Known as the ‘Paradise Beach’ in South Goa, Palolem Beach was one of a few remaining virgin beaches in Goa that was kept isolated from tourists until several years back, but now it is slowly turning developed and commercialized as tourists have begun pouring in. Its one-mile stretch of fine white sand beach provides idyllic scenery and privacy for those wanting to unwind and commune with nature. It is the place of stunning sunset and inspiring sunrise backed with Western Ghats located in South Goan Taluka of Canacona.
Also referred as the ‘Tiny Bay of Goa’, the beach appears as a curve-shaped bay, where one can view both ends, dotted with swaying coconut palms while bordered by a couple of steep rocky cliffs. At the northern tip, you can see a freshwater stream, across this stream is a small islet called Green Island that can simply be reached by swimming during low tide. Along the arched white sand beach are thatched palm huts where tourists may stay. People in these palm huts can enjoy a bonfire at night and take their dinner under the dramatic stars.
There are plenty of things to do in Palolem Beach. You can enjoy watching dolphins by taking a trip on a fishing boat. You may stroll around and explore the small island on the far north part of the beach. Or you could help a team of fishermen pull in a fishing net: they are always thankful for a helping hand. If you want to de-stress, take a yoga lesson by joining Tai Chi, Chi Oong or Bollywood Dancing. Ayurvedic massages are also highly recommended. Plenty of souvenir shops selling all sorts of stuff, especially cool shirts and traditional handicrafts, can be found here and are great for a day shopping.
Swimming here is safe as the currents are neither too strong nor fast and the depth gradually rises, being the shallowest at the northern tip of the beach that makes it safe for ordinary swimmers. An interesting fact, Palolem Beach has been featured as the residence of Bourne-star Matt Damon in his film The Bourne Supremacy in 2004. The initial movie footage shows a good idea of the beach’ unspoiled beauty as well as the beauty of Green Island and beach shacks. On top of the island connecting the beach, you can find a stone sculpture by Jacek Tylicki, an American land art artist. The stone art is called as ‘the Monkey Stone’ or ‘Give if you can or Take if you have to’.
Palolem Beach has a handful of accommodations to choose from. There is the 5-star Intercontinental Hotel located up the road. However, if you choose to stay near the beach, you can stay in beach huts that vary in quality and price. A basic beach hut, with a communal shower and toilet, can cost as low as 100 rupees per night while the more lavish ones may reach up to 2000. A couple of beach resorts – Boon’s Ark and La Ben Resort, are available. To find the best place to stay, simply go for a walk and look at various accommodations.
Palolem Beach is entirely easy to access as it lies around 3 kilometers from the nearest train station, Canacona Railway Junction. It is also well connected to any part of Goa.