Goa
I stayed in goa for a long week - first at Colva Beach, and then at an AC business hotel in Panaji some days just to prepare for going home, and just happened to get a couple of real monsoon days.

If you like sunny beaches and tourist hotels, then Goa may be the thing, though the main difference from any other place like this in the world is the many Indian families in the hotel at the beach. The beach is very long in both directions from Colva. If you like walking it is possible to walk for hours in or out of the water, whatever you like.

The hotel, Longhinos Resort, was bad. The place is nice enough, but the restaurant is terrible, and the waiters ever worse. As this was a breakfast-included hotel (well, a little breakfast at least), I had my first meal there, and one dinner. The prawn-and-beef soup was bad, so this might have affected how I evaluate the place.

Some members of the cleaning-staff are very nice, and love the kind of Western tourist that keeps the room clean and tidy - take a look into a room being cleaned after an Indian family has left, and you will know why. Others will beg and probably steal a little.

 

Fisherman ,Colva Beach

Traditional river fishing, Panaji

 

Panaji

Ferry, crossing the river in Pahaji

The worst fight I had, was trying to get some salt for the breakfast omelette. The air humidity was so high that the salt would not come out. So I asked for salt.

I: "Could you please get me some salt. I believe this is empty. (Waiter lifts the salt up, looking at it.)

W(aiter): "This is salt."

I: "Yes, but not possible to get salt out."

W: "I get another." (From the next table. I tried, no salt came out.

I: "There is no salt here!" The waiter tried, put it back on the table and just left for other guests (there were more waiters that guests).

I: "I JUST WANT SOME SALT!" (Screaming.)

B(utler): "You want salt?"

I: "Yes, please!" (Now the first part of this conversation is repeated, just change W to B. B leaves, and then another waiter comes from the kitchen, carrying a small plate with a little bit of salt, and a tea-spoon.)

B2: "Here salt kitchen."

I: "Thank you very much." (I eat my meal, tips the waiter bringing me the salt, and leaves.)

This was repeated every morning, until next to the last day. Then the waiter had found the solution:

I: "Could you please get some salt from the kitchen."

W3: "No salt in kitchen!"

Like Mr. Faulty of Faulty Towers, he had won over the guest!

I stopped giving tips.

 

Villa by the river, Panaji

The road along the river, Panaji

 Panaji (or Panjim) is nice-ish, and some of it very Portugese still. Be aware though, if you step into what you believe a dog has done, you will be lucky if it was left there by a dog, and not "dogs' best friend".

The hotel, the Mandovi Hotel is ok, a little run-down, and the AC is set at a fixed temperature. The staff is excellent, and the "no begging from guests" policy works. The breakfast is very good and with some new dishes every other day or so. You can get some international newspapers and lots of magazines.

If you want sightseeing and a river-cruise at night, be aware that this is an Indian family event. Be prepared for a stuffed boat, very loud Hindi-pop and kids dancing at the stage. The other places you are supposed to visit will be omitted for a chance to buy a meal at the round restaurant just across the Pato Bridge.

 

"The flower of the Jungle", Campaigning for "The Italian Housewife". Dustbin in the park .