Goa, an experience – VIII (Roads, Transports, Facilities)

Goa is a small place so moving from one place to another has plenty of options. The roads, as per Indian standards, are generally in good condition including the ones in interiors. But don’t be surprised if I say that National Highway NH17 which passes through Goa is just a 1+1 lane road and not a 4+4 or even a 2+2.

Local Transport
Wherever I go, at least once I try to use the local transport to get a ‘at home’ feel. A ride on a local bus, whilst you are on holiday, is usually a unique experience, not to be missed. Goa was no different.

The local buses are known as “Janta Buses”. There are no set timetables and mostly no bus stops either. But they are frequent, touch major bus stops and go to the interiors as well. The buses are not in good condition and packed; not to mention, they are private buses run by locals.
Almost always they won’t even issue a ticket even after asking for it. They just collect the money, stare at you and go away.
Goa

Near airport

There is one more bus service called ‘Kadamba’ which operates between all major points such as Mapusa, Madgaon, Panaji, Vasco-da-gama; the service is regular, they have proper ‘Kadamba’ bus stops and they issue tickets. 🙂
However, one major drawback in Goa is the timings. By seven in the evening, all buses stop their services so planning to go back to one’s place of stay should not be left behind.

Near every regular bus stop, there is a motorcycle-taxi stand about which I have written here. They are plenty, fast, economical and safe.

Autoricksha

An autoricksha

Hiring of Scooter and Cars
Scooters and Motorcycles are in abundance, every day of your holiday you will be asked, by local touts & innumerable sign-boards ‘if you want to rent one’. But what you don’t know is that this hiring for self-driving is totally illegal. You are not allowed to hire private scooters or motorcycles in Goa.
If you do so, it means apart from the very real danger to you of a serious or fatal accident, you will be uninsured, and a target for the local police. The police know you are riding illegally and can stop you, threaten you with arrest, imprisonment and court appearances. Of course, they will tell that an ‘on the spot fine’ can solve your problem. There is no real ‘on the spot fine’ system, so the large amount of money (negotiable) that they extract from you, is for their pocket.
There are very few legal, motorcycle and scooter hire companies in Goa. The tip to remember is that they have black number plates with yellow registration numbers (not white which is for private vehicles only).

Private chauffeur driven cars are available for 2500 INR – 3000 INR per day depending on your days schedule but they too prefer to come back by evening if you plan to go from south Goa to north or vice versa. First two days we had booked the same to get familiarized with the surroundings and after that we were on our own traveling in all kind of transports.

Washroom Facilities
General washroom facilities are available at every major bus stop but then even after being a paid service; you get to see a stinking, not so clean, fully wet, without any tissue or soap washroom. I think we Indians, should now assume that we can NOT improve upon this facility in any city.

Goa road

One of the interior roads through a village

Related posts:- Reaching Geneva, Goa

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15 thoughts on “Goa, an experience – VIII (Roads, Transports, Facilities)

  1. whew.. never knew abt the private bike renting trap.. yeah, since it is private, i dont think one can rent it for money… hm.. one more reason for me to ride down to Goa…
    I am not surprised abt the width of NH-17 coz there r many places in kerala where NH -17 is of same width…

  2. The tip about hiring a two-wheeler that has been registered as a commercial vehicle is a very significant one.

    BTW, a lot of the foreigners visiting Goa hire scooters or motorcycles registered as private vehicles. I wonder if the local police bother them as well and extract bribes or whether that kind of treatment is reserved for Indians.

  3. Anoop,
    Yes, going by your own bike would be lots of fun ! I am for it. You can see a lot more than others. 😀
    Waiting for your trip now.

    Never been to Kerala, is on my list. Let’s see when it happens.

    Peter,
    For foreigners going to a hotel for just using a washroom is ok but we Indians are master at refusing to their own countrymen. 🙂

  4. Sidhusaaheb,
    Welcome to my blog. We have met many times on Mridula’s blog. 🙂

    Well, most of the tourists are not aware of this fact.

    As far as foreigners are concerned, if on short visit, they too fall in this trap. But the ones who stay there for longer period, buy the two-wheelers.

    When was your visit ? I saw autorickshas everywhere and used them many a times. Yes, they are quite expensive.

    Thanks for your visit, keep coming.

  5. I hear a lot of good things about goa….but i hear a lot of bad things too (drugs, crime, too many backpackers!!)

    I’d love to go there though!

  6. Backpakker,
    I think that’s the best option to see the interiors but we should be careful about hiring them.

    Matt,
    Goa is such a beautiful place that whether rich or backpackers, everybody wants to be there for as long as possible. And so the crime.. but it isn’t as bad as New York, Paris or some other cities I have been to.

    Celine,
    Huh ! You are crazy and making me the same. Let’s go together. 😛

  7. Hi Cuckoo! Another great post. Goa is on my list (for all good reasons) and this post is surely of help to get around!
    While not there, Blogtrotter is still strolling in the streets of Santiago de Compostela, now racing the famous Paris-Dakar… Enjoy and have a nice week!

  8. Trotter,
    Thank you.

    Lakshmi,
    Good. Go & let me know. 🙂

    Vibhnashu,
    I am fine, thank you. I am here only, you were missing from the scene. 😛

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