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Monsoon travel: Goa in the rains

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The long hot summer comes to an end as the month of June elapses, and the parched Earth cools down with the incessant downpour which rides in on the Monsoon winds. The monsoon phenomenon brings out an altogether different side to Goa. Imagine swaying palms dancing to the tune of the winds, quaint lanes washed by rain waters, ominous grey layers of thick clouds that rule the skies and swirling waters roaring out at the beaches; there’s something about experiencing monsoons in Goa which tops the list of things to do in Goa in the months of June to September. Here are a few experiences that you can indulge in, if you’re heading to Goa in the rains.

Spend some time with yourself; take a long walk on a beach

When the skies are cloaked with dark clouds, and it starts to pour, opt for a long walk on any of the not-so-popular beaches of Goa and you’d find bliss! (Not Baga and Calangute; try Arambole, Morjim, Vagator, Colva, Sinquerim, Agonda, and Palolem.) The wind brushing your face, wet sand between your toes, turbulent waves creating their own musical notes, and the weighty downpour could just soothe all the nerves and you’d find yourself immersed (in rains and thoughts).

Tip: ditch your phone and camera, and carry some money to get to the beach and maybe to gorge on some snacks on the beach. Swimming is not advisable as the waves can be dangerously big, and the water can get murky.

Take a short trip to the magnificently deluged Dudhsagar Falls during the rains

Photo by:  Kumaresh Rajarajan, Creative Commons Attribution Licence

Far from the beaches and tourist hotspots, the forested hinterland of the State literally comes alive during the monsoon. And amongst the most popular attractions off the beaten path are the Dudhsagar Falls. Located 60 kilometres from Panaji on NH4A, the Falls are so named for the white frothy appearance of the water here. During the monsoon, the Falls become exponentially enraged with water plummeting 1017 feet and crashing with an ear-splitting roar on the surface. Part of Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary, the Falls also attract trekkers who come here to climb through the challenging terrain to the head of the falls.

Tip: Avoid taking a dip if the waters are too thick.

Stay at a luxury resort or a quaint inn near the villages

Photo courtesy: Park Hyatt, Goa

Monsoons is the lean period in Goa (well, almost), and there’s a chance you might get a big bang for your buck at any of the luxury hotels and resorts. Drop the idea of heading out and getting all muddy, and instead just relax in the balcony of your resort, sipping on a hot cup of tea of coffee. Watching the rain pour is as relaxing as a walk on the beach in rainy months. Or even better, you could hire a villa, or stay in those quaint inns or lodges close to the villages. The picturesque surroundings of paddy fields and small streams will make it worthwhile.

Tip: Plan and book in advance.

Hit the hinterlands, ditch those adventure sports

Credit: Getty Images

Come monsoons and Goa gets painted in shades of green, hills shroud themselves in misty veils, palm trees breathe and sway with the tunes of the winds, and the smell of muddy soils intoxicate you with freshness. Rainy months in Goa might just be the best time to go explore the outre terrains of Goa, which are far away from the mainstream choices like beaches, shacks and chapels. Some lesser-traversed green havens are Mhadei Wildlife Sanctuary, Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary, Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary and Mollem National Park, Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary, Bondla Wildlife Sanctuary and Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary.

Tip: Do not forget to take your camera along (with rain covers, of course). These green covers are quite a delight for birdwatchers and photographers.

Celebrate with the locals, avoid those upscale restaurants

Credit: Getty Images

Give those fancy restaurants a miss for once and explore the local side of the state, make conversations with the natives and savour the raw flavours of Goa. Go for the famous feasts of Sao Joao in June, and Bonderam in August.



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