Hidden Gems of GOA #offbeatgoa

8th Dec 2018
Photo of Hidden Gems of GOA #offbeatgoa by Manas Mukul

Almost every year I visit but the last trip in December 2018 was unique for me. Instead of partying or vacationing this time I was there for the Goa River Marathon 2018. For this purpose I decided to stay in Vasco Da Gama, as the start of the marathon was very near to that. On almost all the previous occasions I have either stayed in Panjim or near the Calangute/baga beach.

Staying in Vasco da Gama gave a different feel to the whole trip altogether and I made a promise to explore the lesser-known secrets of Goa which the regular tourists and travellers miss.

After finishing the marathon I decided to rent a bike for about Rs. 500 per day to see and explore some hidden places.

I started with Three Kings Chapel.

Day 1
On the way to the Three Kings Chapel

The Three Kings Chapel or Church in broad daylight

Photo of Three Kings Chapel, Cansaulim, Goa, India by Manas Mukul

Three kings chapel

Three kings chapel is situated in the Cansaulim region in a village called Chandor. It is about 15 kms from Margao and about 17 kms from Vasco Da Gama. There are numerous ways to reach here using public transport but I felt the best is renting a bike. That way you will get to enjoy the route also by which you reach the Chapel as it is in an extremely secluded place.

The Haunted Three Kings Chapel

Photo of Three Kings Chapel, Cansaulim, Goa, India by Manas Mukul

The church was established in 1599 by Fr Gonsalo Carvalo S.J. and is affiliated with St Thomaqs Church, Cansaulim.

The Church also has a haunting tale associated with it. According to the story Goa was once inhabited by three rulers, each of which wanted the complete control of Goa which wasn’t possible under the Portuguese Diplomacy policy. One of the king was King Holger Alvunger; he invited the rest two over for a dinner and poisoned them. He couldn’t bear the public outrage that followed and committed suicide. It is believed that the chapel is haunted with their souls.

Haunted or not but it is best advised to visit the chapel during the day time – one it is in a remote location, secondly, because there is an amazing view which is not possible to view in nights.

After returning I decided to rest as I had to wake up early to witness the sunrise the next day at Hollant Beach.

Day 2
The Sunrise at Hollant Beach

Hollant beach

Goa is the beach capital of India but did you know, this is the only place in the whole of Goa where you can witness a sunrise. It is situated right at the foots of the Western Ghats about 3 kms from Vasco da Gama and in close proximity to Bogmalo beach. It's a lesser-known beach in fact it’s a small hidden beach with only locals inhabiting the nearby areas.

It was about 6:30 am when the first rays appeared on the horizon. There was no one in sight on the beach barring a few early morning birds getting ready for their day ahead. Few fishing boats were already lined up the banks but the men were yet to come. It was a surreal experience away from all the hustle and bustle and noise of parties.

The Next stop was the Japanese Garden and Sada beach.

Posing at the Sada Beach.

Japanese Garden and Sada Beach

There is another hidden place in the Sada region of Vasco da Gama. It is only about 2 kms from the Vasco da Gama railway station and bus station.

Sada Beach from the top of Japanese Garden

Photo of Sada Vasco, Alto Desterro, Vasco da Gama, Goa by Manas Mukul

The secret here is that to reach the beach you need to go through an old small Japanese Garden that has a trail which leads to the beach through a small jungle followed by a temple.

Pass through this passage to reach the Sada beach

Photo of Sada Vasco, Alto Desterro, Vasco da Gama, Goa by Manas Mukul

The Small Trail that leads to the Sada Beach

Photo of Sada Vasco, Alto Desterro, Vasco da Gama, Goa by Manas Mukul

Many people visit the Garden but don’t know how to reach the beach and simply go away. The beach is a perfect place to relax away from all the crowd and noise. Here it is only you…the sea…the waves…the sand…and the nature.

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