Goa needs no introduction. This tiny state has earned its name as one of the most visited holiday destinations in India and all for good reason. With several golden beaches, sunny countryside lined by palm trees, beautiful churches, forts, and an incredible mosaic of cultural heritage, Goa truly is a traveler’s paradise! There’s a lot to see and do around Goa, so for a fabulous little trip here is the ultimate itinerary to explore and enjoy Goa for 2 days.
What better way to kick off your Goa trip than starting the day at the beach! Located 18 km from Panaji, Anjuna Beach is among Goa’s most famous beaches. Nestled to the north of the Baga-Calangute-Candolim stretch, this rocky beach is separated by the Baga river and is a sight to behold. Fun fact, the beach was actually discovered by some American hippies who were looking for some quiet themselves!
The beach offers some stunning views, especially during sunrise and sunset. With a rocky beachfront, coarse beige sand, and sea green and turquoise waves crashing onto the rocky side of the beach, Anjuna is quite a way to start off your Goa trip! The beach is popular for water sports and a vibrant nightlife. You can indulge in a variety of water sports like parasailing, bumper rides, jet skiing, and banana boat rides here. Anjuna Beach also has several trendy cafés and restaurants that offer a wide variety of cuisine and fresh seafood, that are simply delicious and worth a try!
Timings: The beach is open throughout the day, all week.
Entry Fee: No entry fee is required to visit the beach.
When you think of Dil Chahta Hai, the famous fort scene in Goa certainly flashes in front of your eyes. The Chapora Fort is that very fort and is located 10 km from Mapusa town. The movie made the fort a popular hangout spot among youngsters and locals. The fort has withstood the test of time and looks as majestic and imposing as ever. The green pastures and the contrasting laterite stone walls of the fort create a vivid picture, especially against the backdrop of the crashing waves from the sea.
Some of the highlights of the fort are the remains of the barracks, officer quarters, secret underground tunnels, and towers. You can enjoy the exquisite view of the Chapora River, the Arabian Sea, and the distant Anjuna and Vagator beaches. During dawn and dusk, the vibrant hues of the skies are a particularly captivating sight. You can also go scuba diving, parasailing, boat riding, jet skiing, and snorkeling in the turquoise waters near Chapora beach here!
Timings: 8 am to 5 pm, Monday to Sunday.
Entry Fee: No entry fee is required to explore the fort.
Also Read: Best Cafes In Goa To Unwind
After exploring the Chapora Fort, the next stop is one of the tourist hotspots - Basilica of Bom Jesus. Enumerated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the church's exteriors are quite deceiving, to say the least. In comparison to many beautiful looking churches, the Basilica may seem a little bland at first glance but there’s more to it than meets the eye. The structure houses numerous relics and paintings that make it one of the most popular tourist attractions in Goa.
The Basilica represents five architectural styles - Roman, Corinthian, Composite, Doric, and Ionic. It's the interiors of the church that attract the most attention, with a simple marble flooring and an elaborate gilded altarpiece that displays a massive statue of St. Ignatius of Loyola and a small picture of Bom Jesus. On the southern side, you will find the chapel of St. Francis Xavier, with gilded columns and wood-carved floral patterns.
Furthermore, the Basilica also contains a modern art gallery within its premises with various paintings depicting biblical scenes such as ‘The Last Judgement’ and ‘Genesis’.
Timings: Monday to Saturday 9 am to 6:30 pm and Sundays 10:30 am to 6:30 pm.
Entry Fee: No entry fees.
Also Read: Best Hostels In Goa
Se Cathedral is the largest church in Asia, dedicated to St. Catherine of Alexandria. Located in Old Goa, this 17th century church is recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It boasts a grand Iberian façade, incredible mosaic work, a high arching ceiling, intricate wood, and gilded carvings. The interior of the cathedral showcases Portuguese-Manueline Style architecture, which was quite popular in the 17th century, while the exterior architecture is that of Tuscan style with a plain and simple look.
