Soulful and serene, South Goa offers you a heady mix of exotic and sandy beaches, churches and temples rich in history, glimpses into Portuguese culture, mind-blowing seafood, undiluted lush greenery, and an undeniable romantic vibe. A holiday in the southern part of India’s party capital can easily become a memorable affair if you do two things – book your rooms in one of the best hotels in South Goa and explore the right attractions that dot the region.

Planned your Goan trip and packed your bags already? Let the fun begin. To help you out, we have listed some of the best places to visit in South Goa in no particular order.

1. Palolem Beach, South Goa

Palolem Beach | #1 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Palolem Beach | #1 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

One of the most spectacular beaches in South Goa, Palolem welcomes you to its golden sand and spellbinding scenic views. Dotted with vibrant beach shacks and swaying palm trees, the place exudes a chilled-out party vibe. Whether you are looking for adventurous activities and water sports or just a relaxed day under the sun, Palolem fits the bill perfectly. There’s more! The beach market at Palolem, which is organized every Saturday, gives you an opportunity to experience the lively shopping culture Goa is known for.

  • Activities: Canoeing, Trekking, Dolphin Spotting, Silent Discos, Yoga, Kayaking, Scuba diving, Turtle spotting, shopping

2. Agonda Beach, South Goa

Agonda Beach | #2 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Agonda Beach | #2 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

A lesser-known beach in the southern region, Agonda is beauty at its best form. The pristine shoreline of this beach is peppered with pretty cottages and shacks. Casuarinas and palms further add to its splendid beauty. It is also one of the four beaches marked as turtle nesting sites, which gives you all the more reasons to visit Agonda. When you are in a mood to relax and rejuvenate, make your way to Agonda and you will come back as a happier version of yourself.

  • Activities: Canoeing, Dolphin Spotting, Kayaking, Turtle spotting, Water Surfing

3. Benaulim Beach, South Goa

Benaulim Beach | #3 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Benaulim Beach | #3 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Blessed with a captivating shoreline and gleaming white sand, Benaulim exudes a romantic charm. From rolling on the white sand and taking a stroll on the shore to indulging in a variety of water sports, you can do it all here. The nightlife at this beach is quite vibrant and you can expect to have a great time with your SO.

  • Activities: Snorkeling, Wind Surfing, Dolphin Spotting, Parasailing, Jetskiing, Banana boat ride, Rowing

4. Colva Beach, South Goa

Colva Beach | #4 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Colva Beach | #4 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Colva is a hot favorite among the families and couples heading towards South Goa for a wonderful holiday. While adventure freaks can have a great time indulging in a number of water-based activities, those looking for sunbathing and a peaceful time won’t feel disappointed either. Hip and happening Colva is also famous for its vibrant nightlife and full moon parties, which makes it one of the fun places to visit in South Goa.

  • Activities: Windsurfing, Speedboat ride, Dolphin Spotting, Parasailing, Jetskiing, Snorkelling, Motorboat rides, Water scooter, Banana boat ride

5. Butterfly Beach, South Goa

Butterfly Beach | #5 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Butterfly Beach | #5 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Butterfly Beach is truly a hidden gem in South Goa. An unexploited paradise, this semi-circular bay is where you can spot millions of butterflies flying over the hilltop. Once you turn your attention to the turquoise water, you can spot goldfish and crabs playing about. You will have to take a boat ride to reach this beach as the land route demands you to undergo a challenging hike through the forest.

  • Activities: Boat riding, Canoe riding, Sunbathing

6. Galgibaga Beach, South Goa

Galgibaga Beach | #6 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Galgibaga Beach | #6 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Also known as the Turtle Beach, Galgibaga is the nesting ground of the protected Olive Ridley turtles. Sparsely populated and adorned with dense pine vegetation, it is the perfect place for holidaymakers who seek some privacy, splendid sunset views, and tranquillity. No wonder, a visit to this beach counts among the top 10 things to do in South Goa alone or with your family or friends.

  • Activities: Turtle watching, Sunbathing, Swimming

Want to know more about such pristine beaches in the southern part? Read our blog on the less-crowded beaches in Goa.

7. Our Lady of Remedios Church, South Goa

Our Lady of Remedios Church, South Goa

Our Lady of Remedios Church | #7 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Marked with splendid architecture and a serene ambiance, Our Lady of Remedios Church at Betalbatim is an ancient place of worship that traces its origins back to 1630. Surrounded by green lawns, the white exterior of the church offers a soothing sight during the day. During the night, the church looks magnificent as the whole area is illuminated.

