippies, travellers, philosophers, thinkers, babacools, rastamen and musicians. It’s a great place to meet people and generally collect material for a thesis on human psychology. Anjuna is known for its flea market, held under the shady coconut groves, every Wednesday. You can pick up trinkets, get a tattoo, or just hang around to enjoy the crazy colourful atmosphere.

Chapora & Vagator North Goa Beach
The old Portuguese Chapora Fort stands on a hill which looks down on the tiny Chapora village, the estuary, the coconut groves and the beach. With their hidden sandy coves and creeks, Chapora and Vagator North Goa beach are easily amongst the most beautiful beaches in Goa. Besides the strip of the Little Vagator Beach , the North Goa beaches are quite peaceful, as they are not yet a major hub for travellers.

Arambol North Goa Beach
Arambol served as the rudimentary getaway for travellers from Anjuna Beach when Anjuna came under scrutiny of the police and the locals. Arambol North Goa Beach is a beautiful stretch of silky sand dotted with basalt rocks, and is still comparatively uncluttered. There is a freshwater lake and some sulphur springs, close by.

How to reach North Goa

By Air : Goa is well connected by flights to most major cities in India. All major flights, national and international, operate to and from the Goa Airport at Dabolim near the port town of Vasco-da-Gama, 30 kms from Panaji.

By Rail : Goa is connected with Mumbai, Delhi, Pune, Secunderabad, Tirupati via Londa junction on the Mirage-Bangalore sector of south central railway, and to Mumbai, and Mangalore on the Konkan Railway. Convenient stations are Margao/Vasco and Karmali.

By Road : Panaji, the capital of Goa, is connected by road to important towns/cities within the state and also to neighboring states. There are regular bus services from Panaji and Vasco da Gama to several important places in the state and also to the nearby states.

Shopping in North Goa

Goa is the land of tropical paradise. Every year almost thousands of foreign and domestic tourists pack their bags and head straight to Goa for unlimited fun. For every travelers visiting Goa the journey remains incomplete without spending quite an amount in shopping. Tourists pick up souvenir items to make their trip memorable and special. Shopping is a priority for every traveler visiting this magnificent paradise.
The excellent and unique local handicrafts of Goa are the most popular souvenir items and include brassware, terracotta, shell work, crochet, carved furniture, bamboo work, etc. These are readily available in the Government Emporia and also at shops and stalls near the popular tourist spots. Another item which every traveler would love to take home is a packet of salted, plain or masala cashew nuts, available at every market shops.

Many old Goan houses have been renovated and transformed into lifestyle fashion shops where variety types of dresses are available at reasonable prices. The dresses are colorful vibrant and boast latest cuts and designs.

The travelers also love to shop for traditional Goan items. Two of the most famous such market areas are Mapusa and Anjuna. The Friday Market at Mapusa, where stalls sell everything from curios and old coins to dried fish and spices. The Wednesday Market at Anjuna Beach started is an extremely lively spot where souvenirs, beachwear, trinkets and handicrafts are sold at bargain prices.

If money is not a problem for you then you can shop till you drop from the in-house Shops of deluxe hotels. The prices of clothes are quite high but they do not compromise with quality. A wide collection of clothes and interior decoration stuff is displayed in front of you to pick your choice.

Goa is a shopper's paradise. Wooden carvings, straw bamboo hats and coir mattresses are popular item which you can shop for staying at Goa.

Goa lends an ethnic Goan touch to every goods which makes it a stand out item. Goa shopping also means shopping for grand and rich glassware, bronze ware and furniture
Be it any time of shopping Goa offers Bargaining at its best. One has to be an expert in haggling prices to make your buy profitable and economical. Goa tourism generates a huge amount of revenue from this shopping spree. Thousands of foreign tourists buy the stuffs readily
Goa is well known for its wine called 'Fenny'. Other popular shopping items include colorful sarongs and cotton beachwear, colorful floral printed shirts, skirts and frocks. Embroidered bags, handicrafts made of beads, cheap and beautiful artifacts of paper mache, silver and junk jewelry, various types of cuisines, spices and woodwork are also picked up by the travelers.

Goa markets reflect a true picture of Goa's cosmopolitan and contemporary lifestyle.
Enjoy your shopping and be alert about the prices. Bargain your heart out and shop for every popular item.

GoaHub.com provides valuable information about Shopping in Goa and online booking for tours to Goa.

North Goa Weather

Goa weather in November, December, January, February & March:

Cooler months, best time to visit Goa. Rates will be very high during these months. Weather, Festivals & Night parties will make your holidays very enjoyable.
Goa weather in Mid-March, April, May, June:

Summer season - very hot. Heat will keep you away from beaches. Good for budget holidays.
Goa weather in June, July, August, September:

Rainy season - Goa can be at its most beautiful at this time of year. Parties and celebrations are held to welcome the rain.

 
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