On entering the church you will see one main altar along with six other altars and eight different chapels. Tourists make it a point to view the lifelike paintings situated above the main altar. Paintings depicting the life of St. Catherine, the fifteen communion tables, and the baptist font are some of the artworks that are found here. Some of the major highlights of the cathedra are the Golden Bell and the paintings from the main altar. The skillfully carved and gilded ceiling and wall of the Chapel of the Blessed Sacrament and the archaeological Museum are not to be missed too.
Timings: Every day 7 am to 6:30 pm.
Entry Fee: There is no entrance fee to visit the cathedral.
Also Read: Best Beachside Hotels And Resorts In Goa
Since we started off our day at the beach it only makes sense to end the day at the beach, and Baga Beach is the perfect place for a fantastic evening. One of the most popular beaches in Goa, Baga beach showcases shimmering golden sand, waving palm trees, crashing waves, and mesmerizing scenic beauty, especially during sunsets. The beach is extremely popular for swims, and you’ll find several tourists cooling off in the waters from time to time.
Baga also has its fair share of water sports from parasailing and windsurfing to jet skiing and kite surfing! You can also go dolphin watching or on island tours. This beach boasts one of the best nightlife scenes in Goa with some trendy bars and clubs located in the infamous Tito’s Lane. You’ll find a banquet of choices in bars, lounges, pubs, and restaurants here. Furthermore, the Tibetan Market is one of the hotspots for shopaholics and tourists looking for souvenirs. You can wind up your day with some yummy dinner and a walk along the beach or enjoy the lively nightlife and go on a pub crawl!
Timings: The beach is open to the public 24/7.
Entry Fee: There is no entry fee for visiting the beach.
Also Ring: Best Beachfront Hotels In Canacona
We start off day two with the Museum of Goa. One of the largest contemporary art spaces in India, the museum is a popular attraction for all art lovers and art enthusiasts. The Museum of Goa (MOG) is all about celebrating Goa’s history and culture through its various contemporary art pieces that seem to be in constant dialogue with one another!
Founded by a Goan artist, Subodh Kelkar in 2015, MOG aims to bridge the gap between art and local history. So you will also find guides narrating the history of Goa while explaining the various artworks. An oasis for colorful art, the museum is a three-story building complete with contemporary artworks, studio spaces, an auditorium, an art café, and an art store. You can navigate your way through the gallery by following the blue mermaid-like figurines, that guide visitors throughout the structure.
Timings: 10 am to 6 pm, Monday to Sunday
Entry Fee: INR 100 for Indian visitors, INR 300 for foreign visitors, and INR 50 for students.
After a splendid morning at the beach, it’s time to dive into the history and heritage of Goa a little bit. Located close to the Candolim beach is Fort Aguada which is famed to be Asia’s largest water reservoir. Almost 400 years old, the fort was built in typical Portuguese-style architecture with durable laterite stones and massive bulwarks that have certainly stood the test of time. While some parts of the structure have fallen apart, most of it still stands as imposing and grand as ever!
With the ability to hold a whopping 20,00,000 gallons of water, the fort is a true architectural marvel of Goa. Exploring around the fort complex, you will find gun powder storage rooms, secret passageways, iron studded doors, and about 200 canons or so which display the fort’s sheer grandeur and military prowess.
One of the most interesting sights is the freshwater spring called Mae De Agna (Mother of Water) found around the fort complex. Also, be sure to visit the Aguada Lighthouse from where you’ll be able to see the confluence of the Arabian Sea and Mandovi River.
Timings: 9:30 am to 6 pm, Monday to Sunday.
Entry Fee: There is no entry fee required to explore the fort.
Also Read: Best Historical Places In Goa
You will not have had the perfect Goa experience without visiting the Latin Quarter of Goa - Fountainhas. The quarter beautifully embodies the Portuguese influence and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Goa. Nestled between the Ourem creek and Altinho Hills, Foutainhas is a true visual reminder of the Portuguese remnants in Goa. Though exploring this neighborhood would take up quite some time of your day, it will certainly be worth every second!
