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TRAVEL GUIDE- GOA! Must-Know Things Before You Visit

Heads Up is our new series of ‘What to Expect’ when you’re visiting India. It will give you a Heads Up on what to do to ensure your trip is hassle free! The list ( things to do in goa ) will also help you make the most of your time here.

Read on the find out ‘What To Know’ before visiting the Pearl of the Orient- Goa.

1. The Transport

Best way to ride in Goa
Two Wheeler -The Best way to ride in Goa

When In Goa, your best travel companion will be a two wheeler. The buses are not very well connected and neither are cabs easily available. So your only option is to hire two wheelers and ride across Goa. With great weather (most of the times) your rides will be enjoyable with scenic beauty on either side. During rainy seasons, which may not be the best time to visit Goa anyway, it may get a bit troublesome to ride. Be careful about speeding limits when the weather isn’t great, other than that, you’re good to go!

Heads Up! If your accommodation is far away from the airport or bus stop you will have no choice to take a cab. The cabs don’t run on meters and hence the cabbie will quote you an unreasonably high price. That, unfortunately, is normal. Try to negotiate and reduce the price by a few hundred rupees. If he budges you’re lucky, if he doesn’t, it’s alright as all your other rides should be relatively cheaper!

2. What North Goa Offers

Baga Beach North Goa
Baga Beach North Goa

You will have very different experiences of Goa depending on where you choose to stay on your visit. If your accommodation is Baga, Anjuna, Calangute Vagator, Candolim or in and around these areas- you’re in North Goa. North Goa is known for its nightlife, fine dining restaurants and fun beach activities. Basically, if you want to party your heart out, North Goa is the place to be!

Heads Up! North Goa is crowded as most people come to this part of the state on vacation so if you’re looking for a quiet and serene getaway, we recommend finding a place in South or Central Goa.

3. What South Goa Offers

Park Hyatt- South Goa
Park Hyatt- South Goa

South Goa is known for its picturesque, clean and white sand beaches! The road lesser travelled in Goa are the roads to South Goa and which is why if you’re looking for a quiet place to spend time with a loved one, you should visit South Goa!

Heads Up! The beaches are not very crowded and hence is misunderstood as being okay with going topless. But mind you, topless beaches might exist in every other county in the world but not in Goa! Over the top PDA is also looked down upon and you might just get yourself in trouble for ‘public indecency’ if you tread on these lines!

4. Shopping in Goa

Shops in Goa
Shops in Goa

Wherever you’re staying and wherever you choose to go, you are bound to cross small scale shops that sell the typical pants and tops that are worn by people of Goa. They have been commercialised so much that now more than Goans, you will see tourist sporting these clothes. Hippie pants, tops (or kurtas) and bags are some items that sell the most around Goa.

HeadsUp! There is one shirt which is sold in ALL shops which says “I <3 Goa”. It is the most clichéd shirt and mind you, the locals DO NOT appreciate people wearing this shirt. You might just get ridiculed for wearing the shirt so just try to pick up some other prints of your liking and you should be fine!

Also Read: Top #7 Things To See In Chennai

5. Beach activities in Goa

beach activities in goa

Goa being a coastal state, has numerous beaches, each known for its specialty. Beaches such as Baga and Calangute are specially known for the water sport facilities available there. Some activities include parasailing, banana boat, speed boating, water skiing, water zorbing and a lot more!

HeadsUp! Don’t get your hopes too high with the activities you could do. While many beach shacks promise these activities, not all of them actually have them functioning. We recommend getting in touch with friends who have visited Goa and enquiring about reliable beaches that they went to for water sports; you unfortunately can’t always trust the internet!

6. The Drinking Rules

Beer on the Beach-Goa Style
Beer on the Beach-Goa Style

Goa is known for its unimaginably reasonable alcohol prices. You can have a ball without burning a hole in your pocket and Goa happens to be one of the few states in India where such phenomena is possible. You will find many MRP shops; and the alcohol rates in restaurants are reasonably priced as well.

HeadsUp! While the rates are low, the rules are still strictly followed in Goa. Make sure you don’t drink and drive- with cabs being scarce, your travel is something you will need to plan beforehand so you don’t find yourself in a sticky situation.

7. Offbeat Goa Activities

Mandovi River Cruise
Mandovi River Cruise

By now you’ve figured that Goa is known for its beaches, nightlife, sightseeing and a whole lot of fun! But Goa is much more than just that. There are a bunch of other fun activities like the Mandovi River Cruise, island hopping, playing with dolphins or exploring ancient caves. Choose the adventure most appealing to you and make sure you try out some non-clichéd things at Goa as well!

HeadsUp! Do your research. Don’t head off to exotic places before checking with localites. Engage in casual conversations with fellow travellers, restaurant owners or your hotel/ accommodation owners. They’re bound to give you reliable information keeping the then circumstances in mind.

So looks like you have almost everything covered! Remember these little notes on What To Know while visiting Bangalore and you will be just fine. There will always be some unexpected occurrences on your trip, embrace them too- everything becomes a memory in the end!

Hope the Goa travel guide was helpful and would prepare you for the trip better. Read more Travel guides about other places in India on Yeh Hai India.

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