Getting around Goa
Travelling inside Goa is easy and fun especially if you are open to hiring a bicycle or motorcycle.
Travelling by bus is definitely the cheapest option. The Kadamba Transport Corporation (KTC) is the state owned bus service. There are also a number of private operators that service all the major locations. Panaji, Margao, Mapusa and Vasco da Gama have bus terminuses which offer frequent connecting buses to the smaller towns and villages. If you are travelling between these major towns, take the express/direct buses even though they may cost a few extra rupees.
If you are travelling with a family or group and want to explore Goa on your own and at your own pace, then renting a self-driven car may be a better option.
There are two types of taxis, the white-coloured private tourist taxis, and the yellow-and-black regular taxis. Almost all major towns and tourist attractions have a taxi stand, where both types of taxis are available. Though yellow-and-black taxis are supposed to charge metered rates, most don't adhere to this; in most cases, bargaining is common before you set out on your trip.
Most hotels and resorts arrange a white-coloured private tourist taxi for you on request. These taxis quite often have an interstate license and can take you to nearby destinations outside Goa. The taxis can be hired per trip or for the whole day or by distance travelled.
Irrespective of the type of taxi you choose, ensure that you fix a price for the entire journey before you sit in, so that you don't get overcharged at the end of the trip.
By Auto rickshaw
The three-wheeled auto rickshaw, painted yellow-and-black, is a common sight in all Goan towns. It usually takes two to three passengers and is cheaper than a taxi for travelling around town. The rickshaws have separate stands in most places.
Though auto rickshaws are supposed to charge metered rates, most don't adhere to this; in most cases bargaining is common before you set out on your trip.
A more popular and economical option to travel around Goa is to hire your own motorbike or scooter. These are available in the cities as well as near most beach areas.
The cost of hiring a motorbike or scooter for a day ranges anywhere from Rs 150 to Rs 600 depending on the type of the bike and duration of hire. Usually, a cash down payment as security is required at places. Always ask for a receipt and try not to leave your passport or license as a security deposit.
Goa has a unique option of motorcycle taxis. This option is faster and more economical if you are travelling alone for short distances and do not want to hire/rent your own motorcycle. The motorcycle taxis are easily recognised by their yellow mudguards and number plates. Again, bargain with the driver (aka pilot) for a good rate for the trip before you set out.
Tip: An international driving permit is not technically mandatory, but it’s wise to bring one.
A bicycle can also simply be a convenient way of getting around beach towns or through winding village roads. These are easily available near most beach areas. The cost of hiring a bicycle ranges anywhere from Rs 5 an hour to 50 per day.
Tip: For a stay of three months or more in Goa, it’s worth considering buying a new or used bicycle from one of the local markets.
At quite a few places around Goa, especially in the rural hinterland, you will have to cross a small river to get to your destination.
Most such rivers now have bridges across them, which has made the flow of traffic smooth all over Goa. However, where a bridge is yet to come up, you will be able to enjoy another mode of transport unique to Goa. This is the ferry also known as ferryboat by the locals, which carries people and cars from one bank to the other, across the rivers and estuaries all around Goa.
In some places, the ferry remains the only mode of transport to get to the mainland. Popular river crossings include: Old Goa to Divar Island, Divar to Narve, Querim to Tiracol, and Cavelossim to Assolna.
- << <<