35 Travel Tips: The Ultimate Guide to Goa, India

By Sunaina

Goa India Travel Guide

Do you want to go to the most beautiful place in India?

Well then let us help you have the best time you can have in Goa!

This Ultimate Guide is for people planning a trip to Goa. Learn about the top beaches, fun things to do and see, where to stay and when to visit Goa.

Find everything you need right here:

  1. Why people love Goa?
  2. Where is Goa?
  3. Top 10 Beaches in Goa
  4. 15 things to sightsee (that aren't beaches)
  5. 7 Best Goa Hotels & Resorts To Stay In
  6. What time of year to go to Goa
  7. How to get to Goa from Mumbai, New Delhi and more...

Why people love going to Goa

Goa lures travelers and tourists from every corner of the world. It is a complete holiday destination with gorgeous beaches, amazing hills, and lush jungles.

The beauty of Goa with its majestic waterfalls and swaying coconut palms will capture your heart forever.

The Churches and Convents of Goa have been declared world cultural heritage sites by the UNESCO. The architecture and culture here is a unique mix of Portuguese and Hindu Goan style.

Where is Goa?

Goa is the smallest state of India and situated towards the southwest of the country.

goa beach map

This unique holiday destination lures large numbers of domestic & international tourists every year. Visitors love the laid back lifestyle of Goa. Goa also happens to be the richest and most literate state of India.

Top 10 beaches to visit in Goa

It's not easy to pick and choose the leading beaches in Goa as there are so many. Here is our favorite list of the most stunning beaches in Goa:

  1. Mandrem beach

    mandrem beach pic

    Serene and secluded, Mandrem is counted among the most beautiful beaches in Asia. It is a favorite among honeymooners who simply laze around and go for a quiet swim in the clear waters. There are also plenty of eateries around this beach to enjoy local delicacies.

  2. Palolem Beach

    palolem beach pic

    Another scenic beach, Palolem is famous for its water sports activities and great eating joints. The beach in the extreme south Goa is getting crowded slowly but is still less occupied as compared to other beaches. It is covered with scenic rocks and islands off its shores.

  3. Agonda Beach

    agonda beach pic

    If you truly want to relax and catch up on your meditation, head towards Agonda Beach, which is one of the most serene and clean beaches in Asia. Catch up on your reading as you get more opportunities to enjoy solitude. Go dolphin spotting if you are looking for some fun activities.

  4. Baga Beach

    baga beach pic

    The serenity of Baga Beach will simply mesmerize you. Named after the Baga Creek, the beach looks as if it has come straight out of a painting. Have some great time here with your family and friends at those beach parties and enjoy the nightlife. Relish sumptuous seafood at its beach shacks.

  5. Candolim's beach

    candolim beach pic

    Located close to Baga, Candolim's beach is named among the most beautiful beaches in India. There are a large number of tourists here during the peak season. Tourists can enjoy feni - a local drink made from cashew.

  6. Benaulim Beach

    benaulim beach pic

    Head for Benaulim beach, if you just want to relax. Laze under the warm sun on the beach that is famous for fishing. Another excellent idea to perk up your vacation is to enjoy eating options and local grocery shops on the sea side.

  7. Cavelossim Beach

    cavelossim beach pic

    Cavelossim beach is lined by coconut groves and paddy fields. Placed at the mouth of Sal River, the beach gets a comparatively lesser crowd. Enjoy a pleasant evening at the delightful beach, amidst its contrasting white sand and black rocks.

  8. Majorda Beach

    majorda beach pic

    Majorda beach is sure to sweep you off your feet with its natural beauty. Those clear waters and soft white-sands lined with a canopy of palm trees add to the serenity and peaceful atmosphere. Regarded as one of the best-kept secrets of Goa, discover the paradise experience at Majorda.

  9. Vagator Beach

    vagator beach pic

    Vagator beach looks like a crescent and boasts of white sands that contrast with the black rocks and the lush greenery all around. The aquamarine waters of the Arabian Sea are sure to take your breath away. Spend some time on the cliffs or enjoy the famous Sunburn Festival.

  10. Miramar Beach

    miramar beach pic

    Miramar Beach is famous for its beautiful golden sands and mesmerizing blue seas. This is a kind of beach where you can enjoy the nature around or watch the sunset in its complete splendor. This is the ultimate beach if you are looking for the most exquisite experience.

15 things for Goa Sightseeing (that aren't beaches)

Goa's unique Portuguese heritage and mixed lifestyle makes for a lot to see and do. Let's go Goa sightseeing:

  1. The Island of Chorao

    The serenity of the Island of Chorao will keep you captivated. The major attractions here are the village, the birds, and the beautiful mangroves. Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary boasts of the 400 species of the colorful aviary. Take out your binoculars as you gaze at nature's bounty sitting in a boat. You can also spot mudskippers, crocodiles, and fiddler crabs. Take a ferry to this gorgeous island from Panaji.

