Where to stay in Goa: 17 Best Areas for All Travel Types 2023

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This is a post that will answer all your stay-related questions on Goa. The post has information on

  • where to stay in Goa based on your travel type (couples, honeymoon, solo, families and many more)
  • best areas to stay in Goa (all areas from North to South Goa covered in detail)
  • top hotels and accommodations in Goa

The tourist-friendly Goa map included in this article will quickly orient you about the best areas to stay in Goa.

All the information contained in this post is based on our vast experience of 20+ trips to Goa!

Where to stay in Goa - best places and areas

This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through one of these links, we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Please read the disclaimer for more information.

Where to stay in Goa: An Overview

Here is a table giving you a quick overview of the best areas to stay in Goa

Best area to stay in Goa forBest Area in North GoaBest area in South Goa
Solo travellersBaga (See best-rated accommodation)Palolem (See best-rated accommodation)
CouplesSinquerim (See best-rated accommodation)
Vagator (See best-rated accommodation)
Morjim (See best-rated accommodation)
Cavelossim (See best-rated accommodation)
FamiliesCandolim (See best-rated accommodation)Benaulim (See best-rated accommodation)
Best beachVagator (See best-rated accommodation)
Morjim (See best-rated accommodation)
Arambol (See best-rated accommodation)
Palolem (See best-rated accommodation)
NightlifeBaga (See best-rated accommodation)
ForeignersMorjim (See best-rated accommodation)
Arambol (See best-rated accommodation)
Palolem (See best-rated accommodation)
Budget travellersBaga (See best-rated accommodation)
Vagator (See best-rated accommodation)
Palolem (See best-rated accommodation)
Nature-loversMorjim (See best-rated accommodation)
Mandrem (See best-rated accommodation)
Mollem (See best-rated accommodation)
Dudhsagar Falls (See best-rated accommodation)
Cola Beach (See best-rated accommodation)

The highlights and characteristic traits of all these areas as well as a few more areas are given in detail below.

Goa Map: Where to Stay

Top Areas and Hotels to Stay in Goa

If you want a quick answer to the best area to stay in Goa for you, here is a summary with my top recommendations

Candolim: Best area to stay in Goa for first-timers travelling as a couple or with family. Stay at De Mandarin Beach Resort – check photos and availability

Arambol: Best area for foreigners. Stay at Double V – check photos and availability.

Benaulim: Best area in South Goa for all types of travellers (my most favourite too!) Stay at Azaya Beach Resort – check photos and availability.

Palolem: Best area in South Goa for solo travellers. Stay at The Lost Hostel – check photos and availability.

Cola: Best offbeat area to stay in Goa, perfect for nature-lovers. Stay at Blue Lagoon – check photos and availability.

For more details on these areas and other places to stay in Goa, read the full post below.

Best Areas to stay in Goa for every vacation type

About the selection:

Let me clarify at the outset that I have not been paid by any of the properties and I am recommending them entirely on my own based on my experience of visiting Goa over a dozen times and through my in-depth research. Of course, I haven’t stayed at all the places listed here as that would be impossible!

Which part of Goa is best for couples to stay?

Best areas in North Goa for couples

The best areas in North Goa for a romantic holiday or honeymoon are Sinquerim or Aguada, Vagator, and Morjim.

Sinquerim/Lower For Aguada:

Sinquerim Beach near Taj Aguada
Sinquerim Beach near Taj Aguada

– It has many high-end and 5-star properties overlooking the stunning Sinquerim and Coco Beach (as seen in the movie Gehraiyaan).

– Many famous restaurants and cute cafés are in the nearby area.

– Lots of sightseeing options as well as activities such as dolphin-watching, river-front boating, and watersports are easily accessible.

See best-rated accommodation in Sinquerim or check out availability at my favorite Taj Aguada here.


– Charming yet touristy area in Goa with some of the best beaches in North Goa around

– Excellent seafood options and vibey cafés around

– Relatively less crowded than other North Goa places.

– Even Vagator has some of the best resorts and hotels for couples.

See best-rated accommodation in Vagator or check out availability at the cozy and chic W Goa here.


