Sunset Cruise- Panjim (Panaji), Goa, India

From Gokarna, Mariana, George and I headed on to Goa.

The main attractions for tourists in the state of Goa are the beaches, but we only had time to visit the town of Panjim.  Mariana had applied for a new passport, since hers was running out of pages and she needed to pick it up in Panjim, so that was our destination.  We arrived in Panjim in the early afternoon and walked from the bus station to the hotel area of town.  We checked a few hotels, but many of them were full, and decided on Comfort Hotel.  The rooms were very basic and the bathrooms were separate.  300 rupees for the double and 200 for the single.  After checking in we got a snack including delicious Gulab Jamun with ice cream.  Then we walked around town a bit, which has Portuguese style buildings, reflecting Portugal’s control over Goa, which lasted until 1961.

Buildings in Panjim, Goa, India
Panjim, Goa, India
Heidi, Mariana, and George in Panjim, India

We wandered toward the river around 5pm and decided to go on a sunset cruise.  When we got to the dock, there were many booths for booking cruises with different companies.  Some included dinner and some were just an hour cruise with performances.  We took the Santa Monica, which boasted that it had six dance performances.  We would have been happy just with a quiet scenic tour, but the one we got was a taste of modern culture.  There were traditional dances (including Goan jive?!?) separated by attempted audience participation.  When the kids were asked to go on stage only three volunteered and then only one was brave enough to dance, but she was really good!  Looked like she spent all her free time watching Bollywood movies ;).

Sunset Cruise, Panjim, Goa, India

The last dance was for the guys, and there was a school trip on the boat, so those guys all went on stage and tried to dance in the crammed little area.

School kids dancing on the Sun Set Cruise, Panjim

It was pretty scenery from the boat, although we were too distracted to soak it in most of the time.  We got to see one of the beaches as we passed by.  After the hour cruise we found a seafood restaurant and tried yummy honey calamari, and not so wonderful curry kingfish.

George and I attempted to book a train for the next morning heading north towards Kota/Bundi, but it was too last minute.  We had to scratch Bundi from the itinerary and head towards Udaipur, instead.  Originally we wanted to spend one month in the south and one month in the north, but when we realized we would only have a month and a half we thought maybe it would only be enough time to visit the south.  We left our plans open, so we could get more input on the best places to visit.  We got lots of suggestions from the Sumajayan’s, at their homestay in Bangalore and Mariana had lots of tips, as well.  We had also borrowed a video from the library about India, which gave us some ideas about the places we wanted to visit.  Many of the places we wanted to see were in northern India, so instead of taking a relaxing journey through the south we decided to make a quick circle around the country.  From Goa we would head north, then east, then back down the east coast to the southern-most tip, before working our way back up the west coast.

We were able to book an evening bus for the following day, to Mumbai, where we could try for a train north to Udaipur. So we had another day to spend in Goa with Mariana :).  The second day we took care of some work at the internet café in the morning and then in the afternoon we went on a mission.  Mariana’s great grandfather was a sculptor and her family knew that two of his works were in Goa.  One was at the state museum in Panjim, so we set off to find it.  The museum was free to enter and it appeared that we were the only guests ;).  We looked through all the rooms in the three floors of the museum before realizing that the sculpture we were searching for was on the first floor.  Mariana took some photos of the sculpture to show her grandfather, and our mission was complete!

We had time for a quick late lunch/ early dinner before heading to the bus stop for our 6:30pm bus.

Scroll to Top