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Beyond Beaches

By 03:46:00 , , ,

We have always been partial to  the beaches in South Goa ,even though they are definitely sleepier than the north. While the popular tourist spots of Anjuna,Vagator and Calangute beaches join Baga in my folder marked 'overcrowded', a pristine, calm and relaxed beach vibe can still be found in the South.
During this umpteenth visit to the South ,Shital & I were on our regular stroll where we discovered at the end of one of the more popular and bustling beach of Pallolem, a small dirt track and one of the area’s best kept secret – the wild mangroves spread along the fishing villages of Canacona. Home to fish, the white headed eagle, herons, crabs and, on occasion, turtles, the mangroves are teeming with life.

We decided to get our kids out of the sand and even further away from the gadgets and allow them to explore the area with us.
We of course had to survive the the 'whys' and the 'so boring' , but after a bit of fictitious "trail names" and kid-friendly fun facts about the area, we were off.
The ride is peaceful and quiet and you can truly witness the magic of the mangroves and understand how they serve as a buffer zone, a transition from the sea to the land, and act as a coastal defense barrier entangled above-ground root systems, protect shorelines during storms by absorbing wave energy and reducing the velocity of water as it passes through the root barrier.

Once you are deep into the mangrove, surrounded by dense forests, the boatman shuts down the engine to eliminate the noise, goes to one end of the boat with a bag full of chicken skins and starts throwing the pieces into the water.
Within minutes, you see about 10 - 20 white headed eagles circling the beautiful sky, in a sort of magnificent dance. The hovering eagles began screeching and swooping down across the water to grab up the food and try to outwit each other.

We definitely got the kids attention after this part of the ride and little more interest in the beauty of this place.

We turned around and gradually made our way back to the familiar beachy territory. I will definitely go back to the mangroves and try to discover many more in the region

This unplanned tour has once again given us a sense of reassurance to explore the unknown ....

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