Just north of Goa and often overshadowed by it, is the beach town of Vengurla. A semi-circular range of hills surround the town and the white sand beaches on three sides open up to the deep blue Arabian Sea. The beaches here give you beauty and peace without any crowds. The Nivati and the Shiroda beaches are secluded paradises with crystal clear water. The market at Shiroda on Sundays is perfect for finding cheap treasures. Vengurla was burned down twice during its prime days. What is left of the scar is a cluster of large rocks, now popularly known as Burnt Island. Remember to visit it and take pictures. At the evening fish market, that is set up near the Vengurla Jetty, you can find a large variety of seafood and fish to go. This is the site for the long-abandoned port of the region. The lighthouse, perched on a hill, is the highest point from where you can enjoy a view of the beach and the setting sun. Besides fish, you'll find cashew nuts everywhere in all forms – be it roasted or raw. And if you happen to visit from March to June, don't forget to indulge in some fresh, juicy Alphonso mangoes grown here.
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