North Goa or South Goa ???
The Eternal Dilemma
When planning a trip to Goa, the very first question you want to answer is whether you want to make North Goa your base, or South Goa. Just as you have North Goa die-hards, you will also find people who will swear by South Goa. . . only adding to your confusion. So. . . how do we go about answering this dilemma?
The first thing to think about is - what is your Goa trip all about? For some, Goa is all about partying and clubbing, for others its about hogging on sea food, for still others its just relaxing on a secluded beach and spending time with yourself. What is it that is beckoning you to Goa?
North Goa is characterized by beaches that are happening and throbbing with life, fun …. And parties! So if its extempore musical dos by the sea that you are looking for, if it is adrenaline-pumping water sports that are your thing, where mingling with the crowds eating grub on the countless shacks, North Goa is the place for you. Head to beaches like Vagator, Anjuna, Calangute, and Baga for your dose of fun and frolic.
On the other hand, if it is solitude you crave, if you just wish to reconnect with yourself, and want a peaceful, leisurely, calming holiday, South Goa beaches are the perfect place for it. You will find many beautiful, secluded beaches in South Goa, with their pure and pristine expanse of sea and sand, where you can allow yourself to let go of all your worries. So pick a book, your sun-shades and some sun-screen, and head out to these beautiful beaches in South Goa. Palolem Beach, Benaulim Beach, Majorda Beach offer you stunning views as well.
Seclusion V/s Crowds:
As mentioned earlier, if it is seclusion you crave for, South Goa is your thing. But if crowds, fun and clubbing are your thing, North Goa is the place for you. It has a number of nightclubs that operate till the wee hours, and you will find many fun loving, bohemian, like minded souls like you. Some of the best known clubs include Tito’s, Club Cabana, Curlies, and so on. Not to say that South Goa is lacking in its night fun; however, it is definitely quieter, and sleepier than its Northern counterpart. Also, the night clubs in South Goa tend to be more elite than the ones in North Goa.
If you love exploring sights and places of interest when you visit a new place, then North Goa offers you far more choice. Most of the old Portuguese structures, like the Basilica De Bom Jesus and Se Cathedral are located in North Goa, in what is known as ‘Old Goa’. Other tourist attractions like the Dona Paula, the river cruises, and Fort Aguada are also located in North Goa. Many of these are UNESCO heritage sights. South Goa offers more of natural beauty, dolphin sighting, wildlife sanctuaries and so forth.
Accommodation & Food:
South Goa has some of the best luxury hotels and you will be spoiled for choice. However, if it is budget accommodation that you are looking for, your options will be limited. North Goa, however, offers a variety of accommodation ranging from economy to luxury and you can take your pick.
Ditto with food options. In North Goa, you will find lip-smacking sea food at various homely, simple looking eateries at unbelievable prices. You also have your pick of high-end restaurants here. In South Goa, you will find a number of awesome gourmet restaurants (who hasn’t heard of Martin’s Corner??). If cheap food is what you are looking for, then head out to some of the beach shacks.
North Goa’s famous flea markets offer you cheap and stylish clothes, trinkets and jewelry. If bargaining is a skill you possess, you will enjoy shopping at the various street markets that dot the roads leading up to many of the North Goa beaches.
You will find flea markets in South Goa too, but the wares might be a tad bit more expensive here. You may also end up finding something exclusive. South Goa also has a number of beautiful boutiques selling fancy, chic clothing, so you might want to check these out.
So. . . if you are looking for the time of your life, a holiday filled with hanging out at clubs and beaches, letting your hair down and seeing all you can, head towards North Goa. If it’s a relatively quieter holiday that you are looking for, if you wish to pamper yourself, then South Goa is just the right prescription for you!