Goa Calling

February 2021

One month in Goa?

Wow… sounds exciting.

Are you mad? What will you do there? You will get bored?

Is it even safe to stay in a hotel .. you know, so many touch points.

Are you renting a villa? You can’t eat out everyday.

Well … no, we are not insane. We have been thinking of extended stays for a long time. We are pretty much done with short vacays. And we felt that Goa was the perfect choice (for this experiment). There are staycations, workations and we call this ‘temp relocation’.

Why Goa? It’s a beach town with good sunny weather and no pollution, great ambiance, super food, easy liquor, casual atmosphere, no hassle of dressing up, loads of shacks to chill out. And above all, it is a safe place.

We thought of hiring a villa but for two/three people it is not a practical option. Moreover, Goa isn’t Goa unless you get sea view from the window and walk up to the beach in a couple of minutes. Frankly, such villas, if available, would be way too expensive. So we decided to stay in a resort in South Goa where beaches are clean and relatively empty.

Mobor Beach

I was keen to get on to the beach as soon as we checked in. It was my first time in South Goa and the sight of wide, clean beach was very welcoming. I could literally count the handful number of people on Mobor beach. Walking on the sand with feet dipped in sea water was a refreshing change from Delhi winters.

Fresh martinis

We watched the sun set into the Arabian sea and then settled down at Beach Grill; the beach restaurant of our resort was an instant hit with us. Cool sea breeze, good music, fresh pineapple martinis (I spent sometime with the bartender to get my customized versions) and seafood made our first evening very enjoyable.

After dinner we strolled out on the main road. There were just a couple of small shops selling clothes, jewelry, and most importantly, liquor. In Goa you can buy all kind of liquor from the grocery stores. Cool, isn’t it? This part of Goa was pretty secluded with just two big resorts. Lucky for us, two highly recommended restaurants, Fisherman Wharf and Riverside, were at walking distance. We booked a table at Fisherman Wharf for the next evening.

Morning walks

Long walks on the beach every morning and evening are customary and the best way to enjoy Goa. Walking without mask was a new found luxury. Sand color changes from golden to grey to silver and the texture gets softer as the color gets lighter. Sea shells are washed ashore by the waves. Some are left behind while some are taken back by the water. Broken shells make it uncomfortable to walk on sand at times. It is intriguing to watch a fish come up to the beach with waves and grapple to get back quickly with receding water.


It was mainly ‘work from anywhere’ for the boys and they found their respective work spots with amazing views. I would head for the sun loungers on the beach or by the pool with my phone, kindle, sun glasses and sunscreen. My days were well spent reading a book or writing (this blog). In other words, chilling out!

Sundowners at Beach Grill

Our evening walks would invariably end with sundowners at our favorite Beach Grill. Comfortable seating, laidback atmosphere, vast expanse of silver sand and aquamarine Arabian sea, without having to step out … it didn’t take us long to figure out that this was the best place to enjoy sunsets.

Fisherman Wharf

We walked to Fisherman Wharf, highly recommended by friends and blogs. Rustic, shack style restaurant is set by the Sal river. Calm flowing river is quite a contrast to the noisy sea just a few meters away. Live music certainly adds charm to the atmosphere and brings guests to the dance floor. Specializing in Goan dishes and fresh seafood, it is very popular with the locals so fills up every evening. We ended up going back there a few times. For seafood lovers, Sea Devil (bacon wrapped prawns) is a must try!

It was a weekend and we had hired a car for three days. Though we had plans to go out for a drive, we were too comfortably settled on the cushy sofas on the beach. We unanimously decided to continue enjoying the moment and ditched the drive. It was a well spent lazy day on the beach with beers and pina coladas. Personally I liked the idea of staying put but the boys giving up an opportunity to drive came as a surprise!

Riverside @Leela

We had our evening reservation at the Italian restaurant, Riverside at Leela. Dressing up smartly in Goa is an effort but Riverside has a dress code. We had chosen this beautiful and romantic fine dining restaurant for a special occasion. Our table was set up by the river Sal. Everything was perfect .. beautiful ambiance, great food, hospitality, live music and personalized attention. Braised New Zealand Lamb Shank deserves a special mention here. We couldn’t have chosen a better place to celebrate a birthday!

We had already wasted one day of car rental so couldn’t find any excuse next day. We decided to explore some other beaches. We spent some time in a shack on Benaulim beach. Another tick off from our list was Martin’s Corner, much talked about and highly recommended eatery. (May be we are the only ones but) we found the food pretty mediocre. Goa weather and beer makes you lazy. We had no appetite or energy left for the evening in beachside Lobster Village. At the end, we were happy to get back to our own resort for the sunset.

The Cape Goa

Next day was spent exploring South of South goa. The drive to Palolem Beach was good but the beach too crowded for our liking. Nearby, Agonda beach was much better and quieter. We found an interesting machan, Agonda by the Bay, for a relaxed lunch. On our way back, we decided to watch the sunset from a viewpoint in Cabo de Rama fort. We were surprised to find so many people and cars lined up to watch the sunset. Just by chance we found The Cape Goa resort and a restaurant perched above a secluded cove. It was a perfect place to escape the crowds and enjoy the incredible view. Reminded me of Thalassa in north goa .. wonder why this was not as popular?

