Creative Community spaces in Goa - Moonlitekingdom

1st Jan 2019
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Often the best travel memories are about friends that you make while on the road. When you are travelling long term (or even a short trip which you wish you could extend for longer) where do you meet new people? People with similar interests looking to learn or indulge more; who are also looking out for others of their tribe. That is where creative community spaces come into being. They bring together people sharing a common interest or philosophy while encouraging a feeling of bonhomie. This blog is about such creative community spaces in Goa.

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What are creative community spaces?

They are physical spaces such as restaurants, cafes, homes which serve as hubs of cultural activities. Every community space chooses its own niche to specialize in, some choose music, some performance art, some choose wellness or sustainable living and they host events at regular intervals to eventually build a community around it.

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A month long Art Week at ArtJuna, Anjuna

Looking around for immersive experience to be a part of in Goa? Here is a definitive list. This post is written in collaboration with Offbeat goa.

Museum of Goa, Pilerne: A contemporary art gallery curated by artist Subodh Kerkar, it is located in an eccentric building in Pilerne Industrial estate, 20 mins from Calangute. The museum started with a clear intent of making art accessible to all. Their calendar is abuzz with events such as talks, lectures, workshops, residencies and movie screenings around the year. Recently in December, it hosted the Adobo Film festival. On any given day the museum is open for visitors, there is a cute café to sit and enjoy the Goa vibe. One of the thriving community spaces in Goa that has exciting events all year round.

79, Pilerne Industrial Estate, Pilerne, Bardez, Goa, 403511

Artjuna, Anjuna:Artjuna is not content being just one of the best all season cafes in town, it is also a common hangout for those who work out of Goa too. Excellent falafels, very good internet and a really relaxed vibe are what makes this café a hit with weekend holidayers and long term travellers alike. It serves as a de-facto co-working space for many, so it creates a community of its own on that accord. It always has plenty of exciting activities up its sleeve. Monday nights are movie nights, Thursdays are for pizza, a yoga class which runs all year and other workshops, music sessions keep the rest of the week busy. A great place to start your Goa trip with, end it or spend the whole of it in. This is one of the most active community spaces in the northern part of Goa.

940, Market Rd, Monteiro Vaddo, Anjuna, Goa 403509

Sunapranta, Panjim:Located in the picturesque Altinho hills of Panjim , overlooking the capital city, Sunapranta finds its home in a beautiful colonial house. They have an open amphitheatre, exhibition space for local and emerging artists, a residency programme and they play gracious host to talks, workshops, movie screenings, music sessions. They have a detailed schedule on their website which gives one a heads up about all the events curated at the place. Sunaparanta also houses Café Alfresco which, as the name suggests, is located in its open courtyard. Whats not to love?

63/C-8, Near Army House, Altinho, Panaji, Goa 403001

Thinkering, Moira: Thinkering is one of the community spaces in Goa built around critical thinking and is aimed at mostly developing our leaders of tomorrow. Its philosophy is based on the 4 pillars of learning that are documented by the UNESCO: Learning to KNOW, BE, DO, and to LIVE TOGETHER. They have plenty of workshops for children, but they also liaison with businesses, artists, non-profits to hone developmental skills. Their workshops are designed for a diverse interest group ranging from creative writing to practical science to architecture. Learning is a major part of their offerings and an alternate way of doing it is what drives the group.

Takshila Centre, 273, Nachinola Bardez, Goa, 40352

Khaama Kethana: From being a holistic healing retreat, Khaama Kethana has built a community around healing, wellness and sustainable living. It is one of the community spaces in Goa that promotes slow and mindful living. While they hold permaculture workshops, yoga and meditation classes, they run a retreat in South Goa too. Those looking for peace and tranquillity near the pristine shores of Agonda are in for a (re)treat here.

