Goa, India’s smallest state located in the south western region of India is a jewel by itself, visited by a large number of domestic as well as international tourists each year for its beaches, architecture and places of worship.
I have always sworn by the beauty of the beaches of south Goa ( read here south goa beaches ) for they still retain the charm of the quality that made Goa an iconic place on the world map in the first place. For me the beaches of Northern Goa were too overcrowded, too overstretched, too tired to be what they originally were maybe a decade or so back, so when the other day someone suggested to me to make a day trip to Mandrem I did not warm up to the idea and literally spent quite a considerable time searching for some other beach in north goa which would be on line of what I like which means it has to be laid back and appeal to the old goa charm.
Mandrem, a small village in the very northern part of Goa even higher than Anjuna, Calangute, Baga etc which are the normal haunts of those who plan their stay in North goa. Above Mandrem lies another jewel called Arambol and thereafter comes the Goa – Maharashtra border. It is 52 km frm the airport and takes almost an hour and half by road which narrows down as one approaches the village after diverting from the National Highway.
There are few well maintained places to stay at Mandrem and I randomly selected one of them known as The Dunes, ( click here ) it was breakfast hour by the time I reached Mandrem and immediately went to the restaurant at The Dunes for a quiet breakfast. The beach was a stone throw away and the weather was just lovely as I ordered a sumptuous English spread. After a leisurely breakfast I walked down to the beach wherein few thatch shades had been erected by the hotel staff for the pleasure of the guests.
Very few people out at the beach , and those that were all engaged in some activity or the other be it reading books , practicing yoga ,having animated discussions , frolicking in the waters or just lazing on the beach chairs.
Mandrem really appealed to me, crystal clear beaches with white sand and a personal space because of the less crowd it was just perfect to me, I spent close to six hours at the beach dividing my time between going for swims into the ocean, strolling on the beach or just lying down and letting my mind wander aimlessly.
It was a super clean beach with its remoteness I think being its usp and there was hardly any shack culture so maybe that also helped. Once can easily relax in the beach chairs the whole day and spend each hour at leisure.
After hectic weeks of work Mandrem was the perfect antidote and time spent on the beach drained all the stress away from my mind. For all those who are visiting North Goa, spend a day at Mandrem and you will remember it for years to come.