Goa's Dabolim Airport is basic in terms of facilities and services, and getting a cheap flight to Goa can be a difficult thing to do as only seasonal charter flights operate from the UK and surrounding countries. Regular flights operate from major Indian cities, and some locations in the Persian Gulf, so a connecting flight to Goa may be an option.
Currently operated by the Indian Navy, Goa's international flights are limited to afternoon and nighttime as the daytime hours are set aside for military training flights. Transport to and from the airport is adequate, with taxis, private buses and trains connecting to Vasco da Gama, Chicalim and other parts of Goa on a regular basis. Bring your good humour and patience when travelling to Dabolim Airport.
Getting around Goa is no problem at all. There are a multitude of taxis and auto rickshaws on the streets day and night, and the rail service in Goa is extensive, with regular local services to nearby towns, and also to Hyderabad, Mumbai and other cities. Many tourists travel overland to Goa, and the train trip from Mumbai is a wild and memorable experience.
The recommended mode of travel are the many taxis and auto rickshaws that abound, but make sure to ask to see a fare schedule if the price seems a little steep. Car hire is available but not recommended unless you are confident about driving in India.
The beaches of Goa seem to stretch endlessly in both directions and are the main attraction for tourists. Calangute beach is the most popular on the Goan coast, and is a good starting point, but the beaches at Colva and Anjuna further north are quieter and more conducive to total relaxation. The Hotel Bougainvillea in Anjuna hosts the Brahmani Yoga School, which is a must for anyone interested in this ancient form of meditative exercise.
Old Goa is a short trip by bus or taxi from the centrally located Panaji, and offers a number of things for tourists arriving on cheap Goan flights, to see and do. The old churches in the area are rich with artistic and cultural artifacts, and well worth a visit.
Panjim, also known as Panaji, is the main shopping district in Goa, and hosts the municipal markets, which are a bustling array of covered street stalls offering food and beverages, clothing and trinkets of all kinds. The Bombay store, located nearby, is a treasure trove of crafts, textiles, jewellery and high quality gift items.
Anjuna Flea Market is held near Anjuna beach every Wednesday, and is well worth wandering around. Clothes, jewellery and local cuisine are available, and the atmosphere is reminiscent of the hippy era from which the markets originally derived. If you do manage to save on your flight to Goa, you'll find plenty to keep you occupied besides lazing on the beach!
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