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KNOW BEFORE YOU GO - STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD (foreign office travel advice)

Candolim

Candolim Holidays

Sharing a beach with nearby resorts that spans eight kilometres along the country's coast, Candolim offers a peaceful alternative in the way of holidays to Goa. Visits to this stretch of India are all about taking things easy and making your base underneath the ever-present sun.

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Chilled out Candolim

When many people think of taking Goa holidays along the coastline, trance parties and jam-packed streets come to mind. But holidays in Candolim are wonderfully laid-back, still enjoying all the same scenery as its neighbouring resort Calangute but with the volume turned down. Wedged along the coast in northern Goa, Candolim is a haven for relaxation types, as the only thing that's expected of you is to stretch out along the beach beside the Arabian Sea.

Located at the tail end of the beach connected to Calangute and Baga Beach, Candolim is the easy-going side of this trio's holiday coin. When you aren't at the beach, you'll be wandering through local boutiques or pausing for a curry packed with fresh seafood. And if you're in the mood for something a little livelier, Goa's capital city is just on the horizon.

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The quiet side

Candolim Beach is part of the same larger stretch of sand that reaches all the way up through Calangute and into Baga Beach. All in all, it's about eight kilometres long. But the beach Candolim calls its own is much more serene than its other Goan counterparts, offering holidaymakers a sunny spot to relax with the option to up the energy just up the coast.

The beach here is backed by a grove of palm trees and ramshackle-looking huts. Contrary to first impressions, these beach shacks turned restaurants actually serve some of the finest curries in the area.

Just around the tip of the Aguada Fort just under a 10-minute drive away are Coco Beach and Kegdole Beach, whose vibes up the relaxation factor to borderline comatose. The quiet scenery here is reminiscent of the film Jurassic Park – it's all rolling green hills, but without the dinosaurs.

Retail street

Candolim's main street is part restaurant hub, part shopping haven, lined with local pit stops selling traditional Indian wares. It's here where you'll find colourful clothing and artwork, handmade jewellery and brightly-patterned fabric that make for one-of-a-kind souvenirs.

To instantly multiply your shopping options, there's Goa's capital city of Panjim just a half-hour drive from Candolim. That's where you'll find a yellow brick roads-worth of shopping streets and big time bazaars and street markets that are the stuff of exotic dreams.

Diving in

Since much of the activity in Candolim revolves around the beach, it'll come as no surprise that watersports are some of the main attractions in this waterfront town. There are boat tours to help you explore the coastline and diving trips to get you snorkelling and scuba diving below the surface. Just be prepared to see dolphins or the occasional shark.

Authentic curries

You'll need a second stomach to make room for all the Indian food and seafood you'll be ingesting on your holiday to Candolim, as the city is more or less paved with restaurants highlighting the area's cuisine. The vibes of traditional curry spots range from lean-to beach shacks peppered with sunbeds to tranquil gardens made spicier with local performers and waterfront dining along the Mandovi River.

But if you're looking to branch out from the local cuisine, there's also a wide range of international fare to choose from. Candolim is home to restaurants featuring everything from Italian to Thai, Chinese and even European cafe ambiances.

Nights out

Though on the whole, Candolim isn't exactly a party capital – you'll have to head up to Calangute or Baga Beach for that – the resort still presents its fair share of nightlife activities.

There are trendy drinking spots where you can cosy up poolside with a cocktail, plus beach bars soundtracked by the waves. You'll also find the occasional high energy club, where Bollywood meets Western pop for an all-out dance off.