Things We Normally Do in Goa
One of the favorite travel destinations of youth in India is Goa.
The small state of Goa has a history of being one of the Portuguese colonies in India and the culture is still considered as a unique blend of Indian and Portuguese culture.
The Goan tourism really picked up when the mainstream Bollywood movies started shooting in Goa rather than going to exotic foreign locations. From regional cinema exclusively showcasing the unwinding of stories en route from Bombay to Goa, to the movies like Dil Chahta Hai, which set the “norms” of “Thing To Do in Goa”, the place started picking up a lot of tourist’s eyes.
Not long after that, many people started saying – What Happens in Goa, Stays in Goa (taking cues from the famous Vegas quote).
Our perception of people, place, or culture, among others is heavily influenced by movies and media. A few decades ago, Indians aspired to travel the foreign lands, thanks to movies being excessively being shot in countries like Switzerland, or cities like Paris and London. However, there has been a major shift – again thanks to the medium called Cinema – the focus slowly shifted to the tourism within (with heavy Government support too).
Goa has been special all through. I take reference from some of the most famous Indian movies – Dil Chahta hai (that really got people talking about Goa) to Golmaal (Rohit Shetty). The portrayal has been that of a place that boasts of beaches, water sports, budget booze, gambling, honeymoon destination, among others.
If you come to think of, every time you have made plans with your friends for Goa (which I am sure must have seldom worked!), you must have mostly had plans around chilling along the beaches in shacks, the famous Calangute and Baga beach walks, endless beer, rented cars, and two-wheelers for a roam-about, Casino, Tito’s, among others.
Did you know, there is so much more to Goa than just what we aspire to do there while on a holiday?
Did you ever wonder if we treat the Goan heritage the way it should be?
Things to Do in Goa
Shockingly, or maybe not as much, Goa has the highest amount of waste generated per head in India, as per some research reports. And this waste consists primarily of glass particles (coming from alcoholic beverages) followed closely by plastic.
With such a profound impact on the environment and in a bid to figure what can one do in Goa that is just as exciting as any of these, we looked out for organizations doing something, actively, in this area.
Goa has a rich marine heritage and for the uninitiated, it is definitely one of the key ways in which you could contribute to responsible tourism!
Puja Mitra, the co-founder of Terra Conscious, an organization that helps provide responsible tourism in Goa, says, “Tourism is one of the biggest industries here and it is largely coastal based and marine. It has 160 approximate km of coastline. It’s a major contributor to Goa tourism revenue because right now, a lot of Goa tourism is concentrated on its beach belt.”
Talking more about the responsible tourism experiences that Terra Conscious provides, Puja further shared more details on the rich marine heritage the Goa boasts of – humpback whales, dolphins, porpoise, turtles, Bryde’s whale, among others.
Puja further mentions that it is of paramount importance that the tourists act responsibly just as the boatmen do. Efforts are being made to provide an unparalleled experience to the tourist while being cognizant of the fact that there is a minimum to no intervention in the marine life’s livelihood.
While talking about how Terra Conscious helps responsible tourists, she quipped,” Every time we take someone out, we help you to build a little more of a relationship with the oceans when you come back.”
You can hear the entire conversation on responsible Goan tourism
We looked further and found the list of companies offering responsible tourism options (stay as well marine experience) in Goa –
- Alila Diwa Goa Resort
- Mangroves for the Future
- Terra Conscious
- Responsible Tourism Collective Goa (RTCGOA)
- Saraya Ecostay
Watch out this space for more eco-options in Goa!