22 hours later we got to Goa where we were met straight away by our driver (can I just say that the service we received was amazing. it was our first time booking through Southhall travel, and they did not dissappoint)
We got to our Hotel -Novotel Goa (Candolim) and were taken straight up to our room. With the boys being older we now get two adjoining rooms so that we can all have our own space. Hotel wise, we were not disappointed. It was a really nice clean hotel and the staff were attuned to our every needs.
Already we knew we were in a different place to our usual destination. There were Indians everywhere. It was a matter of spot the foreigner here, and we were only spotted because of our dressing.
So how did we spend our day here?
We woke up at 1 in the afternoon- our time at home being 8.30 am- Our internal clocks still tuned to British timing. Also the jet lagg is still seeping through our bodies.
We only have 4 days and we needed to make the most of it, and that we did.
We were told that this is the best beach around, and I have got to admit, it is a very clean and open beach…..Sunbathing on a beach means sharing your space with dogs, cats and cows. The occasional yelp of the dog, or a meow is do- able, but the moo of the cow- now that’s an entirely different culture shock.
The Cow- ‘Mata’ – Mother
For Hindus, Mothers are perceived as ‘Goddesses’ and therefore the Cow is a symbol of sacredness, because like a mother it gives out milk. So although they do not worship the cow, they do believe that it should be protected and looked after. And for this reason in India you will find cows everywhere. I mean everywhere, on the roads, the streets, shops and on the beaches. It’s an ordinary part of life in India.
Ive never seen so many dressed people on the beach on holiday. Im usually the only one in a burkini, here a burkini isnt even necessary, just go in fully dressed, no one really cares. I fit right in. You would think that on a beach its the one with the least clothes on that gets the stares, ill stop you right in your tracks, its usually me, fully dressed from head to toe, in the baking sun, sometimes the smiles are genuine, and sometimes….. well I like to ignore it. Im not one to get scared and walk away, but all I say is Live and Let live. I dont have a problem with the way people dress, so I expect the same back. (little rant over back to Goa)
The beach has a few activities going in, and we decided to go on one of the boats for a bit of sightseeing and dolphin watching,
At around £40 (or less) the 4 of us jumped on a boat, where they take us to 5 spots to see dolphins, and also a few tourist areas. The trip is roughly 2 and a half hours.
In terms of Dolphin watching, most of our boat trip was spent looking out to sea, trying to spot them. We didn’t get to see any jumping dolphins, a fin here or there was all we got. And it’s best to have your phone out and ready, otherwise you will miss it all.
We were taken to a couple of spots for sight seeing. The problem I experienced is I am not really an indian film fanatic so most of it was lost on me and my boys. But the other guests in the boat we’re well informed and thoroughly enjoyed themselves and took hoards of pictures.
Street Food at Candolim Beach
Walking down the beach we came to a little alley, which had a bazaar going on, and….. Street food!
What I came to India for. I love all junky and picky food. So this was heaven for me,
That was day one in Goa, and can I say how much we enjoyed it? All tensions, all negative thoughts thoroughly buried, we had made the right decision. India is the place to be!
We spent our evenings in the hotel, enjoying the hotel and..
But as long as I have my tea, I’m in the right place.
That was Day One, stay tuned for the remainder of our holiday….
Love and Regards
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