A holiday to Goa – Read a customers diary

Once you have been on a holiday to Goa the majority of people return year after year. This is certainly true of one of our customers who always send us a copy of their Goa holiday diary so that we can publish it on our travel blog. If you are a regular to Goa or thinking of going on holdiay to Goa for the first time the diary makes fascinating reading. The diary of a holdiay to Goa is published below. Hope you enjoy it.

This was our 12th visit.  I will give a quick report on our impressions. 

Firstly our usual hotel had really gone downhill.  Have done hotel report on this.  Our usual taxi driver never stopped moaning about the traffic, I told him he should try the M62/M621 out of Leeds every day of his life at 5:00 p.m. he would know what a traffic jam was then.  He also made a few sarcastic comments about the tips we gave him which annoyed me as we do tip him well overall as we do stay out quite late at night.  We have used him for quite a few years with no problem and we have a taxi every evening and quite often in the day too to go to other beaches in the north and south so he does make a lot of money out of us over the course of 3 weeks. 

I don’t know whether the problems was because we were going to a lot of the better restaurants and he suddenly thought we were rich and wanted a bigger share of our money.  Anyway it is to his detriment as we will have a change next year.  I did think the resort seemed a bit cleaner this year.  We actually saw the garbage collectors picking rubbish up from the surrounding area but I have to say I think most of the rubbish is left on the beach by domestic tourists, it was quite common to see them dropping litter as they walked along the beach.  

Things on the beach this year were horrendous as far as sunbeds were concerned.  We couldn’t use our normal shack as the law about 10 sunbeds to a shack is now very strictly adhered to which seems ridiculous as the shacks are losing out on business big time.  Some people hardly spend anything in the shacks so if they are stuck with this kind of customer they don’t make much money.  I can see them all charging for sunbeds in the future. 

I did think there were far less English tourists out there this year and lots more domestic tourists.  We did have a trip to Agonda for 3 days which we loved and hopefully in the future we will spend a week down there.  We didn’t find things any dearer this year as the exchange rate was so much better this year so this compensated for any price increases. 

We did hear of more serious crime this year, e.g. a fight between staff at Bobbies shack and Big Banana, first reports were that someone had been killed, then it changed to someone getting their arm chopped off with a machete, then it was just a big fight which resulted in both shacks being closed for a couple of days.  But customers ending up screaming and running off down the beach.  Also a couple of hotels were broken into with safe deposit boxes being wiped out.  Here goes but I do warn you we do a lot of sunbathing and eating…

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Things to do in Goa

 

The Indian state of Goa has become a firm favourite with UK holidaymakers in recent years, particularly for its stunning beaches, dramatic architecture and carefree spirit.Located on the country’s south west coast, it is synonymous with partying and beach holidays, but also has an array of other sights and experiences for travellers.

Portuguese traders first landed on the shores of Goa in the 1500s and the area existed as a Portuguese colony for centuries, until it was annexed as part of India in 1961.Goa has more than 20 delightful stretches of white sand beach down its 101km long coastline, some of which are crowded year round with holidaymakers, while others present secluded palm-fringed paradises for those seeking a quieter break.

 Every type of traveller and size of wallet is catered for and accommodation along the coast ranges from five star hotels to palm-leaf shacks. Goa is now India’s richest state and has seen a huge influx from neighbouring areas in recent years.

Calangute and Baga in northern Goa are heavily developed resorts and full of the usual tourist amenities, the south offers simpler and more peaceful resorts like Colva and Benaulim, while partygoers head to Anjuna, Vagator, and Chapora. Goa was famous as the hangout for hippy travellers and the psychedelic generation during the 1960s and 1970s and it still attracts similar visitors as well as more conventional tourists, luxury travellers and backpackers, and there are a number of popular yoga resorts in the north of the state.The Portuguese influence is widespread and food in Goa is a delicious blend of meat and fish cooked with Indian spices in a way unique to the region.

Alcohol is freely available in the state and Goa produces large quantities of rice and coconuts, which feature in many of the dishes.The ruins of the former Portuguese capital at Old Goa are a key tourist attraction, with an exotic mix of European and Indian architecture and a number of quaint churches and cathedrals.

The influence of early Portuguese merchants can also be seen at the ruins of Fort Aguada in north Goa and the Bom Jesus Basilica, which houses the mortal remains of St Francis Xavier.Goa has a number of charming market towns, as well as the bustling state capital Panaji. Vasco-de-Gama, the largest town in the state, has some interesting colonial and native architecture, while the town of Anjuna has a popular weekly flea market.

