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This article lists the 11 reasons to visit and best things to do in Goa in the monsoon season.
Goa is a favorite beach destination – for backpackers, honeymooners as well as for families. However, almost everyone wants to visit Goa during the peak tourist season – which is from the months of October to March. This is the time when there is ample sunshine, parties, music festivals and what not. December is a great time to have a Goa trip. That being said, Goa in monsoon is a delightful place and there are a large number of things to do in Goa during the monsoon. This guide to visiting Goa in the rainy season lists all the best things to do in Goa in the monsoon season – i.e. in mid-June, July, August and mid-September.
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Goa Weather in Monsoon
The start of the monsoon in Goa is unpredictable – it could begin at the end of May or as late as the end of June. That being said, most beach shacks close by mid-April since they expect it to start raining anytime.
Thus mid-April to mid-September is the monsoon season or the “off” season in Goa. This is when there are fewer tourists, empty beaches, lush greenery and overall pleasant climate.
On the other hand, October-March is the “high” season or tourist season in Goa. During this time, the weather is dry with almost no chance of rains, there are plenty of music festivals and events taking place, not to mention Christmas and New Year celebrations.
How to Reach Goa during Monsoon Season
Because Goa is the most popular tourist destination in India and is also well-known in the world, reaching Goa in monsoon or in any other season, for that matter, is super simple.
Flights to Goa
There are lots of domestic as well as international flights to and from Goa. The Goa International Airport is located at Dabolim in South Goa. The airport is located at approximately a 1.5 hour drive from both North as well as South Goa. On the other hand, the new airport at Mopa is a lot closer to North Goa but it will take atleast 2.5 hours to get to South Goa from here.
Railway Stations in Goa
There are 3 main railway stations in Goa. Margao or Madgaon railway station is located in South Goa which is closer to places like Palolem and Colva. This is also the biggest station in Goa. All major trains stop here for sure.
Vasco-da-Gama railway station is closer to the airport and is equi-distant to both North and South Goa. Even though Vasco station isn’t as big as Margao, it is still a major railway station in Goa.
Finally, Thivim railway station is located in North Goa, close to Panaji city and Old Goa but is a smaller one and not all trains stop here.
Keep in mind that there is only one track for the Konkan railway which gets disrupted often during the monsoon due to heavy rains and landslides in the ghats. Therefore you should preferably travel by road if you live near Goa or be prepared for your monsoon trip to Goa to be abruptly delayed or canceled due to the trains.
Reaching Goa by Road
Traveling to Goa by road is a popular and scenic way of reaching Goa in monsoon. The ghats along the way look misty and magical during the monsoon showers, though one must be wary of slippery roads and occasional road blockages due to rain storms and the subsequent falling of trees and branches etc. Nevertheless, a lot of people from nearby places rent cars or get their own cars and drive down to Goa.
11 Reasons & Places to Visit in Goa in Monsoon
Quite naturally, one of the best things to do in Goa in monsoon is to enjoy the greenery all around. Due to the rains, the sky has almost no dust, everything looks clear and the rain makes all the plants and trees show off their natural lush greenery. If you’re a nature enthusiast like me, you’ll find joy in riding a scooty in the tiny lanes of Goa, smiling at the greenery and taking in the smell of wet mud in the rains.
2. River Rafting
When you hear the term river rafting in India, you probably imagine the wild waters of Manali or the Ganges in Rishikesh, with a stunning mountain background. Although, did you know that river rafting is actually rampant in certain parts of Goa too? You can find river rafting set-ups on the Mhadei river when you go close to the Mhadei wildlife sanctuary region. If you feel more adventurous, drive over to Dandeli for a fun day tour.
3. No Crowd
A popular place like Goa has SO many tourists that sometimes it’s impossible to find a place to stand on the beach (I’m talking about you – Baga and Colva). So having Goa all to yourself to enjoy the peace and quiet without the crowds seems like an impossible wish. Therefore, you must visit Goa in monsoon to have the beaches all to yourself, without the noise, the swarm of tourists and the partying youngsters.
4. Local Life
Let’s be honest – you’ve had thoughts about how it would feel if you just moved to Goa for a bit – even if it was just a couple of weeks. That would certainly be so friggin awesome!! If you’re one who wants to get a taste of the susegad Goan lifestyle then you should consider moving to Goa during the monsoon season. This is when you will be able to see paddy fields as you ride your yellow vespa scooter, eat a fish thali for lunch at a local eatery, take long walks on the beach in the evening and breathe fresh, clean air – far away from the fast city life.
Because monsoon is the “off” or the rainy season in Goa when there are not many people visiting, the hotels, restaurants and activitiy prices are incredibly low compared to the high tourist season in Goa. Prices of hotels in Goa in the monsoon season are almost half of what they usually are during the tourist season. The only downside is that a lot of beach shacks are closed during this time because they are temporary constructions that are dismantled during the rains. But proper hotels and resorts remain open and are priced lower during the monsoon season in Goa.
6. Empty Beaches
Have you ever stepped onto Baga beach, Calangute beach or Colva beach during the peak tourist season? The beaches in Goa are jam packed with people – families, couples and groups of friends, all looking to have a great time, drink and party. While all this is great, for some of us who prefer peace and quiet to read a book or spend quality time at the beach, the crowded beaches can be a nuisance. With this in mind, if you fall into the latter category like me i.e you love having an empty beach to yourself, dance around in the rain, and run with the wind, you’ll love visiting the beaches of Goa in the monsoon season.
