Arambol, Goa – a colorful fishing village located in the northern part of the state. The warm Arabian Sea and reasonable prices make it one of the most popular resorts in India, and the relaxed rhythm of life and a relaxed atmosphere invariably attract lovers of yoga and various spiritual practices.
Looking through the photos of Arambol in Goa, you will see that this is a fairly large settlement located in the northern part of the state. Stretching along the Arabian coast for several kilometers, it is replete with elemental shops and rickety huts, among which there is a spirit of freedom and complete denial of generally accepted moral principles.
The population of the village is slightly more than 5 thousand people. Among them there are many Russians who either run away to the sea from a fierce European winter, or work on an ongoing basis.
In the 60–70s. of the last century, Arambol, then called Harmal, was popular among hippies, yogis, raw foodists and other non-standard personalities who came here from all over the world. And now it remains a great place for “savages” and independent tourists who do not have large material means.
Curiously, until 2002, only the “chosen” knew about this village, which was sheltered in the very north of the state. But with the opening of the Siolim Bridge over the Chaporu River, the situation has changed dramatically – now it is one of the most popular tourist destinations in India.
The holiday season in Arambol, as in all of Goa, lasts from November to March. The air temperature during this period is + 30 ° C, and the water warms up to comfortable + 27-29 ° C. The rest of the time it is either very hot or heavy rains accompanied by storms and heavy winds. However, in the low season, this village has something to do.
So, in the village there are several travel agencies that organize excursions both in Goa itself and in neighboring states. The latter in most cases take several days. Of the one-day offers, it is worth highlighting a trip to the night market, visiting the beaches of South Goa and a sightseeing tour of the surrounding area. In the evenings, in many Arambol establishments you can watch a concert with the participation of local stars and listen to live music. One of these places is the resort “Magic park”. Tea ceremonies, ethnic dances and religious chants are regularly held on its territory.
The resort also has a Yoga Research Center, a Temple of dance school of dance, and many interesting courses where you can learn many useful things. If we talk about the historical sights of this village, they are limited to an ancient temple located behind the Sweet Lake. Next to it grows a banyan tree, a sacred tree, under the crown of which sage “woman” sits. Not only locals, but also visitors come to ask for advice from him.
And the last important fact. Many villagers observe an afternoon siesta, so some shops, cafes and other establishments may be closed.
Arambol beach, stretching for almost 3 km, is one of the longest on the coast of Goa. Life on it does not stop almost for a moment: in the morning, countless fishing boats leave for the sea, vacationers sunbathe and swim here in the afternoon, and in the evening walk fighting bulls, arrange fire shows and organize folk festivals with songs, dances and drums.
The sand in the resort is gray; crabs, starfish and other animals often hide in it. The entry into the water is smooth, the bottom is soft and gently sloping, and the line of shallow water is wide enough (to get to a good depth, you will have to walk several tens of meters). This feature makes Arambol a good place for families with children.
The beach is quite clean, although there is not a single garbage can on it. The territory is regularly cleaned, and what does not have time to get into the trash bags of the workers is carried away by the sea tide. Sun beds and umbrellas belong to the beach necks. You do not need to pay for them – just buy a beer or a bottle of juice. There are practically no waves in the high season. The exception is only the site near the rocks (the so-called Cliff). It is quite turbulent, and at the bottom there are not only stones, but also various marine inhabitants. In addition, here you can see the lizards basking in the sun.
Another characteristic feature of Arambol Beach is the numerous cows, dogs and other pets peacefully strolling along the entire coastline. Curious Indians are not far behind them. Despite the fact that the white man in this resort is no longer a novelty, the village people come to the beach every day to take photos with some of the European tourists.
If you’ve ever looked at a photo of Arambol Beach (Goa) on the Internet, you probably noticed a huge number of beggars, street vendors and representatives of the local beauty industry offering mehendi, hair removal, massage. To agree on their proposals or not is up to you, but remember that the price announced before the procedure can radically differ from the price that will be presented to you at the end of the procedure.
In addition, in the vicinity of Arambol (Goa, India), you can find several more picturesque beaches. Of these, the most popular are Kalach, Querim, Paradise and Mandrem. Well, another plus – not far from Arambol Beach there is an unusual lake filled with soft clay. They say that it has many healing properties, so tourists, cosmetologists, and numerous massage parlors buy it massively. But those who want to save on such procedures are covered with yellow mud right on the spot.
There are no fashionable 5 * hotels in the village, on Arambol Beach in Goa. Mid-range hotels are also extremely few, and the living conditions in them are mainly Spartan. In the interior of the rooms you are unlikely to find an exquisite decoration – only simple and most necessary furniture.
Most hotels and guest houses are located in the Main Road area, the main shopping street of Arambol. The rooms in them are divided into several categories. If in some you can see only a bed and a tank with hot water, then others are equipped with a shower, satellite TV and a small balcony. But even in such a simple environment, there is practically no shortage of guests here. Music and dancing in this area do not cease for a minute, so it’s unlikely that they can fully sleep here.
Couples in love prefer to settle in a bungalow on the Arambol rocks – from there a beautiful view of the sea opens. The cost of housing is lower, but to get to the place, you have to overcome a rather steep climb. In addition, the territory of the rocks is not lit at night, so you will have to carry a flashlight with you.