Other towns of interest include Margao, Marmagao, and Mapusa. The state is dotted with ornate and colourful Hindu temples and holds a number of lavish annual Hindu and Christian celebrations. As India’s smallest state, Goa represents a manageable slice of the vast country and has just 1.4 million inhabitants. Inland visitors can walk in the Western Ghats range of mountains, a world biodiversity hotspot, visit numerous estuaries and river valleys, and a number of small islands. Its tropical jungles in the east of the state are home to bright birds, wild boars and the region has a large snake population. The Salim Ali Bird sanctuary is particularly interesting, with its exotic mynas and parrots.

Visitors to Goa generally arrive by air or travel to the state from the Indian capital Mumbai. The Konkan Railway line, built during the 1990s, runs parallel to the coast between Mumbai and Goa. Once in the state, public transport largely consists of buses, unmetered taxis, auto rickshaws and the state’s unique yellow-and-black motorcycle taxis.

Goa’s official language is Konkani, but many Indians speak English and travellers will not struggle to get around the more heavily populated areas. The country has a warm and humid climate for most of the year, with temperatures hottest in May and a cooler spell between December and February. The annual monsoon season starts in early June and runs to late September.

Call Global Holidays on 0845 299 4450 for a Goa holiday

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Looking for a cheap holiday to Goa – Book Now

How to get an Indian Visa

Kerala – An Amazing Holiday Destination

What to do in Goa and Kerala

Looking for a holiday to Goa? – Book Now!

Goa is a wonderful holiday destination. The great weather; the food; the culture;the people; the scenery – all make for a wonderful winter holiday destination. And best of all, its excellent value for money!

Goa is a state on the west coast of India and it has become popular with British visitors over the last few years. In fact, many Brits have bought holiday homes in Goa and they spend a good part of the winter there. Goa is about 10 hours flying time from the UK and flights operate from Gatwick, East Midlands and Manchester between the months of November and April. These months are the best time to visit as the weather is about 30C and there is little rainfall.

Another reason why you should visit Goa is that the food is great and very cheap. A typical meal for two people including drinks will cost about £6 in total so you won’t need as much spending money as you would if you were in Europe.Goa - Aguada BeachThe standard of hotels varies. Goa has some excellent 5 star hotels.

 The Leela Palace is one of the best and rivals many of the best hotels that you will find anywhere. There are plenty of 2 and 3 star hotels. The 2 star hotels tend to be basic but most have swimming pools.Goa is divided into north, south and central. The majority of the hotels are in north Goa and the main resorts are Baga, Calangute and Candolim.

These resorts have most of the 2 and 3 star hotels and the area is more commercialised than south Goa. In south Goa you will find the majority of the 4 and 5 star hotels and the area is less commercialised than the north.There are some cracking deals to be had in November and early December.

 A week including flights and a 2 star hotel will cost about £329 per person and 2 weeks at the 3 star Nazri Resort on Baga Beach will cost from £469 per person. The prices over Christmas and New Year are more expensive and the prices tend to rise in the peak months of January, February and March but we still have good late holiday deals even for these months so it is well worth calling us on 0800 433 2300 to check our latest prices.

A winter holiday to Goa is a great way to escape the cold British winter weather and at such good prices it’s hard to not be tempted.

If you want any advice about a holiday to Goa or want a low cost quote please call Global Holidays on 0800 433 2300.

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How To Get An Indian Visa

UK Passport holders need a Visa to visit IndiaHere at Global Holidays we sell a lot of holidays to Goa and Kerala in India. If you have booked a holiday or flight to India you need to be aware that you need a Visa and you must apply for it well before you intend to travel. There have been reports of lots of people turning up at the airport to fly to India without an Indian Visa and them having to be turned away.

Their holidays have been ruined because their travel agent didn’t tell them that they needed an Indian Visa !  That has never happened at Global Holidays !

Here is what you need to do to apply for an Indian Visa: You can apply for a visa yourself by filling  in the forms online at http://in.vfsglobal.co.uk and then posting these with your passports to the appropriate visa application centre.

The basic cost of a six-month visa is £30, plus an £8.86 service charge, and then £7.40 for the return of your passports by special delivery (up to two passports can be sent back in one envelope) so it would cost you £42.56 each, plus postage.To save on the service and postal charges you can you could go to an application centre and it’s now possible to make an appointment online to bypass the queues. But you may have to wait and annoying though the extra charge may be, it could be money well spent.

There are also several visa companies who will be able to arrange an Indian Visa for you. You send them your application form and passport and pay them a fee and they will take your application form to the Indian Embassy and get the visa for you.It is not possible to get an Indian Visa at the airport on the day you travel. You must apply well in advance of your departure date. The process normally takes two weeks but it is best to check this. At busy times of the year it could take longer.Don’t be put off visiting India though just by the thought of getting an Indian Visa. It’s a simple process and India is well worth the effort when you get there !
 

Call Global Holidays on 0845 2994450 for advice on a Goa holiday