No. of Days: 10nights/11days
Day 1: Goa: Arrive in Goa and check into a hotel near Palolem beach, a drive of about 40 minutes from Madgaon. Palolem beach, often referred to as the paradise beach by tourists, is one of the most stunning of the beaches in the whole of Goa. The picturesque beach, lined with swaying coconut trees and white sand, is popular for its fishing trips and dolphin cruises.
Located close to Palolem is Patnem Beach. This is a little offbeat and much smaller than Palolem. But it is counted as one of the most beautiful for its location – nestled between two cliffs.
Have dinner at one of the eateries at Palolem. Overnight at the Palolem beach hotel.
Day 2: Old Goa: After a nice breakfast at the hotel embark on a tour of Old Goa, known for its Portugese houses and churches.
Have a look at Basilica of Bom Jesus, which was during the Portugese rule in Goa. The Church is known for its exquisite carvings and paintings and its awe inspiring architecture. The UNESCO World heritage listed site, Basilica of Bom Jesus is known for preserving the remains of St Francis.
Church of our Lady of Immaculate Conception, located right in the city square of Panjim, is another impressive structure you can explore. It is famous for having the second largest bell in the world. Later on, move over to Fontainhas for a special treat. Tucked away in Panjim, this old Portuguese neighborhood in Goa is adorned with brightly colored houses. Fontainhas has still retained its old colonial charm and you can admire the beauty of it wandering on the streets.
Have dinner at one of the several restaurants in Goa. Overnight at the Palolem beach hotel.
Day 3: Dudhsagar Falls: After an early breakfast start for the adrenaline pumping day trip of Dudhsagar Falls. This is one of the most gorgeous waterfalls of India, with water plummeting from a good 605 meters. The falls are some two hour drive from Margao.
There are jeeps and motorcycles with pilots available to take you on a trip to the Dudhsagar Falls. However, you can choose to trek up to the falls as well.
You can choose to enjoy some time at the Bhagwan Mahaveer Wildlife Sanctuary enjoying its rare treasures of the exotic flora and fauna species. You should also not miss the picturesque Devil’s Canyon.
Return to the hotel, have a nice dinner and retire to room for a comfortable overnight sleep.
Day 4: Colva Beach – Benaulim Beach – Varca Beach: Start after breakfast for South Goa to enjoy the beauties of some of the most stunning beaches of Goa.
Start with Colva Beach, a 25km stretch of fine white powdery sand is dotted with coconut trees. Quite popular with tourists, Colva Beach is lined up with a number of hotels, shacks, food stalls, small restaurants and pubs and bars. The beach has on offer sports activities like jet skiing, speed boat rides, and parasailing. You can also hire bicycles and go around the nearby villages.
Close to Colva beach is a little less frequented Benaulim Beach. The beach is marked for its white sand, loft coconut trees and azure waters. You can undertake dolphin cruises from here. Varca beach, just two kilometer from Benaulim Beach, is yet another magnificent beach one should visit on a tour to Goa. Mostly free of hawkers, Varca beach is good for relaxing in complete peace. You can see fisher folks at work and their thatched houses in the backdrop.
Have dinner at one of the restaurants. Overnight at your Plaolem based hotel.
Day 5: Keri Village: Head off, after breakfast, to Keri Village, located 8km from the centre of Ponda. The village, away from the hustle bustle of the city, is known for Ayurveda. You can get a good Ayurveda massage here.
Soak into the charm of rural life and enjoy the natural surrounding and soothing environment Keri Village has on offer for all its visitors.
Goa also has a suitable climate for spices and there are quite a few spice gardens like Sahakari Spice Farm around Ponda. You can have a tour of the spice gardens and also enjoy wonderful spicy lunch at plantations. You indulge in shopping some spices and also take part in elephant bathing, quite popular among the tourists.
Have dinner at one of the restaurants or at your hotel. Overnight at your hotel based in Palolem.
