Goa in the Monsoon

By Somali K Chakrabarti

Winter is generally the preferred season for tourists to visit Goa. Monsoon, on the other hand is the “off season” for tourists in Goa. Nonetheless, it is also the season when you can enjoy moving around the places of interest at leisure, without finding yourself in a sea of people all around you.

So here I am in Goa on a short trip, enjoying the monsoon. The rain this year in Goa has been sparse though. It wasn’t raining on Sunday morning. We decided to go to old Goa.

Goa has an interesting amalgamation of east and west, ancient and modern, beaches and hills. There is a bit of everything for everyone it appears. On one hand you find casinos and clubs, on the other you find a number of churches and temples. It is a small quaint state and yet there is something very lively about Goa.

The greenery on both sides of the road is refreshing. On the way many old bungalows can be seen with slanted roofs, pillared porches, inner courtyards and gardens outside.

old Goa

 

Portuguese Influence

Having remained under the Portuguese control till 1961 (yes even after India became independent from the British Rule in 1947), the cultural influence of Portugal is evident in its architecture, particularly in its churches and in the old houses.

Portugese Church

One of the oldest churches in Goa and in India is the Basilica of Bom Jesus. Constructed in 1605, the ancient church situated in old Goa, is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The relics of St Francisco, who was known to have miraculous healing powers, are preserved in the church.

Decorated Gate - Basilica Goa

Basilica of Bom Jesus, Goa

Relics of St Francisco

 

Across the road stands the Archeological Survey of India Museum, a white building standing surrounded by carpet of greenery.  We are caught in a sudden downpour but manage to quickly enter the new church next to the Museum.

 

Temples in Old Goa

On the way we see the Tirupathi Balaji Temple.

Tirupati Balaji Temple, Old Goa

Tirupati Balaji Temple, Old Goa

 

We stop at the Mangeshi Temple, dedicated to Bhagavan Mangesh, an incarnation of Shiva. The temple is visited by a number of people throughout the year.

Mangeshi Temple

Mangeshi Temple, Old Goa

 

Spice Garden

Next we head towards the Spice Garden.  Spices have since long attracted people from all over the world to India.

The Sahakari Spice Garden promotes the concept of Eco – Tourism. Spread over an area of 130 acres, the plantation surrounded by a lake grows a variety of spices and herbs.

On entry we are served a glass of lemon grass ginger tea before we head for a guided tour. Our tour guide is a young girl, with an extensive knowledge of herbs, spices and plantations.

She introduces us to various spices and herbs. We see the Arabia coffee plants, cardamom, cloves, pepper, cinnamon, lemon grass, bettle nut palms, Potuguese chilli (called Piri Piri), nutmeg, turmeric and Vanilla. She explains the medicinal properties of the herbs and their various uses.

Piri piri, Portuguese chilli

Piri piri, Portuguese chilli

Turmeric plant, Spice Garden , Goa

Turmeric plant

We get to know how Feni (the famed Goan liquor ) is extracted and prepared from cashew pods.

As the tour ends we freshen up with a little amount of Feni in a shot glass followed by a buffet lunch. We move out recharged and refreshed.

More on Goa later…

Here’s the second part of the travelogue – Going around Goa

Please like, share and/or leave feedback in comments below! :P

 

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Readers Comments (72)

  1. Nice post… bought back the memories for me when I visited Goa in Monsoon… I love Goa in monsoon as it is quiet and beautiful… By the way did you get to see the much talked about crocodile that came to shore of Morijim beach… 🙂

    Reply
  2. Thats nice description. Close to my heart

    Reply
  3. Love the first shot and “Relics of St Francisco” shot so much.Great post.Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  4. there is no place like GOA in India. period.

    Enjoy your stay Somali 🙂 TC

    Reply
  5. I always want to visit this place.. I wish if someday I can..

    Reply
  6. Beautiful pictures Somali, have a good time. I was in Lisbon a month back and all i kept thinking is that oh its so much like Goa 🙂 🙂 ofcourse Goa was a Portuguese colony then 🙂 Monsoon and Goa also reminds me of an event I handled in Leela Goa and most speakers were late or didn’t turn up as the flights were cancelled…embarrassing times 🙁

    Reply
    • Thank you Shweta. Such sweet- sour moments remain in our memory.Another thing about Goa is the present Russian influence, which is reflected in the hotel menu’s that are printed in both Russian and in English. 🙂

      Reply
  7. Lovely pictures and description.. It seems weather is amazing there.. have a nice time enjoying the monsoon. 🙂

    Reply
  8. bhudeb chakrabarti July 20, 2015 @ 6:03 pm

    I found the description of Goa and the illustration of the places by the photographs
    in your post “Goa in Monsoon ” excellent .I visited Goa during the “Exposition of St.Francis Xavier the Patron Saint of Goa in November 1974 -January 1975 .I have not visited Goa after that .After reading your post I have decided to visit Goa in the monsoon .Congratulations for the lovely post and looking forward to the second part of your travelogue .

