History of Anjuna beach is quite young. The beach was discovered sometime in 1950's and 60's by a group of travellers and then they began to meet here in dry season to party. Anjuna beach is an irresistible attraction. Anjuna is better known for its full-moon rave parties and sprawling flea market than for its beach. The popular market, held every Wednesday, is crowded with hawkers from all over India selling everything from Balinese batik, silver jewellery and papier-mache boxes to Tibetan prayer wheels, Rajasthani mirrorwork and Kerala woodcarvings. Fluorescent rave gear and trendy beachwear round off the selection, while added attractions are performing monkeys and fortune-telling Nandi bulls. Its flea market began in 1970's as a place where hippies sell their possessions when they were either broke or leaving for home. However they were banned for several years after the local church ran a campaign against it, it was started again by the Anjuna panchayat.
Anjuna Quick facts
Anjuan Beach lies 18 km away from Panaji. The beach was discovered by the Hippies in the late 1950s to mid 1960s. Because of the beaches the climate is moderate throughout the year and hence parties take place all the time in this year.
Best time to visit is from November to March. Anjuna weekly market held on Wednesdays over the several acres of coconut plantations at the Southern edge of the beach. The market starts around at noon and people begin to leave after sunset. The market is full of clothes, accessories, cheese, food outlets etc.
Anjuna beach is the most happening of all beaches, one rather say is's the mother of all beaches in Goa. The Anjuna Beach is rightly referred to as the Freak Capital of the World. Ajuna beach is an irresistible attraction. The first beach stopover in goa is Anjuna beach also famous for its flea market and rave parties. Anjuna offers unpredictable undercurrents and as such the beach in not safe for swimming. Yet, it calls tourist to venture waist-deep areas. Sightseers can loiter around the nearby attractions and explore the some hidden beauty of the magnificent Albuquerque Mansion built in 1920, flanked by octagonal towers and an attractive Mangalore tile-roof, the Mascarenhas Mansion, and the Chapora Fort. Anjuna is the least likely place to find peace and quiet.
Barely a couple of kilometers of cliff tops and parched grassland separate Anjuna from the southern fringes of its nearest neighbour, Vagator. Dominated by the red ramparts of Chapora fort, Vagator's broad white sandy beach known as Big Vagator is undeniably beautiful. Backed by a steep wall is Little Vagator beach is more secluded and much less accessible than either of its neighbour. Like Anjuna, Vagator is relaxed, undeveloped resort that appeals to the travellers on tight budget. Buses from Panaji and Mapusa, 9 km east pull in here every fifteen minutes near the main road near Chapora. From here one kilometre walk over the hill and down the side of the beach you'll find most of the villages' accommodation and restaurants.
It is located about 18 km from Panaji and is situated in Bardez taluka, just south of Vagator beach & north of the Baga-Candolim-Calangute stretch, from which it is cut off by the Baga River. Situated 8 km west of Mapusa, Anjuna beach is the most happening of all beaches.
Mapusa is 15 km from the capital, Panaji, a bus journey of 30 minutes. Mapusa is a convenient base for reaching the beaches of Anjuna, Calangute, Vagator, Chapora and Baga, and it is fairly close to Arambol and Margao. It is especially convenient for tourists coming in by bus from neighbouring states of Maharashtra and Karnataka. The Kadamba Bus Terminal in Mapusa's main square is an important junction for both private and State Transport buses. Buses and minibuses from most towns of Goa terminate at Mapusa; from here you can get onward connections to other places in the state. These roadways buses connect Mapusa to the Panaji, Margao, Vasco, Ponda and other towns and villages in the state.
Shivim or Mapusa Road is the closest railhead, 12 km north of town. A few trains on the Konkan Railway stop here. Taxis and buses are available outside the main station.
Goa's only airport is at Dabolim and has a number of domestic flights coming in from major Indian cities and chartered flights from European destinations. From the airport, pre-paid cabs and shared taxis are available.
Anjuna Festivals and culture
One of the special features of Goan temples is the Lamp Tower or "Deepmal" or the "Deepa Stambha" rising anywhere from two to six storied high. This is said to be a Maratha influence. On festival days the "Deepmal" or the "Deepa Stambha" or the Lamp tower is decorated with hundreds of oil lamps and the effect is spectacular.
Language: Konkani and Marathi, with a smattering of English and Portuguese
Religion: Hindu, Muslim and Christian. Sikhs, Jains and Buddhists also exist on the whole cosmopolitan culture.