Day 6: Baga Beach: After breakfast head off to the beaches in North Goa which are very popular with the tourists. Visit Baga and Clangute beaches. Baga beach has some of the best water sports and fishing excursions on offer for the beach lovers.
There are some nice shacks around the beach. You can enjoy some delicious food here. Enjoy your drinks looking at the activities around. Sunset is quite a fun filled activity here. You can move on to Club Tito or Café Mambo and enjoy some nice dinner. If you are into dancing, you can definitely enjoy it at either of the two places.
Overnight at your hotel.
Day 7: Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary: Goa is not about beaches alone. You head off to enjoy birdwatching to Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary. One of the most popular bird sanctuaries, it is located on the Island of Chorao which lies along the river Mandovi. This is a very spectacular sanctuary where you will find around 400 species of local and migratory birds. The Sanctuary is also home to quite a few muggers – the Goan crocodiles. Another unusual inhabitant is the mudskipper – a mid-sized bulbous headed fish which actually skips through the mud at low tide.
There are quite a few mud and thatch houses and some exquisite Portuguese villas on the island. There is also a small village Church. You can choose to visit Divar Island also which, again, has some Portugese villas. During monsoon Bonderam festival is celebrated in Divar.
Return to the hotel, have dinner and retire to your room for a relaxed overnight sleep.
Day 8: Anjuna Beach: After breakfast start for Anjuna beach, probably the most popular beach of Goa. Anjuna, located south of another beautiful beach Vagator, is a gem offering all sorts of water sports to the visitors. There are some nice beach shacks on Anjuna beach for beach lovers. Visit the famous flea market where you can buy almost everthing – right from antiques, trinkets, local feni to Goan clothes.
Drive down to take a cruise on the Mandovi river. This is a serene and relaxing experience, where you get to enjoy the lovely views of the river and the lush green surroundings. The cruises are entertaining with local Goan dance and music.
Those who love parties and love to spend time in discos, pubs and bars, can return to Anjuna and enjoy these. There are some nice pubs and bars there. There are some nice restaurants in Anjuna as well. Enjoy your dinner.
Return to your hotel for a nice overnight sleep.
Day 9: Loutolim Village: A walking tour through Loutolim Village, which showcases Indo-Portuguese culture, is a unique experience. This village is located to the north of Margao city in the Salcette district of South Goa. Probably the most picturesque village of Goa, the village has the surreal Portuguese finishing to the architecture and preservation lasting years.
The biggest attraction of the Village is ‘The Big Foot’, India’s first open-air museum. This museum houses huge life-like sculptures, made of laterite stones, of Hindu Gods, Goddesses and prominent figures of Indian History. Some of the sculptures are as long as 14 meters.
In the Village you can see architecturally brilliant Portuguese-era villas alongside simple thatched mud huts and delightful red-bricked cottages. Loutolim is also home to a spice farm, a distillery, a restaurant, a local arts and craft gallery with an attached souvenir shop, an aviary and a medicinal spring. This is one rural area of Goa you must visit on your trip to Goa.
Have dinner once you return to the hotel and retire to your room for a comfortable sleep.
Day 10: Fort Aguada – Candolim Beach: After breakfast go for a tour to Fort Aguada located at Sinquerim beach overlooking the Arabian Sea. This is one of the most popular tourist destinations in North Goa. This Fort, built in 1612 by the Portuguese to shield themselves from the attacks of the Dutch and the Marathas, has appeared in so many movies in India. A fresh water source within the fort gave its name ‘Aguada’ which means ‘water’ in Portuguese language.
After the visit to Fort Aguada, pay a visit to Candolim beach. This is one of the loveliest beaches in Goa. One can indulge in sport activities like paragliding, parasailing, waterskiing, and wind surfing. Those who love fishing can also enjoy their time at Candolim. There are some beach shacks too and you can rejoice some drinks.
Day 11: Goa – onward destination: Have breakfast and check out from the hotel. Drive to the airport to catch the flight for your onward destination.