The Best Places to Stay in Goa
One of the best things about Goa is it’s diversity and the way it appeals to all kinds of travellers and tourists but that also means it can be hard to decide where to go and where to stay in Goa. I’ve been living in Goa for 4 seasons now and often get asked to recommend the best places to stay in Goa so I thought I’d put it all into one handy post. So read on as I’ll list the best places to stay in Goa for each beach area and for all budgets.
Goa has over 101km of tropical beaches and each beach and area of Goa has a different vibe and attracts a different type of travellers. Check out my post here to find the best beach in Goa for you.
There’s a place to stay in Goa to suit all budgets and types of travellers. From luxurious, glamorous resorts to basic beach huts, sociable and fun backpacker hostels, modern family friendly hotels, yoga retreats, Portuguese mansions and heritage hotels.
Where to Stay in Goa: North Goa or South Goa?
The first thing you’ll have to decide is which area of Goa you want to base yourself. Generally speaking South Goa is quieter and less developed whereas North Goa is where the parties, markets and all the action is.
Luxury travellers and people who want to relax and get away from it all usually head to the better, cleaner and quieter beaches of South Goa (it’s where most of the luxury resorts are but there are still some budget options. I’ll go into more detail later in the post. )
North Goa is busier and more popular as it is where the best nightlife, markets, restaurants and entertainment are. There is a huge range of accommodation and dining out options to suit all budgets in North Goa.
Map of Goa
Best Beaches in North Goa
Baga and Calangute are the most popular and most busy places to stay in Goa with a huge array of nightlife, hotels, restaurants and close to the famous Saturday night market. Candolim and Sinquerim further on also have a lot to offer but are more upmarket.
Anjuna, Vagator and Arambol appeal mostly to backpackers and hippies. Anjuna is home to the famous Wednesday flea market and psytrance parties. Arambol is home to lots of yoga and alternative therapies and has a hippy sunset market and drum circles on the beach every night (in season). Morjim, Mandrem and Ashvem are the widest, quietest beaches in North Goa.
Panjim (Panaji) is Goa’s pleasant, Portuguese influenced capital, located in the middle of the Goa. You won’t want to stay here for the beaches but you could spend a few days exploring the old Portuguese quarter, enjoying the floating and as a base for exploring Old Goa and the temples, spice plantations, wildlife sanctuaries and waterfalls of Central Goa. See here for more about the alternative things to do in Goa beyond the parties and beaches.
Best Beaches in South Goa
South Goa is home to Goa’s most pristine, almost empty beaches. The stretch from Arrosim to Cavelossim is mainly luxury resorts but Colva and Benalim are busier and have more budget friendly options.
Further South, Palolem is arguably the most beautiful beach in Goa with lots of colourful, basic beach huts. Nearby Patem and Agonda are quiet beaches good for budget travellers.
To make it easier for you to choose which beach to stay at in Goa I did a run down of the best beaches to suit backpackers, families, luxury travellers, those wanting to party, practise yoga or just get away from it all. Check out the post first if you haven’t seen it yet – it might help you decide which is the best beach in Goa for you.
The Best Places to Stay in Goa – for all budgets
So now you’ve got a better idea of where to stay in Goa, here are all my accommodation recommendations of the best places to stay in Goa.
Prices vary considerably depending on season so I haven’t listed prices but have links to Booking.com so you can check the most up to date prices for your dates for yourself.
I’ve split it up into area and price range – budget (under 2,000 Rupees about £22/ $30) midrange (2,000 – 7,000 Rupees ) and luxury ( + 7,000 Rupees about £80 / $105 ) so there’s something that will suit everyone!
If you’re on a tight budget you can find very basic, cheap accommodation from about 500 Rupees but most of these are not available to book online yet – you’d have to show up and wander around to find them. It’s not a good idea to do this in peak season (especially around Christmas and New Years) when prices rise and almost everywhere is full.
If you’re on a budget and looking to meet other travellers check in to one of the best backpacker hostels in Goa.
