If you’ve read the “About Me” section, you’ll know that currently, I’m in India. To be more precise, I’m living in Arpora, Goa, which is about a 30-minute scooter ride north of the capital city, Panaji.
(If you click on the picture, you can zoom in and out on the map and see exactly where Arpora is!)
This is my 3rd time in India, but my first in Goa. Nearly every person I talk to who’s been to Goa loves it, and I can understand why. My travels prior have only taken me to Mumbai, New Delhi/Agra (for the Taj Mahal), and a hill station outside of Mumbai called Matheran and there are practically no points of comparison between those places and Goa.
My fiancé, a native of Mumbai/Bombay, has visited Goa many times, but he hasn’t lived here before either.
I could tell you all kinds of stuff about Goa, the Portuguese influence here, the infinitely greater amount of space between you and the next person that you’ll never get in Mumbai, and the beautiful beaches, but you can find all of that on Wikipedia.
I think I’ll let a picture do some talking for me, instead ^_^
Do you recognize this beach? It was featured in the Bourne Supremacy. This is Palolem, in the south.
If that picture has convinced you to take a trip here, or if you already had your mind made up, then one thing I want you to be sure to do is buy this book:
Love Goa by Fiona Caulfield (affiliate link ^_^ )
I also recommend this book for the seasoned expat or….well, really, anyone. The “Love” travel book series by Fiona Caulfield and Co. is great. I have the Mumbai version also. I’ve been able to see and experience so many awesome things because of these books. As with all guides pertaining to India, though, you’ve got to make sure you get the most recent version; there are places in my Love Mumbai book that were there in 2014 but are now gone.
There are those who would tell you to ditch the travel guides and just go out and explore. That’s all fine and dandy, but often, that can just result in a ton of aimless wandering around and time wasted. Especially in India. Throw out any hope that an address means anything, because in a place where street signs are so incredibly rare as to be nearly non-existent, they won’t do you any good.
In my experience, the way to get an authentic, unexpected, true experience in India (and really, perhaps most places) is to pick a destination (say, a café recommended by the book) and then try to find it. I am not kidding. Because, as is often said about travel, it’s not the destination, but the journey. Along the way to your destination, you never know what you might find and how your path of exploration may change from there.
So get the book, and get over here! Goa is calling!
Leave a comment below – I’d love to hear from you.