South Goa, India

The border between North and South Goa runs along the mouth of the Zuari River. In the South there are no big crowds on the beaches, bustle, trance parties and hippie youth. Cows and dogs are also rare here. But there are 4 and 5 * hotels everywhere, expensive restaurants and all the infrastructure for a respectable and comfortable stay. The beaches are covered with light velvety sand, and not dark volcanic, as in the northern part of the state, their cleanliness is monitored more carefully. The contingent of vacationers is mostly elderly Europeans, there are few Russians.

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Prices in cafes, fruits and souvenirs in South Goa practically do not differ from North Goa. Housing, on average, is more expensive, but the class is higher. It makes sense to go here for families with children and lovers of a classic beach holiday. In South Goa, tourists are waiting for reference resort landscapes that delight the eye – snow-white sand dunes and emerald green palm trees, rows of umbrellas and sun loungers. By the way, all the beaches in Goa are municipal – you can walk or bike along the entire coast freely, there are no partitions.

Communication and Wi-Fi

In South Goa, it is more convenient to use local mobile communications – roaming of Russian operators in India is unreasonably expensive. All the same operators operate here as in North Goa, the three largest with the largest coverage area – Idea, Airtel, Vodafone. To buy a SIM card at the office of a mobile operator or one of the numerous travel offices, a tourist will need a photocopy of a passport with a visa. Activation of a SIM card issued in the name of a foreigner may take from 3 to 5 days. But in travel offices, tourists are offered the service of buying a SIM card issued in the name of a local – you need to pay extra about 100 INR on top. The cost of the starter kit starts from 700 INR(450 are on the account). Mobile Internet is connected and paid separately. In India, the 4G standard has not yet been developed, only 2G and 3G operate.

In South Goa, unlike North Goa, there are more four- and five-star hotels where Wi-Fi is provided free of charge throughout the territory (or, in any case, at the reception), and it is also available in European restaurants. In local cafes and shacks, Wi-Fi is mostly paid or not available at all. When renting a house or apartment, as a rule, you can have wired Internet at a cost of 3000 INR per month for a 2 Mbps channel.

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The beaches of South Goa

” Aguada ” (Aguada) – a well-groomed and well-equipped sandy beach, located under the walls of the ancient Portuguese fort Aguada. There are luxury hotels and the tourist village of Taj.

” Miramar ” (Miramar) is conveniently located just 3 km from the center of Panaji. The landscapes there are very beautiful, but swimming in the local waters is unsafe.

” Dona Paula ” (Dona Paula) – in the western part of the beach is the official residence of the Governor of Goa. This beach is considered a paradise for lovers and, by the way, got its name in honor of Dona Paula de Menezes, the daughter of the lieutenant governor, who, according to legend, threw herself off a cliff when she was separated from her beloved fisherman. One of the best sports clubs in Goa is open in Don Paula, where you can do literally any kind of water sports.

Bogmalo is located just 4 km from Dabolim Airport and 8 km from the port city of Vasco da Gama. This is a small bay with an equipped sandy beach surrounded by palm trees. There are many cafes and souvenir shops on the shore.

Majorda (Majorda) – a 30-kilometer strip of beaches, combining sections of the coast along 11 villages – from Velsao to Betalbatim. Between the villages there is a bus service along the coast. The beaches here are considered the best in the entire resort, and groves of palm trees and fruit trees descend to the sea everywhere.

Colva is the main tourist center in South Goa, although there are noticeably fewer tourists here than in the same Calangute. There are many relatively inexpensive hotels and restaurants that offer a good entertainment program in the evening.

The town of Benaulim is located less than 2 km from Colva, between the Sal River and the Arabian Sea. It is even more peaceful place than Colva.

According to Forbes magazine, Palolem Beach is one of the ten best beaches in the world.

Varca and Cavelossim (Varсa, Cavelossim) – a 10-kilometer strip of clean coastline south of Benaulim, which has become a beach of the highest category. At least half a dozen luxury hotels have been built here.

Mobor (Mobor) – a long sandy spit, formed at the confluence of the Sal River into the lagoon, surrounded on three sides by water. Beautiful islands, sand dunes, white lilies in ponds – all this makes Mobor unlike other parts of Goa. Luxurious white sands, like all beaches in India, are municipal property here – so do not pay too much attention to the amateur announcements of local hotels that some part of the coast is intended exclusively for their guests.

“Betul” (Betul) – the most inaccessible beach, where you need to get on a motor boat. But the local restaurants serve the largest and most delicious mussels in Goa.

” Palolem ” (Palolem) – one of the most distant beaches, tourism there began to develop relatively recently. The most popular local activities are fishing and trips to the place where dolphins play.

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Diving in South Goa

For those who love the beauty of the underwater world and practice scuba diving, there are several diving centers in South Goa: DiveGoa, Goa Diving and Barracuda Diving. A private instructor can be found on the recommendation in beach cafes. In the area of ​​​​the beaches of South Goa, for example, in Bogmalo Bay, you can admire not only coral reefs with their amazing fauna, but also look at sunken sailboats. Price for 2 dives (amateur level, without special training) plus equipment rental – from 5000 INR.

What to bring

If you are looking for good shopping with local flavor, then North Goa is for you. There are no Anjuna scale markets in South. Here, of course, there are separate souvenir shops, and the assortment in them is similar. Firstly, it is worth taking a closer look at the national Indian clothes – saris and harem pants look very beautiful and moderately exotic. Given the current fashion for everything Indian, you can appear in such an outfit not only at the carnival. Home textiles and beach covers – pareos embroidered with elephants or dyed with natural dyes “holi” will also be a wonderful gift and a reminder of the rest. Traditionally, leather bags and accessories are brought from Goa. Ayurvedic cosmetics, natural henna for mehendi tattoos, incense sticks cost a penny here. In souvenir shops you can find designer jewelry made of silver and bronze.

In the capital of the state, Panaji, there are boutiques and branded stores, the prices of which are pleasantly different from European ones. Again, the ability to bargain is welcome here – all sellers perceive communication with the buyer as an elegant game.

South Goa, India