If you’re planning to stay for a long time then check into a hotel for the first few days and then explore the area look for the ‘house to rent’ signs. More here on the cost of living in Goa and how to rent a house in Goa.
I’ve included links to Trip Advisor too so you can check out the reviews for yourself and to Booking.com, Agoda or the hotels website if you want to book.
I’ve included links where you can reserve the room and pay once you arrive. If you do choose to book, I also earn a small affiliate commission which helps me to keep me in fish curry and keep this site going at no extra cost to you. So thanks! 🙂
Best Places to Stay in North Goa
Best Places to Stay in Baga, Calangute, Candolim and Sinquerim.
The beaches of Baga, Calangute, Candolim and Sinquerim are the most famous and busiest beaches in Goa. Calangute is known as ‘the Queen of beaches’ as the beaches are wide, golden and sandy with plenty of beach shacks and sunbeds, the water is good for swimming and there are many watersports to enjoy.
The resorts merge into each other and offer the best choice in everything (apart from quiet!) including the largest variety and choice of accommodation to suit all tastes and budgets, beach shacks and fancy restaurants serving food from all over the globe, live music bars and nightclubs (famous Titos Lane is located in Baga) and its close to the lively Saturday Night market in Arpora.
These beaches are popular with package holiday tourists (Indian and international) Candolim and Sinquerim are more upmarket and less crowded with more higher class hotels, resorts, restaurants and shops than Baga and Calangute.
Hostels and Budget Hotels in Baga, Calangute, Candolim and Sinquerim
This spacious and popular backpacker hostel is located only 100 meters ( 2 mins) from Candolim Beach and close to all the action on the Calangute/Candolim main road. It has good facilities and nice common areas perfect for socialising and meeting other travellers. Check reviews and click here for prices and to book.
Zostel is India’s first chain of modern backpacker hostels. The Calangute hostel is located in a Portuguese heritage home which has been converted into stylish, spacious and sociable hostel in the heart of all the action in Calangute. Check the reviews here and Click here for prices and to book.
Hotel Bonanza is a popular budget guesthouse just 2 mins walk from Baga Beach and 200 yards from the nightlife on famous Tito’s Lane. The hotel has 2 restaurants and a bar, staff are helpful and friendly and the rooms are nicely furnished. Check out the reviews and Click here for prices and to book.
Le Blanche is a homely guest house run by a lovely, helpful family. Rooms aren’t fancy but are clean and bright with attached bathrooms, fridge, TV and a nice terrace to sit out on. It’s situated in a peaceful, green area just a short walk to the main road and beach. The best part is the warm welcome and hospitality from the owners. Check out the reviews and check prices and book here.
Casa Almedia is a great value for money guest house conveniently located near to everything on Candolim Beach Road. There is a small swimming pool and rooms are basic but clean and well equipped with attached bathrooms, balconies, TV, Air Con, Wifi etc. Check out the reviews and Click here for prices and to book.
Midrange Hotels in Baga, Calangute, Candolim and Sinquerim:
Baga doesn’t have many beach hut options so if you are looking for that Goa beach hut experience in the heart of the all the action then check out the cute, wooden bungalows at Little India Beach Cottages 1 min walk from Baga beach. Rooms have ensuite bathrooms, spacious balconies and you can chose between cheaper fan rooms or go for the AC. Check reviews and check prices and book here.
This stylish hotel is situated right on the beach front in the middle of Calangute. It’s quite but still really close to all the action. Rooms are spacious and modern with balconies that face out over the gardens to the sea. Check out the glowing reviews and Click here to book.
Cavala is a great mid range stay in Baga. It’s a Portuguese building so there’s plenty of charm and character and the rooms are spacious and comfortable. There is an onsite restaurant, popular live music nights on Fridays and a nice swimming pool. It’s located in North Baga which is slightly quieter but it’s only a 5 minute walk to Baga beach, Tito’s Lane etc. Check out the reviews and Click here to check prices and to book.
