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The cool breeze blowing, the soft smell of the water, the rugged wild sound of tides and the sunrise golden beach. That was our privilege as we gazed out of our room to witness one of the most soulful experiences. Everything seemed to be a perfect picture on the canvas. What else you could ask for. This time we planned to visit Goa in the month of September which is not a very usual month to visit, but who wanted to witness the hustle bustle of the city???? Relaxation was on the top priority list, and when it comes to a perfect holiday to relax, Goa is the best place to be.

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It is not the first time that we were coming to this place, but still I really don’t know what keeps us calling back???. The serene beaches, lovely lagoons, lush green forests surrounds and rugged churches. Goa has everything to offer. We selected our place of stay at The Baga beach resort, Baga. Though is approximately 36 kms from the Dabolim Airport, but nests the most exotic locations in Goa. It is an apt place to ‘Pause-the-everyday.’ Far off from the hectic routine, just a few feet away from the Arabian sea.

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We started our exploration hiring a scooter which is the best way to look around and experience the city that has a vast cultural history. The first stop after a beautiful drive giving us the charm to experience nature at its best (though I must admit the roads are really bumpy). We reached Basilica of BomJesus : It is one of the oldest churches in Goa, as well as in India, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In addition for its spectacular architecture, this church is also famous for housing the mortal remains of St. Francis Xavier which lies in a silver casket, partially exposed.

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The next stop was Fort Aguada. This place in particular is a must part of the itinerary even visiting it almost 6 times now. Fort Augudawas a Portuguese fort and is now protected by Archaeological society of India. A famous Jail in the past is now open for visitors. An interesting feature in the fort is a 13 meter high lighthouse. This lighthouse, initially used an oil lamp, but was later renovated and modernized. This lighthouse is a home to a gigantic bell, though the entire fort is no longer intact, but gives to a feel of the historical remains in the city. .A nice breathtaking view that opens up to the vast Arabian sea can be obtained from here.

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Sinquerim beach lies close to Fort Aguada and is silent, when compared to other North Goan beaches. Candolim beach is very near from this.It is a beautiful beach that has a spectacular stretch of sand.Part of the beach connects to the fort and is very scenic.This is not yet commercialized,no shacks or restaurant on the beach yet .

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It was already 1.00 PM ,Sun and humidity of Goa was at its peak. In the afternoon beaches are one of the worst places to be at.Moving around on the scooter enjoying the breeze was very pleasing though. When the Calangute beach came, I was in no mood to get and walk. We had decided to go for water sports at Baga as Baga was one of the famous place for water sports in Goa, but the weather and my husband ditched me. The strong and wild winds and tides restricted us having indulge into water sports.

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The evening, we spent very close to our hotel at famous club, Titos. One of the most popular discotheques in Goa, it stages all party animals who come to goa with a mood to party. A thundering dance floor, pulsating music and electrifying lights, the entire night we spent dancing. Apart from being rated as the most popular party destination in India, it also is famous for its famous Goan delicacies. The spices and the flavours are intense. The most famous authentic dishes are king size prawn in red curry, fried juicy pomfret, an interesting dish that I tasted was crab xecxec, it was a unique dish made using vinegar and a blend of unique masala that made that crab melt in your mouth.

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The next day we set our foot to explore the Goan market. There is more to Goa than just beaches, seashells, nature at its best, cashews and spices,  port wine and aquamarine water. Bargain hunters can have a gala time shopping. Trust me when I wrote Bargain hunters (My husband has a sarcastic grin on his face) as it is home to some of the most famous street markets, night markets and flea markets in Asia. While almost everyplace is lined with stuff like souvenir shops, small classy boutiques, bags, , antiques, jewelry, silverware…..the list is never ending. Take out things from your wildest dreams and Goa markets have everything to fill in your shopping bags.

Goa as a city will never disappoint you and I think this the main reason that it keeps calling me back again and again………..

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Shivani Singh, is a teacher by profession. She believes that ‘to travel is to live’. She describes, her flair for writing as a deeply rooted passion for discovering the world and its wonderful cultural diversity. Her favourite travel quote is, “Of all the pages of world the best stories are found in the pages of your passport.”

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