  2. Divar Island

    divar island pic

    Divar Island is a must visit. Surrounded by paddy hills and woody hillocks are two villages. Piedade and Malar are villages where you can have a relaxing time and savor authentic Goan meals. Make a visit in August to enjoy the grandeur of festival of Bonderam. One can take a ferry from Panaji to reach Divar.

  3. A visit to Arambol

    arambol yoga pic

    This is a traditional fisherman village in northern Goa. It is known for its free centers for Yoga workshops and spiritual exploration classes. You can Learn Chakra Healing techniques, Tai Chi, Chi Kung (a gentle martial for self-discovery). You can easily reach the village by traveling on the local buses.

  4. The Butterfly Conservatory

    butterfly conservatory pic

    Get to know the most colorful fluttering things in the world! Watch butterflies flutter around you and feed them with juicy fruits. It's peaceful to stand and watch the butterflies gathering nectar cheerfully. The best time to visit the conservatory is during the morning in Ponda.

  5. The Spice Plantations

    spice plantations pic

    Walk through the aromatic plantations of Sahakar Spice Farm and Savoi plantations. Do not miss the chance to learn about various spices and enjoy the natural beauty. Walk through the famous plantations and feel the heady aroma all around you. The spice Plantation can be reached from Ponda.

  6. Catch the Crabs

    goa crab catching pic

    This is for you if you don't mind getting your hands dirty & aren't scared of a little snap. Just set traps for the crabs in the Goan backwaters with homemade nets called 'Kobblem'. Find a local in the village or search for different crab catching tours. Crab catching is part of the tours in backwaters between the Chorao and Divar islands.

  7. Dolphin sightseeing

    dolphin sightseeing pic

    Another wonderful thing to do in Goa is to watch the dolphins and play with them. Take the cruise from Fort Aguada, Sinquerim or Panaji Jetty. Brave ones take a dip in the sea and play with the dolphins. Make sure to adhere to safety guidelines of your guides. The best time and place to spot the dolphins is between October to May and in Varca, located in South Goa.

  8. The dark mysterious caves of Goa

    goa caves pic

    The surreal caves in Goa carry a great historic importance. The most important Goan caves are the Lamgau Caves, Arvalem Caves and Rivona Caves. Some of these caves are man made and thrilling to explore.

  9. Kayaking in backwaters

    goa kayaking pic

    Indulge in backwater kayaking on the different waterways of Goa. The most ideal places for kayaking are the Zuari River, Sal Backwaters, Mandovi River and Nerul River. Wear water repellent clothing during the rainy season to avoid slippage.

  10. Snorkeling

    goa snorkeling pic

    Swim underwater using a snorkel which carries a tube for breathing and a diving mask. The best spot for snorkeling is Bogmalo Beach. Enjoy snorkeling with lobsters, fish schools, and corals.

  11. The TambdiSurla Temple

    temple pic

    TambdiSurla Temple was built in the 12th century and is devoted to Lord Shiva. The beautiful shrine is composed of garbagriha and antarala. There is a Nandi mandapa made of basalt. The temple is about 13 km away from the Bolcornem Village.

  12. Tambdi Waterfalls

    tambdi falls pic

    The majestic Tambdi Waterfalls is another major tourist destination. Enjoy the beautiful nature that surrounds these spectacular waterfalls. The falls can be reached by a long winding road about 65 kilometers from Panaji.

  13. Dudhsagar Falls

    dudhsagar waterfalls pic

    Dudhsagar Falls are the largest waterfalls in Goa. They are about about 10 km upstream from Collem village situated high up on the Mandovi River. The spot is a popular destination for hiking and trekking. Take a train to Londa junction and then a local bus or taxi to reach the falls.

  14. Enjoy luxury yachting

    goa yacht pic

    Rent a luxury yacht in Goa to explore the charming shorelines and have more fun. Add to the party life and upbeat vibe of Goa as you yacht across the excellence of the open Arabian Sea. Explore the enticing city of Pa and antique lighthouses.

  15. Anjuna's flea market

    arjuna flea market pic

    Get ready for an unparalleled Goan experience in the Anjuna's flea market. The market was created by hippies three decades ago. Find pairs of Levi jeans and handmade jewelry at the weekly Wednesday flea market. The market remains open form 8 AM - 6 PM and is about 5 kms from Baga Bea.

