So as you may or may not know, I have just got back from a two week holiday with my boyfriend in Goa, India.
On whole, the trip was a wild combination of chaos and serenity. The first taste of chaos we encountered was the taxi ride from the airport to our hotel. The roads are hair-raising to say the least! We had at least one near miss whilst over taking another vehicle, and the roads are mostly dominated by young men riding motorbikes and scooters, wearing no protective gear whatsoever, and over/under taking at every opportunity. The terrain in Goa is dry and dusty but lush and green at the same time, with palm trees everywhere, which made for some rather beautiful photographs.
The beaches are beautiful, white sand and clear sea. We discovered Mandrem beach which was extremely quiet and very serene.
I saw a starfish for the first time, and hermit crabs too! The sea is warm and lovely to swim in.
The Indians in Goa are extremely friendly and helpful, and most speak good English too. Although everybody is trying to make money from tourists, so at some points of our holiday we were being constantly pestered by people trying to sell us jewellery, drums or other ‘handicrafts’ as they call them.
We hired a moped for 200 rupees ($3.72) a day and used that as our main mode of transport to get to the beaches and discover new restaurants and the villages and towns that surround Calangute, where we were staying. The wide range of food on offer is amazing. Two of you can eat a delicious three course meal and have drinks in a nice restuarant for less than $20 – everything is so cheap!
Mapusa market held every Friday was vibrant and bustling, with its plethora of goods on sale ranging from cauliflowers and onions to ribbon, ancient antiques to modern t-shirts. Sellers have low tables or spread sheets on the floor to lay their goods on. The textiles and fabrics on offer were tremendous – The saris and pashminas are so beautiful and the wide variety of ribbon available is fabulous. Words cannot fully express the colours, sounds and smells of the markets in India. They are something else!
The highlight of my holiday had to be riding on the back of an elephant, although every single second of my first experience of India was truly fantastic!