Valentine’s day

Romance in the air! This was the view from our balcony on Valentine’s day. We were pleasantly surprised to see the poolside and restaurant decked up for the occasion. In the evening, more than 20 cabanas were set up on the beach for private romantic dinner ❤️

Feeling pretty much settled in our ‘temp abode’ we got used to our new routine. The thing about an extended stay is that it starts as a regular holiday with excitement of a new place, new environment, drinks and food and photos and selfies. And as you settle down, the days are more relaxed and routine, but with a difference .. there is no running around, no answering door bells, no meal planning or grocery shopping, no watering of plants. It feels good to be away from the daily chores. Life is good and am loving it ? ?


My days were mainly spent sitting underneath a fluttering umbrella to give just enough shade to sun lounger, reading at leisure, snoozing in between, glancing up every now and then at the silver pristine beach and shimmery blue water, feeling cool sea breeze, hearing the seagulls squawk, sipping a cocktail, watching the occasional jet skis and parasails ….

Confluence of river Sal with Arabian sea

Our favorite spot was where river Sal meets the ocean. The spot where sea beach merges into the river beach. A lighthouse stood tall on a small hill behind the river. Little road and a temple on the rocks on the other side of the river invariably had locals flocking at the sunset time. The view of lone palm tree hanging over the rock, jutting out of the sea, and the setting sun into the ocean was picture perfect. The entire landscape taking on a surreal saffron hues at twilight was mesmerizing. You can’t help but marvel at nature’s beauty.

Turtle on the beach

And surely this was the prize catch! Not literally though. While returning from our evening walk we spotted a big turtle on the beach. We couldn’t contain our excitement as we had never seen a turtle in Goa.

We would often walk back to the beach after dinner. It seemed safe with just enough light from our hotel and the two beach shacks. We would sit on the sand looking at the silver waves in dark. Sometimes we carried towels to lie down quietly on the beach and look at the clear night sky while listening to the sound of waves. Faint lights from the fishing boats and trawlers anchored distantly pronounced their presence.

Fishing boats

Sometimes we saw fishing boats on the beach in the morning. Fishermen would bring their catch in the wee hours and take away what could be sold, leaving behind jelly fish and enumerable tiny fish of no value. It would turn into a feasting spot for the birds.

Our last evening in Goa was extremely rewarding as it was a full moon night. While we saw a breathtaking sunset, early next morning we were awestruck by the silver shimmer of the setting moon in the sea. It was like witnessing the celestial delight. Interestingly, both the sun and moon set at the same place in the ocean.

Sunset is magical .. moonset is ethereal

Sunset is romantic .. moonset is divine

Sunset is vivid .. moonset is subtle

Life in Goa

Like all good things come to an end, so did our stay in Goa. We enjoyed every single day, each walk on the beach, every sunset, every sundowner. Staying in a resort is like getting pampered where everything is available on a call, be it housekeeping or dining. Was coming back difficult? Hmm .. not really. I think we had our fair share of Goa. And we felt that we were moving from one resort to another .. that’s what we feel Nirvana is!

P.S. Though February is a great time to visit Goa, it also happens to be the wedding season. ‘Big Fat Indian Weddings’ may be all paid fun for the ‘baratis’ but it can play a spoilsport for holiday makers. It was disheartening, to say the least, to see huge stages set up on the beach for private wedding functions, with total disregard to the environment. So, do check with the hotel for such events before making bookings.

Note: Writing this blog was daunting. It was like a home away from home where we mostly followed the same routine every day, ate at the same place, possibly the same food with no variations. There was no novelty. I have tried to put together my diary with pictures to make it look more interesting ?

Author: Anju Motwani

Aspiring Travel blogger

11 thoughts on “Goa Calling”

  1. Hey Anju. That was a great and beautiful trip. Literally you made me feel that am there too. Bet you did not miss out on any details. Thanks for sharing your delightful experiences in one month vacay in Goa. I really enjoy your travel posts..keep it up dear??

  2. Hi Anju ur blog is written so beautifully I felt I m in goa. Luv to read all detailed description of Goa. thanks for sharing.

  3. Such an amazing description of the month at Goa Anju. Your pics are are too good. So is the video of the turtle. Keep us posted on all your trips. They are quite inspiring

  4. Wow! Vividly described, it brought back all my Goa memories. There’s a lovely flow in your writing. Every moment you described felt like I was experiencing it myself. The pictures are amazing. Keep it up Anju. Cheers!

  5. Reading thru your post made me realise why you all never wanted to come back. A real home away from home. Work got redefined as also the earlier transient vacations which used to vanish in a blink of the eye. A month away but sounds like a week – must say way to go. Well done Anju. Tell us more of your upcoming vacays

  6. Very good post. Highly informative for travellers who want to visit Goa. Nicely written. Keep up the good work.

  7. Anju, What an amazing holiday you had and definitely an amazing narration with wonderful pictures. I am just wondering why you did not disclose the name of the hotel you stayed in, considering you wrote the names of other restaurant s
    and hotels you visited. Maybe it could have been an advertisement for the hotel and you could have charged them for the same. I am sure they would have agreed to give you a free stay for your next holiday after reading your very interesting and descriptive post – tempting readers to follow suit.

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