  • Location: Fatona, Betalbatim
  • Timings: 6:00 am to 5:00 pm; every day

8. Saviour of the World Church, South Goa

Built in 1586, the Saviour of the World Church is a sight to behold even today. The majestic shrine boasts of being one of Goa’s most gorgeous churches built in the Mannerist Neo-Roman style of architecture.

  • Location: Salcette, Loutolim
  • Timings: 6:00 am to 7:00 pm; every day
  • Distance from Margao: 9 km (approx.)

9. St. Alex Church, South Goa

St. Alex Church, South Goa

St. Alex Church | #9 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Built in the year 1597 on the banks of Angoddi Tollem Lake, St. Alex Church is among the oldest chapel churches in the region. An interesting fact about the church is that it was constructed on the site of an ancient Hindu temple, called Ravalnath Temple. If you walk around the church, you can still see the ruins of the temple here.

  • Location: Curtorim
  • Timings: 9:00 am to 8:30 pm; every day
  • Distance from Margao: 6 km (approx.)

10. Three Kings Church, South Goa

Three Kings Church, South Goa

Three Kings Church | #10 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

The Three Kings Church, another ancient Church in South Goa, dates back to 1599 and is located in the small village of Cansaulim. The isolated church may not boast of a colossal structure or majestic architecture. But what makes it a major attraction for many people is that it is believed to be haunted. Yes, this may sound pretty strange about a place of worship, but there’s just one way to verify such claims – visit the church and find out for yourself!

  • Location: Muder, Cansaulim
  • Timings: 6:00 am to 5:00 pm; every day

Interested to know more such places in the region? Then read our blog on the haunted places in Goa.

11. Chandreshwar Bhoothnath Temple, South Goa

Chandreshwar Bhoothnath Temple, South Goa

Chandreshwar Bhoothnath Temple | #11 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

One of the famous temples in South Goa, Chandreshwar Bhoothnath Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva who is worshipped here as the Lord of the Moon. This ancient temple stands atop the Chandranath Hill. If you happen to visit the temple on a full moon night, you can see the Shiva Linga inside the shrine looking resplendent under the moonlight. There’s also the Boothnath Temple nearby which is worth a visit. This temple is also dedicated to Lord Shiva where the deity is worshiped as the Lord of the ghosts. 

  • Location: Paroda, Quepem Taluka
  • Timings:  5:30 am to 8:30 pm; every day

12. Shri Shantadurga Temple, South Goa

Shri Shantadurga Temple, South Goa

Shri Shantadurga Temple | #12 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Dating back to more than 450 years, this ancient temple exemplifies the Indo-Portuguese architectural style. It boasts of Roman arched windows, which is a rare sight among the temples in Goa. A five-story lamp tower is an additional attraction of this temple. The Shanta Durga Temple is dedicated to the worship of Goddess Durga as a mediator between Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu.

  • Location: Kavalem Village, Ponda
  • Timings:  5:00 am to 10:00 pm; every day

13. Tambdi Surla Mahadev Temple, South Goa

Tambdi Surla Mahadev Temple, South Goa

Tambdi Surla Mahadev Temple | #13 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

One of the oldest temples in the region, the Mahadeva Temple of Tambdi Surla dates back to the 12th century. The temple, as its name suggests, is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is surrounded by lush green vegetation. Another interesting fact about the temple is that it is built in the Kadamba -Yadava style of architecture, something you wouldn’t come across frequently in the Hindu temples in India.

  • Location: Sanguem
  • Timings: 7:00 am to 5:30 pm; every day

14. Cabo de Rama Fort, South Goa

Cabo de Rama Fort, South Goa

Cabo de Rama Fort | #14 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Counted amongst the oldest forts in Goa, Cabo de Rama boasts of a rich past and has many legends associated with it. One such legend states that Lord Rama and his wife Sita had stayed at this fort during their exile from Ayodhya. It is said that the fort was named to honor Lord Rama. Today, the fort is the location of the Church of Santo Antonio and you can enjoy majestic views of the surroundings from this church.

