Goa beyond the beach

Sun. Sand. Late nights. Lazy days. Tattoos. Phirangs.  Beach. Alcohol. Yoga. Shack.

Some of the images that come instantly to mind when we think of Goa. I don’t have a count of the number of times I have been to Goa. Friends and family say its our vacation Mecca!:) But each time we have just done what it is famous for – the Sun, sand, water, food, late night parties and lazy days. But this time we went a little beyond the beach. Not saying that the beach was not there in the whole one week vacation.. It was but only for a couple of days. The rest of the time we explored the cities and mainly the capital city – Panjim.

Riding through the narrow quaint lanes of the old city. Walking along blue, yellow, orange homes; turning a corner and getting lost in the narrow lanes. Stopping to admire a small lamp post or a name plate done in traditional pottery.

Panjim has charms hidden all over. It started with the drive along river Mandovi to Shan’s home. It was evening and the sun was just about to set. We stopped and that was when I fell for the city :). Next day we went to explore Fontainhas – the older part of the city still living in its Portuguese heritage. Homes decorated with beautiful pottery and bright colours. You would love to lose way in their lanes and it’s made easier to lose way by the numerous one ways in the region :). I wanted to click pictures of all the name plates which were actually done in blue pottery. Turning a corner, you would see a small homely café or a small yet very expensive boutique!

Goa, Panjim, Fontainhas, Goa sans the beach, exploring Goa beyond the beaches

The bright and colourful Fontainhas

Then we went to Suna Paranta- Goa center of arts. It’s situated on a hill – altinho. The roads in the area are flanked with trees on both sides and the bungalows all have beautiful maintained gardens. Again an area I would like to lose my way in :). There was an exhibition going on in the gallery by an artist, Trisha. what I found amazing in her art was how she had used words in her art pieces.

exploring Goa beyond the beach, Goa sans the beach, Panjim, Sunaparanta

Exploring the art gallery in Sunaparanta

After clicking a lot of pictures in the gallery we went for lunch in Cafe Bodega, in Suna Paranta. It’s a small cafe with seating all along the corridor with an open quadrangle and a big tree right in one corner of the quadrangle :). The menu is not extensive but sufficient – sandwiches and pizzas for the big hunger; quiches and pies for small and baby and big cupcake for the sweet hunger :).

exploring Goa beyond the beach, Goa sans the beach, Fontaihas, Panjim, Sunaparanta, Goa center for arts, Cafe Bodega

Enjoying a quiet afternoon at Cafe Bodega in Sunaparanta

Next day we also did some no-beach but still touristy stuff – a drive down to the south Goa very early in the morning to visit the church. We went early morning to beat the tourist crowd, but the early morning fog was so beautiful and added to the whole experience of visiting the Basilica of Bom Jesus.

exploring Goa beyond the beach, Goa sans the beach, Goa, Basilica of Bom Jesus

Basilica of Bom Jesus in early morning fog

While the beach is amazing, I loved exploring this other facet of Goa – quaint and beautiful. Do try to soak in some of this beauty as well on your next trip to beautiful Goa!

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Categories: Travel | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “Goa beyond the beach

  1. this side of Goa looks good too 🙂 I will keep in mind for my next trip 🙂

  2. Your pictures are beautiful..

  3. Thanks Madhu and Neha! 🙂

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