Goa

Old Sep 21st, 2009, 11:59 AM
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Goa

Me again. Have by now done a bit of reading and it seems the old town is a good idea. I'm not fussed about beaches and presumably can get to them anyway. Any recommendations for where to stay around the old town? Still undecided whether to get there from Cochin by train or air. Then on to Delhi, same question.
Dogster or any other experts out there?
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Old Sep 22nd, 2009, 12:11 AM
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I don't know where you mean - you mean where the cathedrals are? or in Panjim? I think you mean Panjim.

I spent a week at the Panjim Inn. It's right where you want to be. Two great restaurants close by. Lotsa old Portugese houses. It's the place. Street life. Kinda.

http://www.panjiminn.com/

Me? I'd fly. I'd travel on trains for a fascinating experience, but not particularly to get from A - B. For the latter, fly. At least do some comparitive costing on Jet or Kingfisher and see what their deals are. But if you are a 'its not the destination, but the journey' kinda person, then trains might be a lotta fun.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2009, 12:22 AM
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Dona Paula is a good area to stay in Panjim.Most resorts are on the rocky outcrop,with a great view of the Arabian sea.O'Pescador is a nice small family run resort.Take a look here:
http://www.opescador.com/
If you have the time & inclination train is a nice way to travel in India.Kochi-Madgoan is one long haul.Probably over 24hrs.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2009, 07:35 AM
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Another vote for the Panjim Inn.I stayed in the cheaper part - the posh part dogster stayed in didn't exist then - and I thought it was fine. A night or two on the beach wouldn't hurt - I'm not a beach person and i had a pleasant, peaceful time at Vagator - but be careful it's not the party end.

I'm more of a train person, but those are rather long trips you're looking at. Although the train journey from Kochi to Goa is supposed to be very scenic (I went inland via Mysore). The Indian railways website has schedules.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2009, 09:56 AM
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Thanks people. The Panjim Inn looks like nothing I imagined to see in India. Maybe my expectations are stuck in the 60s. LOL.
Have looked at Kingfisher and also the Indian Railways website. Still dunno. Maybe a combination of the two.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2009, 07:04 AM
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"The Panjim Inn looks like nothing I imagined to see in India" So where are you staying in Kochi? Have you looked at malabar house?
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Old Sep 23rd, 2009, 08:21 AM
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In a way I think we all travel to see our imaginary India - that's as good a reason as any. It's there - but the rest of India keeps getting in the way.

If Gertie's expectations are stuck in the 60's then this trip will be all the more amazing. Things have changed. All the more reason to go.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2009, 10:27 AM
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Yes, the more research I do the more appealing it all is. Those hotels look wonderful. I haven't got as far as arranging hotels yet (for Feb 2010) or doing anything definite other than find out what's out there. Thanks for the input.
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Old Oct 20th, 2009, 07:09 AM
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Who knows what about Calangute? My Russian friend (yes, I know Dogster) suggested it as a relaxed beach place to hang out for a few days. What do you all think? Any hotel recommendations? Or should I avoid it like the plague? In which case where else around there would fit the bill?
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Old Oct 20th, 2009, 09:28 AM
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Hiya gertie! Nice to see you back in here. Actually, everywhere is relaxed in Goa - if you have pals there, go hang with them. There ain't nothing wrong with Russians - great company in my experience.

But a big wide hot beach with a few ramshackle huts and some bloated Europeans is, as a wise woman didn't really say, still a big wide hot beach with a few ramshackle huts and some bloated Europeans.

lol lol lol/ So, if I was you gertie, I'd go to where the most attractive of the less-bloated Europeans are. At least you can have some eye-candy. [gertie, I'm sure you are still 22; me? I've got to the stage where eye-candy is mostly the best I can do] Despite my withering prose on Goa, there was the occasional eye-candy... that passed the time.

But gertie, gertie, gertie - I don't think we've talked about the beach boys.... lol lol lol. You can be 1,000 years old, with one leg and a beard and still find yourself a lad. lol. They even headed for me - and I am 1,000 years old with NO legs. They just roll me along the beach. It's quite a Goa attraction.

Calangute, from my brief experience, was a place that I had to leave - very fast. All the other people with me had, independently, come to the same conclusion. Basically, go North or South. In the middle is Hell.

