Old Goa is one of the most sought after tourist destinations in India and when it comes to Goa, people usually have a notion that it’s all about people drinking beers on the shacks and dancing off their feet to its nightlife. But these are not the only things to do in Old Goa. You can go beyond the pristine beaches to experience the colonial side of old Goa. This includes walking in the heart of the capital city exploring the streets and taking pictures of the Portuguese houses and relaxing by the beaches too. Old Goa is also listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Also known as Rome of the East, we bring to you some of the exciting things to do in old Goa on your next vacation. 

Top 13 Things To Do In Old Goa Or Velha Goa

Goa has a lot to offer for all types of travelers. There are adventure activities for the adrenaline rushers and various guided tours for a group of families, friends and solo travelers. We have here a list of the famous things to do in old Goa for a memorable trip to this lively city of India.

  • Panaji – Cycling Tour
  • Grand Island – Dolphin Sighting And Snorkelling
  • Amboli Jungle Trek – For Adventure Seekers
  • Spice Plantation Tour – For Authentic Experience
  • Churches Of Old Goa – Visit World Famous Goa Churches
  • Sunset & Dinner Cruise – Enjoy Dinner On The Cruise
  • Chapora River – Kayaking In The Backwaters
  • Boat Tour – Enjoy Water Sports
  • Scuba Diving – Explore Life Underwater
  • Heritage Walking Tours – Learn About Historical Events
  • Archaeological Museum – A Compact History Museum
  • Paintball – A Fun Game For The Squad
  • Zuari River – Crocodile Sightseeing

1. Panaji – Cycling Tour

Cycling Tour

Image Credit: Pexels

Imagine breeze on your face, down the slope of the winding Goa roads flanked with palms in a row? Well, the cycle tour to explore the old Goa area will take you back to your childhood days and give the thrills of exploring this place in slow motion. You can explore the old Goa churches, the quaint and colorful houses, fort Aguada on cycle in this cycle tour. This tour also includes pick-up and drop facilities from your hotel stay along with snacks. It is a guided tour and one of the best things to do in old Goa to make lots of memories with your friends and family. 

Ideal for: Adventure, families, friends, solo travelers
Average cost: INR 2000/-
Timings: NA
Location: Panaji

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2. Grand Island – Dolphin Sighting And Snorkelling

Dolphin View

When in Goa, you must make sure you venture out into the vistas of blue oceans. Boating coupled with the fun of being with your family amidst the sea having the authentic Goan buffet and some alcohol is what makes your Goa trip a complete statement. The day tours to Grand Island are a perfect getaway to explore a different side of Goa. You will also enjoy the sights of the famous Aguada fort and the house of Goa’s richest person while wading through the waters. Watch the playful dolphins and enjoy snorkeling and fishing on this boat tour which happens to be one of the best things to do in old Goa. 

Ideal for: Families, friends, couples
Average cost: INR 1699/-
Timings: 8:30 AM – 3:30 PM
Location: Grand Island

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3. Amboli Jungle Trek – For Adventure Seekers

Amazing Trek

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The adventure seekers get full-range access to the majestic Sahayadris with the trek to Amboli Jungle. The mangroves are rich with reptiles so its a treat for nature lovers and photographers. Find your peace, spend time with yourself amidst the thick forest and natural canopies in this hilly region. It is ideal for a group of friends and solo travelers seeking a tranquil experience in Goa.

Ideal for: Adventure
Average cost: INR 4500/-
Timings: NA
Location: Amboli

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4. Spice Plantation Tour – For Authentic Experience

An Aromatic Experience in Goa

If you are a foodie and are looking for authentic experiences in Goa, then a 1-day tour to the rich spice plantations of Goa will surely delight your taste buds. The aroma of spices will greet you even in its vicinity. Explore the spices of Goa, grab some for yourself and enjoy yourself with your family. A scrumptious meal served in a traditional Goan way with the local brew will double up your pleasure.

Ideal for: Families, friends, couples
Average cost: INR 3000/-
Timings: 12 noon – 5 PM
Location: Sahakari Spice Plantation Tour

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5. Churches Of Old Goa – Visit World Famous Goa Churches

Beautiful Bom Jesus Church

Coming to Goa and not going to the churches is something like not watching the sun come out of its slumber. This tour includes sightseeing of the world-famous Goa churches with some museums too. Basilica of Bom Jesus, Se Cathedral, Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church, Church & Convent of St Cajetan and St Monica and Church of St Cajetan etc is the famous churches that will give you a glimpse into the culture and heritage of Goa. Get a peek into the life of Goa during Portuguese rule and fill up your bags with memories and history.

Ideal for: Families, friends
Average cost: INR 4000/-
Timings: 9 AM – 8:30 PM

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6. Sunset & Dinner Cruise – Enjoy Dinner On The Cruise

Holding hands while watching sunset never gets out of fashion. When on a honeymoon in Goa, don’t miss this opportunity to sail in the tranquil backwaters while watching the sun go down the horizon. Enjoy dinner on the cruise with your friends and family and dance to the Goan music in this Dinner Cruise package. You will also witness the traditional Goan dancers’ performance on the cruise tour. This is one of the best things to do in old Goa and will surely take your Goan experience to the next level.