– Up and away from the crowded side of Goa but home to a very charming beach.

– A perfect place for a romantic laidback holiday where you want to just relax and instead of visiting Goan tourist spots

– Morjim has some of the best beach cottages and resorts in Goa for couples.

See best-rated accommodation in Morjim or check out availability at the stylishly done resort Sur La Mer

Best areas in South Goa for couples

Cavelossim is the best area is South Goa for couples. It is less crowded than the more touristy places in South Goa like Benaulim, Colva and Palolem but still perfectly centered for quick trips to South Goan attractions.

Cavelossim also has some of the finest restaurants and luxury properties in Goa. The beach is also very scenic and serene.

See best-rated accommodation in Cavelossim or check out availability at the Holiday Inn which with its own private beach too.

Where to stay in Goa with family?

Best area in North Goa for families

Lower Fort Aguada close to Candolim, Goa
Lower Fort Aguada close to Candolim, Goa

The best area in North Goa for families is Candolim. Candolim is close to many major tourist attractions like the Aguada Fort, Nerul River, Reis Magos Fort, etc. The Candolim beach as well as the beaches near Candolim are very pretty yet family-friendly. There are many family-friendly restaurants all along the streets. The area also allows access to transportation facilities, chemists, shops, etc.

It’s easy to find accommodation catering to all budget requirements in Candolim. It not only has some of the best hotels in Goa but also the finest villas.

Check best-rated accommodation in Candolim or check out availability at the family-friendly, clean and well-managed Park Inn by Radisson, Candolim

Best areas in South Goa for families

Benaulim beach at night

The best area is South Goa for families is Benaulim. Benaulim beach is clean, full of great shacks and watersport offerings. The area is less crowded compared to Colva and yet has enough shops, supermarkets, restaurants and cafés to meet the needs of most families. You will find scooter and car rentals too.

See best-rated accommodation in Benaulim here or check out availability at Azaya Beach Resort – a beach facing property with an excellent pool

Where to stay in Goa for nightlife?

Baga at Night
Street in Baga after sunset

The best area in Goa for nightlife is Baga which has some of the most buzzing nightclubs in all of Goa like Titos, Hammerz and more. The beach also turns into a party place at night with all shacks playing loud music for their party-loving customers.

There are a number of budget and mid-range hotels in Baga. See out the best-rated accommodations in Baga for your budget here.

If you are looking for a party hotel, check out Hard Rock in Calangute here. (10 mins from Baga)

In my digital travel plan called ‘Goa: Planned for You‘, I condense all my Goa travel experience to simplify your trip planning process. The travel plan contains curated stay and sightseeing options for your travel style.

Goa: Planned for You

A handy digital travel plan that includes

  • Specially curated stay recommendations
  • restaurant suggestions
  • a day-wise break-up of things to do
  • a fully interactive Goa map
  • special insights and lots more!

Which beach is best for stay in Goa?

The best beaches in Goa for a stay are Vagator, Morjim and Arambol in the north and Palolem in the south. But since Goa is a state with a coastline all across its western border, you can pick a beach that suits your travel type. But in any case, avoid the crowded Calangute and Baga if you want to experience the true beauty of Goan beaches

Best beach areas in North Goa

Sunset at Vagator Beach
Sunset at Vagator Beach


– There is a small beach and a big beach here with clear water and amazing sunset views.
– Anjuna, which is right next to Vagator, also has some of the best sunset cafes

See best-rated accommodation in Vagator

The fantastic high-end W Goa (Check photos and availability here) and the beach-facing cllifftop Red Thread Vagator are also located here. (Check photos and availability here)


An idyllic white sand beach with palm trees around it. Best place for sun-bathing and quiet beach.

See best-rated accommodation in Morjim here.


One of the northern-most beaches in Goa famous amongst foreigners, surfing, yoga, beach markets and parties!

See best-rated accommodation in Arambol here.

Best beach areas in South Goa

While South Goa is full of scenic beaches, from the point of staying, Palolem is the best. Its coastline is stunning and a short boat ride takes you to the deserted butterfly beach and monkey island.

