Goa although being the smallest state of India is among the most beautiful places in India. The beaches of Goa are popular among domestic as well as international tourists. Whereas the Churches of Goa are designated among the World Heritages Sites. Goa can broadly be divided into North Goa and South Goa for the convenience of exploring it from the tourist point of view. North Goa is famous for its happening beaches and night life, whereas South Goa is known for its peace and tranquility. In this article we will be exploring the less explored southern part of Goa.
What’s so special about South Goa?
South Goa has one of the best places to see in Goa. South Goa has one of the most serene and beautiful beaches of Goa. The crowd free beaches are clean and inviting. On the first day we reached Palolem Beach which is considered as the most popular in south Goa. We checked in the beach side resort and were happy that we were so close to the sea. All the beaches of south Goa have accommodation options right on the beach and one can drop on the sand any time of the day if you decide to stay at the beach resorts. All sorts of budget options are available to check in. Cafes and restaurants are also decent. Palolem has a small market to look for the quick bites and beach shopping.
On Day 1 we explored Palolem Beach and the adjoining market and in the evening experienced beautiful sunset. Unlike beaches of North Goa, to experience the sunset at Palolem, you have to walk down towards the right side of the beach and reach a point near the small hillocks and you will come across one of the most beautiful sunset off your life. Its a peculiar location and its very beautiful with rocks in the foreground. Also you have to get back to the beach before the high tide which may make your journey Back somewhat adventurous. We were a little late and had to cross the half a meter deep rivulet, which was fun anyway.
On Day 2 we planned a day trip to a very beautiful beach, the butterfly beach. There were two options to reach this place, one was to take a boat from Palolem Beach and the other was by driving couple of kilometres towards agonda beach and follow a small 2 kilometre trek. We took the road less travelled and opted for a much adventurous route of trekking through the jungle. After having breakfast in Palolem, we started our drive towards Agonda Road and after few kilometres found a left turn showing the way towards the butterfly beach. After a small drive reached a parking place. The parking fee was Rs.100/. We parked the vehicle and took out our bags and started the trek. It was a simple 2 kilometre trek through the jungle. As we walked across the bushy trek suddenly got the initial glimpses of the place through the bushes. The first glimpse of the place will give you that vow feeling. We reached the sandy beach and settled down near the rocks, took off the clothes and immediately jumped into the crystal clear water of the ocean. Its the Arabian Sea! The turquoise water and the blue sky was a perfect feeling of the heaven on earth. We saw small motor boats coming towards us, these were the tourists who opted for the boat ride from palolem beach to reach this place.
We had fun swimming for couple of hours and were in no mood to come out. But our empty stomachs made us come out. It is therefore recommended to carry the picnic stuff and the snacks and drinks with you when you visit this place. There are no shops or cafes here which is a good thing for the sake of cleanliness at this place. We changed the clothes and started our trek back towards the place we had parked our car. We saw people coming in groups and there was a group of tourists in 4×4 jeep. We came to know that there are agencies who arrange for such safari trips. Anyway, we reached the parking and got back to Palolem in 10 minute drive. Had lunch and took an afternoon nap. In the evening we came out of the beach resort which was right on the beach and strolled for some time watching the kayaks on the beach. We knew, we wanted to try kayaking now. So negotiated with the boat man who seated us in the boat and pushed us into the sea. In the beginning I was quite apprehensive but later experienced that it was quite simple and enjoyable. Within the first few minutes me and my 9 year old son got the idea of roving that kayak. We enjoyed it for an hour before heading for another glimpse of the beautiful sunset at Palolem.
On Day 3 we planned to visit Agonda Beach which was on the way towards our route back to North Goa. It was few kilometres from Palolem. Agonda is a small beautiful village and the beach is very small yet quite beautiful especially in the evening. There is not much activity here as compared to Palolem and the cafes and restaurants are quite decent here. One such place was LA DOLCE VITA PIZZERIA, run by an old Italian couple and we had such a fantastic dinner at their place in the evening.
Like Palolem, Agonda also has quite a good options of beach accommodations and the place is small to be covered by walking through the lazy streets. Many cafes are there on the side of the road leading to the beach. Overall its a small quiet village with all modern amenities available for the tourists from all parts of the world.
So if you are planning to visit south Goa in the near future, I would recommend that you plan for at least three days so as to feel the real vibrations of the place. Some related essential information has been shared below for your convenience. Thanks for reading this article. Do share your comments regarding this article and any queries if any.
South Goa is less crowded and more clean than the North Goa. If you like less crowded places and serene beaches, then this is the place to be. You will definately be mesmerized by the sheer beauty of the place.
How to reach south goa
- South Goa can be reached from Madgaon by local bus or a hired cab. It is 35-40 kilometres from Madgaon railway station and kilometres from the Dabolim Airport. It is 75 kilometres from Panjim and 85-90 kilometres from popular beaches of North Goa.
Things to do in South Goa
- Things to do and places to visit – Patnem Beach, palolem Beach, Butterfly Beach, Agonda Beach, Cabo de Rama Fort.
- Adventure Activities – Kayaking, trekking to butterfly beach, boat rides, sunbathing, swimming in the sea etc.
- Souvenirs and shopping – Beach dresses, Hats, sea shell products, wood and coconut handicrafts.
- Cafes hopping
Best Place to Stay in South Goa
Goa is such a beautiful place that you can stay anywhere in Goa. There are whole lot of options from high end to budget homestays and you can easily book them online. You can pick the right one for you by going through pictures on the popular sites.
Best time to visit South Goa
High Season: 24th December- 2nd Jan
Low Season: April – September
Season: October – March
Local Transport – Choose what you like
You have lot of options from hiring the bicycle to hiring scooty, Bike and even Car from the local market for which you just have to carry valid driving licence and a valid ID to deposit with the service provider. Auto Rickshaws are available and in Goa Bike Taxis are common which are way convenient to solo budget travellers and economical too.
Itinerary we followed
Day 1: Patnem Beach, Palolem Beach ( don’t miss the sunset on Palolem Beach)
Day 2: Butterfly beach day trip ( it is recommended to go on foot and explore the not so difficult trek and the amazing views at the end of the jungle.
Day 3: Agonda Beach and Cabo de Rama Fort