Who doesn’t like a holiday to Goa? The image one conjures up of Goa is the nightlife, the long stretches of coastline, picturesque sceneries, heritage homes, religious places with beautiful churches and temples and of course food. When one decides to go on a vacation to Goa, one often gets excited and isn’t informed of the rules and regulations one must follow when in the sunshine state. Travel agents are mostly involved in the business and rarely inform their customers about the dos and don’ts one needs to follow when in a place like Goa.
Here we have compiled a few important things that Travel Agents May not tell you about Goa.
Making your journey safe and enjoyable
Although Goa is a relatively safe place, compared to the rest of India, it is better to be safe than sorry. One must carry all their travel documents in a money belt around one’s waist, which can be hidden from sight. ATM cards and Traveller’s cheques are very convenient when it comes to withdrawing money and are readily exchangeable at most counters. If one is traveling by train, they shouldn’t leave their baggage unattended and can clip it to the seat to foil thieves. In the trains and buses, one shouldn’t accept food from strangers as they can be drugged. One should also carry a small laminated card mentioning one’s personal details like name, age, blood group, other medical details and a contact number in case of emergencies.
Eat your heart out while in Goa
Tourists love to eat fish while in Goa and there are plenty of Goan food outlets that give you the choice of cuisine. You should always check out the small hotels in the famous tourist spots which are more likely to provide you with some exotic and authentic Goan cuisine than the starred hotels. Many tourists staying in starred hotels prefer to eat out. You also need to be careful about drinking water available in small places. Always insist on packaged drinking water.
Cuisine in Goa consists of not only Goan but a variety ranging from Continental, Chinese, Tibetan, Indonesian, Thai, Portuguese, and even Mexican dishes. Fresh seafood dishes are probably the safest and tastiest in most small restaurants that are all over Goa.
Make your Travel in Goa a memorable one
Goa does not have a strong public transport as most of the tourism destinations across the world do and you may have to remain dependent on the cabs or rent a car. Once you land in Goa by Air, Bus or Train, you may have few choices to commute to your hotel, you may hire a cab or just download Goa Miles App on your mobile and get the taxi within no time.
While in Goa, commuting can be easy if you rent out a two or four-wheeler. Traveling within Goa is often problematic as there are no regular buses even on the village routes. The taxis do not follow meters or tariff cards and rickshaw wallahs are known for burning a hole in your pocket. Instead, one should rent a bike/four wheeler for oneself or opt for the motorcycle riders who are called as Pilots. These often tend to be much cheaper.
Traffic circulation in Goa is on the left. Keep your valid documents, driving license, passports, etc., in your possession while driving. If you are a Foreign national you must possess an International Drivers license to be able to drive. Follow Police Traffic rules strictly to avoid any mishaps.
Dress Like a Goan While in Goa but that does not what you may think
The Image of Goa is a little distorted by various media advertisements which shows Goa as a free destination where anyone can wear whatever they please, we are talking in the context of foreigners which are shown in Bikinis in most of the commercials, but they are not Goans. The Goans dress up very elegantly, while Goa is very liberal when it comes to dressing, it has the same rules and mindsets that constitute the rest of the country.
You can wear bikinis and shorts on the beach as well as in certain areas, but you have to make sure that you have something on at all times. You must also dress decently and maintain decorum inside the places of worship and religious monuments that one might visit.
You must remember to remove their shoes when visiting a shrine or the main hall of any holy shrine. When at the beach one must read signboards before entering the water and please follow the instructions contained in the signboards.
Enjoy Water Sports and other Adventure Activities in Goa
Goa is known for watersports and various other adventure sports activities and if one enjoys such kinds of sports, Goa is the best place to visit. But all these sports do not come without a certain kind of risk attached to it. So if you are parasailing or surfing, Make sure to make use of a professional instructor on, how to go about it. One should go to reputed water sports companies.
Goa has many other adventure activities that have been recently introduced by Goa Tourism and bungee jumping is one of them. If you are in Goa, you must try the bungee jumping that is available in North Goa.
Enjoying the Nightlife of Goa keeping yourself safe
Goa is meant for partying hard and enjoying the nightlife but while doing this you must make sure that you are not getting into the wrong lane or exposing yourself to any vulnerabilities. There is no dearth of alcohol and parties in Goa. One should be careful of the amount of alcohol one consumes. One shouldn’t lose their sense and get into a tiff with the locals because they won’t look upon such behavior with patience. You shouldn’t be driving when intoxicated or lying on the beach in an inebriated state and get into trouble with the police and locals as well.
Do not Shoot the things that do not belong to you
Goa is a place to take the memories back home and you must capture all the beautiful moments that you spent in Goa while making sure that you are not taking any picture that you may not be having permission to do so. People always pack a camera on vacation and now thanks to the smartphone one can picture on the go. One can capture pictures of the sunsets, beaches, and monuments but not of locals and foreigners that you have not taken the permission of. Clicking pictures of random people without their permission is both offensive and illegal.
Enjoy the Beauty of Goa but do not stare at Foreigners in Bikini
Goa is known for its serene virgin beaches and the nude hippies (that no longer a reality) but the foreigners do prefer to wear bikinis on the beaches of Goa. While you are in Goa, enjoy the beauty of it at the fullest but do not stare at the locals or foreigners, cause that may cause an unnecessary unpleasant experience at the end of the day. But that doesn’t mean that you cannot enjoy your vacation. Do what you want in the limit of a tourist and make your journey a memorable one.
Here are a few safety guidelines that you must follow while you are in Goa
- Do not swim in the sea during the monsoon. Do not take your vehicle on the beach. It is prohibited.
- Deposit all waste matter at the nearest dust bin available.
- In case you have to visit the hospital please insist on sterilized/disposable syringes and make sure that the blood is tested before transfusion.
- Pay taxis/autorickshaws by meter only or by tariff card issued by Directorate of Transport and available with the driver
- Use Sulabh Shouchalayas (Public Pay Toilets) available at most places of importance.
- Do not encourage beggars.
- Do not accept food/drink from strangers.
- Do not be coerced into shopping by touts/guides/taxi drivers or strangers.
- Do not buy articles made from rare/endangered species of animals as such articles are banned under the law.
- Do not smoke in public places/vehicles. Smoking and spitting are banned at all places of public use.
- Do not indulge in permissive sex as you run the risk of being afflicted by the disease of AIDS. This disease has no cure.