Church of St Michael: The spiritual winds of Christianity swept across the coastal villages of Anjuna in North Goa, in 1603, when the majestic Church of St Michael, the Archangel, was erected by the early Portuguese Franciscans missionaries. As the Christian flock gradually grew up, the Franciscans rebuilt and enlarged the church in 1713 while under the rectorship of Pedro de S Maria. The church was demolished and enlarged anew in 1897 while Fr Antonio Caetano Xavier Afonso was the parish priest, to provide a better ventilated interior, retaining the architectural features of the seventeenth century. September 29 (or the immediate Sunday) is Anjuna's day for celebration of feast of their beloved patron St Michael, the Archangel. The feast of Our Lady, Advocate of Sinners, is also celebrated with equal pomp and fervour by the parish on the second Sunday of January.
Goan Temple: Goan temples today are more modern as compared to most of India's ancient temples, mostly because these are second homes to most deities that were re-established outside of Portuguese controlled areas during the early days of Portuguese invasion and the dreaded Inquisition. The oldest temple in Goa is said to be the rock cut caves at Aravalem known as "Pandava Caves" dedicated to Lord Shiva and dating back to the 1st century AD.
Chapora Fort: It was built by the Adil Shah of Bijapur on the southern headland of the Chapora River. It was also known as "Shahpur" and is now mostly ruined. It has a commanding view of the Vagator beach and is near to Anjuna beach.
Anjuna Entertainment and Night Life
Albuquerque Mansion, Mascarenhas Mansion and The Chapora Fort: The main attractions of Anjuna Beach are the magnificent Albuquerque Mansion built in 1920 (flanked by octagonal towers and an attractive Mangalore tile-roof), the Mascarenhas Mansion, and the Chapora Fort. The Mascarenhas Mansion is an architectural delight with rich and classic 'balcoes' (balconies). The L-shaped seat along the length of the porch is of expensive wood. It has some of the finest stained glass floral etchings. In the vicinity of Anjuna are the Chapora Fort and the Albuquerque Mansion. To the east is a mountain. Anyone tired of the party and interested in returning to civilization can climb the mountain to get to Baga where one can catch a ferry out. Panajim too is not far away. The Chapora Fort gives a splendid view of the nearby Anjuna and Vagator beaches. The fort has been well preserved except a few interesting ruins. Once, it was a domain of the Muslim rulers before the Portuguese wrested it. In 1683, the Marathas hijacked three priests from the Chapora Fort and made them Hindus.
Paraiso de Goa is a swinging trance bar that opens till wee hours. One can enjoy the nightlife here especially the New Year and Christmas eves. Usually the nightlife of Anjuna centers at Shore bar which is in the middle of the beach. The sound system here is pounding and music really funky. All you need to do is just swing into the party mood the atmosphere of the beach whether during day or night is extremely delightful. A walk in the evening during the sunset is something that can be enjoyed by the tourists. A candle-lit dinner at the beachside is also a wonderful option for the tourists.
The waters of the Anjuna beach are considered much safer than other beaches for swimming. Various types of water sports are offered in many of the beaches in Goa. Some of the eminent water sports are sailing, para sailing, boat rides, wind surfing, diving, river cruises, water-skiing, water scooters and fishing.
Every Wednesday a flea market is held at Anjuna beach. This market is very popular among the tourists and is big and spread over the Anjuna coast line where everything under the sun can be found. It is a place wherein you can go on a shopping spree till you get tired and want no more. One can buy anything from a second hand bike to miniature items like cellular phones, cameras etc, Silver jewellery, papier-mache boxes,Tibetan prayer wheels, Rajasthani mirrorwork, Kerala woodcarvings, Fluorescent rave gear and trendy beachwear etc, are the shopping items at Anjuna beach spot.
The beaches of Calangute, Baga and Anjuna also have restaurants with good eating out options. Beaches usually have vendors selling fresh fruit and coconut water.
Not available exactly in Anjuna area.
Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary: This is Goa's only bird sanctuary, situated on the western tip of the island of Chorao along river Mandovi near Panaji. It is 1.8 sq km in area. A variety of local and migratory birds can be found on this island. The sanctuary is named after one of India's most prominent ornithologists, Dr. Salim Ali.
Anjuna is a huge beach in Goa as it has South, Middle and the North Anjuna beach. It has many hotels, bars and restaurants. Water sports in Anjuna are limited to its southern end.
Tourists are informed to bring Lots of light cotton casual clothes, beach wear, hats and sunglasses and tubes of sunscreen cream with high SPF and many, many bottles of sun tan lotion.
Department of Tourism (Branch Office - North),
Tourist Shopping Complex, Mapusa.
India Tourist Office Ministry of Tourism,
Transport Bhavan, 1 Parliament St,
New Delhi 110 001, India.
Phone: +91 (0) 11 233 20005
It is always better for tourists to enquire with local lifeguards before deciding to jump into the water.
Without lifeguards don't jump into the water.