See best-rated accommodation in Palolem here or check out availability at the beach-facing resort Ark’s Comfort here.

Which part of Goa is best for foreigners to stay?

Foreigners love Morjim and Arambol in the North for its scenic beauty, hippie vibe, yoga and drum circles. In the South, most foreigners head to Palolem for its peaceful vibe, cafes, yoga and comparatively lesser crowds than the beaches in North Goa.

Best beaches in North Goa for foreigners

Arambol beach during the day
Arambol beach during the day


A waterbody next to Vagator separates Morjim from the crowded side of Goa.
Morjim is peaceful and quiet. It has a turtle nesting centre too.
Plenty of shacks serve affordable, foreigner-friendly food.
Foreigners can find good accommodation for all budgets in this area.

See best-rated accommodation in Morjim


Arambol is much-further north than many touristy places in Goa.
The beach is clean and full of shacks.
A foreigner’s market sets itself up at the beach in the evening. Many ‘local foreigners’ sell artefacts here while some play music.

See best-rated accommodation in Arambol here

Best beaches in South Goa for foreigners


This area is visually appealing with its lovely beach, backwaters, eagles, coconut trees and idyllic islands close to it.
There are many cafes and yoga houses in the nearby area that particularly appeal to foreigners.
Located on the extreme south, the place is usually much less crowded than Benaulim or Colva.

See best-rated accommodation in Palolem

Where should a first-timer stay in Goa?

Balcony overlooking Anjuna beach
Taking in the views at Anjuna

A first-timer in Goa should stay between Candolim and Vagator in the North or at Benaulim or Palolem in the South. These areas are full of restaurants, cafes, wine shops, flea markets, bakeries and other amenities a first-time tourist in Goa would need at his disposal. But each place has its own unique characteristic trait and if you are a first-time traveller to Goa, base yourself in an area that aligns with your travel type.

Candolim – family-friendly, central

Calangute – crowded, stuffed with flea markets and food places

Baga – crowded, excellent for nightlife

Anjuna – Great cafes, flea market and a pleasant beach vibe

Vagator – two pretty beaches, Chapora fort and great bakeries and cafes/

Benaulim – Family friendly, tourist amenity-rich, less crowded than North

Cavelossim – couple-friendly, excellent restaurants around

Palolem – cafes, boat rides, pristine beauty

Check the best-rated accommodation in North Goa here.

For South Goa accommodation, click here.

Get more in-depth area-wise information later in the article

Where to stay in Goa when traveling on a budget?

If you are travelling to Goa on a budget, it is advisable to stay in a budget accommodation or hostel in touristy areas like Baga or Vagator in North Goa or Palolem in South Goa.

You can read my in-depth and popular post on how to visit Goa on a budget for more information.

Check top-rated hostels in Goa on Hostelworld here.

Where to stay in Goa for nature-lovers?

Goan backwaters

The best areas to stay in Goa for nature lovers are Mollem, Dudhsagar, Cola Beach in the South and Morjim and Mandrem in the North.

  • Mollem is a sancruary area that is now called Mahavir bird sanctuary. It is lush green, raw and attractions like Tambdi Surla and Dudhsagar falls are closeby.
  • Dudhsagar Falls is one of the tallest waterfalls in India and is a famous Goan trekking spot.
  • Cola Beach is tucked away from touristy South Goa and boasts of serene Goan backwaters.
  • Morjim has a turtle nesting center. Ashvem and Mandrem Beach north of it are known for its random dolphin sightings.

What are some of the best offbeat or heritage stay areas in Goa?

Siolim House, Goa
Siolim House, Goa

There are much unique offbeat heritage stays all across Goa but the ones that are the most unique with an incredible heritage value are Fort Tiracol, Siolim House, Vivendo dos Palhacos and Welcome Heritage Panjim.

