Goa, located on the western coast of India, is renowned for its sandy beaches, vibrant nightlife, and Portuguese heritage. While Goa attracts tourists with its popular destinations like Calangute and Baga, there are also offbeat places that offer unique experiences. Here are some offbeat places to visit in Goa:
Divar Island: Divar Island is a tranquil escape from the bustling crowds of Goa’s main tourist areas. Located in the Mandovi River, it is known for its scenic beauty, traditional Goan houses, and old-world charm. Visitors can explore the island on foot or by renting a bicycle, discovering picturesque landscapes, quaint villages, and ancient churches.
Chorla Ghat: Chorla Ghat is a picturesque mountain range located on the borders of Goa, Maharashtra, and Karnataka. It offers a serene environment, lush green forests, and stunning waterfalls. Nature enthusiasts can enjoy trekking, bird watching, and wildlife spotting in the area. The breathtaking views from the ghat make it a perfect retreat for those seeking peace and tranquility.
Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary: Situated in South Goa, Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary is a lesser-known gem that offers a rich biodiversity and a peaceful atmosphere. The sanctuary is home to diverse flora and fauna, including tigers, leopards, deer, and various bird species. Visitors can explore the lush forest trails, go on guided nature walks, and enjoy the scenic beauty of the surroundings.
Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary: Nestled in the Western Ghats, Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary is a hidden gem in South Goa. It is known for its dense forests, waterfalls, and pristine wilderness. Travelers can take nature walks, go bird watching, and spot wildlife like the Malabar giant squirrel and Indian gaur. The sanctuary also offers opportunities for trekking and exploring the enchanting Dudhsagar Waterfalls.
Tambdi Surla Temple: Located in the dense forests of the Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary, the Tambdi Surla Temple is a 12th-century temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is the oldest surviving temple in Goa and showcases beautiful intricate carvings and architecture. The surrounding lush greenery and serene atmosphere make it a perfect spot for meditation and spiritual reflection.
Chicalim and Sao Jacinto Island: Chicalim and Sao Jacinto are lesser-known islands located in the Zuari River. These islands offer a glimpse into the traditional Goan way of life and the region’s rich fishing heritage. Visitors can take boat rides, explore the local villages, witness traditional fishing techniques, and indulge in delicious seafood.
These offbeat places in Goa provide a unique perspective beyond the popular tourist spots, allowing travelers to explore the lesser-known aspects of the state’s natural beauty, cultural heritage, and serenity. Whether it’s embracing nature, delving into spirituality, or immersing in the local way of life, these destinations offer memorable experiences away from the usual tourist crowds.