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Beaches of Goa


Goa's over 104 km. long coastline, is a sequence of beaches separated from one another by rocky headlands, bays and estuaries of rivers.

Mythology says that Goa was the celestial playground of the voluptous Gods. While Geomorphologists say Goan hills on the eastern side succumbed to the effect of erosion and fractured, while those on the western side stayed more or less stable. Between myth and science stands a glorious reality - 40 pollution free beaches. Though most of them are not safe for swimming and bathing they are very alluring for any sea loving person. Towards the north of Panaji are the most famous and popular beaches in Goa. These are Calangute and beach segment in the Bardeshi subdivision. In the Pernem subdivision are the delightfully primitive and untouched beaches of Keri,Anjuna,Arambol, Mandrem and Morji. Bardesh also treasures Chapora,Baga, Candolim,Bogmalo and Sinquerin beaches. One of the few rocky beaches in Goa, Quegdevelim is a shell collector's paradise. Little beaches of Tiswadi subdivision are both tranquil and well connected. In close proximity to the Mormugao harbor are the beaches of Caranzalem, Marvel, Dona Paula, Benaulim and Siridao. Dona Paula gives an excellent view of the Zuari estuary. A lovely beach close to the capital Panaji is being developed. This beach has golden sands to attract the sea loving people.

Sooner or later the coastal stretch between Goa and Mumbai is going to be the scene of much treasure hunting. At least 200 ships wrecked on the coast in the last two centuries alone. Though the voyage list of most of the ships are mysteriously laconic about the cargo on board, it is known that at least six ships carried treasure consisting of the nobel metals - the old terminology called silver and gold - and possibly gems and stones. The 200 ships must be worth a fortune in terms of sunken cash chests alone.

Some of the most famous beaches in Goa are:


Anjuna Beach :

Anjuna Beach



Anjuna beach attracts a weird and wonderful collection of overlanders, monks, defiant ex-hippies, gentle lunatics, artists, artisans, seers, searchers,sybarites and itinerant expatriates who normally wouldn't be seen out of the organic confines of their health-food emporia in San Francisco or London. It's famous throughout Goa for its Wednesday flea market, and has retained an undeniable, if somewhat shabby, charm. This is a good place to stick around for a while, make some friends and engage in mellow contemplation while the sun goes down. Full moon, when the infamous parties take place, is a particularly good time to be here if you want to indulge in bacchanalian delights. Only a Brit would think about raving about the main beach, but it's worth the walk to the small, protected sliver of sand at South Anjuna where the area's long-term house-renters tend to gather.


Arambol Beach :



Arambol Beach

Some years ago, when the screws were tightened at Anjuna in an attempt to control what local people regarded as the more outrageous activities (nudism and drug use) of a certain section of the traveling community, the die-hards cast around for a more sympathetic' beach. Arambol, north of Chapora, was one of those which they choose. Initially, only those willing to put up with very primitive conditions came here. Things are a little more comfortable these days, but development has, so far, been minimal. The village remains tranquil and friendly - just a few hundred locals, mostly fishing people, and a couple of hundred Western residents in the November to February high season. The coastline lacks the palm-fringed exotic clichés of the southern Goa beaches but it has plenty of character and is pretty in its own kind of way. The main beach has adequate bodysurfing and there are several attractive bays a short walk to the north. Beyond an idyllic, rocky-bottomed cove, the trail emerges to a board strip of soft white sand hemmed in on both sides by steep cliffs. Behind it, a small freshwater lake extends along the bottom of the valley into a thick jungle. Fed by boiling hot springs, the lake is lined with sulphurous mud, which, smeared over the body, dries to form a surreal, butter-coloured shell. The resident hippies swear it's good for you and spend much of the day tiptoeing naked around the shallow like refugees from some obscure tribal initiation ceremony - much to the amusement of Arambol's Indian visitors.

Bagmalo Beach :


Immediately south of the airport, the Mormugoa peninsula's sun-parched central plateau tumbles to a flat-bottomed valley lined with coconut trees and red-brick huts. The sandy beach at the end of the cove is even more picturesque. Pricey café-bars have crept up the beach, while the clearing below the hotel is prowled by assiduous Kashmiri handicraft vendors. The beach is clean and not too crowded, the water reasonably safe for swimming, and there are plenty of places to eat, drink and shop at Bogmalo .

Benaulim Beach :

According to Hindu mythology, Goa was created when the sage Shri Parasurama, Vishnu's sixth incarnation, fired an arrow into the sea from the top of the Western Ghats and ordered the waters to recede. The spot where the shaft fell to earth, known in Sanskrit as Banali and later corrupted by the Portuguese to Benaulim, lies in the centre of Colva Beach, 7km west of Margao. Only a decade ago, this fishing and rice farming village, scattered around the coconut groves and paddy fields between the main Colva-Mobor road and the dunes, had barely made it onto the backpackers' map.

Either side of the village's sand-blown beach front, the gently shelving sands shimmer away almost to the horizon, littered with photogenic wooden fishing boats that provide welcome shade if the walk from the palm trees to the sea gets too much.

Varca : Just 5 kms South of Benaulim and in a 10 km strip of Beach full of up-market resorts.

Cavelossim : Seven kms South of Varca and more developed.


Calangute Beach :

16kms from Panaji is the 7 kms. long 'queen of beaches'.Being a popular holiday resort, the small houses amidst the coconut groves behind the beach are always in constant demand.

Duna Paula Beach :

7 kms from Panaji near the rocky point between the Mandovi and the Zuari is a secluded bay with a fine view of the Marmagao harbour - an idyllic spot to relax and sunbathe.


Miramar Beach :

A lovely golden beach of soft sand girdled with palm trees - is almost part of Panaji. It is one of the most popular beaches.

Palolem Beach :


It is one of the most enchanting beaches in Goa and relatively deserted, with backdrop of Western ghats.

37 km from Margao.

Chapora :

Very interesting and beautiful part of the coastline of Goa. Coconut Palm Grooves. A rocky hill on whose top is an old Portuguese fort, but well preserved.

Vagator Beach :


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