|Things to do
Calangute has been described as the "Queen of Beaches". 16km from the
Goan Capital Panaji, the beach spreads 7km along the Arabian sea. On
the north is Baga, south is Candolim all on one glorious stretch of
sandy beach. Take a break from the parties of Anjuna to the relative
calm solitude here (for an even quieter beach head to Candolim).
It was hippies who first discovered Calangute in late 60's and then
spread the word about the beach. The 70's saw tourists from Europe
coming in large numbers. Over time the hippie culture has moved further
north but this hasn't detracted from the popularity of this beach.
Round the year tourists arrive in Calangute for a perfect escape from
their hectic schedule.
The name Calangute according to locals is a distortion of the local
vernacular word 'Koli-gutti', which means land of fishermen. Others say
it has derived from Kalyangutti meaning the village of art, and still
others say it came from the earlier name Konvallo -ghott because the
village is full of coconut trees.
At the beach
You can do what most people do, let your hair
down. Tan yourself
spreading on the beach or go swimming. Calangute is a reasonably safe
place to swim though one should keep at least three hundred meters away
from the mouth of the Baga river. Children can be seen here making
castles out of sand. Watch the sun go down as you laze on the beach.
Take a fifteen minute walk from the main beach front area and you will
come in a hawker free zone. Sights of rows of wooden boats and teams of
village fishermen hauling nets in a high tide can be seen here.
Together the sun, sand and sea set the mood for that perfect holiday.
And while at beach you will not miss hundreds of stalls of sea food.
Gorge on the prawns or the lobsters. Sea food is available in
abundance. There are options for vegetarians too.
Nightlife in Calangute is mainly concentrated towards Baga / Arpora
with numerous Night clubs open until the early hours. These include
Tito's, Club Mambo's
There are more than a dozen of water sport operators along the beach.
You can go for para sailing, water surfing, water skiing or banana and
bump rides depending upon which you find more thrilling. There are also
boat operators offering dolphin and crocodile spotting trips, island
trips and fishing expeditions.
A bazaar is held in Calangute every Saturday near to the post office
and promises good bargains. Fish, meat, grocery, textiles, pottery and
other provisions are all available in the market. There is also a
Tibetan market and Kashmiri merchants also frequent Goa with carpet,
embroidery works etc.
The Church of St. Alex celebrated its fourth centenary in 1996. This
parish church is a must see in Calangute. It has a two towers and a
magnificent white dome and ornate altars. Another local attraction is
the Kerkar Art gallery. It displays works of art and craft of local
The Anjuna Flea Market (every Wed) is close by and is well worth a
least once anyway). A taxi ride should cost about Rs250 return but
because of the traffic this can be a 45 minute ride. The best way to
visit the market is via boat - some shacks hire out their
to go the short distance round the headland to the market. The fitter
of visitors can walk from Calangute across Baga River and round the
headland (about 20 min walk) - but be aware there is some minor
climbing and scrambling to be done. All manner of clothing, carvings,
bedding, jewelery can be found at the market - just remember to haggle
hard, prices (generally) start at about three to five times more than
the vendors will really sell it to you at. Most of the goods on view
can be also purchased from the numerous road-side stalls and beach
sellers in Calangute and you may even recognise one or two sellers from
your beach. Hint, Wednesday (because of the market) is one of the
quietest days on other beaches with far fewer sellers than normal.
The history of Anjuna beach is quite young. The beach was 'discovered'
sometime in 1950's and 60's by a group of travellers and then they
began to meet here in dry season to party.
One of the biggest beaches, the vastness of Anjuna can be realized by
the fact that there is a north, a south and a middle to the beach.
While most of the hotels, bars and restaurants are in north Anjuna,
towards the middle Anjuna is Flea market and in the south is Little
Things to see and
Once in Anjuna leave your inhibitions and get into the party mood. Its
difficult to say what's the main attraction of this beach, the beach
parties, walking through the beach on moonlit night or the ever so
famous Flea market.
The Acid House Party
The party never stops on Anjuna. Its the party hard spirit that makes
Anjuna a rave venue for big parties and party animals, especially
during the Christmas and new year period. Usually the nightlife of
Anjuna centers at Shore bar which is in the middle of the beach.
The sound system here is pounding and music really funky. The night comes
alive with trance music from London. There is no dearth of
party places. All you need to do is just swing into the party mood and the fun begins.
One of the best
places to see the famous Goan sunset is Zorros in North Anjuna. A
restaurant with marvellous views set on a cliff top, just wind down and
markets at Arpora Ingo's and Mackies provide a different shopping
experience. Both markets operate from
sundown till late in the night.
They offer a variety of arts & crafts similiar to the Anjuna Flea
market, but because of the night atmosphere,
it is a more relaxing and certainly cooler way of shopping. Alongside
the market stalls, there are numerous bars, food stalls, and live
music. It is definitely more than just shopping more of a night out.