For families with children who have come to Arambol for a long time, Geercar Vadoo, a tourist area in which new guesthouses with separate apartments and a whole range of additional services (housekeeping, free Wi-Fi, laundry, children’s corner, tennis court and etc.).
No less demand among the “long-livers” are used and villas owned by local residents. To rent such a house with 2-3 rooms, a kitchen, a bathroom and a garden is possible only in high season. If you want to be closer to nature, choose beach huts, a beach shack built from plywood and palm leaves. On the street there is a table and chairs. The entrance to the hut is closed by a curtain.
If we talk about the average cost of living, renting a double room in an institution without stars will cost $ 6-10, in a 2 * hotel – $ 20, in a 3 * hotel – $ 14-55 per day. The largest price gaps are observed in guesthouses – the price of such accommodation varies around $ 6-120.
Where can I eat on the beach?
Looking at the photos of Arambol in tourist avenues, you can see a huge number of shakes built along the entire coastline. Despite the simple, if not primitive appearance, the food in them is quite tasty. The menu has both national and European dishes, but the greatest demand is for various seafood, the freshness of which there is no doubt – they are caught here daily.
In addition, going to dinner in one of these shakes, you can enjoy a wonderful Indian sunset. But you need to look for elite establishments at luxury hotels located in the village. In the evenings, jazz plays there and a large number of people gather. The menu in the restaurants is about the same: vegetable dishes, mussels, chicken, rice, fish, etc.
As for prices, they are here 10-15% lower than in other resorts of the state:
- Soup – 80 cents;
- Shrimp – $ 2;
- Main course (rice or noodles with chicken or vegetables + Indian bread) – $ 1.5-2.5;
- Lobster – $ 17;
- Masala tea – 40 cents;
- Juices – 70 cents;
- A bottle of beer 0.5 ml – $ 1.5;
- Coffee with milk – 50 cents;
- Cheesecake – $ 1;
- Vegetable Curry – $ 1.7;
- Vegetarian burger with salad and french fries – $ 2.5;
- Sushi with miso soup – $ 4.
It is better to buy fruits in special shops; we recommend tasting fresh from mango and watermelon from non-alcoholic drinks. Despite the abundance of cafes, some tourists prefer to cook their own meals, picnicking right on the beach.
How to get from Dabolim airport?
Arambol in North Goa is 58 km from Dabolim International Airport, which receives flights from many European and Asian countries. There are two ways to get from there to the beach or the hotel you are interested in.
For all its cheapness, this option is considered the longest. The classic route with transfers will look like this: Dabolim – Vasco da Gama – Panji – Mapusa – Arambol. Buses depart from a small intersection located at one of the terminals. The journey takes at least 2 hours. The whole trip will cost $ 4-5.
On a note! Municipal transport in India runs irregularly. Moreover, he is almost always very overloaded. Buses do not have numbers – the direction of the flight is indicated on a plate installed in front of the windshield.
Taxis are simple, but insanely expensive, because Arambol is the most remote beach of North Goa. You can order a car via the Internet, call it by phone or just catch it on the street. The most popular services in the region are Prepaid taxi and Goa taxi.
There are no meters in the cars, the cost of the trip is at least $ 40. Payment is made upon boarding.
On a note! India’s state carriers have fixed prices, but you can bargain with private carriers.
When planning to go to the resort of Arambol (Goa), listen to the advice of those who have already managed to visit there:
- Theft in India is ubiquitous. Of course, in good hotels there are paid safes at the reception, but they will not protect your property from encroachments. The only way out is to put more or less valuable things in different corners of the room, and hang a strong padlock on the door. To do this, almost all rooms have deadbolts with ears.
- Those who come to the village for a week or two should rent a scooter. It is convenient to get to the beach, shops and neighboring villages.
- Walking through the streets of the village, you should be careful. The width of the streets here rarely exceeds 4-5 m, the pedestrian paths, if any, are laden with goods taken from numerous barn shops, and cars and motorcyclists scurry about in both directions, often not even adhering to basic traffic rules.
- Want to make your trip to India even brighter? Be sure to visit the sunset point. Some special actions will not be needed for this – it is enough to come to the beach in the late evening, so that together with a hundred of exactly the same vacationers you can watch the sunset, accompanied by songs, dances and continuous drumming of djembei.
- Before going to the resort, you should insure yourself.
- In Goa, you can only drink bottled water. If you order fruit drinks, cola or freshly squeezed juice in a cafe, ask that they not throw ice into them – they could make it from unfiltered water.
- In Arambol, however, as in all of Goa, it is customary to bargain. Moreover, not only in bazaars and in souvenir shops, but also when renting housing from the local population (apartments, beach bungalows, guest houses, etc.). Hindus willingly drop the price by 1.5, or even 2 times, if they see that a person is really interested in buying. By the way, it’s better to go shopping in the morning – locals believe that early sales attract luck, so you get good discounts.
- The main media in Arambol are walls and pillars – announcements, announcements and other important messages are stuck there. They can only compete with word of mouth and flyers that are distributed on the beach.
- Do not forget to take a first-aid kit for traveling with you, replenishing it with funds from bites of tropical insects and various intestinal disorders. To prevent the latter with soap, you need to wash not only hands, but also fruits.
- Going to Arambol beach in India late in the evening, do not forget about special shoes. Without it, there is a risk of stepping on a jellyfish or other marine life.
Walk along the beach, visiting shops and cafes, visiting the Arambol mountain: