The diversity and the natural charm of attracting a variety of travelers and tourists is one of the best things about Goa, but it can also be hard to decide where to go and where to stay in Goa. For each beach area and for all budgets we have put together a basic guide to the best places to stay in Goa.
Goa is more than 101 km long with tropical beaches and each beach and Goa area has a different atmosphere that attracts travelers.
There’s a place to stay in Goa to suit all budgets and types of travelers. From luxurious, glamorous resorts to basic beach huts, sociable and fun backpacker hostels, modern family-friendly hotels, luxury villas, yoga retreats, Portuguese mansions, and heritage hotels.
Where to Stay in Goa: North Goa or South Goa?
The first thing that you will have to decide is what part of Goa you want to be based at. South Goa is generally a quiet place that is less developed, and North Goa is where all the parties, markets, and where all the action is.
Luxury tourists and guests who want to relax and get away from all the noise and hustle-bustle are usually heading to South Goa’s where it is peaceful, less crowded, and a whole lot cleaner. North Goa is more busy and popular, as the best of nightlife, markets, restaurants, and entertainment is here. In North Goa, there is a wide selection of lodging and dining options for all budgets.
The best beaches in North Goa
Baga or Calangute, with its vast range of nightlife, hotels, restaurants, and close proximity to the famous Saturday night market, make up the most popular and busiest destinations for Goa. Candolim and Sinquerim have much to offer, but they are a lot more upmarket.
The main areas that gather backpackers and hippies are Anjuna, Vagator, and Arambol. Home for the famous flea market held on Wednesday and psytrance parties is Anjuna. Arambol houses many yoga and alternative therapies, and every night during the season it features a hippy sunset market along with drum circles on the beach. The widest, quietest beaches in North Goa are Morjim, Mandrem, and Ashvem.
Goa’s pleasant, Portuguese-influenced capital is Panjim (Panaji) situated in the center of Goa. You won’t want to go there only for the beach, but you can spend some time exploring the old Portuguese quarters, exploring Old Goa and its temples, spice plantations, or the wildlife reservoirs found in Central Goa
The Best Beaches in South Goa
Goa’s most uncluttered, almost empty beaches can be found in South Goa. The Arrosim-Cavelossim area is mainly a luxury village filled with numerous starred resorts, but Colva and Benaulim are busier and a lot more affordable. Palolem is probably the most beautiful of the many beaches in Goa featuring many colorful basic beach huts for the budget travelers, along with the neighboring beaches of Patem and Agonda.
The Best Places to Stay in Goa – for all budgets
So now, you have a better idea of where to stay in Goa, all the recommendations on the best places to stay in Goa are here. The prices vary significantly according to the season, you can check the dates online.
You can find basic and cheap accommodation from 500 rupees if you’re on a tight budget but most of these can’t yet be booked online –you will have to show up and wander around. This is not a good idea in peak season though when prices are rising and nearly everything is packed.
If you are planning a long stay, check-in for the first few days in a hotel and then explore the surrounding area and find ‘house to rent’ signs which are posted almost everywhere along the residential stretch of the beach belt.
Best Places to Stay in North Goa
Best Places to Stay in Baga, Calangute, Candolim and Sinquerim.
The most famous and busiest beaches of Goa are the beaches of Baga, Candolim, and Sinquerim. The beaches are wide, golden sandy with numerous beach shacks and sunbeds, the water is good to swim in and there are many watersports to enjoy. Calangute is known as “the Queen of Beaches.”
The resorts blend together and offer a wide variety of stay options, for every kind and budget, beach shacks and restaurants serving food from around the world, live music bars, and nightclubs (including the famous Titos Lane in Baga), and near a lively Saturday night market in Arpora. The resorts offer you the best choice of everything.
Candolim and Sinquerim are much more upmarket and less crowded than Baga and Calangute with starred hotels, luxury villa, resorts, restaurants, and shops.
Best Places to Stay in South Goa
South Goa is probably home to some of the most serene beaches in Goa, as the busy, more famous beaches in the north are much quieter and cleaner. South Goa beaches are full of empty spaces of sand, stunning and peaceful resorts, and happy yoga retreats instead of the endless night-long beach parties.
Best places to stay in Arossim, Utorda, Majorda, Betalbatim
Arossim and Cansaulim, Utorda, Majorda, and Betalbatim are the ideal places to relax, hit the beach, read a book and just take it easy for a few days, or alternatively check-in into some of the best luxury resorts offering numerous luxury comforts.