We are a couple that does not believe much in booking places for stay, in advance, when traveling on a holiday. Or, more correctly, we are a couple where one half does not believe in booking places for stay, in advance, when traveling on a holiday while the other half raves and rants and makes dire predictions about how there will be no rooms available and how one will be helplessly stranded on streets and grumblingly eats humble pie when the first half lines up super room in super hotel. Each and every time. He cheerfully attributes his complete confidence and ability to get his way to his hostel upbringing.

Why do I bring this up? Because this is the background to our first Goa trip. This was about 4 years back, from Delhi. We had very little money to spend on that trip. It was November. Season had already started. Most sites reflected some obscene room rates. So, as usual, it was decided we would just….. go. And so we……… went.

The only information that we were armed with was that we HAD to stay at north Goa and it had to be as close to the beach as possible. So after the usual 3 hours of drama and driving around looking for a place we settled for a resort called ‘Whispering Palms’. Well…..definitely not a shack…I think I romanticized a bit in my earlier post. But most definitely not a Taj.

It was your usual aunty and uncle — and loads of screaming children – kinda resort with one nice, tiny swimming pool with aunties floating around in their salwars and one restaurant which served only buffet for breakfast, only buffet for lunch and only buffet for dinner.

Nice rooms though…and close to the beach.

Since the resort really didn’t offer much in terms of entertainment, it had to be the beach, which was exactly what we had in mind anyway. That year we discovered absolutely pig – like behavior of guzzling beer and nibbling on fish while lying on a beach cot for 7-8 hours at a stretch. To get around in Goa, you have to have a bike. We’d get out of the resort for breakfast at a shack on the beach, drive around lazily to some more beaches close by, come back to Baga (which by the way will always remain my favourite), lie around on the beach interspersing beer drinking with dips in the sea. Absolute, sinful fun. We were younger then. It took absolutely no effort to pick up the bike and travel around Goa to far flung beaches like arambol up north and palolem down south with dinner thrown in at Panjem.

To digress a bit, you just have to take the route up north towards beaches like arambol. It’s a beautiful drive through villages, across a river and through the ghats, Very scenic.

Anyway, that was then.

This year we decided to splurge on the…Taj. So Fort Aguada it was. Booked very much in advance by moi. It’s a beautiful property. And that ladies and gentlemen is the difference. This year we spent most of our time at the resort. A beautiful swimming pool overlooking the sea, a beautiful bar called SFX ( which I loved) again overlooking the sea and 3 restaurants offering different cuisine. It was a different Goa. One did do the trip to Baga beach, one did do dinner at Brittos on Baga beach ( a delightful, very popular hang out – for the uninitiated to Goa), but this time one did not madly rush around to the other beaches, or madly drive around. One stayed at the resort, visited the spa, and generally behaved very la-di-da.

So I wonder, was this because we’ve grown older, or was it because one has slightly more paise then 4 years previously?

But Goa is Goa—-whichever way you enjoy it. Whether at a 5 star resort or at a shack on the beach, the romance of the sound of the waves, the never ending sight of the sea, the calm village like atmosphere, the endless beer, and the ease with which one can slip into a different world altogether where client deadlines, screaming bosses and traffic snarls seem from like a different lifetime, the place has a attraction that will keep pulling me back there and honestly I don’t care where I stay as long as I get unlimited beer and unlimited sea.


Oh, and this is my 50th post 🙂

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20 Responses to >Goa

  1. SMM says:

    >Looks you guys had loads of fun…I wanna go to Goa tooo.We had thought of going to goa for New Years last eyar, bu it fell through afer 26/11. We used yo run off to goa from Pune and live on the beach and patao the shackowners to let us sleept here at night.I agree with your husband – that has a charm of its own. Now of course, if I had o go anywhere like hat, i'd probably think a few times 😛

  2. Scarlett says:

    >A swimming pool over-looking the sea is just heavenly. Like at Otter's Club on Carter Road. Goa is one place where I'd like to go at least once every year…like an annual ritual 🙂

  3. BlueMist says:

    >Heard so much about Taj in Goa. and I am seriously jealous of all people heading to Goa. But surely it must been fun for you guys. and I am completely with you when you say you need reservations and planning before travelling. 🙂

  4. Ronnie says:

    >Wasn't it more fun 4 saal pehle? 🙂 There was a phase of frequent ah-i-am-bored-lets-just-go-somewhr-this-weekend and landing somewhr with no plans wotsoever , but having such a thrilling,fun time. Aaj kal its mostly a relaxed well planned vacation with family/frnds in an yelp-ed or oktatabyebye-d resort. And I miss those ol' impromptu vacations. Indication of official aunty-dom? 🙂

  5. Kaavya says:

    >Planned vs Unplanned… all equals FUN, eh depends who is taking the vacation though….