Fort Tiracol Heritage Hotel: Fort near Arambol converted into a plush hotel. (Check photos and availability here)

Siolem House: A 17th century noble home turned into a boutique hotel. (Check photos and availability here)

Vivendo dos Palhacos: A 100+ year old property, uniquely redesigned for guests. (Check photos and availability here)

WelcomeHeritage: A massive colonial mansion in Old Goa with rooms available for an affordable price. (Check photos and availability here)

Best places to stay in Goa as per area (North to South)

Goa is a state. It’s not a small city that has just a couple of main tourist areas. That’s why it is important to dive into the details of every major area in Goa from a touristic point of view.

I am organizing the best areas to stay in Goa in a North to South manner for better understanding, and each section will give you a brief idea about what to do, what’s special about the area, and places to stay in that area.

Best areas to stay in North Goa

Area 1: Arambol

Arambol is the most foreigner-friendly beach in Goa. It is famous for its hippie vibe.
You will find shacks playing loud music, drum circles and yoga classes crowding the beach and lanes near Arambol.
The clean beach is surrounded by small cliffs with colorful houses.

During the day, you will find local tourists here, but as sunset approaches, the foreigner’s market (a market set up by foreigners settled in Arambol) comes into play. Foreigners sell sarongs, bracelets and many more interesting items here.

A sweet water lake next to the beach is a must-visit attraction too.

Best places to stay in Arambol

Fort Tiracol, Arambol, Goa
Fort Tiracol, Arambol, Goa

Luxury Heritage: Fort Tiracol Heritage Hotel – a fort a bit away from Arambol beach converted into a luxury hotel. (Check photos and availability here)

Mid-range – Double V – family-friendly, some rooms even have a kitchen, close to the beach (Check photos and availability here)

Budget: Hotel Galaxy – clean, affordable hotel close to the beach (Check photos and availability here)

See best-rated accommodation in Arambol here

Area 2: Ashvem (or Mandrem)

Ashwem Beach

Ashvem is one of the most beautiful beaches and areas in all of North Goa.
The beach is mostly deserted and has a small creek-like structure towards one end.
It’s a perfect beach for family outings with young children or for a romantic time away from the crowds.
All along the area outside, you will find lovely cafes and restaurants with Prana Café being one of my favourites.

Arambol, Mandrem and Morjim are all just a short drive away.

The main touristy region of North Goa from Candolim to Vagator is also 30-60 minutes away.

The area is perfect for those who visit Goa for workations, long stays or for pure relaxation.

Best places to stay near Ashvem

Boomerang Beach Resort, Goa
View from Boomerang Beach Resort, Mandrem, Goa

Mid-range: Boomerang Beach Resort – great vibe, suitable for all travellers, close to Ashvem beach (Check photos and availability here)

Spa Property: Amritara Aura Spa – clean, excellent flora and fauna, lovely location (Check photos and availability here)

Luxury beach resort: Amadi Beach Resort – brilliant hospitality, beach-front resort on Ashvem beach (Check photos and availability here)

See best-rated accommodation near Ashvem here.

Area 3: Morjim

Baby girl walking at Morjim beach
Baby girl walking at Morjim beach

It’s one of the most beautiful beaches in Goa, thanks to its white sand and palm trees.
It is popular amongst Russian tourists, but not many Indians visit this beach.
You will also find Olive Ridley turtles here during their nesting season.
The beach also has plenty of sunbeds for the perfect time out on the beach.

In the nearby area, you will find the famous Chapora river which separates the touristy side of North Goa from Morjim.

Mandrem, a beach known for its dolphin sightings, is also just a short drive away.

The beach is ideal for couples and travellers looking to escape the crowds of Goa but not its beauty.

Best places to stay in Morjim

Jacuzzi at SinQ Beach Property at Morjim

Mid-range resort: Sur La Mer – Chic, stylish, tastefully done rooms with good hospitality (check photos and availability)

High-end hotel: SinQ Beach – beach-facing property with jacuzzi and cocktails, perfect for couples. (check photos and availability)

Value for money: Tridiva – Simple property 2 mins away from the beach, helpful staff, affordable (check photos and availability)

See best-rated accommodation in Morjim

Area 4: Vagator

Vagator Beach
Vagator Beach at twilight

Vagator is one of the most scenic places in all of Goa. It has two beaches that look divine thanks to the overhanging cliffs.

