When my friend confirmed it, I never expected the trip to go this well considering this was planned just two weeks prior. But surprisingly, it was one of the trips which I loved all together. I would give some negative points to few travels and hotel but I realize it wasn’t that bad after all.
23-25th Jan : The start wasn’t that easy going. I had to do 2 night journey to and from Thiruvananthapuram to get my cousin’s DSLR Lens as mine was broken (Thanks Vani !) but that too was fun nevertheless, met few nice folks from xBhp there . So, Including those two nights, I had spent 7 nights of 9 on public transports. Speaking about transport, it was quite tiring to look at.
25-27th Jan : I started from my place on my bike to CBE then took ARC bus to Bangalore, met my friend and then to Mysore, a quick tour of Mysore palace, then straight to Goa on Seabird’s Volvo. By straight I mean literally ! Our driver didn’t believe in breaking, even for speed breakers (Rumblers, as you call it in Goa ) or two trucks in front, nor did he believe in a calm n quite journey. Probably thats why the German lady sweared at him after he refrained to switch off the Hindi movie even at 11PM. Thankfully we got seats at front on the onward journey (Please don’t bother asking about the return one on the same bus).
27th Jan : Reached Panjim, Loved the atmosphere. The moment we stepped down,
group swarm of people gathered to take us to places or hotels or get us a ride. We politely declined and went to Ginger, half a KM walk from the stop. We had reached few hours earlier so had to wait for 2 hours to get the room. Had an expensive buffet breakfast there. Finally to the room and I was sad, it wasn’t the same room I had in Ginger Chennai, this one didn’t have that big window wall or a view to talk about. To sum up, a cramped room which wasn’t doing any justice to the money spent.
We walked around the whole day realizing how out of place we looked in our jeans so got ourselves a pair of shorts, good looking sunglasses for my friend, noted down few eating joints. The guy at the rayban store, Pramod was kind enough to guide us to the Paradise cruise with a discount. By the evening, we were on the boat ( which earned me a badge on foursquare ) a fun side of Goa – cruise, dance and booze on water with a lovely night view of the water and the well lit boats. Though like anything in Goa, it is expensive, quoting 40% extra for all kinds of drinks.
28th Jan : Woke up, got ready went to lobby for breakfast turns out that the couple who paid 1000rs less than us get a free breakfast but nothing for us, fine ! Vada Pav it is Got ourselves a good looking ‘Honda Dio’ and off to Miramar Beach. Unlike anything I had seen, a clean beach with lovely sand.
My friend suggested we go to Old Goa, and set about on our Dio. Speaking of which, Goa seems to be in love with Honda Scooters, almost everybody there has a Dio. Also, Panjim seems to have almost nil Auto Rickshaws
The Convent of St Francis Of Assisi Cathedral & Basilica of Bom Jesus in Old Goa had many interesting architecture and antique Portuguese and church items on display. Good thing about Goa is they don’t charge you for the camera, provided that you don’t take pictures of people, Kerala should learn something from them. After the slow tour, we had to have some fun, Calangute seemed perfect. About 22km from Old Goa, lies the beach with all kinds of water sports. Got ourselves a sweet deal of 1.5k for all the rides including the very short spanned Parasailing. All of them were better than the last.
We headed to Fort Aguada / Jail, although nothing much see here in terms of architecture but the water view from here is astounding.
29th Jan : Simply wasted the day. Morning hours was spent at Dona Paula, but then I saw Vasco at the other end. May be the name was fascinating that I suggested to go there, a mistake. 40 + 40 km on Scooter under hot sun for a place which has nothing to show, except maybe the coal laden ships on the port. Got back tired, later took a stroll down the Panjim streets in the evening. I loved a small shop there “Chat Street” (I’m the FS mayor there now ). For restaurants, do try “Delhi Darbar” and “Sher-e-Panjab”.
30th Jan : The sad realization that the lovely holiday is coming to an end. Checked out of Ginger at 12 , stashed the luggage at the Paulo Travels and set off to Baga beach. This is when I realized I need to come to Goa again. Many more places to explore. It was very relaxing to sip a Pinacolada and Bloody Mary at one of the shacks.
Now, here I’m home planning my next trip there