Also called the ‘Queen of beaches’, Calangute is the largest beach in north Goa. Calangute along with Candolim, Baga and Anjuna form part of the beach stretch extending from just outside Panaji city to Fort Aguada. Located in North Goa, about 15 km from Goa’s capital Panaji, Calangute is home to one of the largest and commercialized beaches in Goa. Calangute beach is located between Baga and Candolim beach.
Calangute is Goa’s busiest and most commercialized beach town. Calangute and Baga became popular after hippies started travelling overland in the ’60s. Later, charter tourists replaced the hippies in the ‘80s. Despite the hype surrounding it, the beach itself is nothing spectacular. Its sand shelves steeply and could be risky for children. However, the beach is large enough to accommodate the thousands of tourists that visit during the high season. Unlike Baga which is popular with tourists who want to drink, dance and party, Calangute is more of a family destination. Nightlife in Calangute is tame, as night clubs and bars shut down at 10 pm. The beach is popular among tourists due to the availability of restaurants, clubs and shopping activities. Calangute is also famous for its water sport activities. One can experience para-sailing, water surfing, banana ride, jet-ski.
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Calangute was earlier called as Kolongutt but the Portuguese changed it to Calangute. The word ‘Cal’ refers to goddess Kali, who was worshiped by local fishermen. Some believe the town got its name from the word ‘Kalyan Gutti’, which means a village of art. Some others believe the name Calangute emanated from its earlier name ‘Konvallo-Ghott’, a reference to the coconut palms which abound in the village.
Maximum visitors prefer to visit Calangute during Christmas and New Year. The beach, accommodation facilities, water sport activities makes Calangute one of the best places in Goa. During the months from June-September visitors refrain from visiting the place due to rough sea and tides which make it dangerous to swim but locals believe that Calangute is at its best during the monsoon months. Calangute is the best place to buy antiques, junk jewelry, sake boxes, beach wears also available. Handicrafts made in Kashmir, Tibet, Indonesia and Rajasthan are worth buying.
Accommodation options are plenty in Calangute. You can find many luxury, mid-range and budget hotels as well as resorts with good amenities. You can get rooms as paying guests too. Those who prefer accommodation on the beach can also get rooms in resorts and hotels with luxury facilities. The tourism department of Goa manages the Calangute Residency near the beach.
Calangute is an ideal place for seafood lovers. You can find stalls in the town as well as on the beach serving seafood. You can also find several multi-cuisine restaurants all over Calangute. Veg food too is served in most of the restaurants.
The best and most popular time to visit Calangute is between the months of November to March. During this period, the weather remains pleasant. Tourists flock to the beach in large numbers during Christmas and New Year. Tourists avoid Calangute during the monsoon months; however, locals believe the beach town is at its scenic best during the rains.
BEST TIME TO VISIT GOA
The average minimum and maximum temperature of Goa is as given below. The best time to visit Goa is also specified.