The famous Chapora Fort (aka Dil Chahta Hai fort) as well as the Vagator beach, are famous for their sunset views.

There are plenty of delicious bakeries (I particularly love Jaws bakery) and cafés in the area around the beach. It’s also a great pad for budget travelers looking for hostels.

Best places to stay in Vagator

The stunning Whiteflower Cottages, Vagator

Luxury: W Goa – luxurious, excellent rooms, hospitality and ambience (Check photos and availability here)

Resort with a view: Red Thread Vagator – great views, clifftop property (Check photos and availability here)

Stylish Cottages: Whiteflower Cottages – close to the beach, clean, outstanding hospitality, yummy breakfast (check photos and availability here)

See best-rated accommodation in Vagator

Area 5: Anjuna

Sunset at Anjuna Beach
Sunset at Anjuna Beach

Anjuna has a rocky beach that’s a hit amongst Instagrammers. It is also where the famous songs from the movie ‘Rangeela’ were shot.

There are many sunset cafés in Anjuna that are probably the best place to watch a Goan sunset from. I particularly love Café Morgans (Café Eva and Purple Martini are way more famous, but didn’t impress me because of how crowded and loud they were)

A weekly flea market is set up in Anjuna on every Wednesday but on other days too, there are many stalls selling amazing fashion wear, dreamcatchers, instruments, handbags, and more.

Anjuna is an excellent base for group holidays in Goa.

Best places to stay in Anjuna

Panoramic view of Westin, Goa

Luxury: Westin, Anjuna – top-rated, 5-star property, excellent rooms and hospitality (check photos and availability)

Value for money: Reemz Beach Heaven – family-friendly, good pool, near many restaurants (check photos and availability)

Villa: Myconos – Luxury beachfront villa with a pool, tastefully done decor, 2 bedrooms (check photos and availability)

Area 6: Baga

Baga Arpora
Baga River

Baga is the place to be if you want to experience the nightlife of Goa. Baga has some of the best clubs in Goa such as Titos and Hammerz and the loudest parties you will probably ever find on beachside shacks.

During the day, the place is crowded but relatively calm. After sunset, Baga transforms into a chaotic mess of loud music, fluroscent glow lights, fish spas and busy roadside shops.

The area has an ample number of restaurants, local shacks and cafes.

The Saturday Night Market (when open) is also a touristic highlight for its musical events and flea stalls.

Best places to stay in Baga

Casa Legend Villa & Apartment, Baga

Apartment: Casa Legend Villa & Apartment – excellent amenities, ideal for families with young children, away from crowds yet central location (check photos and availability)

Budget-friendly beach resort: Fiesta beach resort – excellent location, small but cosy rooms, great for those who want to be in the heart of the buzz. (check photos and availability)

Another alternative for families is to stay at Karma Royal Monterio. It’s a timeshare property with excellent rooms, facilities and cleanliness.You could try reaching out to them and explore if there are ways in which you can stay there even as a non-member.

Area 7: Calangute

Calangute Beach in the evening

Calangute is known as the ‘Queen of Beaches’ in Goa. Calangute beach is the most crowded beach in Goa.

The feels of Calangute are similar to a Mumbai chowpatty and hence Calangute is not the best place to admire Goa’s coastal beauty.

But, because of its touristic popularity, Calangute is a hub of transportation. You can easily book buses to and from Calangute.

Many major tourist attractions in North Goa such as Fort Aguada, Nerul River, Chapora Fort, etc. are a short drive away from Calangute

The area is a busy center full of restaurants, cafes, touristy shops, wine shops, and a wide variety of hotels from budget to mid-range.

Best places to stay in Calangute

Chalston Beach Resort, Calangute

Best party-pad: Hard Rock, Calangute: Great place for party-lovers, close to the biggest clubs in Goa. (check photos and availability)

Mid-range resort: Chalston Beach Resort – All amenities like pool, in-house restaurant, garden for an affordable price. Central location. (check photos and availability)

Mid-range resort: Resort Terra Paraiso – Excellent location, good rooms, clean, decent breakfast, next to the beach (check photos and availability)

Area 8: Candolim

Sightseeing at Lower Fort Aguada near Candolim

Candolim is the best area to stay in North Goa for its proximity to the best tourist attractions in North Goa. Fort Aguada, Sinquerim Fort (Lower Fort Aguada), Nerul River, Reis Magos Fort, Coco Beach and many more attractions are in the nearby area.

