Located on the west of Mormugao, the quiet unassuming side of south Goa, the Grand Island or Ilaha Grande Island or the Monkey Island or Bat Island is one of the must-visit places in Goa. The road (read as the sea) leading to the island is a journey to reckon. With the treasure of experiences strewn about all over in this part of the Arabian Sea, it’s a paradise for all those nature seekers out there.
Set aside a day or half for you’ll be busy being with nature. The boat leaves at around 8:00 am when the wind is still cold and there’s a floating smell of freshly brewed coffee in the air, the sound of the morning bells ringing at a distance is a hint for the blessed journey that you are to undertake.
Road to Solace
Onboard the ship you will be welcomed with a generous spread of snacks and an assorted array of fruits native to the region. The Goans are also very generous with the drinks as you will be served with rum, beer (unlimited) and other non-alcoholic drinks. As the journey begins, the wind is still crisp, blowing through your hair with a whiff of salinity of the ocean.
As you will gently sail through the mighty ocean, you will come across some eye-catching monuments and structures that ooze history. You can see the Aguada fort that stands tall having victoriously braved the rough seas, the Central jail which has been witness to some heartbreaks, looms large over the sea. The millionaire’s bungalow depicts the luxuries that hard work brings. As you sail through in our thoughts, the journey is given a brief pause and you are handed a fishing rod and a bait. The experience is invaluable in itself and if you get a fish, it’s just another added goodness.
While at it, you suddenly hear the splashing of the water. Turn back and you’ll have a sight to behold. The Dolphins jumping up and down in the clear waters of the Arabian Sea, vying for your attention and showing off their moves. These incredible animals are human-friendly and can also understand the human language. A pod of dolphins come together and perform their choreographed moves to utmost perfection. It becomes hard not to fall in love with those loving creatures. This Grand island trip can be booked online.
Sweet seclusion on the Monkey Island
On reaching the shores on the island, a delectable spread of barbeque (chicken/fish/ veggies) awaits. The sweet aroma of the amalgamated ocean water, sand, and the trees will make you want to bottle the scent. After a sumptuous lunch, you can play in the waters, dance to some music, or just find a secluded place and enjoy the solitude.
For all you water babies, snorkeling and Scuba Diving is like a drug that you can never get enough of. Snorkeling and Scuba Diving are available with all the equipment and a guide. For the not so adventurous types, listen to some music or even groove to some peppy music. For all those poets and novelists, this a perfect setting to pour your heart out.
Things to carry
- Medicines if you are prone to seasickness
- Sunglasses and a good sunscreen.
- Swimsuit and an extra pair of clothes
- Wear comfortable clothes
It’s priced around 1600/- per person and requires prior booking.
The package includes:
- Pick up and drop from your hotel in an AC shared vehicle
- Boat trip with sightseeing
- Snacks, fruits, water, and drinks (rum/beer) onboard the boat
- Dolphin Sighting
- Snorkeling and scuba diving with equipment
- Life jackets
- Buffet lunch
Note: Scuba Diving Activity will cost extra money (around Rs 3000 per person including Equipment and Guide)
Be assured that the boat trip to the monkey island will be your most cherished and memorable take away from your trip to goa