The Best Guided Tours in Goa, India

Goa beach | © Umesh Bansal / Flickr
Goa beach | © Umesh Bansal / Flickr
Photo of Poonam Binayak
India Writer19 December 2017

Goa, the party capital of India is one of the preferred travel destinations in the country. Brimming with scenic beaches, thrilling watersports and rich Portuguese heritage, this smallest state of India has everything to keep you busy for days on end. The best way to discover its treasures is through tours led by knowledgeable guides. Here’s our pick of the best.

Rediscovery Cruises

What would Goa be without its breathtaking beautiful sunrises and sunsets? Soak in the stunning vista of this everyday spectacle in peace and quiet, climb aboard the Rediscovery Cruises and enjoy a day out cruising along the state’s rivers and backwaters. Prepare to see more than just sunrise/sunset. This tour takes you up close to the vibrant wildlife of the state, as well as providing an opportunity to explore the hinterlands of Goa. With a variety of options to choose from, including romantic dinner cruises, private yacht tours, exclusive sunset rides and more – these tours exude elegance and luxury. They are slightly pricey but worth it if you are looking for a unique and refreshing perspective to enjoy the state from. For booking and tariff details, click here.

Rediscovery Cruises, DJ Agnelo House, Near Hotel Deltin Palms, Britona, Penha de França, Goa, India, +91 077740 30591

Goa Jungle Adventure

Goa Jungle Adventure specialises in outdoor extreme sports. Whether looking for trekking, cliff jumping, canyoning or abseiling, the team at Goa Jungle Adventure can plan the perfect day. They offer a series of half-day to several day tours in Netravali area that is home to a wildlife sanctuary and waterfalls. This adventure tour is perfect for both beginner and advanced outdoor enthusiasts.

Goa Jungle Adventure, Unnamed Road, 403702, Palolem, Canacona, Goa, India, +91 098504 85641

Konkan Explorers

Not content with exploring and experiencing the sunshine state by street, why not tour it on water instead? Konkan Explorers combines cruising and nautical sports, thus offering an experience like no other. Luxury yachts and trawlers are available, and passengers are taken to a certain point in the sea or river, where sailing adventures, kayaking, swimming and other nautical activities are organised. The trip ranges from an hour to full day, and is customizable depending upon the passengers’ physical and technical abilities. During the scenic voyage, you will be treated to delicious food and beer, and unrivalled vistas of Goa’s coastline.

Konkan Explorers, Chodem, Morjim, Goa, India, +91 096893 13506

Konkan Explorers

Boat tour in Goa | © Nagarjun Kandukuru / Flickr

Private Portuguese Heritage Tour

If you’re a history buff and architecture aficionado, Private Portuguese Heritage Tour is for you. It’s a half-to-full-day private guided tour that takes you around the Portuguese-influenced sites in Goa, including the 16th-century Basilica of Bom Jesus (UNESCO World Heritage Site), Se Cathedral; the Fontainhas, an old Latin Quarter with narrow winding streets that seems to be frozen in time and Portuguese-era architecture that depict the tale of Goa’s colonial era; and concludes with unbeatable views of the Arabian Sea from Dona Paula Jetty. The tour includes a private English-speaking guide, hotel pick-up and drop-off, and an air-conditioned vehicle. There’s no better way to experience and immerse in the traditional Goan culture!

Basilica of Bom Jesus | © P.S.SUJAY / Wikimedia Commons

Goa Nature Trails

When you’re fed up with the humdrum of city life, opt for Goa Nature Trails and head out of the hectic life into the lap of nature. The Goa Nature Trails offer half-day hill biking/cycling tours around Fort Aguada. If biking doesn’t tickle your fancy, look instead for something more adventurous with tidal river kayaking tours along the Nerul Creek and Mangrove forests. Both the tours are conducted by an expert guide and start from Nerul Bridge. Hill biking tours are held in the morning and early evening to beat the heat and be one with nature in solitude; while kayaking tours are organised only during high tides and take you pass the fishing communities, scenic hamlets, and dense mangrove forests rife with marine life and birds. Tours include a trained guide, walkie talkie, safety gear, snacks and mineral water.

Goa Nature Trails, Next to Amigos Bar & Restaurant, below the Nerul Bridge,, Near Candolim, Nerul, Bardez, Goa, India, +91 070309 73005


goMowgli takes you on a day-tour of the picturesque town of Goa. It not only shows you the popular sights, but also the hidden treasures of the city unknown to many. You’ll be picked up from the beaches of North Goa (Calangute, Anjuna, Morjim or Arambol) and then head to the Mapusa Market for a traditional Goan breakfast. The tour continues to Old Goa, where you can dig into the historical wealth of Goa by visiting the museums and churches; and further head to the Fontainhas, the Latin Quarters of Goa and relive the Portuguese-era, while gazing upon the colonial architecture. Not to miss in this tour is the gallery of Mario Miranda, the famous Indian cartoonist and painter that portrays Old Goa in a humorous way. The tour ends with sampling some delicious cuisine at one of the many cafes in Old Goa.

Tour the Latin Quarter of Goa, Fontainhas | © Shambhavi Karapurkar / Wikimedia Commons

Goa Kayaking

For water adventure combined with nature and wildlife, Goa Kayaking is your best bet. This is an eco-tourism tour that offers kayaking and canoeing tours from one-day to multi-day excursions along the scenic backwaters and rivers of Goa, including the Sal backwater, the Zuari river, the Nerul river and the Mandovi river. As well as getting your adrenaline fix and admiring the scenery, kayaking trips with Goa Kayaking are also an opportunity to spot some of the area’s birdlife, including 40 different bird species.

Goa Kayaking, No. 6, Plot No. 721/A, Above ICICI Bank,, Airport Road, Chicalim, Vasco da Gama, Goa, India, +91 094220 56037


Kayaking at Sal Backwaters | © solarisgirl / Flickr

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