IN: Goa

In Goa we did absolutely NOTHING. Perhaps the most embarrassing moment of our trip was the taxi ride back to the airport. Our driver asked us if we liked Goa. Our reply, "very much so! Its beautiful here."

"Oh," he exclaimed, "what did you see? Did you see Old Goa? The old churches? South beach?"

"We saw the hotel, the pool, and the beach… to be honest, we didn't do much but relax by the pool while we we're here." We sheepishly explained.

After ten days of active travel and sightseeing across India (throughout the Golden Triangle) we needed some downtime to relax, and process all that we had seen and done. For us, Goa was our holiday from our holiday.

For three days all we did was relax and indulge in India's Party State. We ate. I exercised. We drank. We spa-ed. We slept. We lounged by the pool. It was PERFECT (and just what we needed to recover from our flu).

Contrary to the majority of India, the state of Goa is a catholic society. Instead of Lord Ganesha embellishing the taxi cab dashboards a cross hangs from the rear view mirror. In a previous life the state of Goa was controlled by the Portuguese. Remanentes from the Portuguese era are evident throughout the state. European architecture lines the streets, cultures the people, and influences the cuisine.

In Goa, we stayed at the luxurious Alila Diwa. The resort was an oasis. Our room was smart, spacious, and inviting. Service was fast and friendly. The resort's amenities, including the picturesque magazine cover worthy infinity pool, were inviting.

At breakfast our first morning in Goa, T (the non-vegetarian) lit up with delight at the sight of bacon and sausages on the breakfast buffet. The people of Goa, aren't opposed to eating or drinking. Across India, Goa is infamous for having the country's cheapest booze, highest consumption of alcohol, and for their un kosher diet. In Goa, the locals dine on cow, pig, sheep, fish and goat.

After breakfast, I made a routine of visiting the gym. Where I met the twins August and Fifteen, named for India's Independence Day. The sport facilities at Alila Diwa were pristine. I ravished the fact that I had the complete gym to myself where I could atone for my glutenous diet (and cashew feni coconut coffee cocktails) with burpies galore.

Cashew Feni is the local drink of the tropical state. Rumour has it the beverage is a medicinal cure for common colds and flus. It's made from fermented cashew fruit. Alone it tastes wretched, more potent than screech; but mixed by a clever barmen the alcohol is a delicious and intoxicating treat.

Besides the glorious infinity pool, we made use of Spa Alila, cooking classes at the Spice Studio, and the beach. At the spa, both T and I experimented by trying traditional Indian Ayurveda Treatments. T had the oil drip, and I the pressure point massage. Our treatments brought us total zen.

Our three days in Goa, was the perfect holiday from our holiday. It was delectable to do nothing but relax for a few days. As much as I loved lounging by the pool, by our checkout date I was ready for the total cultural immersion that would be guaranteed at the traditional Punjabi wedding we would be attending.

Although we didn't do or see much in Goa, I would be eager to return and explore all that Goa has to offer.

If you find your self in Goa:

  • Relax in comfort and style at the Alila Diwa Resort.
  • Get a little loose and experiment with the local libations.
  • Find zen, at Alila Spa. Indulge in a traditional Ayurveda treatment.
  • Gorge on the rich and spicy flavours of South Indian cuisine.
  • Venture to the beach, and take a dip in the Arabian Sea.
  • Go sightseeing, explore the old churches and architecture of South Goa.
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