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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

How can one travel within Goa?

Abhishek Sharma DEC 10 2012
0 people found this answer useful Useful ?Yes

Wondering how to commute within this mesmerizing state? Well, don't worry, as Goa has many options ranging from bikes to cars to ferries to buses, which will make your travel not only faster but also convenient. The best part about this place is that even though the distances between places is significant, you can easily rent a bike or car to cover that distance comfortably. Just take a look at the options available for travel with in Goa to you:

  • Bicycle
    Cycling in Goa is not a very practical option to travel, given the distances within the state, but if you enjoy it then go forward with it. Goa offers variety of terrain for cycling which includes relatively smooth-surfaced highways, rocky dirt tracks, coastal routes through coconut palms and winding country roads through spice plantations, rural villages and ancient temples. If you are bringing your own bike, then be careful of the thefts. So, its better that you hire a bike as the beaches in Goa have multitudes of people who are prepared to rent out bicycles. If you're planning to stay for long, like more than a month, then it's worth considering buying a bicycle locally.

  • Auto Rickshaw
    A great option for short trips, the autorickshaws are cheaper than Taxis and are easily available at the airport, bus stands, railway stations and markets. Even though they are suppose to run on meter, they never do so. Shell out around INR 50 for a very short journey and INR 100 for a slightly longer one. Do negotiate the price before you hop in the rickshaw and if its too much, then just wait for another one.

  • Motorcycle Taxis
    Motorcycle taxi sounds a little strange, doesn't it? Well, Goa is the only place in India where motorcycles are a form of licensed taxi. The rider of the motorcycle is popularly known as ‘Pilot' and you can identify the motorcycle taxi easily as it is black in color with yellow mudguards. These unusual taxis are quite fun and are really fast as they can easily navigate through traffic. Do settle the fare in advance to get a great deal and to avoid any confusion or hassle.

  • Rented Motorbike/Scooter
    There are scores of operators in Goa who rent out motorcycles and scooters. Before hiring a two-wheeler, do check out the credibility and past record of the rental agency. Make sure that the license plate (number plate) of your bike has yellow lettered numbers with a capital ‘Z' or ‘T' as only those bikes meet the legal stipulations for renting. Carry your driving license and some identity document such as passport, PAN card, Voter ID etc. The rent varies according to the kind of bike, like for Enfields, the daily rentals during peak seasons range from about INR 600 to INR 1000 (differs from model to model). Lighter motorcycles, (upto 250cc) are usually available for INR 300 to INR 500. For scooters and other ungeared vehicles, one should not pay over INR 300. Many of the rental agencies also arrange the pick and drop of the bikes to and from the airport, railway station, and hotel for a fee. You can even call a rental agency to enquire about or possibly fix such a service before reaching Goa.

  • Taxi
    Taxis are comfortable, quick and convenient, don't you think? Well, you will agree with us. Like autorickshaws, most of the taxis too don't go by the meter in Goa. So, you must decide the fare beforehand and have no qualms about arguing over the fare if you feel duped. The fare increases if you have luggage. Easily available, these taxis charge between INR 1500 to INR 2000 for a full day of sightseeing. Remember to use your negotiation skills to strike the right deal. So if you have just landed in Goa, take a Dabolim to Panjim taxi which will take you to the main city of Goa, from where you can further decide where to head to.

  • Rented Car
    One can hire either self-driven or chauffeured cars in Goa. It is illegal to hire a private car and one should stick to reliable rental agencies. Car rates vary from model to model and also fluctuate from season to season. For instance, a chauffeur driven Alto would normally cost about INR 1300 a day, while a chauffeured Scorpio and Mercedes would come for some INR 2000 and INR 8000 respectively. Prices and rules of renting can also vary from agency to agency. Rental agencies can also charge a security deposit which is usually around INR 5000 for smaller cars and about INR 10000 for the bigger ones. For renting a car you'll have to submit a copy of the driving license and some original ID such as passport, pan card or voter ID which is given back once the vehicle is returned.

  • Bus
    Buses are quite convenient and inexpensive, and the best part is that you get to see the rustic sights of Goa while travelling. The state and private buses plying in the city cover most locations. One can also opt for tour packages offering sightseeing through these buses. Regular bus services are available at almost all points in the city. The bus fare would vary depending on the type of buses you board (AC/Non-AC); you will get a 30 to 40 kilometre ride for approximately INR 10 to INR 15, whilst for shorter distances the fare is around INR 4 to INR 6. Some of the main bus terminals in Goa are Panaji, Mapusa and Margao. Kadamba Transport Corporation is the state-owned bus service in Goa that operates several buses which can be boarded from the major tourist spots in the town.

  • Train
    Trains are not usually used to travel within the state given the ease and economy of bus travel. However, trains may be useful if you're planning to travel Goa from one end of the state to the other. The state has both South Central Railway and Konkan Railway. Former has its terminus in Mormugao (past Vasco da Gama) and runs due east, through Margao and is often used by tourists day-tripping to Dudhsagar Falls. The latter runs from Mumbai to Mangalore (in Karnataka) through Goa and its stations are Pernem (for Arambol), Thivim (for Mapusa), Karmali (for Old Goa and Panaji), Verna, Margao (for Colva and Benaulim), Bali, Barcem and Canacona (for Palolem), from north to south.

  • Ferries
    This is another fun way travelling within the state. It is truly joyful to travel around Goa on blue-painted passenger-vehicle ferries that cross the state's many rivers. However, these ferry services are gradually being put out of business by massive bridge-building projects. They are pretty cheap and the best part about them is that they run from early morning till late evening. The main routes are: Panaji to Betim, across the Mandovi (every 15 minutes); Old Goa to Divar Island (every 15 minutes); Querim to Terekhol over Tiracol river (every 30 minutes) and Cavelossim to Assolna (every 20 to 30 minutes).

With so many options available for travel with in Goa, you must decide which suits you the best. If you value comfort, then opt for taxis or rented cars and if you're in a mood for fun, try the rented bikes which are truly quick and fun. So, book any Goa packages which suits your budget and start packing your bags as Goa is waiting for you.

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