5 Offbeat Things To Do in Goa During Monsoons
This post is on 5 offbeat things to do in Goa during monsoons. Next time let not the monsoons dampen your holiday spirits, because Goa has spruced itself up to welcome tourists in monsoons.
Rain clouds come floating in Goa during monsoons ushering a new adventure spirit! I discovered just that during my recent tour of Goa experiencing its peak monsoons. Rains no longer dampen the party spirit, nor there is any dearth of places to visit in Goa. I am excluding the customary places to go in Goa and mentioning unique offbeat things to do in Goa during monsoons.
5 Offbeat Things to do in Goa during monsoons.
1. Festivals of Goa
There are several unique traditional festivals that dot the months June to September. These colorful festivals are accompanied by feasting, singing and dancing. I am mentioning not the regular festivals celebrated throughout India, but those unique ones that can be included in off beat things to do in Goa during monsoons only. I recently witnessed the Cucumber Festival of Goa held on last Sunday of July. The celebrations, decorations, sale of cucumbers, and offerings at St Anne’s feet are grand scenes to witness. Even Hindu families lined up to offer cucumbers at deity’s feet. It was so evident that people of Goa love their festivals and participate wholeheartedly in celebrations.
Here is the monsoon festival calendar in brief:
- In June you can celebrate Sao Joao festival on 24th and Ponsachem Fest, which is a jackfruit festival. Sao Jaoa Festival is dedicated to St. John the Baptist. You will be tempted to jump into wells and ponds there just as the locals do during the festival. Witness their colorful boat races in Siolim North Goa during this festival. The third festival Sangodd festival is a feast of St. Peter and St. Paul. Feast of Sangodd Festival will thrill you to core.
- July has two fun festivals; Chikhal Kalo on 2nd, a fun and amusing mud bath monsoon festival. And Cucumber Festival on last Sunday of July.
- Come next August to witness Nag Panchami Festival (venerating Snake God.) and Vasco Saptah on 8th. Along with Independence Day celebrations on 15th August, people of Goa celebrate Patolleanchem Feast. It is the feast of the Assumption of Our Lady organized in various churches. Then there is Gokul asthami (check the date) and Bonderam Festival on 4th Saturday of August.
- Ganesh Chaturthi and World Tourism Day is celebrated in September.
Goa is no more a disappointment for outdoor enthusiasts and adventure lovers. A number of well meaning ‘to do’ activities has come up in Goa. During monsoons Goa becomes a happening destination! More thrilling and more exciting! I participated in river rafting activities there in July when Mhadei River was filled to brim. It is a lifetime memorable experience for me. The river rafting activities are absolutely safe and experienced people conduct these tours. Since this is only a ‘16 weeks’ activity you will have to book your dates and time slots to avoid disappointments. In addition to that you can go trekking and touring spice plantations if you are a nature lover. Goa is green then! The spice plantation tour at Tropical Spice plantation has package kind of deals which includes lunch before or after the tour.
3. Offbeat places to stay indoors in Goa
For Indoor lovers there are several monuments of historic importance. Museums are the best places to go when rains come lashing mercilessly! Goa is home to several museums, among them some are very unique. The museum of traditional houses of Goa is one such must visit unique museum. It is a good small museum, very useful for people who wish to know more about old Goan styles. Architect Gerard da Cunha deserves the whole credit of making this museum of traditional houses of Goa. The museum has 2 floors dedicated to building related materials. It also explains how the present day house designs have evolved from Indo-Portuguese designs. If you are traveling with children be sure to include this museum in your list of offbeat things to do in Goa during monsoons.
Other interesting museums worth visiting are:
- The Indian Customs and Central Excise Museum showcasing evolution of the Indian Customs and Central Excise from ancient times, its modernization and relevance today for revenue generation.
- Museum of Goa is the largest contemporary art space in Goa, with galleries, a sculpture garden, a café, a museum store and an auditorium.
- Mario Miranda’s art work in Reis Magos fort.
4. Dining in Night Cruise
If closed shacks on seashores are a disappointment to you then I suggest you experience the dinner cruise organized by GTDC. It is a 2 hour cruise along Rvier Mandovi starting from the jetty in the Santa Monica. I am lucky to have experienced this night cruise too. On board there was troupe of talented local artists entertaining us with traditional folk dances of Goa like dekhni and fugdi. In between their performances they cajoled and encouraged participation of the guests on board. Hats off to their party spirit! Meanwhile we, the onlookers, got continuous supply of refreshments. They served dinner buffet in the lower deck. Everything was timed so well that by the time everyone finished their dinner we were back at Santa Marina jetty where we started. This cruise is worth an experience if you are in Goa and very much doable during monsoons.
Opening time of Dinner Cruise: Wednesdays and Saturdays 8.30PM.
Tariff for Night Cruise: Rs.650 for adults and Rs. 300 for children between 5 to 12 years of age.
5. Off Season Rates for Lodging
One more off beat thing you can do which you may not do normally is go stay in some beach facing luxury hotels of Goa. The monsoon rates are tempting. I stayed in Panjim Residency and their monsoon tariff is comparatively low for the monsoon months, from June to September. Some of the 5 star luxury hotels slash their price to almost 50%. A good study can yield you very good stay options at cheap rates. You can even hire vehicles too at very low rates. Once lodging is taken care of rest of the tour becomes a breeze! So, go enjoy Goa in monsoons!
The ones mentioned here are some of the offbeat things to do in Goa during monsoons. Do let me know in your comments which of these you liked best and intend to do if you visit Goa.
I visited Goa during July 2016 on invite from Goa Tourism.
My sincere thanks to Goa Tourism for hosting me for this FAM trip of Goa in Monsoons!