It doesn’t matter if you choose to wait till the party season ends in Goa (because you are on a budget trip). It doesn’t matter if your salary/savings/pocket money doesn’t allow you to splurge while on a bacchanalian ‘trip’ (pun intended) to the party capital of India. You can still splash it up in some cool tourist places in Goa, here’s how:
What I have for you here are some eclectic extra-curricular discoveries I made during my not-so-long-ago college days in Goa. The sea, the sun and the sand are all free, now what remains is to hit the right spots to wine and dine, and just that is what I have jotted for you – nothing more, nothing less.
Location: Near Fidalgo Hotel, Panjim
While in the capital city, this is a cool hangout to chill with a couple of friends. The tiny double-storey pub glows in blue lighting, with commercial music playing from the discman located at the bar counter. Though slightly overcrowded, you would want to visit this place for its refreshing draught beer and super-spicy snacks.
Top Gear Pub
Location: Altinho, Panjim
More than a decade old, this old-school pub in Altinho is the perfect place to down a few drinks while touring through the capital city. With its range of delicious seafood snacks (be sure to try their Chilli Chicken) and a laid-back ambience, Top Gear Pub is also a hit with the locals.
Picnic Bar and Restaurant
Location: Sapana Gardens, Chogum Road, Porvorim
An easily approachable mid-way halt while on your way from Panjim to Calangute, Picnic Bar and Restaurant is located about 500 metres ahead of Coqueiro Circle. It offers a tasty Chinese fare with some good beers and cocktails to go along with it. The Fried King Fish is a must-try at this joint.
Bertsy Bar and Restaurant
Location: Opposite Main Market, Mapusa
Set amidst the turmoil of the Mapusa Market, Bertsy offers a surprisingly relaxing respite behind its easily noticeable red-bricked entrance. Chill out over a few drinks at this cheap bar in Goa as you wait to catch your next bus from Mapusa bus stand. Be sure to try some lip-smacking Prawn Papad with your drinks.
Location: Techno Cidade, Chogm Road, Alto Porvorim, Goa
A wine-and-dine joint, Golden Rooster is located right off Coqueiro Circle, and is thronged by students of nearby colleges and a few locals now and then. It also has a small dance floor, making it a decent party place for those on a limited budget.
Location: 200 metres ahead of Coqueiro Circle, NH-17, Porvorim, Bardez, Goa
NH-17 offers typical “highway dhaba” style ambience, and serves varied multi-cuisine preparations along with a fine selection of wines, cocktails and beers. It is also popular for its North Indian fare, which is difficult to find (at reasonable prices) while in Goa.
Club 9 Bar
Location: Ozran Beach, Little Vagator, Anjuna, North Goa
Set atop the Vagator cliff, Club 9 Bar offers an experience unlike any other party place in North Goa. This typical hippie joint is famous for its trippy psychedelic music and casual, laid-back ambience. Beer is moderately priced, but hard liquor is a little expensive. Gulp down a couple of pints and just let the music take control.
There are also a bunch of bars/pubs/discotheques that offer couple and/or stag entry at a charge of around INR 1000 (+/- INR 500 depending on season/crowd), which covers unlimited drinks and snacks. Some of these include popular ones like Tito’s and Mambo’s at Baga Beach, Club Cabana at Arpora Hill, Calangute and some lesser known ones like Club Westend at Saligao and Kamaki at Baga.
Cheers, carousers! Forget the worries of having to splurge. Just pack your bags, head to the hedonistic land and have the time of your life!
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