  • Location: Canacona
  • Timings: 9:00 am to 5:30 pm; every day

15. Indian Naval Aviation Museum, South Goa

Indian Naval Aviation Museum, South Goa

Indian Naval Aviation Museum | #15 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

One of the popular places to visit in South Goa with family and kids, this museum exhibits huge machines and artifacts related to the evolution of naval aviation in the country. By paying a visit to this museum, you can learn many interesting things about flying, like the aircraft ejection system and life-rafts. The place also has a café (called Cockpit Café) where you can enjoy a tea, a souvenir shop, and a mini theatre where you can catch short movies and documentaries on naval aviation.

  • Location: Vasco da Gama
  • Timings: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm; closed on Mondays
  • Entry fee:
    Adults – ₹ 30 per head
    Children – ₹ 10 per head

16. Goa Chitra Museum, South Goa

Goa Chitra Museum, South Goa

Goa Chitra Museum | #16 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

If you thought the culture and lifestyle in Goa have always been the same, think again! The Goa Chitra Museum takes you on a journey into the cultural and historical past of Goa through its 4000 plus exhibits. These artifacts map out the lifestyle of the people of Goa in the past and how it changed over time, owing to many historical and cultural factors. The museum is a treasure trove of all sorts of artifacts, ranging from agricultural tools to musical instruments, and even staple food. Needless to say, it is one of the must-visit museums in Goa where you can get a glimpse into the region’s rich and interesting past.

  • Location: Benaulim
  • Timings: 9:00 am to 6:00 pm; every day
  • Entry fee: ₹ 300 per person

17. Big Foot Museum, South Goa

Big Foot Museum, South Goa

Big Foot Museum | #17 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Big Foot is an off-beat museum in South Goa, one with a lot of difference. For starters, it is established and run privately by an artist names Maendra Alvares. Secondly, it is an open-air museum that recreates a miniature Goan village of the bygone days. Some of the key highlights of the museum include miniature houses that depict traditional Goan life and culture, a handicraft center that sells Goan artifacts, a bird habitat, a restaurant, rubber plantations, a spice yard, and lot more. The 14-meter high Sant Mirabai sculpture, which apparently is the largest laterite sculpture in the country, is another key attraction of the museum.

  • Location: Loutolim
  • Timings: 9:00 am to 6:00 pm; every day
  • Entry fee: ₹ 50 for adults; ₹ 30 for children
  • Distance from Margao: 9 km (approx.)

18. Mollem National Park, South Goa

Mollem National Park, South Goa

Mollem National Park | #18 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

The core area of Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary, Mollem National Park is home to a large number of wildlife species, birds, reptiles, and butterflies. You can easily spot wild boar, barking deer, Bonnet Macaque, and big cats like leopards and tigers while roaming around this park. If you are a bird lover, you will be delighted to visit this place since it houses more than 120 species of birds. The main attraction of the park is the adventurous jungle safaris during which you can watch your wild friends from close quarters.

  • Location: Sonaulim
  • Timings: 8:00 am to 5:30 pm; every day
  • Entry fee: ₹ 20 per adult; ₹ 10 per children
  • Distance from Margao: 45 km (approx.)

19. Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary, South Goa

Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary, South Goa

Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary | #19 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Away from the sunny beaches and happening shacks of South Goa, the Cortigao Wildlife Sanctuary entices you to a world of exotic flora and fauna. It boasts of varied wildlife species, including slender Loris, mouse deer, Indian pangolin, Malabar trogon, Malayan bittern, golden-back gliding snake, and many more. One of the prime attractions of the sanctuary is a treetop watchtower overlooking a watering hole. If you climb up the watchtower during dawn or dusk, you can watch many animals visiting the watering hole to quench their thirst. And now, that’s a sight you wouldn’t want to miss in a lifetime.

  • Location: Canacona Taluka
  • Timings: 7:00 am to 5:30 pm; every day
  • Entry fee:
    Adults -₹ 5 per person
    Children – ₹ 2 per child
  • Distance from Margao: 58 km (approx.)

20. Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary, South Goa

Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary, South Goa

Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary | #20 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Located in the south-eastern part of Goa, Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary is another must-visit place to add to your itinerary. A popular spot for nature lovers, wildlife enthusiasts, and birdwatchers, the sanctuary is home to a wide range of flora and fauna, including Giant Squirrel, Great Pied Hornbills, Grey Headed Bulbul, Slender Loris, and an exciting range of mammals, butterflies, and birds. For those looking for a tryst with nature and its many wonders, this is the place to be.