If you stay in Maharashtra or Karnataka, then you must drive to Goa during the monsoon! There’s nothing more enchanting than driving through misty green ghats while the rain comes pouring down and the smell of roadside chai and maggi. Oh what a perfect road trip that would be! What’s even better is that this road trip would lead you to Goa!! The roads leading to Goa from both Maharashtra and Karnataka are equally beautiful and exciting. However, be wary of occasional landslides during the rainy season.
8. Road Trips
Continuing from the previous section, taking road trips to Goa during the monsoon has its own charm. Since I already live in Goa, my family loves driving down to Gokarna, a temple town in Karnataka and Mahabaleshwar, which is also a tiny temple town located close-by, to take in the thriving greenery and have a family weekend together. If you live in Goa, you can take such a road trip to a nearby town. And if you live out of Goa, then you must drive here if you have a few extra days and want to try something offbeat! The drive will take you through Canacona in South Goa to Karwar in Karnataka and then to Gokarna. Additionally, you can drive just a little further to Mahaballeshwar – another small beachside temple town.
Goa has lots of waterfalls, with the famous ones being Dudhsagar waterfall, Netravali waterfall, Surla waterfall etc. However, what most tourists aren’t aware of is that during the monsoon season in Goa, lots of tiny springs and waterfalls get active due to the heavy rainfall. Often these water bodies require a bit of trek or hike and they may not be easy to find. But that is what makes them even more special. So during your next Goa visit during monsoon, make it a point to discover at least one such waterfall and have a great day out bathing in it.
While Goa is known for the popular music festivals and events such as Sunburn, Rider Mania etc. that are held in the months of November and December, there are actually some local festivals that are celebrated by Goans during the monsoon season. One such festival, called Sao Joao, is celebrated by the Goan catholic community in the month of June. Locals celebrate this festival by wearing crowns made up of leaves and flowers, singing traditional folk songs and leaping into wells or water bodies. Even though the festival is celebrated by the catholic community, these days it has gained more popularity among the Goan youth of all faiths who hold pool parties, dance and celebrate on this occasion.
11. Offbeat Places
Generally speaking, there are a huge number of offbeat places to visit in Goa. However, in recent times, more and more travelers have been trying to explore these offbeat gems. Thus even these hidden spots in Goa are starting to see a lot of visitors. And so the only way that you can find these offbeat places without a rush is during the rainy season in Goa.
While I’ve written a few blog posts to help you find some of the lesser known spots, I still haven’t disclosed the locations of the best ones because I believe that one needs to enjoy the thrill of discovering these places by themselves and that if they are freely open for anyone to visit, they’d get commercialized and littered, just like any other famous tourist spot in Goa. So go offbeat in Goa during the monsoon and discover some secret spots of your own!
Cons of Visiting Goa during Monsoon
The weather in Goa during monsoon season may get rough at times, with really strong winds and rains that go on for multiple days at a stretch. This results in a multitude of problems such as water-logging which is quite common in Panaji city. Additionally, the hilly regions and the ghats experience landslides on a minor or major scale at times. This results in road and rail services being disrupted.
Another major and frequent problem caused by the unpredictable weather in Goa during the rainy season are the frequent power cuts. The government cuts power supply before the monsoon for “monsoon maintenance work”. But in spite of that every year, the power gets disrupted on a regular basis every time it rains, even if it just drizzles! So if you’re a remote worker who’s shifting their base to Goa, this is a crucial factor that you’ll have to keep in mind during the monsoon season.
Because not many people flock to Goa during monsoon, it can get quite lonely if you’re a solo traveler, hoping to meet other fellow solo travelers. Moreover, beach shacks get dismantled, fewer restaurants are open and there aren’t many events happening so it gets hard to meet other people during this time of the year in Goa.
The beaches in Goa during monsoon can be a risky place to visit. Due to the strong winds, the ocean water gets really rough and there are numerous cases of tourists drowning reported each year during the monsoon unfortunately. Even if you visit the beaches during the monsoon, adhere to the safety guidelines, listen to the life guards and for God’s sake, don’t take selfies in or around dangerous areas!!!
Where to Stay in Goa During the Monsoon?
During the monsoon season in Goa, you won’t be able to stay at the beaches since beach shacks don’t operate from mid-April to October. However, you can book a stay at other hotels and resorts in Goa. Goa has countless options of places to stay so you won’t find any problems in booking a stay for yourself. Use the link below to see all options of places to stay in Goa during monsoon.
You can also take a look at this list of the 23 best hostels in Goa.
Where to Eat in Goa in the Rainy Season?
If you will be staying in North Goa, you might wanna checkout my blog post on the best restaurants in North Goa and this list of restaurants and cafes in Panaji city. Even though the beach shacks will be closed during the rainy season in Goa, other restaurants and cafes will still be open.
Heading on a Trip to Goa?
If you’re heading to Goa for a trip then checkout some of my travel blog posts on Goa. Each post opens in a new tab.
- North Goa vs South Goa – Detailed Comparison
- 13 Best Beaches in North Goa
- Guide to All the Old Goa Attractions
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