  6. Nu says:

    >Hey MD, nice post…you know why am I saying this ? Today morning only me and Hubby decided to take a holiday to may be Goa or Leh.. we are still fiddling with the thought…since we would be first timers to goa…your post really helped 🙂 Thankuuuuu… Oh and yes congratulations on your 50th post… 🙂

  7. Nu says:

    >Hey and I guess the earlier trip of yours made much sense than the latter one..isn't it ?

  8. Dee says:

    >COngrats on the 50th post!!We were at the same place last weekend.. Much fun was had.. Although its been our 4th or 5th trip to Goa we still made the routine trips around for the benefit of our passengers!Hope u have many many more trips like this 🙂

  9. ani_aset says:

    >congrats on 50 🙂 yay i miss the calmness of Palolem 😦

  10. mindspace says:

    >Hey, congratulations for the 50th!I was eagerly waiting for your goa post and lo behold- this is the only place I have personally experienced, in Goa. It was an offsite with colleagues but nevertheless. had a great time there. just wish I had learnt swimming little earlier though.can we get to see any pictures btw?

  11. Iya says:

    >i love Goa and i love the Taj. Been there done that..but for me Goa still means just riding along, though now the riding will be changed with driving..oh yes thats because we have gorwn a little older and have a little more money..

  12. >it's both honey…the paisa and the age……the older we get the least adventurous we become….MAYBE :)Try south Goa the next time….it's AMAZING! Going to Goa used to be like going for a pilgrimage for me when I was in India. have done Goa so many times and in all seasons.The best part about the beaches in goa is the booze and beach umbrellas on the beach easily available. Here we cannot drink on the beach and have to carry out own umbrella if at all :(.I have a real fun college days story of the Taj Aquada :). we gatecrash and was thrown out LOL!…Thank God they didn't have a "wanted" picture of me and my friends on their wall when I visited them the last time 😉 LOlllllmissed you too babes….it's been a while.

  13. Zeba says:

    >So very happy for u. Taj huh?? Nice

  14. Aparna says:

    >We also stayed in Baga beach and lazed around the whole day. Ate so much that we were completely stuffed and looked at the sea. But the Taj resort is awesome, and the view from there is so beautiful. Did you try out all the water sports? My husband went para sailing and he loved it, I chickened out.

  15. Mumbai Diva says:

    >SMM : I know, lately we've stopped travelling without bookings 🙂 but ya it used to be a lot of fun. LOVE goaScarlett: I do that now. atleast once a year.BlueMist: They have 4 properties there now. All very beautiful.Ronnie: Ummm…i have very divided opinion on that. I used to think that was fun after the initial scare of course…but lately i prefer to travel in style with all bookings intact :)Kaavya: absolutelyNu: Thanks. We've been planning to go to Leh for some time too. It just doesn't happen. Both trips have been fun, actually.Dee: Oh? nice place, na?ani_asset: i know, yay :)mindspace: not a very pictures person, really. awesome place, tho.Iya: 🙂 no no. we still got ourselves a pulsar.

  16. >Ok as a trublue goan blogger, i thank you very much for the kind words. but seriously check out some of the non-beach thingummies. fantastic it is

  17. >Congratulation on your 50th post 🙂 I think both kind of holidays sound like such fun!! I doubt if it is age yet, but a time might come when comfortable, well planned holidays will be preferred… but both are fun.

  18. >Just opposite the Whispering Palms is a family run resort called the Sunset Beach. Try that next time. Book in advance though because they're really in demand. I guarantee you won't regret it. http://www.sunsetcandolim.com/

  19. >… oh and it costs around 2 grand a night for a double AC with full room service and comp. breakfast.

  20. Haddock says:

    >What 50th?You mean I have 49 more to read?

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