Lovely Portuguese villa with individually themed rooms, antique furniture, a peaceful, tropical gardens and a good restaurant situated just off the Fort Aguada road. Check reviews here and book on their website here. Also check out homely Bougainvillea Guest House in Candolim
This stylish 4 star resort in Calangute has a swimming pool, 3 dining options and a private walk way to the beach, a swimming pool and 3 dining options. The décor is fun and quirky – where else can you sip a drink at the bar while sitting on a saddle! The rooms are funky, modern and well appointed – go for the cute swiss cottages if you can. Check the reviews and Click here for prices and to book.
Also check out Eros Boutique Hotel in Baga and if you are looking for a holiday resort style hotel see Keys Ronil Resort in Baga, Treebo Santiago Beach Resort in Calangute and Sonesta Inns Resort in Candolim.
Luxury Hotels in Baga, Calangute, Candolim and Sinquerim:
The best luxury hotels in North Goa are The Vivanta by Taj and Vivanta by Taj Holiday Village which are situated next to each other on the Southern end of Candolim beach by Fort Aguada. Both resorts are luxurious, have great sunset views over Candolim beach and are within easy reach of all the parties, markets, restaurants and attractions of North Goa making it the best place to enjoy a luxury stay as well as all the action. The Vivanta by Taj is classy and classic and the Vivanta by Taj Holiday Village next door is slightly more laidback with cute, colourful cottages spread across the tropical gardens. I prefer the atmosphere of this one actually. Check out the reviews and check prices and book.
The Park is a hip boutique luxury hotel situated on the beach right in the centre of all the Calangute action. Rooms are decorated in an all white, ultra contemporary style with designer furniture. There’s a nice outdoor swimming pool with cute cabana day beds to laze in, a spa, cool artwork and there’s also the ‘Love’ restaurant and the lively ‘Peace’ bar. Check reviews and book here
A gorgeous, family run boutique resort of 7 Goan style character cottages situated in luscious gardens, complete with large wooden verandas and heritage furniture. The villas are located on a hill with panoramic views from the amazing infinity pool. There is also an onsite restaurant. The resort is secluded yet within easy reach of Candolim beach and all the action in North Goa. Check reviews and see here for prices and to book.
Lemon Tree is a colourful and uniquely styled boutique hotel with a modern and also slightly medieval theme in the heart of Candolim. The resort has several restaurants and cafes, including the award winning Republic of Noodles, a spa and a nice swimming pool in leafy grounds. Check reviews and click here to check prices and to book.
Best Places to Stay in Anjuna and Vagator
Anjuna and Vagator became popular back in the days of the hippie trail and still attract backpackers, budget travellers and hippies today. Anjuna is famous for its Wednesday flea market and all night trance parties. Vagator’s beaches are surrounded by rocky, charismatic red cliffs, look out for the Shiva face carved in a rock by a hippy and climb up to Chapora Fort for sunset.
There’s a lot of backpacker hostels and basic guesthouses in Anjuna and Vagator but not much beach front or luxury accommodation here (it would be too noisy to stay on the beach close to the parties anyway) Both these villages are quite spread out and you’ll need to drive a scooter or motorbike to get the most out of your stay.
Hostels and Budget Hotels in Anjuna and Vagator
One of the best party hostels in Goa is Prison Hostel It’s themed to look like a prison and the dorms are pretty basic but it attracts a fun, lively, young, party crowd. There’s even a bar made out of an old bus in the front yard and they put on a shuttlebus to take people to parties. Check out the reviews and book here.
Wonderland Hostel has an amazing location in between the beach, the flea market and the parties.The dorms are located in cute beach huts and there is plenty of outside spaces and hammocks to chill in and to meet other travellers and a community kitchen. Private rooms are also available. Check reviews and book here.
This colourful, funky and sociable hostel is located on the cliffs within walking distance to the beach and nightlife of Vagator. The hostel has cool pictures and murals, a nice sociable garden area with a bar which means it is easy to make friends with other travellers as well as comfy dorms and communal areas including a kitchen area. It’s become quite a party hostel. Check out the reviews and book here.
