Goa in December
Leave chilly weather behind and soak up some sun in India's smallest state. Renowned for its relaxed, chilled-out vibe, Goa is family friendly, welcoming and fantastic value for money. Plus, with the monsoon season over, December weather will be perfect for relaxing on the beach or by the pool.
In a nutshell
- Will suit: families looking for an exciting beach holiday and a change in culture
- Flying time: 9.5 hours
- Time difference: GMT+5.5
- Average temperature: 27°C
- Tourist information: tourismnindia.com
How to get there
- Flights are available with a variety of carriers (Air India, Qatar, Jet, BA) but most are indirect.
- The best direct flights are offered by Thomson Airways, from Manchester and London Gatwick.
Where to stay
- The most popular resorts are found on either the North or South Goan beaches, so that's a good place to start.
- Thomson Holidays offers package holidays to both North and South Goa, with a range of hotels available.
- Northern Goa is typically more lively at night and popular with a younger, back-packing crowd.
What to do
- Try out Ayurvedic Spa treatments. Most hotels will have a spa, or ask for a local practitioner.
- Head to local markets for some haggling and shopping. Some of the best include Anjuna's Wednesday flea market and the Saturday-night market in Arpora.
- Explore Goa's Western Ghats. Stretching for around 62,000 square miles, they've been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site thanks to their rich wildlife and fauna. Take a tour to the Atreya Vedic Farm. It's spread over 36 acres, and has tropical gardens, orchards, and coconut and mango plantations.
- Explore some of the old cathedrals, harking back to Goa's days of Portuguese rule. One must-see is the Basilica of Bom Jesus, another UNESCO World Heritage Site that holds the remains of Catholic missionary St Francis Xavier.
- Go on a Jungle Book adventure. Discover the wildlife and local community of Goa on a full-day jungle adventure at the Shanti Nature Resort. Explore a tribal village and delight in a thrilling elephant ride. Dine on traditional Indian fare, and visit a 12th-century Hindu temple.
- You can never have enough suncream! Cover little ones with hats and T-shirts, too.
- Check with your doctor for up-to-date travel vaccinations well in advance of your departure date.
- Choose a hotel with a pool - sometimes the beach hawkers can be a bit much.
- The currents in the sea can be quite strong, and at times, very strong, so keep an eye out and never let children paddle alone.
What Mumsnetters say about holidays in Goa
- My son loved it (both times). The sea is lovely. Money-wise, you can eat very cheaply, and there are lots of European options if the children won't do curry. There are spice plantations, which can be fun, and elephant washing. Blackduck
- If you're on a beach in a touristy area, shorts and a T-shirt is fine. A hat is a must to protect from the sun. Selks
- Get some DEET repellent - the strongest you can find - and use it often in the evenings. I got sweat band-type things to pour the DEET onto and then wear them on wrists and ankles. ivykaty44
- Make sure you apply for a visa before you go. kreecherlivesupstairs