Watersport activities, boating, dolphin-viewing activities and more are also in closeby.

The area has some of the most vibey cafes serving delicious food. (Cafe Candolim is my absolute favourite)

At night, most restaurants turn into places offering live music.

The beach itself is also suitable for all age groups but Coco Beach and Sinquerim Beach which are closeby are less crowded and therefore more visually pleasing.

You will find accommodation across all budget ranges here.

Best places to stay in Candolim

If you want a high-end property, Candolim has multiple options from reputed brands. You can pick one based on your budget. Staying here often works better as the service quality is more reliable than smaller brands which are only slightly cheaper.

De Mandarin Beach Resort, Candolim
De Mandarin Beach Resort, Candolim

Luxury: Taj Aguada – best luxury property in Goa, huge site, multiple restaurants, Portuguese decor rooms (check photos and availability)

Beach-front resort: De Mandarin Beach Resort – one of the best properties in Candolim, luxe feels for a relatively lesser price than other luxury properties, spacious rooms, courteous staff (check photos and availability)

Mid-range hotel: Resort de Lohias – located on the main road close to many restaurants and cafés, clean rooms, affordable price, excellent hospitality (check photos and availability)

Best areas to stay in Central and Old Goa

Area 9: Fountainhas

Fountainhas lanes

Fountainhas is one of the rare Latin quarters in all of India.

Its lanes are popular for their Portuguese styled houses in which locals continue to live. The colourful backdrop of these houses is used by many youngsters to light up their Instagram feeds. It is also a common place for fashion and wedding photoshoots.

The area is also famous for its many bakeries. The Confeitaria 31 de Janeiro is my favourite spot for a quick bite.

You will also find many heritage properties and mid-range hotels in these lanes.

Best places to stay in Fountainhas/Old Goa

WelcomHeritage property in Fountainhas

WelcomeHeritage: A massive colonial mansion in Old Goa with rooms available for an affordable price. (Check photos and availability here)

The Old Quarter Hostel: Clean, budget-friendly hostel, great for solo travellers, in the heart of Fountainhas (Check photos and availability here)

Area 10: Panjim

Panjim is the capital of Goa and a place where very few tourists live.

The capital looks like any other busy city in India,e with locals driving around in cars and on two-wheelers. Large bridges, flyovers, petrol pumps, and supermarkets grace this area.

The area is an excellent stay choice for those planning to visit Old Goa churches like the Basilica of Bom Jesus, Se Cathedral and other monuments in the vicinity. The famous filming locations Dona Paula, Immaculate Conception Church are also located here.

You can also hop on an offshore casino from Panjim.

Best places to stay in Panjim

Room at Fortune Miramar, Panjim

Luxury: Vivanta Goa – In the heart of Panaji, close to Miramar beach, spacious rooms, Taj hospitality and premium dining options. (check photos and availability)

Luxury: Fortune Miramar Goa – cheaper than Taj Vivanta, but comparable hospitality and service. Huge breakfast spread. Very close to the beach. (check photos and availability)

Area 11: Goa Airport/Dabolim

The Goan airport is in Dabolim. It is a military airport that is used for commercial domestic flights and a few international flights as well.

From a touristic point of view, there is nothing much to do in Dabolim. Dabolim is about an hour away from Candolim/Calangute and about 45 minutes away from Benaulim.

So it only makes sense to stay in Dabolim if you arrive or leave from Goa at odd hours and need a place for a quick rest.

Best places to stay near Goa airport

I can’t recommend a specific place near Goa airport. But you can check properties in Dabolim here.

Best areas to stay in South Goa

Majorda and Betalbatim beaches one of the most spectacular beaches in South Goa. Majorda is adorned by clean golden sand while Betalbatim is famous for glowing at night because of the presence of bioluminescent algae.