  • Location: Sanguem Taluk
  • Timings: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm; every day
  • Distance from Margao: 46 km (approx.)

21. Margao Municipal Market, South Goa

Now that you have had your share of beaches, museums, wildlife, and history, isn’t it time to indulge in some retail therapy and shop like a true Goan? Make your way to Margao Municipal Market, one of the most popular markets in South Goa, where you will find everything from cashews, spices, and alcohol to souvenirs, clothes, and handicrafts. You can spend hours here without feeling tired or bored. Don’t believe us? Try it out! By the way, don’t forget to buy a packet of salted dry mangoes, a signature item you find in all Goan markets.

  • Timings: 9:00 am to 8:00 pm; every day

22. Dudhsagar Waterfalls, South Goa

Dudhsagar Waterfalls, South Goa

Dudhsagar Waterfalls | #22 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

Located in the Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary and Mollem National Park, this picturesque falls forms the border between Goa and Karnataka. The whole region is surrounded by lush green forests and the falls cascade down from a height of 310 meters, offering a spectacular sight. The word Dudhsagar literally means ‘the sea of milk’ and that’s exactly what this waterfall is – milky, foamy, and just so beautiful.

23. Beach Shacks, South Goa

Beach Shacks, South Goa

Beach Shacks | #23 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

It’s considered a crime to leave Goa without having a drink or two at its beach shacks. And when you are in the southern part, you have quite a few options, each of which is known for its food, drinks, music, and ambiance. Here’s our list of the best shacks to visit in South Goa:

Pinacolada Beach Shack

  • Location: Colva
  • Timings: 8:00 am to 12:00 am; every day
  • Cost for two (approx.): ₹ 1000

Café Del Mar

  • Location: Palolem Beach
  • Timings: 8:00 am to 12:00 am; every day
  • Cost for two (approx.): ₹ 800

Johncy’s

  • Location: Benaulim Beach
  • Timings: 8:00 am to 2:00 am; every day
  • Cost for two (approx.): ₹ 1000

24. Restaurants, South Goa

Restaurants, South Goa

Restaurants | #24 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

What’s a trip to Goa if you don’t indulge in the flavorsome seafood the region is renowned for? Now, if anyone tells you the dining scene in South Goa is not as great as that of its northern counterpart, don’t believe them. There indeed are many restaurants serving some of the best Goan flavors along with other types of cuisines. Here are our suggestions for the best restaurants in South Goa:

The Space Goa

  • Location: Canacona, Palolem
  • Timings: 08:30 am to 05:30 pm; every day
  • Cost for two (approx.): ₹ 500

Martin’s Corner

  • Location: Ranvaddo, Salcete, Betalbatim
  • Timings: 11:00 am to 03:30 pm and 06:30 pm to 11:30 pm; every day
  • Cost for two (approx.): ₹ 1600

The Fisherman’s Wharf

  • Location: Mobor, Cavelossim
  • Timings: 12:00 pm to 11:00 pm (Sunday to Thursday); 12:00 pm to 12:00 am (Friday to Saturday)
  • Cost for two (approx.): ₹ 1100

Want to add some spice to your beach holiday? Read our blog on the best restaurants in Goa to know more.

25. Bars and Pubs, South Goa

Bars and Pubs, South Goa

Bars and Pubs | #25 of 25 Best Places to Visit in South Goa

South Goa may have the reputation for being quieter than North Goa, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy nightlife here. In fact, there are several places to visit in south Goa at night and chill out. Some of the best nightlife spots in the south are:

The Farmhouse Bar and Bristo

  • Location: Benaulim
  • Timings: 11:30 am to 3:00 pm and 7:30 pm to 12:00 am; closed on Mondays  
  • Cost for two (approx.): ₹ 1000

The Red Ginger

  • Location:  Colva
  • Timings: 12:00 pm to 11:00 pm; every day
  • Cost for two (approx.): ₹ 1200

Edge

  • Location:  Majorda
  • Timings: 9:00 am to 1:00 am; every day
  • Cost for two (approx.): ₹ 2000

South Goa can be full of solitude and tranquility or energy and effervescence, depending on how you want to explore the place. Start with this list and you will discover many other places worthy of your time as you embark on this lovely journey. Here’s wishing you a great time in South Goa.