Why You Should Visit (South) Goa!

In mid-February, I took a trip to the west coat of India with my best friend Leah, who is also taking some time in India during her gap year. We both travelled separately, me via bus, and her by train, and met in south Goa! Initially we chose the south over the popular touristy north because we heard it was less crowded, but it turns out there are so many reasons to visit south Goa, and here’s just a few!

Beach front accommodation.

After meeting up at Madgaon train station, we took a train to Canacona, where we got an auto to Palolem beach, where we spent our first night. We stayed at a beach hut that was just a 3 minute walk from the beach, and it was so cute and rustic. The next few nights were at Agonda beach, and we stayed at a guesthouse right on the beach. This meant we spent nearly every night sitting and taking in the waves until it was time to sleep. The best part was that it was only $20/night

The beaches are pristine. 

Since the south is less crowded, it has some of the cleanest beaches. Both Palolem and Agonda beaches overlooked beautiful cliff edges, and had huge stretches of yellow sand. They are lined with restaurants of every kind, leading to the next point…

TONS of vegan restaurants. 

The most amazing part about Goa was all the vegan restaurants and food. Leah’s a vegan and I’m a vegetarian, so we hit up a new spot for nearly every meal. It was a big hit for our wallets (though the food was way cheaper than it would’ve been in the US), but I know our stomachs appreciated all the smoothie bowls, pizza, and raw dishes. 

Great people!

In north Goa you’d find many young adults and hipsters, whereas in the south we found ourselves surrounded by retired couples and families. It was fantastic, and very relaxing. The downside is that because it is so touristic nearly everyone is a foreigner. Everyone there is aslo very spiritual and has a calm persona, so you can find tons of yoga classes around, people meditating (okay that was us), and there was even someone practicing tai chi to the sunset every night.

Hiking spots!

After a few days we were getting restless sitting by the beach all day, so we decided to take a little hike, which is a generous word. We were going to head to the secret Butterfly Beach, but instead navigated our way to Coca beach lookout, a scenic overlook on a cliff, and it is one of the most amazing sights I’ve seen to date. We trekked down to the beach after and swam, and due to the limited amount of free shade, we both got terribly sunburnt. 

The best part of the trip was all the beach time! Outside of swimming in perfect waves, we spent our time playing cards and painting with water colors on the beach which was beyond fun. We even got bored and painted our sandals (rainbow colors of course!) and the paint has stayed surprisingly resilient.

Overall we had an amazing time exploring Agonda and Palolem beaches with my best friend, and I definitely got a bit emotional leaving (or maybe I just had sand in my eye!). I know I’ll be back to south Goa as soon as I can to soak up some more sun!

With love,
Leonie

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