Goa on India’s south west coast has been a favorite hippy and backpacker hangout since the 60’s. Palolem Beach used to be a hidden heaven and is now a major tourist destination but this crescent-shaped and palm-fringed bay is still very appealing with excellent value for all styles and budgets. Perfect for chilling out and soaking in its laid-back atmosphere.
Ganpatipule, Tarkarli and Harihareshwar Beaches north of Goa on the Konkan (India’s west) coast. Long, white, forest and coconut palm-backed and almost devoid of humans, this 230 mile stretch between Vasai and Vengurla is the Goa of 50 years ago and the place for solitary beach-seekers. Made more accessible by the recently opened Konkan railway the area is – naturally – short of good hotels save for the state-owned bungalows at Tarkali. n. b. the national highway between Goa and Mangalore runs near the sea and is spectacular.
Best October-March, OK April and May. Wet, sticky and with rough seas during the monsoon from July to September.