B1 Intermediate UK 496 Folder Collection
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Steady.
You're overtaking on a blind bend!
Hi, I'm Tom.
I'm traveling through one of the most colorful and vibrant countries in the world
and with the help of local knowledge, I'll be trying to find out what makes this place so special.
Join me on my Journey Through India.
Roughly 300 miles south of Mumbai, Goa is India's smallest state.
A Portuguese colony until 1961, the coastal region is now known for its music, nightlife and beaches.
Not bad, eh?
I could spend a week just sitting on a beach in Goa, but we're here in low season so actually, it's a little bit quiet.
However, there's still plenty to see and do in this beautiful part of India.
High season in Goa runs from October through till January, but if you don't mind the odd downpour,
then low season is a good time to find cheaper room rates and deserted beaches.
But no matter when you visit, there is one thing that stays the same throughout the year.
So the best way to get around Goa is on a scooter.
There are scooter rental shops all over Goa, and to hire one for the day is around 300 rupees,
which is less than $5 and it even comes with a helmet.
What do you think, good look?
There's no instruction on how to drive them.
The indicators on, so that's good.
Right then.
Goa is split into two distinctive districts, north and south.
The north tends to attract a livelier crowd, while the south has a slower pace of life.
In both though, you'll find beautiful golden sand beaches and roads that wind through leafy green hills.
Watch out for the overtaking cars.
How fast am I going? 15 km an hour?
Now that is a view. That is the best of Goa.
Wow.
Goa's beautiful coastline has been attracting visitors ever since the sixties.
In the last five years, however, the number of tourists coming to Goa has almost tripled.
This remarkable growth has attracted hoteliers and restaurateurs from all over India keen to invest in the state,
in the midst of its growing popularity.
Hi, Saarthak?
Hey man, how you doing?
Good, nice to meet you.
Welcome to Purple Martini.
Several years ago, Saarthak Gupta came to Goa with friends on holiday
and loved it so much they decided to open a cliff top bar.
What a great spot.
The place is known for sunsets.
So we love partying in Goa. We were young guys at that time when we started off
and for us Goa was an excuse for us to come here.
None of us are actually restaurateurs or hoteliers by profession, so we learnt it the hard way.
So we're just opening in a couple of hours, so everything is being set right now.
So you're emptying boxes full of booze.
Liquor and beer.
And do you serve a purple martini?
Yeah that's the signature drink.
Okay, okay, what's in it?
It's a vodka-based drink but I can't share the recipe with you.
A secret recipe?
It's a secret recipe.
I know that there's a lot of places, there must be a lot of competition.
How hard is that?
Only on this street, there are about 20-odd restaurants.
So it takes time in Goa to build a brand and
you need to stand out because every restaurant is offering something.
So, for us, we've worked really hard and we've tried to stand out over time,
and now we've become a brand, thankfully. But the competition is immense.
Turning my back on the sea, I'm heading inland towards Old Goa
to see the colonial architecture and Catholic cathedrals that are part of the region's distinctive Portuguese heritage.
Throughout Goa you'll find beautiful churches like this, built in the 17th century when Portugal ruled Goa.
This is called the Basilica of Bom Jesus and not only is it a Unesco World Heritage Site
but it's also where St. Francis Xavier's remains are held.
Goa has had a wide array of rulers over the course of its history,
but it's the Portuguese whose legacy still lives on.
The 450-year reign was a chequered one.
While they established hospitals and schools, they also vigorously converted the locals to Christianity.
Through the colonial-era mansions, the churches, the cuisine and even the language,
Portuguese rule has left a vivid historical mark.
You may not know, but my great, great grandfather was Goan and Catholic so he may have come to this church.
It's quite nice to go back to where your ancestors are from.
History lesson over. It's time for me to experience something that's synonymous to Goan culture, music.
Across the region, but particularly in the north, you can catch live performances
of everything from trance to traditional Konkani.
To learn more about Goa's music scene, I'm meeting up with Vivek Philip,
a music performer and producer who has been living in Goa for more than a decade.
Vivek?
Hey, Tom.
Hi, nice to meet you.
Nice to meet you.
The nice thing about the Goan music community is it's not just local or Indian.
It's so global, we have people from all over the world who come here and they make music.
And we interact, we exchange ideas and it's amazing.
A lot of people would recognize it as a big electronic music scene, EDM scene.
Yeah, that's interesting because Goa's kind of been synonymous with trance and techno
and not just Goa but all of India, the whole live music scene is coming back
and now there's an interesting fusion between electronic music and live music which is taking place.
A lot of creative, people who are working in music, are moving out of Bombay and coming to places like Goa?
Yeah initially I was telling a lot of my friends, "This is the place to move to now," and
you see the number of people moving here, and now you feel like, "Okay guys, that's enough."
What an interesting man Vivek is and what a great place Goa has been, I've absolutely loved it.
But this has got to be my last one because I've got to catch a train in the morning.
For many people, Goa is a holiday destination for beachgoers who want to party.
It is that, but also so much more.
The history and architecture here make it unique to the rest of India and if you happen to come in low season,
fear not, it's the perfect time to appreciate its laid-back culture and experience 'real' Goan life.
But now onto our next stop.
We're at Vasco Da Gama train station. We're about to catch a 16-hour sleeper train to Bangalore.
Okay, so this is inside the train and it's pretty basic,
but you've got an incredible view and what better way to see some of the countryside.
Another reason to take the train to Bangalore is Dudhsagar Falls.
At just under 2,000 feet, this is the second-highest waterfall in India
and the railway line actually crosses over it, offering some amazing views.
It's definitely worth it, that is absolutely stunning.
These huge waterfalls and the train runs right past them.
It's about 7.30 pm and they've just served dinner,
which I thought would be on a sort of big silver platter but it's served like this.
A nice little lentil dish. Move one of the five water bottles out the way.
We sort of take a bit of that, mix it with some rice.
Mmm, not bad. A bit of a kick, that's fine.
It's better than you get on any British train, that's for sure.
Traveling by train is a quintessential Indian experience and with more than 7,000 train stations scattered across the country,
this is one of the largest networks in the world.
Sleeper trains also offer the chance to travel huge distances
for not much more than the price of a mid-range hotel room.
Right, it's bedtime, and I've got the bottom bunk which I think is a good thing.
They've provided me with a pillow, two sheets, and they're very nice and clean, and a blanket.
Now I've got to just move this bunk up like this. Little hook comes down and that attaches under here.
There you go, that's one but better make sure you're safe.
You don't want one of those coming down on you in the middle of the night.
Right, better get some sleep before we get to Bangalore.
My feet are hanging over the end and hopefully they won't block anyone walking down the aisle
but for now, this'll do nicely, night.
Hi guys, thanks very much for joining us on our Journey Through India.
If you want to see our first episode in Mumbai, then click here.
Or to check out our next stop in Bangalore click here.
And do let us know what your favorite destinations are and don't forget to subscribe.
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Journey Through India: Goa | CNBC International

496 Folder Collection
April Lu published on November 5, 2018
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