There are not many budget beach front rooms in Anjuna. Tantra is a unique place right on the beach near the flea market that offers rustic treehouses and beach shacks and a restaurant. Rooms are super basic and bathrooms are outside and shared but it’s a fun experience. If you don’t want to stay it’s a cool place to hang out on the beach anyway. Check out the reviews and book here. If you prefer to sleep in a proper room but still want a budget room on the beach check out Sea Princess Guest House nearby.
This cute collection of rooms in a Portuguese house set around nice gardens. It’s located in a right in the middle of Anjuna near Starco Junction but its still a peaceful spot. Rooms are clean, bright and colourful and tastefully decorated, security is good and the owners are helpful. Check out the reviews and book here
Blue Bird is a family run guest house and popular restaurant in leafy surroundings located within walking distance to Vagator beach. Rooms are spacious and clean and have attached bathrooms and AC. The hosts are really helpful and don’t miss trying the homemade local Goan food in the restaurant. Check out the reviews and see their website for contact details.
Mid Range Hotels in Anjuna and Vagator
This 200 year old Portuguese mansion on the very outskirts of Anjuna has lovely, clean, cosy character cottages in shady tropical gardens around a nice swimming pool. The place feels more like a beautiful old Goan village than a hotel and I loved the outdoor bathrooms. The hospitality and food were also good. It’s quite far from the beach though so you’ll need a scooter to get around. Check reviews and book here.
Also check out Palacete Rodrigues, Anjuna a quirky Portuguese mansion with a pool and individually themed rooms stuffed with antiques. Laguna Anjuna is another unique resort with a large pool, shady gardens and really spacious, quirky, individually designed rooms but it could do with a little renovation.
The Living Room is a really popular, stylish modern hotel. The rooms are spacious and tastefully decorated and have big balconies overlooking the swimming pool and theres a bar, 2 dining options, gym and games room. Its about 15 mins walk from the beach or just a couple of mins on a scooter. Check out the reviews and book online.
Cochinos is a cute little boutique resort located in the middle of Vagator within walking distance to the beach. They have cute modern, but still Portuguese style, cottages with cute Goan style sit outs on the balconies set in landscaped gardens. There’s also a nice swimming pool with a swim up bar and a restaurant. Check reviews and book here.
The Tamarind is one of the best hotels in Anjuna. It’s a Portuguese stone built property of classy boutique style rooms with patios around a courtyard and swimming pool. Theres also a bar, games room and the restaurant here is also really popular, especially for the deserts, and they often have live music on Wednesdays. Again, it’s a little far out so you’ll need to hire a scooter to make the most of it. Check out the reviews and book online.
Luxury Hotels in Anjuna and Vagator
There’s not that many luxury hotels in Anjuna and Vagator but if luxury is what you want look no further than the new W Goa. This huge, modern, ultra hip 5 star resort is perched right on the quiet end of Vagator beach under Chapora Fort with amazing views – especially at sunset over the beach from one of the pools. The whole resort is really stylishly designed and makes a statement. Rooms are very plush and modern, theres a spa, sauna, bars, restaurants, swimming pools, landscaped tropical gardens, an indoor play area, yoga classes, shops and much more – the place is huge! Simply stunning. Check out the reviews for yourself and book online.
There’s just a few of these cute barefoot luxury wooden chalets hidden in the jungle on the cliffs of Ozran beach. The patios and big floor to celing windows make the most of the amazing sea views. Theres only a few huts and each is on its own level with a private cubana/day bed facing the ocean so it’s a perfect place for couples. There’s a great restaurant on site and its walking distance to the top restaurants and nightclubs in Vagator. Check out the reviews and book online.
This post is still work in progress as its taking ages to write up all the best places to stay in Goa. I’ll be adding all the other beaches and more photos when I get time so subscribe or check back later.
If you’ve stayed in an awesome place in Goa please leave it in the comments below and your tips can help out other travellers. 🙂