Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Goa Diaries 2 Old Goa

This time we are a large group and thanks to Shyam we have a good bus, packed lunches, and a planned route. We started at 9 in the morning and the first stop was the Basilica of Bom Jesus. This is the magnificent Portuguese church where the relic of the saint Franxis Xavier is kept. The group is let off to explore the Bom Jesus Church, the museum near by, the Cajetan church, and the viceroy's arc. People form groups and get into activities according to their tastes and inclinations. Some bought candles and went inside the churches, some decided to attend the masses, some went on a shopping spree buying junk jewelry, hats etc, Some found a shop that sells chilled beer and camped there en masse, some others like yours truly (lacking such fixed direction in life) just loafed around watching the fun and taking pictures.
Relic of St. Francis Xavier

Cajetan Church
We weren't done with divinity for the day yet. The next stop was Mangesha Temple. Most of us did a quick round of the temple and found time for some quick shopping. If you can bargain well, you can get some good deals from the shops around the temple, especially if you want souvenirs for friends and relatives.

Then we stopped for lunch, again near a wine shop. We made most of the opportunity, combining our biryanis with beers and some really great cocktails. It was at this place that someone from the group discovered the wonders of coconut and rum and generously carried some back to the guest house.

The last and the best stop of the day was Colva beach. If you want to visit Goa on a peaceful, off season trip and have plans to get into the water and have fun, the place to go is Colva beach. The beach is comparatively clean, less crowded, and beautiful. The way the waves come in and cover you and the recede the way it had come has to be experienced. It was in a shack near the beach that we discovered this really great cocktail of Coconut feni, chocolate liqueur, and pepsi. Sunset at Colva and it was stumps on day 1 of the group tour.

Setting Sun, Colva beach

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