Go! Go! Goa!
Ah, Goa! India’s favourite holiday destination and loved by people all over. At Skyscanner, we love Goa too, and that’s why we’ve created a number of guides on Goa over the years. But here are the best ones, so that you can find all your Goa information in one place. Whether you’re in Goa for business, on holiday, for shopping, or even to attend a festival, we’ve got you covered. Oh, wait. Before you start packing, refer to our guide on the things you must pack on your Goa trip.
Know about Best time to visit Goa.
Flights to Goa
The quickest way to reach Goa from other cities in India is to take a domestic flight into Mumbai, from which Goa is only a 45-minute flight away. All the leading domestic airlines offer cheap fares to Goa, based on when you travel. Moreover, most metros now offer direct Goa flights too. Depending on your travel dates, we can even help you to get flight price alerts when there is a change in ticket prices, so you can make an informed decision. See our simple explanation of using this tool here: https://www.skyscanner.co.in/news/secret-finding-cheapest-flights.
Dabolim Airport located in Vasco da Gama is Goa’s sole and diminutive airport, although it has been recently renovated to increase capacity and also been given a substantial makeover. It is situated right in the heart of the state and 29km south of Panaji.
Goa has a hot and humid climate for most of the year. Temperatures come down slightly in winter, and it is usually quite pleasant during the monsoons as well.
Best time to visit Goa
The best time to visit Goa is – really – anytime. But if you’re a beach lover, avoid the monsoon seasons since adventure activities are off-limits during that time. But if you love the rains and don’t mind the curb on beach activity, July to September is actually a great time to visit, when the rain Gods turn Goa into lush green heaven.
Getting around in Goa
From the airport, visitors can book a prepaid taxi from the arrival terminals. Taxis, as in many states in India, are cheap and plentiful. There is a rates board just outside the arrival halls to all popular destinations. We recommend booking a taxi from the government-approved counters just outside the airport gates. You can choose between the AC and Non-AC option. There are also buses available but the traffic can be a pain, especially after a flight!
There is a wide variety of transport that visitors can take when going around Goa. Rent a motorbike for a day or a week to explore this charming coastal city. Do remember to always wear a crash helmet. There are also cars that can be rented all over Goa. The best place to start inquiring for places to rent a car is at your hotel. Alternatively, flag down a taxi.
Places to visit in Goa
There’s so much to do here, from the gorgeous beaches with pristine waters, to the sumptuous restaurants serving the best seafood in the country, to the magnificent churches and historical structures that are nothing short of architectural marvels.
Begin the day exploring Se Cathedral, the largest church in Old Goa and in Asia. Be awestruck by this 76m tall cathedral built in 1952. The Golden Bell and the Chapel of the Cross of Miracles are two monuments worth seeing in the cathedral. The Church of St Francis of Assisi is a beautifully fading church filled with gilded and carved woodwork and murals depicting the life of St Francis. Be sure to visit the archaeological museum which houses a portrait gallery of Portuguese viceroys, a couple of bronze statues and fragments of Hindu temple sculptures.
Goa is a nature-lover’s paradise and is one of the best spots in South India for wildlife-watching, with an abundance of brilliant birdlife and a fine collection of flora and fauna. Explore the Cotiago Wildlife Sanctuary to scout for birds and beasts alike – but remember not to feed the macaques. Go on a tour with John’s Boat Tours in Candolim to explore the nature’s treasures. They offer both bird-watching boat trips along with sea-based dolphin tours and crocodile spotting trips up the Mandovi River.
Lastly, if you’ve been there, done that, then see our guide on the most unique things to do in Goa during the day!
Beaches in Goa
Indulge in extreme sea sports such as parasailing and jet skiing on the beaches of Baga, Benaulim and Colva, all extremely easy taxi rides away from the airport. The adventurous can try paragliding at Anjuna and Arambol where there are also ample opportunities for kite surfing. There are also numerous diving agencies offering PADI certifications in the Arabian Sea. However, if you’re looking to escape the crowds, check out our guide to 11 secret beaches in Goa!
For those who want a relaxing time, Goa is definitely the place to visit. Visitors would be able to immerse themselves in literally every form of relaxation. From Ashtanga through to Zen, every imaginable form of yoga, along with Reiki, Ayurvedic massage and an array of other spiritually oriented health regimens are practised in Goa. There are many retreat centres for meditation and yoga courses too.
Places to stay in Goa
Goa has plenty of accomodation options on offer for tourists with a wide variety of budgets, from beach resorts and hotels to homestays and villas. However, if you’re looking for exclusivity, check out our guide on the best private villas for your Goa holiday. Also, see our picks for unique hotels in Goa and Goa’s best eco resorts. If you’re travelling to Goa with your better half, here’s our list of the 9 most romantic retreats in Goa!
Favourite and popular Goan cuisine foods include fish curry with rice, pork dishes such as sorpotel, chaurico, xacuti, and vindaloo, vegetable stew khatkhate and variants of dosa and idli such as Amboli, Polle and Sannas. Bebinca is a dessert favourite, while Feni is the most popular alcoholic beverage in Goa. We have got a comprehensive guide to the best places in Goa to sample authentic Goan cuisine. Also, if you’re the sorts who loves their cocktails, we have a unique guide on the must-try wines, spirits, and cocktails on your Goa holiday. For an overall guide to the best restaurants in Goa, here are our recommended picks.
Culture in Goa
Goa is a unique blend of Konkani, Christian, Hindu and Portuguese cultures. Festivals such as Easter, Chavoth, Shigmo, Eid, Christmas, Diwali and the New Year and the famous Goan Carnival are celebrated with equal zeal and enthusiasm. Places such as the Ancestral Goa Village Setup, the Goa State Museum, and the Naval Aviation Museum showcase the culture of the state. If culture is what truly interests you, here’s our guide on the 9 ways to explore cultural Goa.
History and Architecture
Goa has two world heritage sites – the Basilica of Bom Jesus and the Old Goa convents and churches. Some notable architectural marvels include St. Cajetan Church, Shanta Durga Temple, Se Cathedral, and the many forts across Goa.
Shopping in Goa
The many flea markets in Goa (e.g. Mapusa Friday Market) are the best places to shop for summer clothes, hats, scarves, trinkets, souvenirs, footwear, and even alcohol. Here’s our guide to the best shopping markets that you must explore.
Goa is a popular destination for conferences, and a lot of corporates pick this destination for its beautiful, picture-perfect location. If you’re planning a business trip for your team/company, and need some ideas, fret not. Here are some of our suggestions to ensure perfect team bonding.
Whether it’s business, pleasure or just the love for Goa that brings you to this fantastic destination, ensure that you book your flights through Skyscanner. Download our award-winning app for the best prices.
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Airports near Goa
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