Destination: Goa, North
Number of days spent: 5 (including travel days)
Accompanied by: colleagues, 8 of them.
Please fasten your seat belts said the sweet voice of the beautiful air hostess. The feeling that we are about to rise high and suspend in air for a about 2 hours 35 mins gave me a little chill like usual but the feeling that I am hitting the paradise of beaches and greenery gave me such pleasure. The plane took off in a nitrous mode and I was immersed in the thoughts of how am I gonna spend my much awaited trip of the decades ‘GOA’.
Evening rain welcomed us all in Goa, at first I found it difficult to breath may be my lungs are not used to such clean, fresh filtered air. The drive from the airport to the hotel was good 1.5 hours inspite of being super tired and a sleeper that I am I couldn’t close my eyes to the breathtaking view that just kept me hooked on. Our hotel was small but welcoming, and right in the middle of the hustled Candolim beach road. Without wasting much time as we were hungry like we haven’t had food in ages we straight went to the Fisherman’s Cove .the food was heaven, Unknowingly I tried Calamary, it was good, and the Goan fish curry is a must have.
With the pool under-maintenance our focus turned to playing poker in our hotel room and dancing to the tunes of our mobile phone. Luckily I had my book to read.
Spoiler alert: If you don’t have the swimming pool operational in the hotel you checked into, you might have to go looking for another hotel.
Day 2: Woke up to watch the sunrise from the Candolim beach but to our surprise clouds spoiled all fun. Back in the hotel post breakfast, we had nothing much to do thanks to the pool not working, and the sun was shining hot and bright in the day. Danced and drank beer in our room and took a short nap. The evening we hired a taxi and left for Fort Aguada, the rain kissed fort had more greens than brown. The view of the sea was mind blowing from the top of the fort. Few photo ops and we were on our way back to our hotel. The evening was fun with music and dance and drinks… went out hunting for food again and without realising we were back to Fisherman’s cove still, I think it’s in the name “Fish” calling !! This is where I tried what I never tried before “Crab” took me a lot of courage to dig into it and later lot of patience to finish it through, damn it’s so tasty but the amount of labour it takes to finish it made me swear never to eat again. Swimming pool failed us yet!
Spoiler alert: When you travel will with people who get stuck for what is not available at that time.
Day 3: Look out for a hotel, with a swimming pool in working order. By midday, we moved into another hotel in Baga, quite a vast property with individual villas with 16 rooms in each. What my colleagues liked about the hotel was the “swimming pool”, and I was in love with the greenery, all kinds, all shades, fresh and washed by the rain. As my colleagues jumped into the pool like floating hippopotamuses, I went out looking for food, found my place in the Baga Deck ordered one whole baby kingfish with fries and a glass of LIT (Long Island Ice tea)… took me a while to finish the entire fish, with the amount spent I could have even gulped down the bones. I was full to the neck, and I walked back to our hotel with my earplugs on for some beautiful music. My colleagues were still floating in the pool, I clicked few photographs for them and went up to rest had to get ready for the Casino – Grand Royal Cassino, a must visit if you are in Goa is what everyone said. I was feeling quite sick by the evening but managed to get out still dressed up in anticipation of what the casino holds inside. It was quite a drive in the night, rain wet roads; we managed to reach by 1030pm, there were all kinds of the genre going in. We went fetched in a ferry to the casino, the ship in front was well lit and huge, three decks one. The first floor was the casino; I realised for the first time how mad people get gambling, then we went up to the second floor where there were food, drinks and dance. I couldn’t enjoy or eat anything thanks to the baby kingfish I stuffed myself in the evening. I came out to get some breath, and then we returned to our hotel late at night.
Spoiler alert: you need to either go early or have a good jack for parking. general parking is too far
You never eat a full baby king-fish all by yourself; you will fall sick
Day 4: I was not up to waking up as I had an upset stomach and felt uneasy from last night. We had a late breakfast, and I returned to my room to rest. My roommate went out with the other two colleagues of ours to see the Portuguese city. Rest of the ones became hippopotamus again, and they remained so for the rest of the day. I had idli sambhar at Navtara restaurant for lunch which was ten minutes walking distance from our hotel, and it was quite lovely. The evening we all went to Baga beach, parked on the other end of the beach and we had to walk through the beach to the other end to reach Britos a nice restaurant/shack. After that, we walked up to Titos restaurant one of the best and must visit a nightclub, free entry for ladies and free drinks. Their restaurant was lively too with a live band, dance and Goan dance performances and football fever were on. Had excellent dinner and enjoyed watching the band perform.
Spoiler alert: Titos disc gets too crowded and stuffy after a while, and the free drinks don’t give you any kick.
The shacks are not fun, and the sheets are down when it rains.
Day 5: morning we had a quick breakfast, packed our luggage and checkout out, two of us were returning home on a 6.50pm flight. Left hotel with our luggage to another beautiful location named Thalassa only to know that it opens only at 4 pm. Such a disappointment but the view around was terrific, and you would want to stay on for a while. We drove back to Candolim beach and had lunch at Fisherman’s Cove, this place seems to call us back every time. Could not resist ordering Goan fish curry and mutton curry. Went to newton store next door to buy some souvenirs to bring back home and some wine and Cashew nuts. It started raining again quite heavily making the drive back to the hotel quite lovely and worth it.
The trip came to an end even before I realised..or maybe I was so engrossed in it that I didn’t realise that time was running ahead. Those barefoot walk on the beaches, the not so still yet calm sea will be missed. Goa gave me so much peace inside, it helped me relate to nature, and while walking towards the aircraft I made a promise to visit again and I will.
Spoiler alert: mutton curry tastes the same as any other dish, with a tangy and fishy tint to it.