Top 7 Goa Hotels & Resorts to stay in

We picked some great hotels and resorts you shoudl try. Obviously, we recommend you check out our MakeMyTrip, Cleartrip or Yatra pages to save a little extra on your bookings. Here's our top listed hotels:

  1. Radisson Blue

    radisson blue goa pic

    The Radisson Blue luxury resort is located in the heart of Cavelossim and offers a full-service spa and an outdoor pool, and two restaurants. Enjoy the facilities of bar, lounge health club and a coffee shop.

  2. Park Hyatt

    park hyatt goa pic

    Placed near the pristine Arossim Beach, the 5-star Park Hyatt beach resort provides you scenic views of the Arabian Sea. Enjoy walking in the maintained lawns or swim in large swimming pool.

  3. Baywatch Resort

    baywatch resort goa pic

    Baywatch Resort is situated along the Colva Beach. The 4-star leisure resort boasts of comfortable and spacious rooms plus ample recreational facilities such as swimming pool, fitness center, and spa. If you are a sports enthusiast, then you can find your share of water sports activities on every beach such as windsurfing, parasailing or you can simply enjoy swimming. You can also get your mind, body and soul relaxed with a rejuvenating massage at one of the massage centers or a place by the beach side.

  4. Riva Resort

    Located near Mandrem Beach, the resort offers you some grand views of sparkling waters and sandy beaches. Enjoy cuisine made of freshly grown vegetables and local cosines.h4

  5. The Dona Sylvia Resort

    dona sylvia resort goa pic

    Located near the pristine Cavelossim Beach. Dona Sylvia Resort is nestled among acres of lush greenery. Positively one of the most beautiful resorts in Goa.

  6. Whispering Palms Beach Resort

    whispering palms beach resort goa pic

    Located near Candolim beach. The Whispering Palms Beach Resort caters to all your needs with its comfy air-conditioned rooms. Facilities include a swimming pool and fitness center.h4

  7. Majorda Beach Resort

    majorda beach resort goa pic

    The luxurious ambiance of Majorda Beach Resort is hard to match. Enjoy spectacular views of the Majorda Beach from its room spread across the lush green acres. Enjoy international class amenities and facilities.

When should you go to Goa?

The best time to tour Goa is between November - March. This is the time when Goa weather is clear and beautiful, with soft, cool sea breezes blowing through.

Avoid Goa in summers when the temperature is sizzling hot and can cross 40 Degrees C.

Goa gets even more beautiful during the rains from June - September. This time is excellent for the rain lovers. However, the perfect weather to enjoy Goa is during winters.

What's the best way to travel to Goa from...

Need to know the best flight, bus and train options to get to Goa from your home? Check out our Redbus page to save on your bus ticket. Here you go:

Mumbai to Goa

  • Mumbai flights to Goa: Direct flights about Rs. 2693 and takes ~ 1 hr 10 min.
  • Mumbai trains to Goa: Fastest train is about Rs. 1540 and take ~ 13 hrs.
  • Mumbai buses to Goa: Fastest bus ride is about Rs. 1000 and take 11 hrs 45 min.

New Delhi to Goa

  • New Delhi flights to Goa: Direct flights about Rs. 3388 and takes ~ 2 hrs 30 min.
  • New Delhi trains to Goa: Fastest train is about Rs. 2970 and take ~ 34 hrs.

Bangalore to Goa

  • Bangalore flights to Goa: Direct flights about Rs. 3030 and takes ~ 1 hr 15 min.
  • Bangalore trains to Goa: Fastest train is about Rs. 1405 and take ~ 18 hrs.
  • Bangalore buses to Goa: Fastest bus ride is about Rs. 850 and take 11 hrs 30 min.

Hyderabad to Goa

  • Hyderabad flights to Goa: Direct flights about Rs. 4714 and takes ~ 1 hr 15 min.
  • Hyderabad trains to Goa: Fastest train is about Rs. 1605 and take ~ 19 hrs.
  • Hyderabad buses to Goa: Fastest bus ride is about Rs. 1100 and take 13 hrs.

Pune to Goa

  • Pune flights to Goa: Direct flights about Rs. 4377 and takes ~ 1 hr 10 min.
  • Pune trains to Goa: Fastest train is about Rs. 1300 and take ~ 17 hrs.
  • Pune buses to Goa: Fastest bus ride is about Rs. 999 and take 9 hrs.

Chennai to Goa

  • Chennai flights to Goa: Direct flights about Rs. 5589 and takes ~ 1 hr 50 min.
  • Chennai buses to Goa: Fastest bus ride is about Rs. 1300 and take 19 hrs 30 min.

Jaipur to Goa

  • Jaipur flights to Goa: Connecting flights about Rs. 8755 and take ~ 4 hrs 10 min.

In conclusion, we hope you have a great trip to Goa. Hopefully we help you find something new that you want to do!