We always felt Goa is an all-year-round destination. It’s synonymous with hippies, intemperance and all-night clubbing held under a full moon. But India’s prevalent seaside destination offers much more than such clichés. In case you are wondering, we are here to talk about the pristine beaches and immaculate countryside, the usual Goa which you must have come across several times, then you are mistaken.
The city of beaches has still a huge craze amongst the teenagers after all at some point in our lives we all have made Goa Plans with our friends in that “DIL Chahta Hain” style.
Well for some of you, those plans never came true, unfortunately, and for some of us, such plans actually worked out…not once but several times! According to us, Goa has now become highly commercialized party hub! It’s a rush toward low-quality, tourist resorts, at massive environmental cost.
You probably would have got an idea as to why we decided to write this blog, we have nothing against it, we absolutely adored it the first time we were here but then now that our “teenage phase” is practically over and if someone recommends “GOA” for New Years or any other celebration, we would probably ditch the idea.
The gorgeous, laid-back Goa is disappearing amidst trash, over-development, pollution, and qualms over personal safety.
Let us assure you again that we are not going to sit and count the negatives here but only take you through the sad reality of what we experienced there, your experience might differ!
Highly commercialized and hyped Restaurants
According to Zomato review, we tried a much talked about the restaurant “Fisherman’s Cove” and it simply did not live up to our expectations at all. We felt it was vaunted. As we entered, we saw a huge waiting queue and got really thrilled as a long queue indicated nothing but scrumptious food but to our disenchantment, the food we ordered was really less in quantity and the taste was mediocre!! All expectations went down the drain. And just like this one, there are few other restaurants where we felt the quality and service has degraded over time but we simply feel they are not worth mentioning or reading about!
Goa Carnival Festival
Goa hosts a very peppy and exhilarating carnival. We have heard about people liking the energy, the passion and the exuberant celebrations taking place during the carnival. So we thought that it’s going to be like the spendthrift celebrations where you can see cheery crowds just losing themselves to the madness and mood of the festivities just like any other festival in Goa. There is a parade stuffed with beautiful floats, performers dance and music extravaganza at the end of the carnival.
Well, we went there around February 2016 and had high hopes from this Goa carnival as it is the much talked about festival. To our disappointment, there was nothing prodigious. To begin with, there’s no proper arrangement for people to sit or stand & one can barely see the performances clearly. To put things in a better perspective, let us further throw some light on the history of the carnival. Music, dance, and entertainment are the shining features of the carnival and along with these, there are plays of a short length which portray the Goan traditions and culture. But after a point, it becomes really repetitive and it simply seems to be never-ending. The place becomes overcrowded and the people behind you will start pushing you, it becomes even worse. Even something as basic as water isn’t available around, if you want to grab water/snacks then you will literally struggle to get out of the crowd. In few hours you will probably get a headache like we did and decided to leave the place.
Dona Paula /Sigham Beach
That’s what they call this place and again it’s a much talked about place in Goa, where several film shootings have taken place, we really anticipated more from this place. So we had to park our car around 2 km away from this place and then walk down towards it. We were literally stunned to see the beach at one side with really dirty wall fencing where people have literally spat and made it turn red! The foul-smelling of fishes at several spots are excruciating and on the other side of the beach, you will again find small vendors selling the same old stuff.
Another overhyped beach which was really muddy, found few creeps who were randomly taking our photos, vendors at the parking area trying to fool the foreigners by charging them really high for fake accessories and braids and obviously those watersports guys running literally behind you and constantly telling you about the rates for banana boat ride, parasailing or jet skiing. But then you think about the beaches, the ones with the plastic bags in the water, which you might be mistaken for jellyfish, and the wrecks of glass from the alcohol bottles carried into the waves, which now churn with sewage from the infected tanks. The place is literally surrounded by plastic bottles and thrash everywhere which made us feel “what’s literally in this beach which makes people tag Baga Beach in their Instagram stories”
To end this on a good note, beyond the beaches lies a lush landscape that conceals ancient forts, rich ecosystems and the hilly farmlands that proved irresistible to European spice traders. Centuries before the hippies, there were the Portuguese — and it’s their lasting impact that makes Goa such a fascinating place. So not everything is wrong with Goa, the Saturday night markets, few peaceful & secluded beaches like the Palolem beach, their dine and wine culture, immaculate countryside, sociable people, fort’s architecture, beautiful churches, mesmerising Catholic ceremonies, soulful music and the spectacular cathedrals of Old Goa is something we always look forward to.
So apart from the not-so-good times, we also had some really memorable moments in Goa, attaching few pictures of the same…