Mumbai to Goa distance is not even 600 km, yet we don’t drive from Mumbai to Goa for a road trip that often. Have you never wished to go for a Mumbai to Goa road trip after watching Dil Chahta Hai? That is one trip that every travel lover wishes to experience at least once in his life. The Mumbai to Goa road trip can be considered as one of the best road trips in the country where you can experience immense scenic beauty. Yes, it will be exactly as you see in the movie, or maybe, even better than that. Through the mesmerizing Western Ghats, you can travel to the land of beaches, Goa. This is one of those trips that can prove to you that it is not about the destination, but about the journey to reach there.
What is the best time to visit Goa?
The beaches of Goa are swarming with people in the months of December and January and this is indeed the best season to visit Goa. But if you are planning a visit during these times, then it is better if you could book your accommodations in advance. In case you want to avoid the crowd, you may visit during the months of February to June and October to December. If you are willing to experience the lush greeneries and empty beaches, you can visit the place in the monsoons. Moreover, Goa is the cheapest during monsoons, but then driving down to Goa from Mumbai in that season is a bit challenging.
There are two common routes which people take for a Mumbai to Goa road trip and it is upon you to decide which route would suit you better.
Route 1:Mumbai to Goa via NH 4
Total Distance: 590 kms
Total Duration: 10 hours 30 minutes (Non stop)
- Mumbai to Pune by the Mumbai-Pune Expressway
- Pune to Satara to Kolhapur to Belgaum (NH4)
- Belgaum to Goa
Approximately 20 kms longer than the other route, the Mumbai to Goa is a trip worth taking. People consider the above as the best route between Mumbai to Goa and people who have troubles with motion sickness must surely opt for this one. The road is simple, smooth and straight with a four lane road all along. But, you would be troubled by paying taxes at the numerous toll booths that come along your way.
The beginning of your Mumbai to Goa road trip would be along the Mumbai Pune expressway which is about 94.1 km in distance. After a smooth ride through the 6 lane expressway, you would reach Pune in three hours. The Mumbai-Pune expressway merges into the NH4 along which you need to travel till Belgaum. There is a sharp right angled turn at the end of the expressway, which says “Mumbai Pune Expressway ends here” and then you know that you have started your journey on the national highway.
Keep following the National Highway 4 until you reach Sankeshwar. This is the faster as well as the smoother option of travelling as this is a concrete four lane road and there is no scope of onward coming traffic. The main milestones on this journey are Satara, Kolhapur and Sankeshwar.
Satara and Kolhapur is a good place to stop and have your lunch as there are many roadside eateries there. One can also visit the Rankala Lake, Panhala Fort and the Jyotiba Temple on their way.
The next stop on your Mumbai to Goa road trip should be Belgaum where you may also decide to have a night halt. Belgaum is extremely famous for the Belgaum fort and the Bhimgad Wildlife sanctuary and if you have an extra day, it is better to stop here and explore this place. The final stretch of this road is from Belgaum to Goa which is basically a three hour drive. A smooth trip and then you reach the amazing land of beaches, Goa.
Route 2: The Bombay Goa Highway via NH 66
Total Distance: 577 km
Total Duration: 12 hours (Non Stop)
Route: Mumbai- Panvel- Pen- Kolad- Khed- Chiplun- Pali- Sawantwadi- Goa
This is a really delightful scenic journey with paddy fields, coconut and area nut plantations all along the route. This route has ample amount of scenic beauty. You can also have a beach side halt at Ganpatipule. People say the beach resembles the beaches of Maldives. But, let me warn you that it’s a very winding road. So if you have motion sickness, this would be a wrong option to go for.
One must start the journey around 6 in the morning in order to avoid the morning traffic. Reaching Panvel from Mumbai is not difficult as it is a signal free zip over flyover and it is quite a comfortable ride. After Panvel, you would hit the NH 17 which is renamed as NH 66, which is a two lane highway, quite good in shape, but has a few treacherous corners. The ride along this national highway offers you some amazing views of luxurious greenery all around, the sounds of the regional birds and that distinct smell of the forests to enhance your experience. As it is a commercially important route, the road has numerous hotels, restaurants, repair shops and petrol pumps. There are a few interesting places on your way, which you must surely check out to have the complete experience.
If you are one of those bird lovers, you must surely stop at Karnala Bird sanctuary, in the Taluka of Panvel. It is a small, yet beautiful sanctuary which is home to more than 150 species of birds. Soon, after a few hours, you would reach Pen which is a historically important port city. Now it has been a major centre where huge Ganesha idols are made for worshipping.
There are some small towns on the way of your drive like Kolad, Indapur and Mangaon which has the facilities of ATMs and Petrol Pumps. There are many roadside eateries on your way from Mumbai to Goa, where one can sit and relax and have some delicious local cuisine. One another popular halt for all the travellers is Chiplun which is at a distance of about 200 km from Panvel. The town is located on the banks of the River Vashishti in the district of Ratnagiri. This place is famous for its waterfalls, the Parshuram Temple, kokum and obviously, the famous Ratnagiri mangoes. If you are visiting this place in summer, mangoes are something that you must try for sure. There are sellers all along the route who offer the Ratnagiri Alphonsos at the best rates.
After that, NH 66 leads you to Sindhudurg which was built by Hiroji Indalkar. It is a fort on the coast of the Arabian Sea which has been made a lot popular being featured in many movies. After that, you reach Sawantwadi and a drive along the ghats, you finally reach your ultimate destination that is Goa.
What to eat and stopovers between Mumbai and Goa?
At stopovers you can find basic Indian and continental cuisine. If you are on NH4, you will able to spot dhabas at Satara and Kolhapur. On NH 66, Chiplun is a popular stopover.
There are many options of travelling from Mumbai to Goa on a road trip. If you are willing to have a trip with your friends or family, you may rent car along with a driver for the entire journey or you may opt for driving your own vehicle, for an ultimate Mumbai to Goa road trip experience. If you wish to opt for a lesser budget travel, you may choose one of those luxury buses that leave everyday for Goa from Mumbai. And yes, if you are among those adventure lovers, then why don’t you ride your motorcycle to Goa? It can be quite dangerous, but then nothing can beat that experience.
A few points to take note of:
- Sleep well the day before your journey.
- Always follow the traffic rules.
- Observe the speed limit in all the areas.
- Make sure to have frequent stops in your journey as it will help to refresh the body.
- Carry some high protein snacks to provide energy on the course of your journey.
- Keep a note of your fuel tank and never let your fuel tank go too low.
- Always carry a spare Tyre while you are travelling.
- Notice the accident warnings on the road.
- Look for the speed breakers on the route.
Summing up, the first route is faster as well as a safer option, but the second route can provide you with unmatched scenic beauty and adventure. It is completely upon you which route you would prefer to drive along. You must weigh your pros and cons and then select the route that would suite you the best. This journey is among the hot picks among the young bikers of Mumbai and you can do this journey on bikes also if you are with your friends. A Mumbai to Goa road trip is one of those amazing road journeys which every Indian must experience in his life. All you need to do is to fix the dates and begin the journey.