“Of course, I’ve been to Goa”

In my head, I like to think of myself as a kickass girl and a traveller and all that. So it was getting quite embarrassing for me to confess that:

1) I have never been on an impromptu trip

2) I have never ventured out on a trip as a solo traveller

3) Brace yourselves for this one… I have never visited Goa. Yes, this is where you gasp and exclaim “What!” in disbelief.

This is the Aguada Fort in the north of Goa

Two days before my 24th birthday (earlier in July this year), I resolved it was about time I changed these embarrassing facts. So on Monday afternoon, I decided to leave for a 5-day-long solo trip to Goa, which would begin on Wednesday morning.

It took a bit of convincing for my parents to agree to send their daughter “all alone, for so many days to an unknown place!” It sounded like I wanted to go fight in a war or something. But I crossed the hurdle and had my dad book a one-way train ticket to Goa. One-and-a-half-days later saw me with a backpack, on Mumbai station at 5.30 in the morning, waiting for my train to arrive! What followed were the most unique 5 days of my life.

The first few of hours into the journey, I’ll confess, I was pretty nervous about it all. Especially, since I was in the half-filled last coach of the train, with only a bunch of Muslim uncles who were conversing with each other in hushed voices. And then there was the chatter of the railways boys, as the pantry coach was adjacent to mine. It did start with a scary me, but thanks to a book I carried along, I busied myself in reading, which helped me recompose myself. In the next couple of hours, I was comfortable and confident.

North Goa welcomed me with light rain showers and cheap prices, thanks to the off season. I found myself trusting the rickshawallas for accommodation suggestions more than TripAdvisor. After a tired, boring, rainy first evening, I was actually dreading birthday calls that would begin from midnight. After answering most of them in a drowsy state and a good night’s sleep later, I was ready for Goa.

It did take a few jumps, but we got it right eventually! (Do ignore the couple in the background.)

I met up with a French tourist, Romain (whom I had interacted through CouchSurfing), and we set off on the quintessential two-wheeler. Birthday was great – visited the beaches, got all soaked in the rain – and ended in a karaoke bar (a bit more here.) In the following two days, I visited more beaches and forts, drank some, danced some, and stayed out at the beach till 5.30 in the morning.

I forgot to book my return ticket in all the fun, and had to return by a bus in a horrid 16-hour bus ride (due to landslides in Ratnagiri). We’ll leave that as a story for a different day.

By the end of it all, I was ecstatic about having crossed the three nagging items off my list. Now, Goa purposefully crops up frequently in my conversations, and I nonchalantly proclaim, “Of course I’ve been to Goa.” Oh, and I also had fun flashing my legs to over half of Goa!

Put a solo trip on your must-do list. Now!

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17 responses

  1. So glad you did it; such a great way to travel. Some of my favorite trips have been on my own.

  2. very nice sosha… i am yet to say “i have been to goa”… goa is on my list for sure now..

  3. Smedette, yes! I’ve discovered that.

    Joysown, you’ve got to visit Goa. Let me know when you decide to go, I’ll help you out with a few accommodation options and places to go clubbing.

  4. Nice article.

    Goa is addictive; I went there this March but I feel like going again, maybe a bike trip in the winter!

    1. How is the plan coming along?

  5. Wow! Sounds like a fun trip! 🙂
    I am dying to go on a solo trip, just to take in the experience. No offense meant to the better half. 😛 Now I have to convince my parents as well the better half. 😐
    I hadn’t visited Goa till 2011 – we decided to do it this Jan. It was fun, but I felt I did not soak in the atmosphere of the place enough.. Did parasailing and rode the water scooter, but didn’t go on the two-wheelers. Should do that soon. A trip to Goa is definitely once more on the cards. 🙂 Now, I have a penfriend there too!
    You know what, my humiliating travel fact is – I have never been to Mumbai!! Imagine!! The people that half the world talks about as THE city, and I have never been there!! I have touched the city on a couple of occasions, on a passing visit, but have never really been there. Hope to rectify the embarrassing situation soon. 🙂

  6. Hey! If you think you’ll have an issue convincing your folks for a solo trip, go to a place where you know a few people, so in case of need, you can always get in touch with them. You can even meet friends, but do venture out on your own for a couple of days at least, for that’s the different experience.

    Do you still have pen friends? That’s lovely. I’m in touch with my pen friends through Facebook, which kinda defeats the purpose, but anyway.

    And you haven’t been to Bombay? :O Woman, pack your bags, now!

  7. Amey, you have a superb plan there. Try Northeast if you got a week or more.

  8. Don’t ignore the couple in the background! the jump looks like the before and the cuddle looks like the after. I miss goa, being a ‘not born in goa’ goan i miss it even more! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  9. Scastellino, ‘Not born in Goa’ Goan… I love that!

  10. that’s amazing that you’ve been I’d love to go! I’m far too scared to go on a solo trip but it doesn’t seem nearly as scary the way you talk about it… as soon as I master going the pictures alone i’ll get on it!x

  11. Good on you for going, and it sounds like you had a lot of fun!

  12. Glad you made it to Goa. I was there last summer and it was a blast!! Even though it was monsoon season and it poured on us, it was fun to see the place and meet up with backpackers at the local bars 😀

  13. wow…cool gal…for me, well Goa is still an item on the “wish-list”….yet to be ticked off…..surely inspired by your attempt 😉

    1. Do go, and have fun!

  14. good on you!
    way to go!!

  15. i am goan anyone intrested more info AND HELP IN GOA please feel free to contact at sohabhandari@gmail.com

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