The best hotels in Goa : You’ll find Goa on nearly every traveller to India’s to-do list, and for good reason. This beatnik paradise sets itself apart from other areas of the country with a mesmerising combination of pristine beaches, colourful nightlife (there’s a reason Goa’s famous for full moon parties) and Hindu, Buddhist, Islamic and Portuguese heritage which has influenced the food and architecture of the region. In short, there’s a lot to see here, which means finding a decent place to rest your head at night is essential. Luckily, Goa delivers: be it beach-side bungalows with undulating sea views, Portuguese villas with gorgeous interiors or lush jungle resorts complete with spas and yoga retreats. Whatever your vibe, consider your stay sorted.
Ahilya By The Sea, Nerul
Every room is a treasure trove at this former private home- turned-guest house filled with antique furniture and Portuguese and Balinese curios. Each bedroom has its own unique character and exquisite views thanks to the fact the villas are nestled on the edge of Coco Beach in Nerul, north Goa. When you’re not soaking in the outdoor pools or sipping a gin cocktail (from the nearby distillery) at the alfresco bar, there are also chef-set menus to tuck into in the evening all with a Goan feel.
The St Regis Goa Resort, Cavelossim
Set in 49 acres of tropical greenery dotted with crystal blue lagoons, you won’t find a more picturesque spot than at this sprawling luxe resort. And you won’t run out of things to do while you’re there. Not only are you in driving distance of local wildlife sanctuaries, on site you’ll find a restaurant, a drawing room where you can indulge in afternoon tea, a cocktail bar, a spa where you can pamper yourself with ayurvedic and a 12-hole golf course looking out across the Arabian Sea. Don’t fancy doing anything at all? There’s a 24-hour butler service to keep you in idyl luxury.
Amrapali, Goa Velha
Built in 1919, this Portuguese villa has been restored to its former glory with manicured gardens, a shady outdoor pool and rooms with ornate four-poster beds, rustic wood furnishings, roll top baths and colourful tiles. To complete the fairytale look, the jewel-hued pile sits on the banks of the Zuari River where you can tuck into gourmet deserts and artisanal pastries at the waterfront cafe.
The Postcard Hideaway, Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary
Staying in the depths of the Indian jungle doesn’t mean having to go all Bear Grylls. The Postcard Hideaway is a collection of luxury huts designed especially to blend into the wildlife park surroundings. That means you can nestle down in a plump white duvet and soak in a jacuzzi all while trying to spot black panthers, giant squirrels, and great pied hornbills in the undergrowth. For the full experience, head out on a hike to the secret waterfalls and untouched corners of the park or dine on meals made with ingredients grown in the resort’s organic garden.
Nilaya Hermitage, Arpora
Designed by Indian architect Dean D’Cruz, this showstopper of a hotel is inspired by Moorish design, with dome-shaped rooms painted in midnight blue, gold-tiled ceilings and mosaic floors emblazoned with moons and stars. When you’re not holed up in your colourful surroundings hit up the outdoor swimming pool, pamper yourself with a traditional Indian treatment in the Ayurvedic spa or take a trip to Arpora’s famous Saturday night market nearby.
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