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There's no doubt that Goa is the top destination of every college group and professionals looking for a break. While the beaches are the obvious choice of go-to place, there is much more to Goa than just that. With every passing day, more tourists are turning into travellers. That is to say, they want to explore the history and the cultural aspects of the place, rather than just sit at a beach all day. Although I must say, the prospect of sitting on the beach with chilled beer all day is quite appealing. Patnem beach, in particular, is one of my top choices in Goa. However, if you want to explore Goa beyond the beaches and click amazing pictures along the way, I've got a list of the most instagrammable spots in Goa!!
Fontainhas - The Old Latin Quarters of Goa
Fontainhas is a colorful neighborhood in Panaji city. In fact, it is the old Latin quarter where the Portuguese rulers were once settled. Once upon a time, Old Goa used to be the capital city of Goa. An epidemic disease drove the rules away from Old Goa and brought them to Panaji city. It's here in Fontainhas that an unplanned colourful neighborhood sprung up immediately. The Portuguese have left behind their legacy in the tiny lanes dotted with colorful houses and fascinating staircases. While it's possible to spend an entire day here, try to spare atleast a couple of hours to explore this neighborhood. Not only will you catch a glimpse of Portuguese architecture, but you will also change upon some great cafes and restaurants in this area. It's close proximity to Panaji city makes it the perfect destination for your next Instagram shoot!
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Meet me on the street ? If you've followed my stories, you'll know that I'm a massive fan of colourful, vibrant streets, like the ones in Fontainhas - Goa. I never tire of rambling in the lanes, imagining what they looked like 200 years ago and gleefully clapping at the myriad of colours all around me. Do vivid lanes appeal to you too? #Fontainhas #ColorfulStreets #VibrantStreets #LatinQuarter #Panaji #Panjim #PanjimCity #Travelista #GoaDiaries #GoaBlogger #Goa #SheIsNotLost #FemaleTravelBloggers #GirlsLoveTravel #GirlsThatWander #TravelinLadies #YogasiniTravels #LeagueTravels #DameTraveller #SheTravels #TravelGirl #PassionPassport #CnTravellerIndia #NatGeoTravellerIndia #TheSpicyJourney
Our Lady of Piety Church, Divar Island
Divar Island is a sleepy little island tucked away in the Mandovi River. It is located roughly 5 km from the Panaji bus stand. This island has been untouched by time and the people of this island have ensured that organisation doesn't take away the charm of the island. To reach Divar island, get on the road to Old Goa via Ribander. After 5 km you will come across a ferry terminal near the Gene Garden restaurant. From here, a leisurely ferry ride will take you to the island. Once you reach the island, walk or ride across the empty road along the open fields and a solitary village. The church, in the picture above, is located on a hillock at the end of this village. From the church, you will get a clear view of the island, Old Goa and some of Panaji city. Divar island is one my favorite offbeat places to visit in Goa. It's not one to be missed !
Sunaparanta Art Gallery
Sunaparanta Art Gallery is a part of the famed Cafe Bodega. Both of these are located in a quaint Portuguese bungalow in the plush neighborhood of Altinho, Panaji. The decor of this place automatically takes you back a few years to a more peaceful time. There's an old-world charm about this art gallery. Whether it's the subtle floral decor, or the tranquility of the neighborhood, Sunaparanta manages to exude a whole lot of charm. Moreover, it has a wonderful cafe where you can sit back, enjoy a delicious red velvet cake and spend the afternoon dreaming of the 80's.
Do note that DSLR photography requires prior permission from the management. However, you're free to click pictures from your mobile, without any hindrance.
Purple Martini at Sunset Point, Anjuna
It should come as no surprise that Goa has an abundance of Instagram worthy cafes and restaurants. Whether you're looking for a bohemian vibe or an artsy place, whether you want to experience a Portuguese bungalow or a hip joint to hangout with friends, Goa has every kind of eatery. Purple Martini is one such restaurant that has many charms. Firstly, it's located in the ever-buzzing neighbourhood of Anjuna, that too right on the beach. Secondly, you get front row seats to the most epic sunsets in Goa whilst indulging in drinks and food. Make sure to snap some pictures of this gorgeous place for the gram.
Eva Cafe, Anjuna
Eva cafe, located in Anjuna is the perfect blend of the Greek island Santorini with bohemia. Here, you can expect white washed walls, lace and burlap mats, dream catchers, seashells and views of the ocean. It's the perfect place to bring along a loved one, have the gentle winds tease you and watch the sun go down together. Naturally, it's also a cafe where you can get stunning pictures of the food as well as the ocean views. It's a must-visit instagrammable cafe in Goa!
There can't be a article on the most instagrammable places in Goa without mentioning Parra. This road shot to popularity after being featured in the Bollywood movie Dear Zindagi. To reach here just search for 'Parra chapel' or 'Dear Zindagi road' on google and you should be able to find it with ease. It's located quite close to the Anjuna neighbourhood. P.S. You can find more recommendations like this on my instagram profile @thespicyjourney.
St Cajetan Church in Old Goa
St Cajetan Church is one of the hidden gems in Goa. While it's located just a few meters from the Old Goa Church, it's hidden from plain sight and hence unknown to most people. If you're paying a visit to the Old Goa attractions, make sure to include this one in your list. Old Goa is just a short 20 minute drive away from Panjim city and thus can easily be covered in a half a day's trip.
Mangrove Boardwalk Panjim
The mangrove boardwalk is another gem in the city which was created as a recreational space. It's located equidistant from the Panjim bus stand as well as the vibrant neighbourhood of Fontainhas. Apart from being a soothing space to relax, it gives an insight into the world of mangroves, which is quite fascinating. Visit this place while making a trip to the top Panjim attractions.
Cabo de Rama Beach
My love for Cabo de Rama beach runs so deep that I dedicated an entire article to it. Read the post on Cabo de Rama Beach Goa and why it's perfect for a picnic. This beach is located in South Goa, close to Cavelosim and Agonda beaches. The cliff houses two indulgent restaurants, my favourite being The Cape. A short flight of steps from the cliff lead to the pristine Cabo de Rama beach. Take a look at this handy guide on all the South Goa beaches.
Art Resort Palolem
Art Resort or Art Prive is a striking resort located right on Palolem beach in South Goa. While the spacious rooms overlooking the ocean are inviting enough, it's the cafe that seals the deal for me. The cafe has two sections - an open air seating, shown in the picture above and a seating area with a roof over it. The second seating area is just as appealing as the outdoor one - complete with a wall full of exquisite art work and a breezy table setting. Not to mention that Palolem is one of the most happening places in South Goa. This cafe is a must-visit for any instagram buff!
Vagator is one of the best and most popular beaches in North Goa. The Vagator area is home to some of the best restaurants, cafes, nightlife and scenery. Some of the popular attractions in Vagator are the Vagator beach, the hilltop view and Chapora Fort (which was made famous by the Bollywood movie Dil Chahta Hai). Make sure to watch the sunset from any of these spots overlooking the ocean!
Reis Magos Fort
Standing proudly on the bank of the Mandovi river, Reis Magos fort is a 16th century fort facing Panaji city. While the fort itself isn't as grand as you would expect it to be, it has a unique layout which is perfectly captured in photographs. Spiral stairways, stone pathways and little wooden balconies will make the perfect props for you pictures! Moreover, you will get unobstructed views of the expansive ocean and the Panaji city from the top of the fort. My favorite spot at Reis Magos fort was the spiral staircase at the corner of two walls blanketed with greenery. The fort is located 18 km from Panaji bus stand, on the opposite bank of the Mandovi river.