442,Gurawal, 403702 Agonda, India

Vaayu, Ashwem: For those adhering to the call of the ocean, Vayu is a great space to get together with others sharing interests related to surfing and other water activities. It was built with the vision of bringing together people with a sense of adventure, creativity and fun while having a positive impact on the local community and the natural environment. It is located at the Vaayu Fisherman's village and is home to the lovely Prana Café. They also have an artist's residency in-house with an art gallery for showcases. You can also keep an eye out for seaside gigs and beach cleanups at the village.

Ashwem Beach Road, Opposite Holy Cross Chapel,Ashwem Beach, Ashwem, Mandrem, Goa 403527

Shaala 142, Assangaon:Set inside Nancy's beautiful bungalow in Assangaon, Shala hosts transformative workshops such as sound healing, pranic yoga, meditation. They also host New Earth gathering which is a community market for Organic Vegetables and Groceries, chemical-free products, seeds & saplings for setting up your own garden. In addition, they host listening sessions, in a fairy-lit shala where the community comes together to soak in the music. It's a wonderful setting for those looking for a mindful new way of life.

Shala 142, Assangaon, Next to Purple Yoga centre

Also read: Zagreb Travel Guide

Beyond Nomad, Anjuna: A quaint poshtel nestled in the sleepy boroughs of Anjuna makes for a perfect setting for a budding creative community space in Goa. The folks at Beyond Nomad have set up home around a beautiful Portuguese home. This is where they host travellers in comfortable dorms replete with antique furniture and Mangalore tiles perfumed with nostalgia. While they started out with arranging activities exclusively for their guests, it soon extended to everyone who wanted to join in. Thus the community that they have built thrives on cultural experiences, whether its clay making, walks to a brewery, hikes and night market visits. There is always something going on at Beyond Nomad.

No. 968, Pequen Peddem, Anjuna-Caisua, Anjuna, Goa 403509

Also Read: Top destinations for Digital Nomads

Sadhana Dell'Artes, Panjim: This wonderful space is a 10-minute drive from the heart of Panjim and 2 minutes from the highway. The art space serves as a co-working space for architects, it has a café set under a tree and hosts beautiful plays and movie screenings, book readings, gigs, amongst other things. For example, I visited here during the Serendipity arts festival when they hosted the wonderful play Sonnets performed by the Guilds of the goat. They had a very warm team looking after the whole affair and do keep an eye out for their calendar they always have something new coming up.

House No.125, Casa Joao Francisco, Bhutem Bhat, Merces (after A Lua Restaurant) Goa 403005, India

Rocket Burgers, Anjuna: On Wednesday and Friday nights if you want to hang out with your homies at a bar with good live music, then Rocket is a great bet. Come here for the music and the burgers and meet your homies on any given day. But what is really exciting are these gig nights where brings home everyone who lives in the neighbourhood or has friends visiting. Krish the owner is always around to have a chat or recommend which burger to order. In addition, for Bengalis who are feeling homesick and want to try some Kolkata chow mein, they have this on their menu quite often. I have spent quite a few evenings here and I want to go back as soon as I can already.

Anjuna chiver, Vagator, Goa 403509Sa

Saraya, Sangolda: For an art café experience near Sangolda, you have Saraya which is quite the hub of activities. While it hosts movie screenings, workshops and focuses on sustainable living, they also have a volunteer exchange programme where one can help out in the café or the stay (treehouses, how great is that) in exchange for a stay in the premises.

House No. 64, Chogm Rd, Porvorim, Sangolda, Bardez, Goa 403511

Also Read : Slow travel in Madhavpur, Gujarat

Offbeat Goa: This post is written in collaboration with the awesome folks at Offbeat. While they have created quite a stellar community online for those looking to do something offbeat, this is one of the first and few community spaces in Goa started with the vision of supporting smaller business, promoting conscious and sustainable living. For example, they have been long active in beach cleanups, feeding of strays. Their 10k+members on the group are one of the most active bunch you have seen in a long long time. Whether you are looking to learn a new art or looking to lease a new home or looking for puppies for fostering, this would be a great place to begin.

Also read: 8 Fierce Female Travel Bloggers who will inspire you