The beach capital Goa is divided into two subdivisions namely North Goa and South Goa. Both these districts of Goa are multifaceted and bestowed with distinct landscapes and experiences for the travelers. The main regions that fall under North Goa are Ilhas, Bardez, Pernem, Bicholim, Ponda and Sattari. All these places of North Goa are basically about fun and merrymaking. Also known as the party hub of Goa, North Goa is where travelers can expect an ultimate Goan trance that can be witnessed in its crowded beaches, amazing nightlife, thrilling activities, funky markets and mind blowing culinary experience. From pub hopping to meeting the crowd, this district is always buzzed with tourists from around the globe. You can visit this side of the country to experience the vibrant culture and lifestyle of Goa.
North Goa receives maximum footfall between mid-November to mid-February as it is the peak season here. During this time, both domestic and international tourists visit Goa in large numbers due to amazing weather. Also, various festivals like Sunburn etc are hosted here during this season which are also a major attraction of Goa tourism.
History of North Goa
Going back to the history of the district, North Goa was primarily a part of the Sawantwadi kingdom of Marathas. Until 1783, it remained the territory of Marathas and Hindus. Later the foreign invaders, mainly Britishers and Portuguese came to India and started capturing these kingdoms. In the 18th century, North Goa was captured by the Portuguese and remained their undisputed colony till 1961.
On 30th May 1987 after the formal annexation by the Union of India, Goa was recognized as a state with two districts namely North Goa and South Goa. Even if Goa comes under Indian territory, there are still traces of Portuguese colonization that reflect in the architecture, food, festivals, lifestyle and culture of this place.
Best Places to Visit in North Goa
Brimming with excitement, there are plenty of things to do in North Goa that make your vacation memorable. Check out the list of beautiful places!
One of the best and most crowded beaches in Goa, Baga Beach is the top attraction of North Goa. Famous for water sports activities, this beach is where you can enjoy various thrilling activities like parasailing, banana boat ride, jet skiing etc. Also, the beach is dotted with shacks and a huge market which attracts many tourists.
2. Vagator Beach
Boasting the cracked rock surroundings, the beach offers a breathtaking view that attracts a large number of visitors. Vagator beach has a flea market, number of shacks and enthralling red cliffs that make it worth a visit. Apart from this, the beach is also famous for hosting a number of music festivals that are marked by music aficionados from across the globe.
Nestled in the Aravalli hills, Anjuna beach is yet another attraction of North Goa where you can explore the gorgeous view of this pristine coastline fringed with palm trees. It is a small village in North Goa which is best known for villas and homestays. Apart from grabbing an ethereal view of sunset at Anjuna beach, tourists also get a chance to participate in the trance parties that happen frequently on the beach.
Also known as the queen of beaches by a large number of tourists, the beach is a hub of water sports/activities such as parasailing, water surfing, jet skiing, and banana rides. One can also explore the handicraft showrooms from Indonesia, Tibet, and Kashmir that are lined up alongside the main road on the beach.
5. Sinquerim Beach
The most frequently visited beach by adventure lovers is Sinquerim. It offers you the best opportunities to indulge in and enjoy water sports in Goa. Water sport activities like scuba diving, water- skiing, windsurfing, etc are extremely popular here. Apart from that, a number of historical forts built by the Portuguese are other major attractions around this beach.
6. Casino Palm
From nightclubs to casinos, Goa has everything to spoil you. Casino Palms is one of the most visited and popular casinos of Goa where you can definitely try your luck. A large number of tourists visit this casino to have their dose of fun. Win or lose, you definitely partake in fun-filled memories from here.
Flea markets in Goa are extremely popular and gratifying and Anjuna Market tops the chart. This weekly flea market is a major tourist attraction in North Goa. Tourists can buy t-shirts, bags, dresses, shoes, hats, glares etc. at great prices from the market. Apart from the utility stuff, the market also features exquisite handmade jewelry, statement pieces of art, and sculptures made by knack artisans.
How To Reach North Goa
North Goa is truly an unforgettable tourist destination to explore in India. This coastal region is well connected to all parts of the world through airways and to the rest of the country via railways and roadways. Here is how you can travel to Goa by the following means of transportation.
Dabolim airport is the nearest airport to reach North Goa. It operates in a military base namely INS Hansa. One has to cover a distance of approx. 35km to reach North Goa via taxi or a bus after deboarding at the airport. The airport receives direct domestic and international flights from multiple destinations, hence booking flights would not be a problem.
Distance from Dabolim Airport. 35 km
Here is a list of Indian cities from where flights are available to North Goa
Madgaon and Vasco da Gama are the nearest railway stations to reach North Goa. The train route will be an opportunity to enjoy the surreal views of the adjoining states and villages en route Goa. These stations connect many Indian cities with North Goa in particular. Once you deboard at the station, you will need to cover the remaining distance by some means of public transportation.
Distance from Madgaon Railway Station. 38 km
Distance from Vasco da Gama Railway Station. 27 km
Goa is well-connected by motorable roads and national highways. You can travel by inter-state tourist buses which will be the cheapest option of traveling to North Goa. You can also consider hiring a cab or self-drive as per your convenience and budget.
A. The main areas that fall under North Goa are Ilhas, Bardez, Pernem, Bicholim, Ponda and Sattari.
Q. Which is more expensive, North Goa or South Goa?
A. South Goa is more expensive in terms of accommodation and food. North Goa in comparison is much cheaper as there are plenty of budget hotels and eateries which brings down the budget in total.
Q. Is north or south Goa better?
A. Both North Goa and South Goa have distinct features. If you are looking for fun and parties then North Goa is better and if you are looking for a quieter vacation then South Goa should be your choice.
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