If you're feeling tired from traveling, or just love the beach and want to chill out for a while, there are plenty of options for an India beach vacation.
- When people think of beaches in India, they usually think of Goa -- the long strip of coastline that is actually a state in southern India. Perhaps India's most liberal destination, Goa has been attracting visitors since the hippies made it home in the 1970s. Most of it has become quite commercialized now, but there are dozens of Goa beaches to choose from depending on the type of beach vacation you want to have.
- Of course, there's much more to India's best beaches than those found in Goa. The states of Karnataka and Kerala, further south on the west coast, also have some spectacular beaches that are less developed than Goa's beaches. Two of the most popular ones are Gokarna and Varkala.
- A trip to Kerala wouldn't be complete without spending time exploring the beautiful backwaters on a traditional style houseboat. This makes a wonderful romantic getaway as well.
- Maharastra, the state above Goa, has some terrific little known beaches that make great escapes from Mumbai, such as Ganpatipule. As well as beaches, the Sindhudurg region is renowned for its forts.
- The beaches on India's east coast tend not to be as clean or appealing as the ones on the west coast. The pick of the bunch is Mahabalipuram, near Chennai in Tamil Nadu. Gopalpur-on-Sea, in Orissa, is relatively peaceful. Puri has a long stretch of beach but the central part of it can be quite dirty. A stay further out at one of the resorts with a private beach is recommended.
- Not to be overlooked are the stunning beaches of the Andaman Islands and, for those with plenty of money, Lakshadweep. These beaches, off the coast of India, are the kind that you see on postcards -- fine white sand, sparkling clear water, and pretty coral.