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You can take a train or bus to Goa from Mumbai, but be warned: such trips can be long—at least 12 hours by train, 17 hours by bus—crowded, and uncomfortable. (Be sure to take a bus or train with reserved seating.) The Konkan Railway (www.konkanrailway.com) runs lines to Mumbai in the north and Mangalore in the South. The Madgaon station in Margao is the main station, and there are smaller ones in Pernem, Thivim, Karmali, and Canacona. Book early online for train reservations: seats fill up quickly during the tourist season. Air-conditioned sleepers are best for overnight journeys.
For complete train schedules and fares, and to book tickets online, go to the Indian Railways website (www.indianrail.gov.in) where you can purchase and upgrade tickets, determine the kind of train you want, and review the rather extensive list of rules.
Karmali station (832/228–5798.)
Margao station (2 km [1 mile] from the main shopping area, Margao, Goa, 403601. 832/271–2790.)