The south Goa beach circuit begins from Margao, the second most important city in Goa. This railway station connects Goa to all major cities in the coastline like Mumbai, Mangalore and Kochi. Beginning from Majorda beach, a 20 kms long silvery white sand stretches across till the headland of Cabo de Rama.
It’s a beach of white sand facing a blue bay between two headlands. The little wooded islands on the northern headland look interesting but as we’ve never ventured onto any of them we don’t know what landing on them would be like.
If you’re interested, try to persuade one of the fishermen — this is also a fishing beach — to ferry you across. They do offer to take you out to spot dolphins. Tourists have discovered Palolem and so there are a few shacks selling seafood snacks, souvenirs and clothes of the shapeless, bright, informal kind. Panaji, the capital, is more than 70 km away.
Palolem is just 3 km away from Canacona Railway station, now on the Konkan Railway. You can hire taxis and auto-rickshaws to reach Palolem beach from Margao, 40 km away. There are regular buses from Margao to Palolem that would drop you at Canacona village.
There are beautiful beach huts and family room to choose from in Palolem. Try to avoid the weekends, as there is a big crowd of picnickers who throng the beach on weekends.
If you continue driving towards Panaji from Palolem, the next beach is Agonda.
It’s long and lonely, fringed with palms and casuarinas and dominated by a large hill to the south.
It’s not safe to swim out too far on this beach. There are very few facilities available here and you are needed to carry all the essentials.
Agonda is a three-kilometer long beautiful cove of white sand, safely secluded in the palms. There are no tourists, no souvenir stalls, no restaurants, nothing.
Just the trees, the beach, the big beautiful ocean and you. It also makes for a great day trip from Colva and Covelossim. For real adventure, hire a tent and camp for the night, listening to the crashing of the sea waves.
Not far from Agonda beach is Cabo de Rama, untouched by most of the visitors in this region. The atmosphere of the fort creates a sense of history and drama that very few would fail to appreciate. The fort is named after Rama, hero of the Hindu epic Ramayana. According to the local legends, Rama stayed here with his wife Sita during the period of 12-year exile.
The best way to reach this beach is by a scooter or motors bike.
VARCA, CAVELOSSIM, MOBOR
Varca, Cavelossim, and Mabor are the most beautiful beaches south of Benaulim. These beaches are much cleaner and quieter than most of the famous beaches of Goa. There are numerous beach shacks offering a variety of Goan dishes and seafood at reasonable prices.
There are several food joints around Dona Sylvia where you can get entire package of good food, good drink, nice service, and a pleasant service in quite reasonable rates. There are facilities for Dolphin watching up river Sal.
These beaches are home to some of the most exclusive and luxurious beach resorts in Goa. Accommodation is also available for budget and economy class travelers though not on the beach itself.
There are plenty of transportation facilities available to reach these beaches from Margao. From Cavelossim village, Margao is 18 km away and buses and autos are available easily. You can also hire taxis from Dabolim Airport (41 – 48 km) to reach the beach resorts here. To move locally, use cycles and scooters that are available on hire.
This is the most important beach in the south circuit equipped with all modern amenities like air-conditioned resort complexes, tourist cottages, discos, seashell artefact stalls, refreshment stalls, eateries, guest houses, expanding the village enormously.
The Church of Our Lady Of Mercy in Colva is famous for its miracle statue of Menino Jesus. The road leading from the Church to the beach is where all the facilities are located.
Colva is a small village in south Goa on the shores of the Arabian Sea. It lies 39 km away from Panaji, capital of the Indian state of Goa. Two km further ahead from Colva is Benaulim.
With 20 km of virgin white sands, palm fringed, and sun drenched beaches, Colva is the most loved beach of Goans. Colva, unlike Anjuna or Calangute, gained popularity only lately. It was little disturbed and life moved on quietly.
While taking a stroll on the Colva Beach, silver carpets of bangdde (mackerels) can be viewed shimmering on the golden sands for drying. Fishermen’s motor trawlers can be seen anchored in a line offshore. Tourists—Indian and foreigners, as well as locals—can be seen in colorful dresses, coming either for a walk or ‘for a change of air’. Many tourists can be seen having a sunbath on the golden sands.
The trinket stalls and the drink stands on the golden sands under the moonlight make the evening on the Colva Beach utterly romantic.
This small stretch beach stretches about 5 Kms north of Colva Beach along the coastline. The beach is the location of many hotels. It is in no way comparable to Colva Beach that lies just south along the coast.
From Bogmalo down south, there is Majorda beach and the Majorda Beach Resort. Majorda is the village where the Jesuits, fond as they were of the good things of life, discovered the best Goan toddy (sap from the coconut palm), which they used to leaven the bread. Naturally, then, Majorda is the place where the Goans were first trained in the delicate art of baking European breads.
The Majordans are still Goa's best bakers. The delights of the beach, however, were discovered much earlier, in the mythical times when the gods above went through a lot of turmoil. There is a Goan version of Ramayana and therein Lord Rama was kidnapped as a child and brought up at Majorda. Later, in pursuit of Sita, he camped at Cabo de Rama - a headland further south - where the stretch of developed beaches ends.
This beach dominated by a huge 5-star hotel located right on its edge and is cut apart from both the North and South beach circuit. Being just 4 kms away from the Goa Airport at Dabolim, it is a favourite among the elite classes and has an air of exclusivity.
Although the resort hotel towers above the village, there are couple of smaller places to stay. Windsurfing and water skiing facilities are available.
Less than 2 kms south of Colva is the more tranquil beach of Benaulim. Benaulim is one of the few places in Goa where one can glimpse handicrafts typical to this area. The best of the traditional rosewood furniture is made here. Also Benaulim is famous as the place where the legendary Parashuram's arrow landed, by which Goa was created.
About 2 km away from Colva is the Benaulim, which is more peaceful and serene than Colva. The best thing about Benaulim is that it is still rather undiscovered by domestic tourists even though it is a fishing beach. It gets fairly crowded in the evenings and on weekends, it gets fairly crowded with local visitors who get off buses about a kilometer away and pour onto the beach.
The Church of St John the Baptist is situated on a hill beyond the village and worth a visit. On the arrival of the monsoon, Feast of St John the Baptist (Sao Joao) is celebrated as a thanksgiving. Young men wearing crowns of leaves and fruits tour the area singing for gifts. To commemorate the movement of St John in his mother’s womb when he was in his mother’s womb and visited by Mary, the mother of Jesus, the young men of this village jump in the wells.
Betul is one of the most important fishing ports where all the mechanized boats and deep sea trawlers bring in their catch. Here headlands from the slopes of the Western Ghats protrude into the shore giving it an imposing backdrop.
Beyond this secluded beach is the hill of Cabo De Rama where the Portuguese have built a fort. From the fort a great view of the sunset on the beach can be viewed. There are very few places to stay in Betul.