A long pending post that was waiting to be posted on to this space..
It was a holiday in 2014 to Candolim, North Goa that literally made sure that we lost track of time. We were two couples travelling with two kids and were hopeful of a holiday to remember especially with small children hovering around us.
Candolim is less than an hour’s journey by car from Vasco-da-gama railway station. We had reached around 7am by an overnight train journey from Bangalore and reached Candolim in about 50 minutes.
However we did notice that there are enough options of not just resorts, but guesthouses at Candolim where you can stay if there is enough planning made for the stay. After checking into the guest house, we had two reasons to directly go to the beach. There was a taxi driver’s strike and the temperature was rising. So it was wise to hit the waters before making any other plan.
Nevertheless post our inaugural breakfast session that was to commence our holiday, we decided to be on the beach for the next two hours. While the men and the kids jumped into the water, the women, that is myself and a fellow woman companion had a good glance at on the fashion quotient on the beach. Obviously we were overdressed for the beach. Thankfully even the local residents give you the comfort level attitude that it is fine with whatever you want to be dressed as to be at the beach.
During our earlier visits, we have had vegetarian cuisines but those were limited ones. This time again, we read the boards that prominently read sea food, but we were optimistic of accessing good vegetarian options. Rightfully we were not disappointed.
For a shopoholic, there are plenty of options to shop –goods that either would be useful during the stay or as a memento. Hats, caps, beachwear for all shapes and sizes, sarongs, skirts, shorts, tees, Indian brass gift items, kashmiri shawls, were some of the items that were seen across displayed at several stores along the main road. There are options of massage centres for those who wanted to de-stress through a massage.
Time flies, when you watch the sunset at the Candolim beach or at the Fort Aguada that is adjoining Sinquerim–Candolim beach. Walking along the pathway leading to the fort and the wall of the Taj at Fort Aguada during sunrise or sunset is a worth a visit. Make sure you take your digital tool to capture the picturesque scenes.
Something that struck us blatantly on our faces in Candolim was that there were several boards that were trying to lure customers to Ayurvedic massage centres, restaurants, but were written in English and Cyrillic, thanks to high Russian tourist population at Candolim.
Lastly like the earlier visits at Candolim, we were greeted by fellow International tourists who want to say a hello to you and smile at you even though you are a stranger. This gives the feel-good factor of being in a place that is a friendly destination. At the end of stay all of us had just one thing on our minds- Wish we could stay longer at Candolim to feel the leisurely Goan holiday much more.
List of suggested activities when in Candolim:
Soak yourself in the sun at Candolim like most of International tourists like to do it at Candolim. If you are not in favor of sun tan, you have the ready option of getting into relatively clean waters. The stretch is less populated and people are on their own so you can be assured of your own ‘me time’.
- If you do not mind on the budget go for at least one water sport like para-sailing, water bike ride or the banana ride on Candolim beach.
- Visit a restaurant that has a prominent beach view. It is sheer pleasure to look at the sea during late evening hours. Ideal for a romantic date or a family evening where the kids can have fun on the artificial sand dunes.
- Make sure you visit a restaurant that offers live band music. There are enough of such dining spots across Candolim beach and also at the by lanes joining the beach coast. You will get to listen to live music right from 7pm onwards with songs in English, Hindi and a few Goan numbers.
Lastly when in Candolim, discover a good holiday in India.
BY RESHMA KRISHNAMURTHY SHARMA