–By Gilbert Anthony Mendes, a marketing professional , heading the marketing team at Offtrail.in.
1) Day Trekking
Goa’s Western Ghats and Waterfalls they hide are often ignored by the tourists visiting Goa. The idea of visiting and trekking to the base of these magnificent waterfalls is a new concept and not frequented by many. The journey is tiring but fruitful and refreshing. There are very few operators who are experienced in this and we are proud to be one of them. (Available only from July to March, as the waterfalls are the best in this time with greenery all around the trails). The trek would usually last for a full 8 hours which includes meals and transporting to the place of trekking along with a qualified guide.
2) Rock Climbing / Rappelling
We in Goa are blessed with excellent rock faces which are good for introducing rock climbing to beginners, at entry level we start with Bouldering in order to get over the fear of heights and to understand the technique of climbing and then graduate to rock climbing and descend the rock face using rappelling (it is the method in which one come down the rock using a rope). A once in a lifetime experience learning the techniques of rock climbing and rappelling under the watchful eyes of qualified instructors who will be giving you a personalized learning experience with a smile. The entire journey is designed keeping in mind your safety and the equipments used are of the best quality.
Unravel the eclectic and bustling streets of Panjim and its surrounding villages through an exhilarating bicycle ride tour. Let the fascinating story of the city unfold as you pedal through the narrow bustling lanes. Pass by some of the magnificent structures that transport you to a the historical past of the city and experience the pride of the city. You can also make your way through the colourful by lanes of Fontainhas.Some of the points to be covered on this tour are Miramar Circle, Taleigao Church, St. Cruz Church, Fontainhas Bylanes, Adil Shah Palace, Panjim Church, Ferry Point, Old GMC, Kala Academy and return back to the hotel.
Enjoy the morning sunrise, marvel at the fauna of the backwaters in the evenings or choose for some moonlight kayaking (usually held on 4-8th of every month before monsoons) Spend your day paddling through the river and venture into breathtaking backwaters of Goa. Visit the bird sanctuary with the kayaks and enjoy your time photographing various species.
5) Water Sports
It’s not just Goa’s beaches that are dotted with people. You can find them up in the sky as well, screaming their lungs out! Goa’s popular beaches are filled with various beach activities like parasailing, banana boat riding, jet-skiing, etc, and water sports are definitely among the top 10 things to do in Goa. Water Sports are common on the beaches of Calangute, Baga, Miramar, Colva and so on and so forth. Be careful to choose the operator providing the highest safety standards. Some of the activities you will find on the beaches are Water Skiing, Para Sailing, Catamaran Rides, Banana Boat Rides, Dolphin Cruises, Scuba Diving/Snorkelling.
6) Spice Gardens
Spice Gardens offer a tour of the plantation, where you can learn about and taste the different spices and produce, take a cold shower, enjoy a traditional Goan lunch, and additionally get a chance to watch folk dances, swing between trees like Tarzan, and bathe and ride elephants.
7) History / Heritage / Culture
Walking through the streets of Fontainhas, Panjim will take you back to the Portuguese Era and will bring back the stories of the Portuguese to life. The fort across Panjim, Reis Magos documents the works of Mario de Miranda and showcases the historical walk through Goan Lifestyles. Gasp at the magnificent Basilica of Bom Jesus, Se de Santa Catarina, The Archeological Museum of Old Goa, The Naval Aviation Museum and Institute Menezes Braganza.
8) Shop Shop & Shop
Arpora and Anjuna are famous for their Saturday and Wednesday Nite Flea Markets respectively. Friday Market at Mapusa is famous for traditional Goan Farm Produce. The high street fashion is also picking up in cities like Panjim and Margao. Shopping for the funky takeaways will also take you to various street shops along the busy tourist bylanes of Baga, Calangute and Calangute.
9) Food and More Food…
Eating options are galore and the quality of food will never leave you complaining if you know where to head to for some amazing meals. Martins’ Corner, Mum’s Kitchen, Britto’s and Attulem Bittulem are some of the famous eat outs for Goan Traditional Foods.
10) Party Till You Drop
From shacks with karaoke, retro English, Bollywood, popular club and electronic music, to the standard bars to uber luxe lounges and nightclubs, to open air, hilltop, beachside and semi-jungle raves, Goa has something to offer for every kind of party goer. Tito’s on Baga and Hilltop at Anjuna are evergreen, but new places keep popping up and shutting down all the time, so just keep an eye out for party posters and flyers, and a ear out for hushed whispers