The North Goan coastline is littered with stretches of sand, each offering something different to holidaymakers who visit this beautiful corner of India. For gap year travellers, it's great, as you can see or do something new every day.
Here's a rundown of some of the top beaches in North Goa.
Main attraction: Its Wednesday flea market
While Anjuna isn't the most picturesque of Goa's beaches, it does have a truly unique selling point - its Wednesday flea market. Every week, traders descend on this stretch of sand to offer their goods to travellers and locals alike. You'll be amazed by the variety of items on sale; there's everything from clothing and souvenirs to handicrafts and food. Half the fun of a shopping trip here is the bartering - so be prepared to bargain!
Main attractions: Golden sands and water sports
If you're keen to inject a bit of adventure into your gap year, head to Calangute for at least one day. The golden beach here is among Goa's most famous and beautiful, lined by palm trees and with plenty of space to sunbathe. However, those keen to try new experiences while travelling will no doubt want to have a go at some of the water sports.
Parasailing, windsurfing and waterskiing are all on offer, while the sea itself is safe for swimming in if you fancy just taking a dip to cool off. If you want a break from the beach, book a spot on one of the crocodile or dolphin spotting tours that regularly run down the Mandovi River.
Main attractions: Close to Calangute
The Calangute and Anjuna beaches tend to draw in the crowds, so it's usually quite busy and lively in both these coastal spots. If you're keen to experience a little bit more solitude head to Baga, which is near Calangute beach. As it's a bit more isolated, it takes a little effort to get there, but once you arrive, you can marvel at its gorgeous sands, which are split by a creek that leads into the sea.
Main attraction: Water sports
Sinquerim is another picturesque beach you can visit while staying in a North Goa hotel. It is renowned for the variety of water sports on offer, with parasailing, windsurfing, scuba diving and jet skiing among the activities you can have a go at. Due to the length of this stretch of sand - it's 13 km long - it's also an ideal place to go for a coastal walk if you'd rather stay on dry land. There are also plenty of restaurants, bars and hotels here in case you fancy grabbing some refreshments.
Main attraction: Turtles
Morjim beach is relatively undeveloped and stretches for 2.5 km. It's one of the protected nesting sites for olive ridley turtles, so there's a chance you may spot these amazing marine animals if you spend a day or two here at the right time of the year (breeding season is between September and March). There are conservation programmes designed to protect the turtles, so that could be something that interests you if you have a reasonable amount of time to spend in Goa as part of your gap year.
These are just a few of North Goa's beaches - there are plenty more to be discovered at your leisure when you jet off to this beautiful Indian state.