Goa being the smallest state in India, is also a very special holiday destination. People like to visit Goa again and again, rather than just once. Goa offers natural beauty by way of its beaches, backwaters, hills and rivers. Besides this Goa also has a very special culture that is Indo-Portuguese and different from the rest of India. The people are also liberal or easygoing and tolerant of people from different cultures. This combination has made Goa a melting pot of diverse communities. This is what makes it an interesting destination to visit. To cater to to the growing visits by tourists year after year, Goa offers a wide choice of accommodation options as well. One can choose from High End Luxury Hotel properties to the more economical option of serviced villas and apartments like Goa Casitas
A Melting Pot of Cultures
Anywhere along the coastal state, you see foreign tourists from Russia and different countries from the former USSR like Ukraine, Belarus and other countries. There are many tourists from the UK, France, Germany, Sweden, and other European countries as well. From India, there are many tourists from metro cities like Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru but also from smaller towns in neighbouring states and beyond. Among the tradespeople, you will see tribal women from the Lamani tribe in Karnataka. They wear beautiful ornate headgear and colourful outfits with mirror work.
A Liberal Attitude
Although Goans and all Indians for that matter do not appreciate naked sun tanners, they don’t mind bathing suits . The locals do not stare at tourists, which might happen in other parts of India. Drinking is also more socially acceptable in Goa than other parts of the country. Even women drink along with the men without any taboos. Goans are also fond of music and dance, which has made it conducive to parties that tourists enjoy. That said, there’s much more to Goa than just drinking and partying on the beaches. Getting to know local Goan families and festivals, visiting museums and seeing heritage homes, are some of the enriching experiences one should seek out.
Goa has a strong Catholic tradition. This is because of the Portuguese colonization of the state. Thus you will see churches and chapels all over the coast. But there is an equal if not more Hindu population and there are many interesting festivals of both faiths that take place around the year. Several walking tours are offered by companies like Soul Traveling and Make It Happen. These are a really fun way to explore various villages around Goa and usually include history, culture and a food experience.
Watersports and Adventure Tourism
Among the coastal offerings, there are watersports like jet skis, banana boats, parasailing. Goa also offers eco dolphin trips. Here you can spot dolphins in a non-intrusive manner and also learn about them (offered by Terra Conscious). There is also surfing and classes available, and backwater boat rides and kayaking in the Chapora River and other locations. In the monsoon, one can go river rafting in Valpoi and trek to waterfalls like Dudhsagar and many others.
Learn While You Holiday
Goa has a vibrant community and there are lots of interesting workshops to develop one’s arts, crafts, culinary, language or other skills as well, so take a look at local Facebook groups to see what is being offered when you are planning to travel here. The live music, stand up comedy and night club culture are also among the best in India, let alone the extensive cuisines available as Goa is now one of the leading foodie hubs in India. For all these reasons, Goa makes for a unique holiday destination and if you stray off the beaten path, you will take home memories beyond your expectations.