Area 12: Majorda/Betalbatim

Both the beaches are hardly ever visited by regular tourists and therefore continue to retain their natural charm.

They are only about 35 minutes away from the airport and just 5-10 minutes away from the more popular Colva area in South Goa.

Many high-end properties are found in Majorda, and lovely homestays and villas welcome tourists in Betalbatim.

If you want to spend some time with your loved ones away from the hustle-bustle, surrounded by pristine beauty, these areas are perfect for you.

Best places to stay in Majorda/Betalbatim

Alila Diwa, Majorda
Alila Diwa, Majorda

Luxury: Alila Diwa by Hyatt – luxe property away from the crowds, ideal for couples or those seeking a relaxing staycation (check photos and availability)

Mid-range Resort: Nanu Beach Resort – a family-friendly property with on-site playarea, table tennis, etc. and spacious rooms in a quiet area. (check photos and availability)

Area 13: Colva

What Calangute is to North Goa, Colva is to South Goa (but much less crowded). In other words, Colva is the most popular area amongst tourists visiting South Goa.

Colva beach is a long stretch of white sand lined with many shacks and restaurants. Colva also has some of the best mid-range properties for tourists to stay in South Goa.

You can enjoy a host of watersport activities during your time in Colva.

Colva is an appropriate base for families looking for a central area in South Goa with access to all touristic amenities.

Best places to stay in Colva

Sea Queen Beach Resort, Colva

Beach Resort: Sea Queen Beach Resort – This place offers excellent value for money, lovely views, private beach, fantastic location. (check photos and availability)

Mid-range Resort: Soul Vacation Resort – a mid-range property, with a very warm staff and clean rooms, away from the crowded side of Colva (check photos and availability)

Area 14: Benaulim

Benaulim Beach at Twilight

Benaulim is my personal favourite area in South Goa as it offers the right balance between touristic infrastructure and natural beauty.

The beach itself is a lovely place to interact with locals, watch the sunset, enjoy watersports or for a candlelight dinner with your partner.

Multiple restaurants serving delicious food are located right at the entrance of the beach.

For a hearty continental breakfast, check out one of the many restaurants on the road leading to the beach or stop at the famous German bakery for a quick bite.

Benaulim is the most ideal base for families (young and old) visiting Goa. You can visit all the top South Goa attractions from Benaulim as all of them are about a 30-60 minute drive away.

Best places to stay in Benaulim

Sunset at Azaya Beach Resort, Benaulim
Sunset at Azaya Beach Resort, Benaulim

Luxury: Fairfield by Marriott – Near Sernabatim, Benaulim’s quieter neighbour, an outdoor pool, a refreshing garden and rooms with a lovely decor. (check photos and availability here)

Beach Resort: Azaya Beach Resort – Beautiful property throughout, close to the beach, a lovely lounge area, Portuguese decor and the most lavish villas in this area. (check photos and availability here)

Family-friendly Villa: Villas close to the beach with in-house kitchen and more family-friendly amenities. Helpful staff. (check photos and availability here)

Area 15: Cavelossim

Cavelossim beach

Cavelossim beach and its neighbouring Mobor beach present postcard-like beauty. The large deserted beach with its signature white sand contrasted by black rocks for backdrop is a sight to behold.

This remarkable beauty is also a reason why most luxury hotels are based in this part of Goa. It is an ideal location for couples to stay in Goa for their honeymoon.

Many famous seafood restaurants like the Fisherman’s Wharf are located here.

It is a convenient base for visiting all the major South Goan beaches and sightseeing spots. Cabo de Rama – the most beautiful cliff overlooking South Goa, is just a short drive away.

Best places to stay in Cavelossim

An area full of plush luxury properties that are all worth the price in their own unique ways. You can choose any one from the list here.

Radisson Blu, Cavelossim
Radisson Blu, Cavelossim

Luxury: Holiday Inn Resort – Luxury property with a sprawling landscape, playarea, tennis court, café and tastefully done rooms. (check photos and availability here)

High-end: Radisson Blu Resort – Lavish-looking rooms, impressive decor yet less expensive than other luxury properties in this area. Perfect for quality-conscious couples and families. (check photos and availability here)

Area 16: Agonda

Agonda is an area south of Cavelossim famous for its pristine beauty and serenity. The beach is an attractive stretch of golden and white sand.

