Actor Mahek Chahal talks about Goa, her favourite city in India after Mumbai. Mahek loves Goa for the boutique hotel Casa Vagator, the lovely shopping experience at flea markets, the Silent Noise party at Palolem beach, the finger-licking fare at the beach shacks, and the bike rides.
She says, “A holiday means having some good time off work, with friends and family. Eat, shop, dance and do everything stress-free.”
Q: Where did you go on your latest trip?
Mahek Chahal: Goa is like any other tourist destination abroad. You can do what you want without anyone interfering or disturbing you. It’s a complete chill-out zone, and, after Mumbai, it’s my favourite city in India. I went there with friends whom I was meeting after quite a while. We all wanted to catch up on lost time.
Q: Where did you stay?
Mahek Chahal: We stayed at Casa Vagator, a boutique hotel with a quaint environment and its own private beach.
Q: Did you meet any interesting people?
Mahek Chahal: We spent most of the time on the resort beach, and didn’t go out too much into town.
Q: Did you do any shopping?
Mahek Chahal: I bought a cute pair of slippers, some shorts, shirts, and interesting accessories from the flea market.
Q: Any Sightseeing recommendations?
Mahek Chahal: If you like the hustle-bustle, then head to Baga beach, but if you want peace, then stay in places like Vagator and Anjuna as they are relatively quieter. We also visited the Palolem beach that is about a two-hour-drive away, to party at the Silent Noise party. It is one experience you must have, and is a part of Goa not many people know about.
Q: Any travel tips?
Mahek Chahal: Try staying at a place that’s away from the crowded beaches. Eat at the local shacks run by people who live on the beaches as the food here is the most authentic Goan fare. Don’t carry too much cash in your bag, and hire bikes to move around Goa. With your own set of two wheels, you can experience the freedom that Goa offers.
Q: What have you learnt?
Mahek Chahal: That we get just one chance to live, and we should learn from the Goans to live it to the fullest.
Q: You’d love to visit?
Mahek Chahal: I want to visit Kashmir for I have heard nothing but the most romantic tales of its beauty. The chinars, the lakes, the shikaras, the mountains, the delicate handicrafts, the food, and the beautiful people — I’m sure Kashmir will be all that and much more, and live up to its epithet of heaven on earth.