    Reply
  9. Beautiful pictures…Goa is indeed a place where oriental meets occidental… It’s been in my list for a loooong time…

    Your post just ignited the desire to visit Goa, preferably in monsoon… 🙂

    Reply
  10. Lovely pictures. Goa is beautiful in any season. 🙂

    Reply
  11. I am yet to visit the spice garden. Great pics all.

    Reply
  12. Beautiful pictures.

    Reply
  13. Goa beyond the beaches is also so fascinating!

    Reply
  14. I really wish to go to Goa in the monsoons someday. A lovely account of the place, dear. Thanks for the vivid information 🙂

    Reply
  15. Lovely pictures and description. 🙂 Beautiful insight of Goa! ^_^

    Reply
  16. Wow, picture perfect !! Goa <3 I love it… amazing pics 🙂 so beautiful…

    Reply
  17. Beautiful captures, Somali. Goa is indeed fascinating in Monsoons too. Recently, I was reading the adventurous Goa Monsoon trip on Nisha’s blog. It was thrill, reading the post. Hope you too enjoyed a lot! 🙂

    Reply
    • Thank you Ravisha, I am yet to read Nisha’s post on Goa, but intend to do so today, Yes the trip was short but very enjoyable. We got to know a lot about the local traditions, culture, folklore, news and places of interest, courtesy the person who took us around. 🙂

      Reply
  18. Very nice one Somali. Goa sounds so enjoyable in the rains, would never have known. Must visit in this season

    Reply
  19. Nice.. very nice.. photo blog.

    Reply
  20. Lovely. Goa is amazing in monsoons, there is a completely different charm to it. Thanks for sharing.

    Ami@ http://thrillingtravel.blogspot.in/

    Reply
  21. Archana Kapoor July 21, 2015 @ 5:34 pm

    i’ve been to Goa in the summers also and like it equally… it’s an amazing place… but ofcourse Goa in the monsoons just takes the cake! 🙂 Nice pictures Somali 🙂

    Reply
  22. Goa.. It’s forever a different Tourist Place.. Especially during the rainy Season.. Your Post takes me back to year 2005 when I had to visit the Place a few times on my Official Visits..Thanks for sharing such a nice Post, Somali!

    Reply
  23. Beautiful views of Goa in Mansoon.

    Reply
  24. Although I have been to goa a few times, I have always missed out on the cultural aspect. The portugese presence and the rich history certainly adds a lot of flavour to it. I really liked the architectural front and their influence on it. And the greenery sure speaks for itself.

    Reply
  25. There is so much to do in Goa than beaches. Thanks for sharing, Somali. 🙂

    Reply
  26. Incidentally I also wrote a post on Goa in monsoon recently. Goa beyond beaches is equally wonderful. 🙂

    Reply
  27. I so want to visit this spice garden…sounds very interesting. Lovely clicks, Somali.

    Reply
  28. Lovely pictures and description. Goa is my favorite holiday destination. I have visited it many times and prefer off-season as well.

    Reply
  29. Our coastal areas are so beautiful in the Monsoons. Last year we visited a coastal town in Kerala — in the monsoon — and just spent a day chilling with friends and another just watching the rain and taking in the greenery. The off-season charm.

    Nice post, Somali. It clearly tell one that Goa is much more than just its beaches.

    Reply
    • True D. Our coastal places are so beautiful and so are the mountains in the north, Not without reason they call Kerala – God’s own country..and yes Goa is beaches and more. Better infrastructure for tourists can really give a big boost to tourism.

      Reply
  30. I’d love to visit Goa during the off-season! Plus, anywhere during the monsoons sounds good to me! 😀

    Reply
  31. I remember few years back, it was off season in Goa during Monsoon. In last three years things have changed dramatically. Now its a packed season in Monsoon too. Thanks to monsoon offers by hotels now Indians rule the tourists in monsoon season. And yes Goa looks amazing in this season.

    Reply
  32. Sarbani Chowdhury July 23, 2015 @ 12:27 pm

    Nice post with beautiful pics.
    went down memory lane when we had visited Goa with our six months old daughter but during summers.

    Your post motivated us to visit Goa again bt this time in monsoon.
    Congratulations! !!!

    Reply
  33. The elephant shower at spice gardens is amazing. Thank you for following me Somali

    Reply
  34. Beautiful post. Reminds me of my last trip where I loved staying at Conacona in South Goa, not far away from Palolem. So serene to be surrounded by greenery and village set up.

    Reply

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