Decked with beautiful, colorful houses with colonial architecture painted in hues of green, yellow and blue, this colony is a time capsule to the past! Along the narrow cobblestone streets, you will also see several vintage bakeries and cafes, and gorgeous churches that simply call for your attention. The Latin Quarter displays some stunning street and wall art, and it will come as no surprise that one of the major attractions here is an art gallery - the Gitanjali Gallery. The gallery showcases exquisite contemporary and Scandinavian art pieces.
Another attraction of this lively neighborhood is the Fonte Phoenix (Fountain of Phoenix). This gurgling fountain is a natural spring dating back to the Portuguese era in Goa and the name of the town was derived from it.
Timings: The Latin Quarter is open throughout the day, all days of the week.
Entry Fee: You don’t need to pay any entry fees to explore the neighborhood.
We wrap up our two-day Goa trip with a fun and adventurous expedition to the Grand Island. The beaches of Goa have no shortage of water sports, its difficult to find a kind of one-stop-shop for all the possible water activities. Well, Grand Island has you covered! The island is located in South Goa and has everything from snorkelling to fishing to scuba diving. The scuba diving experience here is super popular and you must certainly add it to your Goa itinerary.
Grand Island is famous for its ship wreck sites and beautiful reefs which certainly glam up the scuba diving experience here! Diving sites like the ‘Suzy wreck’ and ‘Davy Jone’s Locker’ are especially popular among both beginners and experienced divers. If scuba diving seems a little too adventurous for you, you can also try out the bumper boat rides and banana boats.
A great way to end your amazing Goa trip would be a small fishing expedition. The guides or ferry drivers will also set you up with a barbeque grill to smoke the fishes you caught. The trip to and from Grand Island might be a bit exhausting but certainly worth every bit of it!
Timings: While the island is open for the public throughout the day, the ferry timings may differ from one ferry service provider to another. Make sure to book or contact your ferry service in advance and plan out your day with them in detail, to avoid unexpected surprises.
Entry Fee: There is no entry fee to go to the island. Though the expedition costs will depend on the ferry service you avail, the time you plan to go and come back, and all of the water sports and activites you wish to partake in.
Goa is one of the most popular vacation destinations whether it’s for an entire week or simply the weekend. The small beach state has so much to offer from exquisite beaches to stunning Portugal neighborhoods. To make the most of your 2-day Goa trip, all you need is some good planning, and our ultimate itinerary has got you covered!
What Is Goa Famous For?
Goa is extremely popular for its beaches, beautiful churches, Portuguese-inspired architecture and towns, and vibrant nightlife.
What Is The Best Time To Visit Goa?
October to February are the best months to visit Goa since the weather is quite pleasant and cool making it the perfect time to relax on the beach and go sightseeing through the towns.
Which Months Are The Off Season In Goa?
The months between March and September are considered off-season in Goa due to the hot and humid weather. May is usually the hottest month post which the monsoon season begins up until September.
How Many Days Are Enough For Goa?
2-3 days are good enough to explore and truly enjoy Goa. You can go on a beach crawl from North to South Goa and stop to sightsee some major tourist attractions along the way.
Which Places Are Best To Stay In Goa?
If you’re looking to enjoy the vibrant nightlife of Goa then places like the Baga-Calangute strip in North Goa are an ideal location. On the other hand, if you’re looking for some peace and quiet you can opt for beaches like Agonda and Colva in South Goa.
What Is The Climate Of Goa Like?
Goa enjoys a tropical climate with hot and humid summers, tropical monsoons with heavy rains and thunderstorms, and a mild and pleasant winters.
What Food Is Famous In Goa?
Goa is famous for its wide variety of fresh seafood. Many restaurants and cafes serve fusion cuisines with traditional Goan seafood and European flavors. Goa has a wide variety of cuisines, desserts, and beverages and is a food lover’s paradise!
What Language Is Spoken In Goa?
Konkani is the majorly spoken language across Goa. Other than this, people also speak Hindi, English, Marathi, and Portuguese in various parts of Goa.