For the ultimate Indian beach holiday, book Goa with its intoxicating blend of white sand beaches, fresh seafood, yoga studios and vibrant nightlife.
Alongside palm-fringed shorelines and lively bars, many boutique hotels in Goa boast Portuguese colonial architecture and chic modern facilities. If you want to make your stay in India’s smallest state unique, here’s our list of the best boutique hotels in Goa, suited to all wallet sizes – and all bookable through Culture Trip.
Located on Ashvem Beach in north Goa, this boho-heavy retreat offers relaxed Goan seaside charm with lots of tranquillity. There are twice-daily yoga classes, so – whether you’re staying in a beachside stilt cabana, a Portuguese-influenced suite, or a roomy villa with a small garden – inner peace (and the sandy shores of the Arabian Sea) are never far away.
The Postcard offers a serene experience. Six breezy, sunlit rooms come with terrace views over a centuries-old banyan tree and Goan greenery, while Portuguese architectural touches are evident everywhere, adding to the oasis vibe. Surf lessons and cycling tours to Divar Island can occupy your time when you’re not lounging poolside or tucking into the local fare – try the pickled and curried prawn balchao.
Dolphins frolicking in the bay, rustic villas and a treehouse suspended in an ancient banyan tree await at Ahilya by the Sea. A pair of swimming pools (one for sun, one for shade), along with arty knick-knacks, sculptures and well-groomed grounds, make this boutique hotel a joy at every turn. Extend the experience by heading to the wellness centre on the first floor of the tree tower for a massage.
Sur La Mer, with a mix of 14 royal and deluxe rooms, is homely and elegant – perfect for an extended stay in Morjim. For a special night, there’s a swish treehouse cabin, with dark-wood interiors and canopy views through the windows. If you’ve got a big appetite, opt for the F&B experience which includes a seasonally changing selection of fresh and locally sourced delights.
Andores is a leafy refuge from the more touristy Calangute and Baga areas nearby. A massive swimming pool along with a smaller pool for children, lawns, coconut trees and a powerful sense of calm pervade this lush estate – all viewable from your private terrace. When it’s time to venture forth, Calangute beach is within walking distance.
Portuguese influences are everywhere at this historic villa hotel alongside the Mandovi River. The pace of life at Surya Kiran Heritage is laid-back. And although the five colour-coded rooms – azul (blue), amarelo (yellow), pessego (peach), marrom (brown) and verde (green) – aren’t massive, they radiate old-fashioned colonial charm. Wood architecture, a gorgeous inner courtyard, and lots of surrounding greenery will make you murmur many soothing “ahs” during your stay.
Elegant Goan wall art and an ornamental pond await you at Hotel Amrapali. Rooms have calming names such as Peace, which includes an inviting copper tub and lake views, and Compassion, overlooking the central courtyard pool. On the outskirts of Velha Goa, this is the spot for French-infused Indian cuisine, available at the in-house Cafe Amrapali. The hotel, next to the Zuari River, has a private lake, along with all the amenities (masseuse services and personalised dining options) you’ll need for a restful stay.
Be transported back to the Portuguese colonial days at Siolim House, which was once the home of the Governor of Macau. Nominated for a Unesco Heritage Prize, Siolim House has seven rooms, which perfectly blend Goan and Portuguese architecture. This property offers serene surroundings, lush greenery, deluxe amenities and impeccable service. For a taste of popular Goan cuisine, head to the dining area in the central courtyard. They also offer yoga, massages and Ayurvedic treatments.
Within a 19th-century Portuguese family mansion in Saligão, Shanti Morada has luxurious rooms with clawfoot tubs, antique wood fittings and Goan pizazz. The outdoor pool, with an elevated kiddie pool attached, is next to a cascading artificial waterfall, which you can view from your private terrace. If you don’t want to swim, why not try your hand at the pool table in the salon?
In the heart of Anjuna, the Tamarind Hotel offers an all-round top experience, with the best restaurant, cafe and bar right on your doorstep. There are 26 beautifully designed airy rooms to choose from, as well as a library. The beautiful azure pool surrounded by palm trees makes for a refreshing dip. Its lounge bar, with an Alice in Wonderland theme, and the on-site Cotinga Cafe are also popular afternoon hangouts.
The Park is a classy seafront boutique hotel overlooking the beach, comprising 30 modern rooms and suites. They’re decorated in lively white and purple hues. It’s a stone’s throw from Calangute and Candolim beaches – the best spot for spectacular sunset views. With days spent reclining in a poolside cabana, we won’t blame you if you never want to leave.
History comes alive in this 19th-century property. Nestled in the historic Fontainhas Latin Quarter of Goa’s capital, the Panjim Inn is a cherished heritage boutique hotel. It has 37 rooms filled with period furniture and antique four-poster beds. The in-house restaurant, the Verandah, offers the freshest local cuisine. Try the Sambarachi Kodi (a typical Goan prawn curry). If the kitchen isn’t too busy, you’re welcome to pop in and learn about Goan cooking.
Surrounded by lush greenery, the Fort Heritage Hotel is an oasis, tucked away from the bustling streets of Tiracol. It offers five double rooms and two suites filled with Portuguese touches and modern amenities. Enjoy the ocean views from your balcony, or head to the terrace restaurant overlooking the River Tirakol. Here, you can dine on Portuguese dishes and sample the finest wine.
Couples looking for romantic seclusion should book a suite at the Mayfair Hideaway Spa Resort. The clue is in the name. Choose from a Deluxe Room (with either river or pool views) or upgrade to the Suite with its own private plunge pool. During the day, recline by the palm-fringed pool with a book from the well-stocked library or enjoy a spa treatment. Come nightfall, dine on lobster, freshly caught from the Arabian Sea, at the Nautica seafood restaurant.
If you’re in Goa to party, book the Casa Vagator, located on a cliffside overlooking Vagator beach. The area is known for its trance and deep-house music scene; nearby Hill Top hosts international DJs every Sunday. Inside, you’ll find 20 rooms, five luxury suites and an exclusive penthouse with magnificent views. Enjoy a cocktail on the beachfront deck, flanked with palm trees, or unwind with a massage before another night on the dance floor.