But Hell is really interesting to look at. The real show in Goa is the other tourists. If you want to see India, then you're in the wrong place.
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Old Oct 20th, 2009, 09:35 AM
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Right Dogster. Got that. No, I'm not 22 and I'm not looking for beach boys. Or eye candy. No Russian friends will be there. Just me.
So Calangute is off. Where nearby should I try? Remember I want to relax and hang out for a few days in between intensive India experiences in Kerala and Rajastan. The old Portuguese settlement sounds good but I want a beach recommendation. Recommend away!
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Old Oct 20th, 2009, 09:53 AM
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I stayed at Sterling Vagator. The hotel was full of Indians, not foreigners (but the AC in the cottages was flaky). The beach party was round the headland to the south. There was a convenient beach shack for drinks and people watching. Tourist conveniences such as second-hand book shops and a French restaurant were walking distance. But that was all the way back in 2001.
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Old Oct 20th, 2009, 09:59 AM
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This sounds more like it Thursdaysd. Thanks. Is it easily reachable from Panjim? I hear there are buses. I'll follow it up and see what I can find.
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Old Oct 20th, 2009, 10:01 AM
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I think you should certainly check out everywhere, Gertie. Go see Calangute - but don't stay there. Now, you travel on your own, me too - I've learnt that beach places are really difficult for single travelers. Certainly single men. Everybody is in couple, families, arghhh, solitary.

So I choose groovy, small boutiquey places, rather than mega-resorts. Panjim Inn, as discussed is great - you'll meet people there if you want. Panjim was a different companion at everey meal for a week, all by happenstance. Fascinating.

I liked Siolim House - inland, but very nice, great friendly staff - another prerequisite for the solo traveler:

http://www.siolimhouse.com/index.php

Go here:
http://www.sawdays.co.uk/search/list...=goa&submit=GO

Sawdays is really reliable. There a half-a-dozen places here I'd go like a shot if Goa was in my sights.

And here:
http://www.i-escape.com/country_summ...y=India%3A+Goa

That'll keep you busy. See what appeals and report back.
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Old Oct 20th, 2009, 10:02 AM
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This took my eye for the solitary escape:

http://www.i-escape.com/minihotel.php?hotel_key=IS043
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Old Oct 21st, 2009, 01:47 AM
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Gertie,Candolim(same stretch of beach but in the opp direction,to the south) is better than calangute.Calangute/Baga is a mess.I've been going to Goa regularly for the past 25yrs & use to stay there.Not any more.The only time,each time,I go to calangute is to dine in Souza Lobo's a great restaurant on the beach.No great ambience but great seafood.The other place being Britto's,Good food.
Link: http://www.souzalobo.com/htm/cont.htm
Candolim stay,my recommendations are Sonesta Inn a 3* property & Goan Heritage(closest to the surf).
Link:http://www.goanheritage.com/aboutUs.htm
http://sonestainns.com/
Book with them directly.Panjim is 1/2hr drive.There are buses.never tried them though.Take a taxi.Wont cost much.Around INR250.
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Old Oct 26th, 2009, 12:13 PM
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It's a horribly wet day in Houston and I have just consoled myself by booking Kingfisher Red from Cochin to Goa and from Goa to Delhi 6 days later. Now to seriously look at hotels .... thanks for all your advice.
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Old Nov 18th, 2009, 10:58 AM
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So here's my next dilemma. Dogster, are you still there?

I'll be in Goa for 6 days in February. Should I split it 3/3 in Panjim and the beach, or should I go for all 6 in Panjim and use it as a base for travelling around the area?
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Old Nov 18th, 2009, 05:38 PM
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Gertie, I'm considering Goa in February as well as a solo traveler. How is it safety wise for a single woman? I'm 42 and would love to go and not have to wait until someone can go with me.
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Old Nov 18th, 2009, 07:37 PM
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Writealiving: I have never been to Goa before, nor India. It's a first for me. I shall be in Goa 14-20 February. The issue of 'safety', which is so often a major factor in the thoughts of posters on this board, is something I rarely think about beyond the obvious common sense stuff. I reckon living half in London and half in Houston is more hazardous than most places in the world. I have been travelling alone for years and really like it. Just do it!
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