Laguna Anjuna offers our own somewhat eccentric guide to Anjuna.
There are any number of good restaurants, speciality cuisine restaurants, and most of them are well advertised and covered by the various guide books, so we are only going to name some of the others. Some small places are delightful though very basic, often without licenses, and have survived being overwhelmed only because they are away from the glare of publicity, and are known only to locals, including the longer staying tourists and anyone with an “I want to be part of it” attitude.
Sadly, many good locally run places for great Goan food have been forgotten in the in the phenomenon of chic “resto bars,” “lounge bars”, and the wannabe desperation ” to have a rocking time” and to “be with it”. For these come and talk to us personally. Also, interesting places come up and are run for a season or two, we’ll tell you about these too.
Some of our lesser known, consistently good and favourite eating places (besides of course our own!) are
- Xaviers, one of Anjuna’s first and best restaurants, located in the heart of South Anjuna. Xavier has passed on, now run by his nephew Johnnyboy. No music please! Great ambience and always superb food, especially the sea food.
- Joe Bananas – letters were being delivered here since time immemorial. The family has been running this small place for 40 years now, open only till afternoon. Great lassis, milk shakes and tasty, simple Goan vegetarian and fish meals.
- Sakana-The best place for brilliantly and artfully served Japanese food in North Goa. Vagator, Anjuna.
- Shiva Place -On Small Vagator beach, sunset view and local seafood-if your kids have extra energy let them loose on the huge trampoline!
- Basilico-Italian home cooked is just so good- in a pretty Goa house courtyard.
- Curlys – On beautiful South Anjuna Beach, their friendly and helpful attitude, music and food have made their reputation as one of the coolest beach shacks in the world.
- Artjuna- A child friendly garden cafe, for great coffees, handicrafts, jewellery.
- Whole Bean-On the way to South Anjuna, this Goan family serves tofu, tempeh along with home cooked Goan vegetarian fare.
- Thalassa-Better known as Marikettis after its Greek owner, long time resident of Anjuna, this is one of the most popular restaurants, and is known for Greek food and the beautiful cliffside ocean view at Small Vagator.
- Anand Bar and Restaurant-the best place for Goan seafood, Hindu Goan style.
- Laguna Anjuna-for beautiful ambience, old world style and and classic dishes from French, Goan, Parsi and other cuisines, and an absinthe and cocktail bar, its difficult to top Laguna Anjuna!
Surprisingly good live performances from artistes from all over the world, from Bengal’s charismatically wild Baul singers, sitar and tabla artists, percussionists, Indie bands, rock musicians. Medieval music artistes, fusion music performers, didgeridoo performers, stand up comedians with hilarious stories of the hippy years are some of the people who show up at different times and places. You can hear about these on the grapevine!
At Laguna Anjuna we have many such performances, for several years now Graeme Hamilton, formerly of UB40 and Fine Young Animals fame has been belting out his reggae songs of protest, freedom, love and life under the 100 year old Mango tree in the Laguna Anjuna courtyard. Our off beat garden film festival in February has become something of a landmark. And at end of last season, Goa trance Dj Tristan and Jamie of Masterblasters played at Laguna Anjuna for what the girls called the bad boy party of the season!
Bookshop : “The Other India” bookshop near the Mapusa Clinic is exactly what the name suggests, and has lots of intelligent material on Goa.
The nearest airport is at Dabolim, 29 km away from Panaji and 47 km from Anjuna. The nearest railway station is at Thivim, 20 km away from Mapusa and 29 km from Anjuna. Once in Goa, many people prefer to rent motor bikes and scooters. Alternatively small taxis are a good way of getting around and seeing other parts of beautiful Goa.