This account of my road trip to Goa is the latest addition to my Family Travel category, something that all my readers have shown a lot of love for. I am told I am one of the top Family Travel Bloggers in India, and it makes me full of gratitude. And with that good news, lets talk about my happy place in India – Goa!
With a surprising diversity in its culture as well as its beaches, Goa is an Indian beach – destination that needs no introduction. Pristine churches that stand against the backdrop of a lush green landscape, Fort walls that overlook the sea, cuisine that can turn even the most disciplined of us into die hard foodies – Goa is a vacation heaven for everyone.
I have explored Goa and a few times – once solo and a lot of times with friends and colleagues. And I think that Goa is best enjoyed as a family, or with a group. I know that solo travel is good for discovering yourself, but I believe that family travel is good for the soul.
[ Read about my list of Must-Do Water Sports in Goa ]
One such trip that became a memory for keeps for my family was our road trip to Goa. We were in Nashik, Maharashtra at the time and were planning to spend a few days in Goa. Two more couples with kids, our fiends in Nashik, decided to join us in this trip. So now we were a group of six adults and three kids and the trip was already looking like a lot of fun!
Nashik to Goa is almost a 12 hour drive, but because the husband and I love long drives, and also because our daughter was just a few months old at the time and travelling at our own pace was a better option, we decided to drive down to Goa. Our friends loved the idea.
This impromptu decision of a road trip to Goa became one of our best trips!
The next best thing was the decision to try out a stay option other than the ordinary hotel stay. We had a child with us, and we wanted to stay somewhere that did not bind us to breakfast timing and limited in-room dining menus.
We wanted a new experience, but not without the basic comforts for our daughter. After some research, we decided to try a homestay. We were a big group and we wanted to stay like a family, and homestay looked like the right choice.
We reached Goa in three different cars, after a super fun road trip. We exchanged cars, switched drivers and ate at local joints along the highway. Most importantly, we moved at our own pace, stopping wherever the kids wanted a break, or a bite to eat.
[ You might like my post about delicious Greek Food inSouth Goa ]
When we reached the villa we had booked, we instantly knew we had made a good decision. The vial was a four bedroom property in North Goa, with a swimming pool and a huge, fully equipped kitchen. The villa had a staff of two helpful people for cleaning and other upkeep during our stay.
The villa was a walking distance away from a main street full of eating joints, so getting food was no problem at all – both, local or international. While all six adults were crazy for local Goan food, we also used the kitchen a lot during this stay. We cooked for the kids because all three of them were under the age of one year at the time.
From boiling milk and eggs for the kids, to making ginger tea in the mornings and instant noodles late at nights – the kitchen was a blessing. We wouldn’t have got this freedom in a hotel room, and we loved it.
[ I travel with my daughter to Himalayan Offbeat spots. read about our latest adventure: Going Offbeat with the kid at Seegreen Lodge Haathipaon, Uttrakhand ]
We visited the beach, which was a short distance away from our villa, multiple times daily and shopped in the flea markets like a pro. Because we travelled in a big group, we took turns to watch the kids and tried our hands at various water sports at the beach. You’ll know how good that felt if you have little kids and you love to travel as a family!
We had such a fun time travelling together, but the best thing about staying at a homestay villa as compared to a hotel was the fact that we lived like locals for a week in Goa, with no limitations or restrictions of timing, itineraries or even agenda. It was a great vacation.
[ The full account of my home stay experience in Pune is here: Celebrating Ganpati Festival in Pune at a Home Stay ]
Overall, this was an experience we loved. Homestays are something we have come to love as a family now, and our road trip to Goa with a big group was the beginning of it all. If you too, like me, love travelling with family or friends, do try out the homestay options and experience the local life through it.
Nashik to Goa: 675Km
Time to Drive: 12 Hours (approx)
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PPS: Stay tuned for my stories from the Princess Cruise that I recently went to and fell in love with.