Monday, November 21, 2011

{ Goa's beaches: Indian Paradise on the Arabian Sea }

Shopping on the beach in Candolim - I love this photo - these women walk around like that all day!
One of my favorite photos!
Seriously, could this picture look much more perfect?

Parasailing over the Arabian Sea!

I love the women in sarees walking on the beach...

Oh, just enjoying my fresh lobster on the beach!
This is the high life haha...for a cheap American!

Indian women selling pineapples and coconuts on the beach to drink from!
India's paradise. 
India's smallest state by area.
Fourth smallest by population.
One of India's richest states.

A former Portuguese colony.
Because of the Portuguese influence, they have about 20% Christianity and only 60% Hindu in this state.
Goa lies on the western coast of India on the Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean. 
Goa is known for cashews and special goan (i.e. lots of different, varied spices!) seafood dishes.
The people love their "easy life" there (that's how they refer to it)!
Surrounded in gorgeous palm trees.
And relatively clean.
But only go from November to March or so...that's tourist season. Otherwise, it's too hot or too monsoon or...too dirty. Apparently, they start to clean up the beaches at the end of September after the monsoon season ends.
It's beautiful! 

We spent 5 days in Paradise!
Goa is split between the North and the South beaches - the North is a little more touristy and crowded while the South is most often described as paradisiacal. We only stayed at Candolim beach in the North, but I'll be back to further explore the south! :)
Shopping on the beach, unstoppable seafood, cheap massages, inexpensive watersports, dolphin spotting, starfish, seashells, etc. 
It is a very touristy state so, they catered to us. 
Our beach was full of older, white people in bikinis...just because I knew you were wondering. Only the cafe owners and the women servicing us were was nice to feel in our "comfort" zone for the first time in months... (haha) so nice!

We figured out that Goa is to Europeans what Hawaii is to works out! (But Goa is sooo much cheaper!)
We ate at the most incredible fine dining restaurant called I-95 - it was exquisite.

The water was a little salty and a *little* too warm (made me miss Cali beaches!) but it was still so so nice.

What more can I really say?
It was perfect, lots of down time and relaxing.

Enjoy some beautiful photos from our trip!

Candolim Beach. 
This adorable little girl helped us to arrange our waterspouts package! She's beautiful and works during the tourist season with her family on the beach and spends the rest of the year in school 6 hours away. 
Cow in the streets of Goa...dressed for money. 

Katie and Liz - photo fun on the beach!

Our guesthouse. 
This is the view from our hotel!
Our little guesthouse, right on the beach!
The walk out onto the beach! Literally took 2 minutes - perfect!
The perfect roaring waves.
Our delicate, peaceful beach.
The beautiful women, Aunties or Didis, selling jewelry and sarongs and dresses on the beach - we had too much fun shopping with them!

A boy that walks around with a tribal mask asking for money.
Effortless shopping on the beach - except when you run out of money!

Lots and lots of fabric. 
I was stuck shopping with them for over an hour! But I found some presents :)
Bracelets - I love the references...haha
First cheap, cheap hour-long massage. A little too nice!

We frequented this shack quite often...or the owner, sweet Celina, would bring us food and drinks on the beach :) Talk about spoiled! If we tried to get up they would say, "No, relax!"

Our Pina Coladas :)
King Prawns on the beach!
The beach lifeguard...he was pretty darn cute!

Laughed our heads off when we saw this.
Getting pedicures on the beach :)
Perfect evening. 

She was my favorite - beautiful! This is Sangita :)

I love me some Indian Sunset!

Fresh black henna and a manicure - all for about $6!
Playing in the night waves!

Fresh manicures! I'm the tannest...haha but they still call me Ms. India ;)

Roomies and best friends...I can't imagine living without these girls!!!
Love the beach!
Saw the full moon and I took this photo for someone special... :)
This was the morning we went out on the water for a dolphin spotting tour...
The river that runs from inland India to the Arabian Sea.

This is Jimmy's house...a really rich European can barely see it there in the background but it's huge!

Dolphins...we did see some jump during our time in Goa! 

We went riding on a scooter down the coast!

Shopping in Mapsa (about 30 minutes east from the beach, where cashews are grown!)...lots of salted fish = smelly!
And of course some baby bananas :)
Watermelon rind on the beach :)

And some yummy pineapple too!

Second massage!

Another didi, Sarah, or Lilitta, we call her :) The same name as one of our favorite widows!
Running on the beach... perfect.

We found a starfish.

Best friends...we sleep together.

Swimming at night...rather intimidating with the intense undertow and high tide! Big waves...and they look bigger without any light to guide us!
We watched fireworks from a wedding by our beachside cafe one night...and sweet little lights that trailed into the sky following the ceremony (reminded me of tangled!)

Morning run :)
Beach runs are some of my favorite.

Love the sarees and the colorful.

Beach shack.
How can you swim in a saree???
This is the busy crazy part of Candolim beach :) We lucked out - we had the perfect quiet location!

A night out fine dining...I-95. Started by two different couples from Mumbai...the food was incredible! Fun to dress up and get out!

My incredible dish of Earthy Mushrooms and Red Onion Risotto - divine...

We even called over the Chef and met her. She was so sweet! So impressed - highly recommended. 
Amazing atmosphere!!!
The next morning, we headed out for a little watersports! :)
Too excited...maybe a little nervous! Loved it!!!
First time parasailing - SO much fun!!!

Jet skiing on the Arabian Sea!

Tubing...we had fun of it :)

And a banana boat - we were on there with two other crazy russians and we toppled over so many times! The seawater clawed at my eyes! But it was worth it.
We made a quick visit to Old Goa one morning...good thing we left early because it got so hot!!!

Church of Our Lady in Goa's Capital, Panaji. I love the quaint European architecture!!! Feels a little closer to home. 
The road to Old Goa, the former capital of Goa in the 17th century...looks European, right?

This building is known as the Basilica of Bom Jesus - It holds the mortal remains of Saint is a UNESCO world heritage site!

I loved the street lined with palm trees! was too hot to walk back over and get a photo so I sufficed!

This is the Goa Archeological Society. 

Old church in Old Goa.

The ocean!
Lighthouse built in about 1615 - beautiful!

Sand mermaid!

This is the Marriott Hotel there in Goa...such a nice resort! And we saw a wedding - made us feel a little closer to Utah (where the hotels were started!)

Another amazing evening sunset.

Papaya slice on the beach! This was our favorite cafe right by our hotel :) 
This was one cafe owner's son...he's adorable! With the sweet little Indian lady that massaged me...she gave a good massage - she was so strong!
Last night of the trip...we got to see our last sunset at least! Amazing!

Goa was fantastic. We had a relaxing, fun week on the beach, saw many amazing sunsets, and by the time we left, we were starting to feel ready to return "home" to Delhi - it was perfect!!! I highly recommend a beach vacation there :)


  1. Oh Liz...I'm so wonderfully jealous. Goa is beautiful!!! :)

  2. Goa journey is quite mesmerizing and a dream journey for many. Thanks for sharing your trip! Photos are beautiful and I enjoyed the article from start to end. Often I wanted to visit this place, but still I've not got the right opportunity to explore the beauty of Goa. I like the massaging very much. If it remains cheap by the time I go there, I would definitely do it for several times a day. A feel of complete relaxation comes out after a long oil massage on my body.