14 December 2009

Silent Noise at Palolem

After 24 hours on a train (or two) we made it from Ellora to Goa, the former Portuguese colony on the Indian west coast. The Portuguese arrived in 1510 and retained control of the area until 1961, 14 years after the rest of India gained independence from Britain.

We're planning on visiting three or four different resorts along the Goa coast but our first stop is at Palolem, the most southerly of the developed beaches. We've not seen a beach since we left Aqaba 4 months ago and it's also only the 2nd time in 4 months where we've stayed in the same spot for a week. Hence we're making the most of sitting on the beach, not moving and doing no sightseeing! Essential tan topping up time before we head home.

Palolem is a really nice little village that hasn't been spoiled by over-development and retains a lovely ramshackle, laid back feel. There's no international hotel chains (all the hotels and beach huts are locally run) and there's no buildings over two stories high. It also has loads of great bars and restaurants. Best of all a big bottle of Kingfisher beer costs Rs60 (that about £0.78) and a glass of gin costs less than a tonic!!!

A few years ago Goa became well known for its night life and the party scene here got really popular. However; in order to calm things down the government banned loud music in open air locations after 10pm. To get around this problem the local promoters have opened several silent discos. A silent disco is a club that has no speakers, instead everyone is given a set of radio headphones which they use to tune into one of the 3 DJ's that are playing.

On Saturday night we went to an event run by Silent Noise who have an open air club at Neptune Point, on the cliffs overlooking Palolem beach. It was very strange when we first walked in to see several hundred people who appeared to be dancing to no music.

We had a great, if slightly surreal evening!

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