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India Travel >>Travel to Goa >>Arambol in Goa 

Arambol in Goa

Arambol in GoaThe Countryside Heaven Of the fishing settlements dotted along the north coast, only Arambol 32-km northwest of Mapusa, is remotely geared to tourism - albeit in a very low-key, low-impact fashion. If one is happy with basic amenities, the village offers two very fine beaches and a healthy dose of peace and quiet. Parties are occasionally held here, drawing revellers across the river from Anjuna and Vagator, but these are rare intrusions into an otherwise tranquil, out of the way enclave.
Beaches Of Arambol
Modern Arambol is scattered around an area of high ground west of the main coast road, where most of the buses pull in. From here, a bumpy lane runs downhill, past a large school and the village church, to the more traditional end of the village, clustered under a canopy of widely spaced palm trees. The main beach lies 200m farther along the lane. Strewn with dozens of old wooden fishing boats and a line of tourist café bars, the gently curving bay is good for bathing, but much less picturesque than its neighbour around the corner.

The smaller and less frequented of Arambol's two beaches can only be reached on foot by following the stony track over the headland to the north. Beyond an idyllic rocky-bottomed cove, the trail emerges to a broad strip of soft white sand hemmed in on both sides by steep cliffs.

A Freshwater Lake
Behind the surrounding of the second beach lay a small freshwater lake extends along the bottom of the valley into a thick jungle. Hang around the banks of this murky green pond for long enough, and one will probably see a fluorescent yellow human figure or two appear from the bushes at its far end. Fed by boiling hot springs, the lake is lined with sulphurous mud, which, when smeared over the body, dries to form a surreal, butter coloured shell.

Nearby, in the woods immediately behind the lake, other members of the lunatic fringe have taken to living in the branches of an old tree; the scene resembles a cross between Lord of the flies and apocalypse now.


Places to see
Terecol FortTerecol Fort : North of Arambol, the sinuous coast road climbs to the top of a rocky, undulating plateau, then winds down through a swathe of thick woodland to join the river Arondem, which it then follows for 4km through a landscape of vivid paddy fields, coconut plantations and temple towers protruding from scruffy red brick villages. The tiny enclave of Terakol, the northernmost tip of Goa, is reached via a clapped-out car ferry from the hamlet of Querim, 42-km from Panjim,

The Fort
It was a key Portuguese fort for the defense of Goa, on the north side of the estuary of the Teracol River, the most northern boundary of Goa. Hyped as one of the state's most atmospheric historic monuments, it turns out to be little more than a down at heel country house recently converted into a low-key luxury hotel. Decorative turrets and dry moat with commanding views of the estuary and ocean mark the fort.

If ones visit coincides with the arrival of a guided tour, one may get a chance to look around the gloomy interior of the chapel of St. Anthony, in the fort's claustrophobic cobbled square; at other times it's kept locked. The Chapel also has a classical late Goan facade.
 


How to reach :
By Road
Road: Buses to and from Panjim pull into Arambol every thirty minutes until noon, and every ninety minutes thereafter, at the small bus stand on the main road. A faster private minibus service from Panjim arrives daily opposite the Chai (tea) stalls at the beach end of the village.
Local Transport
Boat: Boats leave here every Wednesday morning for the ninety-minute trip to the Anjuna Flea Market. Tickets should be booked in advance from the Welcome Restaurant by the beach, which also rents out motorcycles. The post office, next to the church, has a Poste Restante Box; to change money, however, one will have to head for Vagator, as Arambol's State Bank Of India has no foreign exchange facility.
 
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