After the cyclone that hit Goa a few years ago, the few shacks and commercial establishments on the beach have also shut leaving Agonda in its natural, unfiltered form.

But there are a few accommodations available in the nearby area. Beach huts also sprout here during tourist season (after monsoons till February)

Agonda is an ideal base for nature-lovers or those looking to escape the crowds and relax on a deserted beach. You can also hike your way to the secluded Butterfly beach or Cola beach from here.

Best places to stay in Agonda

Agonda has many beach huts that perfectly encapsulate the Goa vibe. The beach huts are not very luxurious but great for a beach holiday. (Most are unavailable during monsoons)

Most popular: Om Sai Beach Huts – Lovely beach huts with a simple, clean rooms right on the beach or with a small garden view, AC, hot water and wifi are also good. (check photos and availability)

You can check more beach huts and properties in Agonda here.

Area 17: Palolem

Far end of Palolem

Palolem is an excellent beach for first-time visitors to Goa, solo travelers as well as foreigners visiting Goa.

The beach is located on the Southern end of the state of Goa and its beauty is unparalleled.

From Palolem, you can head out on eagle-feeding boatrides, trips to the tiny islands around like the monkey island or check out the backwaters of Goa.

Even though Palolem is scenic, it is not as deserted as Agonda. There are a few beachside shacks here. Lanes outside the beach have excellent cafes including some of the best vegan cafes. Yoga classes and cooking classes are also found in the bylanes that particularly attract foreigners.

You will find excellent hostels in Palolem as well as many mid-range properties in this area.

Best places to stay in Palolem

Palolem has excellent guesthouses and hostels – ideal for those and budget and solo travellers.

The beach-facing Arks Comfort at Palolem

High-end: Ark’s Comfort – beautiful location, beach views, welcoming staff and spacious rooms. This category of hotel is a rare find in Palolem where most others are 2-3 star properties. (check photos and availability here)

Guesthouse: Thyme Guesthouse – new property, clean rooms at affordable pricing, 2 mins from the beach (check photos and availability here)

Frequently Asked Questions

How many days are enough in Goa?

For a first time tourist, 5 days are enough in Goa for a glimpse of all the major tourist attractions, beaches and sightseeing spots. But for those looking to explore Goa deeply, it is advisable to stay in Goa for at least two weeks.

Read my post: 5 days itinerary for your Goa trip

What to check when finding accommodation in Goa?

Finding accommodation in Goa is tricky because of the sheer number of options available. Check the area of your accommodation, check user photos and check out recent reviews of the property you plan to visit to avoid making the wrong choice.

What’s the average cost of accommodation in Goa?

The approximate average cost of accommodation in Goa is

  • < INR 1000 per night per person at a hostel in Goa
  • INR 800 to INR 2000 for budget room on a dual sharing basis.
  • INR 2000 to INR 7500 for a mid-range room on a dual-sharing basis
  • > INR 7000 for a room on a dual sharing basis in a high-end property

Should I stay in North Goa or South Goa?

Ideally you should divide your stay between North Goa and South Goa to experience all the aspects of Goa. North Goa is ideal for experiencing Goan nightlife, visiting major forts and sightseeing spots and trying out food at popular restaurants. South Goa is more suitable if you want to see Goa’s coastal beauty, greenery, waterfalls and wildlife.

Final Thoughts

It can be difficult to decide where to stay in Goa given how many property and location options you have. To pick a stay in Goa

  • determine what kind of travel you are looking for
  • narrow down on an area that meets your travel type
  • pick a property in that area based on your budget

If possible, try to divide your stay in a couple of different areas to experience various shades of Goa.

Finally, note that there is no right or wrong choice when it comes to choosing where to stay in Goa. If you’ve read the article till here, you would already know which area to look deeper into. Go ahead and have a lovely Goan holiday!

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Where to stay in Goa - best places and areas

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