Catching the overnight train to Goa this evening. Can anyone recommend somewhere nice and chilled to base myself for few days/weeks (a beach and a few bars but nothing too crazy, other travellers but not too developed...!?).
My plan right now is to head down to the southern beaches, maybe Colva but not sure, as I say just want to chill for a bit so any suggestions would be great (my guide book is very vague), thanks.
Hmmm, I was in Goa last christmas. I didn't think Colva was all that great. The good thing about it is that it is largely undeveloped, but if you are looking for backpacker action...well, there isn't (or wasn't) any. There are a few low key hotels there though.... My favourite place was Palolem. Stunning beach and fairly chilled. If you head north of the beach, right near the end, there is a great guest house called Cozy Nook. There was quite a few backpackers there and the huts are very atmospheric. The north end of the beach is less touristy and more relaxed, yet there are still plenty of options towards the middle for eating and drinking. Hope this helps a little!
hi tommy . . colva is cool...so is benaulim . . <2 kms from colva
south beaches are usually less crowded than the north . . but if its sex drugs n rock'n'roll then its north
i usually land up in the south.....Bogmalo is a nice SMALL beach...its 8kms from Vasco.
however, if just land up there...am not sure on u getting a room at this time...usually everything is packed...but u could try ur luck.
theres a few i know called Joets, Sarita's & coconut grove something like tht...usually are booked way in advance .. n this time rates are not any cheaper..try ur luck tho
Colva i believe there would be more places to stay...GTDC colva cottages.. sea pearl hotel. .. . hotel colmar ..these are a few from my old guide.
n at benaulim...xavier's bar . . rosario's inn..liteos' guesthouse
n goa rocks.
Thanks for the responses guys, in case anyone out there was following this, I'll post a quick reply with some further information. Having spent 7 days in Colva, I would say that it's quite touristy in terms of the general atmosphere, and from the people I've spoken to it seems that the majority are here on their annual vacations (therefore lots of couples, some families). The town itself is a little bit tatty, and there's not a huge amount to see, but if it's a chilled out time on the beach you want with a few drinks in the evening etc etc then it's quite cool (been really lucky with my accommodation, right on the beach, one of four huts).
As Clare says, there's no backpacker scene and those I have met are staying for one or maybe two nights tops, and then heading on through (down to Palolem mainly or back up North, think that's where I'll be heading, thanks for the info on places to stay Clare).
Checked out Benaulim for a day, a bigger town but less developed on the beach front, basically both places are very similar in their touristy feel and if you're staying in one, the other is only a short walk down the road.
So yeah, anyway, as I say if you want a beach and somewhere to chill for a few days, then both places are okay (at the moment at least, the season is only just starting and a lot of beach bars are still being built) but if it's culture and a backpacker scene that you're after, I wouldn't come here (lacking an Indian feel, could be one of many beachy places in Europe).
Anyway hope this is of interest to someone out there...!
thats a neat synopsis of the 2 u visited... on your thought abt Goa not having an indian feel is true to a certain extent...cause it has a heavy purtuguese influence as it was one of the states ruled by them..n also as any other touristy spot as it tries to cater to the west...it tends to lose its originality.. tho i wouldn't say its lost it...
Do head towards Palolem. People are chatty and friendly. I did 3 weeks in Goa & Karnataka and only had one evening on my own - I did go mid Dec to early Jan though.
At that time Palolem was crazy but it will be pretty low key when you get there. If it's too happening for you, walk a little further on and stay on Patnam beach - just around the corner. This place was very special to me. I always think Groove Armada when this place comes to mind. Be careful if you go swimming at Patnam - like don't do it there as it has a crazy un-expected under tow there. Stick to swimming on Palolem.
I stayed at Flavia's which is more or less in the middle of the beach and in a quiet spot. Nothing special but the compound was very, very sociable.
I also heard that Agonda beach was low key and cool but didn't make it up there.
Well do enjoy all the roast fish and keema rice.
Enjoy and just witness the most stunning sunsets - possibly the best in the world.
Yep ended up staying for about 3 and a half weeks in Palolem, was great, very tough to leave indeed...!
Anyway that was about a month ago now, but yeah you're spot on in your description...very easy to meet people, some great beaches either side (went to Agonda for a day, quiet but beautiful) and as you say, the sunsets were really stunning (one of the key points in every day).
Well I just thought I would add that for anyone heading down there for xmas and new year, have a great time...!