Ideal for: Families, Couples
Average cost: INR 500/-
Timings: 6:15 PM onwards (every hour)
Location: Captain of Ports Jetty, Panjim

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7. Chapora River – Kayaking In The Backwaters

Kayaking In The Backwaters

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Match the peace outside with the peace within by experiencing kayaking in the backwaters of Chapora River. Watch the colorful houses of Goa passing at a slow pace as you paddle your way through the thick mangroves. You also get to see some fascinating birds on your way. A delightful treat for nature lovers and photographers, this is a must-do activity when in Goa that offers its different side other than its famous nightlife.

Ideal for: Adventure, Families, friends, etc
Average cost: INR 1799/-
Timings: 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Location: Chapora River

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8. Boat Tour – Enjoy Water Sports

Beautiful Views

Image Credit: vladimiralykov for Pixabay

Feel the rise of adrenaline in your body by taking up the adventure water sports activities on the pristine beaches. You can book a package for boat tours with water sports activities like banana ride, snorkeling, parasailing, SUP boarding and much more. Food and music to which you can tap off your feet add to the experience of tuning to the Goan vibes. If you are with your friends, then you must enroll your gang for this adventure boat tour in Goa.

Ideal for: Adventure, families, friends
Average cost: INR 1599/-
Timings: 9:30 AM – 6:30 PM
Location: Mandovi River

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9. Scuba Diving – Explore Life Underwater

Scuba Diving In Vietnam cover

Explore life underwater and watch the colors beyond the recognition of the aquatic creatures to please your eyes. The scuba diving experience will help you appreciate life and its gifts to us. It is a blend of adventure and peace and will leave those who do it with a once in a lifetime experience feel. 

Ideal for: Families, friends
Average cost: INR 2500/-
Timings: 8 AM – 2:30 PM
Location: Grande Island or Sao Gorge Island

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10. Heritage Walking Tours – Learn About Historical Events

Heritage Walking Tours

Image Source

If you are someone who loves to dive down the lane of history and know the stories that the places hold, there are many heritage walk tours that you can take up in old Goa. Walk Aguada fort and Chapora fort among other churches and sites of cultural importance in these packages. These tours come with an English speaking guide to help you understand the historical events of Goa. It is truly among the most important things to do in old Goa. 

Ideal for: Families, friends, couples
Average cost: INR 1000/-
Timings: 10 AM – 6 PM

11. Archaeological Museum – A Compact History Museum

Image Credit – Jmbhalodia for Wikimedia

Visiting this museum is one of the best things to do in old Goa for the history buffs and for those interested in knowing about the history and culture of Goa. The archaeological museum houses some of the beautiful artefacts of the Portuguese rule in India, and also has an amazing collection of religious artefacts, stamps and other valuable treasures. Some of the must see treasure here include bronze statue of a prominent Portuguese poet, Luís Vaz de Camões, wooden sculpture of John the Baptist and portrait of Vasco da Gama. 

Ideal for: Families, solo and history buffs
Entry Fee: INR 10/- (Free for children upto 15 years)
Timings: 9AM – 5 PM (Friday closed)
Location: EDC Complex, patto, Panaji, Goa 403001

12. Paintball – A Fun Game For The Squad

Image Credit – Christoph for Pixabay

Disclaimer: The image is for representation purposes only.

Still thinking about the best things to do in old Goa? Go on a paintball excursion at Nuvem. Play this exciting game with your friends and feel the thrill as you play. This game is the best to test your planning skills and coordination with the team members. Make sure to carry extra clothes and towel as you might need it after the game. 

Ideal for: Families, friends
Average cost: INR 600/- per adult
Timings: 45 minutes (for one game)
Location: Nuvem, Goa 

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13. Zuari River – Crocodile Sightseeing

Image Credit – Raju for Wikimedia

Zuari river is one of the largest river in Goa. On your trip to old Goa, you can spend a day cruising along the backwater of this river and get a chance to see Indian Mugger Crocodile and watch the exotic species of birds in their natural habitat. This great tour will be something special to remember for your lifetime. 

Ideal for: Families, friends
Average cost: INR 1800/- per adult
Timings: NA
Location: Old Goa 

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Goa will never go out of places and experiences for its visitors. Whether it is lying leisurely on the beaches with a book getting tanned or fishing to have some local experience, there are plenty of things to do in old Goa that has something in store for every soul. So, don’t wait much but book your tickets, grab your clothes in a bag, and go Goa to sail and hail yourself!

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Frequently Asked Questions About Things To Do In Old Goa

Q. Which are the must-visit churches of Goa?

A. Goa is known for its churches and one must not miss these churches when in Goa, Basilica of Bom Jesus, Se Cathedral, and Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church.

Q. Which cruise tour should one take for a honeymoon?

A. For couples on honeymoon in Goa, the Sunset Cruise and Dinner Cruise are a must-have experience in the budget. If you can extend the budget a bit then an overnight stay on the houseboats in Chapora and Mandovi backwaters are a must-experience for couples to have a romantic time in Goa.

Q. Which is the best 1-day tour package for adventure activities in Goa?

A. 1-day trip to Grand Island is the best way to have an adventurous ride in the ocean along with sightseeing and food.

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