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Calangute boasts the most extensive beach in North Goa with over four miles of golden sand to enjoy. It is popular both with local residents and visitors from all over the world and is probably the most visited beach in Goa. The town of Calangute has over fifteen thousand residents so there's a busy feel to the place. There's great choice for entertainment, accommodation, food, shopping and activities making for an exciting, active break definitely not a place if you are seeking a quiet and peaceful holiday. It's loved for its bamboo, palm thatched huts on the beach where you can stay in your own little bit of paradise.
Although visited by throngs of people throughout the year, it's worth noting that monsoon season can change the nature of your holiday as swimming in the sea is prohibited, but many love coming at this time of year to enjoy the local vibe with a beer or feni (a local spirit distilled from cashews or coconuts). The food is exquisite here, with a fantastic variety of delicious seafood; freshly caught tuna, squid, crab and prawns for example. With eateries varying from wooden shacks on the beach to modern high class restaurants you will be able to enjoy the flavour of Goa wherever you choose to relax.
If you enjoy thrilling activities Calangute is the place for you: the beach is a hub for stacks of water sports, with motor boat rides, scuba diving, waterskiing, windsurfing, parasailing and riding the waves on inflatables. Marine life is fascinating to watch, whether you are snorkelling in the shallows or watching the dolphins in the bay.
The local Church of St Alex is over 400 years old and its graceful and imposing façade of two white towers and dome are one of the first things you see as you head into the town from the main road. Kerkar Art Complex close to the beach is a unique showcase for Indian artists to demonstrate their arts and crafts. Not only are there exhibits and installations, but a couple of evenings a week you can enjoy a concert of dance and music. You can even enjoy art-based food served in its lovely airy restaurant; the brainchild of Subodh Kerkar. For something a bit different you could take a boat tour up the Zuari and Mandovi Rivers in search of crocodiles, through thick mangroves.
This part of Goa is well connected with the rest of India. There is a domestic airport at Vasco and rail connections from Madgaon, Vasco and Thivim. Taxis are readily available from outside Thivim station where a pre-paid ticket office allows you to hop into a taxi and be on your way quickly and cheaply. Alternatively it's only a half hour bus ride from the capital Panaji. Once you are in Calangute you can easily hire a bike or scooter ideal for going where you want when you want.
Nightlife in Calangute is buzzing there's a vast choice of pubs, bars, restaurants and nightclubs to choose from. However unlike other beach areas such as Anjuna, where celebrations can continue until dawn, most establishments in Calangute close before midnight.