This was my first trip to Goa and many guide books and internet sites suggested Mandrem the quietest and most unspoilt beach and possibly the best in Goa. I'm glad I heeded their advice as it was absolutely amazing with wide beaches and not many people, you had a large expanse of perfect beach to yourself. If you like a quiet, peaceful time then Mandrem is definitely your place. You can walk along the beach for 10 minutes either way to find busier towns if you need a change for a drink or diner.
There are about a dozen places to stay I'd say in Mandrem and the Mandrem Beach Resort looked the best to me (after being there several weeks and checking things out), it's on the beach and the small blocks of 4 rooms are widely spread about and in well-kept grounds. The yoga retreat next door (daily drop-in classes at 8am and 4pm) also looked really nice but only has beach huts (nice ones though) and the Villacat guest house is also next door (you'll see Mandrem is very small) and that looked excellent too and I know gets good reviews on here.
At Mandrem Beach Resort block E is overlooking the beach, I paid more for one of these (about £7 a night more, total about £40 a night) to have an incredible view of the beach from my room and balcony, however I had a good look around and think next time I'll have one overlooking the river, equally beautiful I think and it's not as though you won't see plenty of the beach! If it's your first visit then block E is probably best.
The hotel is very well managed and staffed. The Manager, Vincent, was really helpful in answering my emails before visiting, and friendly and helpful whilst I was there. The rooms are clean and have hot showers in the en-suite bathroom and are very solidly built, so quiet. They are also very secure and I didn't feel the need to put my wallet, iphone and money in the security boxes in reception. I wish I'd appreciated how safe the rooms would feel, I didn't take my laptop which was really stupid as free wi-fi available in many places in Mandrem.
There is a restaurant at the hotel which is as good as any in Mandrem I thought and staff there perfect (I'd like to adopt Sudish). Breakfast isn't included but cost about £1.50 for cereal, eggs and toast, juice and coffee. I also ate many lunches and dinners there and as good as you'll get in Mandrem (the spring roll excellent and the butter chipatti is a must). The restaurant is quiet and so this isn't for everyone. I think a lot of people walk to the other towns (or take a cheap taxi), I just didn't bother.
I would highly recommend the Mandrem Beach Resort and definitely plan to return. You can walk along the beach for miles and on my last night I was lucky enough to see baby turtles making their first journey to the sea, it was very moving to see and I watched until all four were in the sea, sadly these were the 'runts' and the last had a deformed shell and didn't seem very robust and took a long time to cover just a metre of sand. Apparently they were the last four of a batch of 146 and the metre-long momma turtle whistles to guide them to the sea, sadly I didn't see this (there were two environment protection officers there and they answered questions and had monitored the nest site). This was about 4 minutes walk from the hotel! Amazing.
In summary I'd say Mandrem is for you if you want quiet unspoilt beaches and if you do choose Mandrem then the Mandrem Beach Resort is the place to stay. It's solid and safe, clean (I didn't have a single bug in my room thankfully!) and well managed and excellent value for money. As I've said the staff are excellent and the location could not be better. Many people return it seems (as I will I'm sure) and whilst there I saw two groups ( a small German family and a friendly mature lesbian couple) ask to extend their stays as they had planned to move along the coast but felt Mandrem was just perfect. I don't think they were able to extend as hotel full, as are the other places in Mandrem, it is very small and so limited accommodation.
My criticism isn't really valid as such: the hotel website and pictures don't make it clear at how safe and nice the rooms are and that it is a "proper" hotel. The hotel site and literature about Mandrem make it (the whole town) sound a bit hippy and haphazard, I didn't take my laptop as I've said and didn't expect to be able to pay for my room with AMEX! There's about a paragraph about Mandrem in the Lonely Planet guide, which is crazy, though they do say it is one of the best and most secluded.
I had an amazing two weeks at the Mandrem Beach Resort and am more than happy to give it 5 stars.
MANDREM BEACH DOGS are lovely and aren't interested in you whatsoever, unless you have food I guess. I liked watching them chase crabs, which they rarely got, even with much digging.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- If you have been dreaming of getting away from the fast life to relax, enjoy yourself and rejuvenate, Mandrem Beach Resort is the place to be. Nestled amidst lush green coconut groves on a quiet and serene secluded beach with a meandering rivulet running alongside our resort is your perfect getaway to paradise. Our Resort comprises of 22 rooms and an independent 3 bedroom beach bungalow with fantastic sea and river views. With unmatched service and a restaurant with a breath taking sea view to top it off, Mandrem Beach Resort is an ideal spot for a remarkable holiday experience. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Mandrem Beach Hotel Mandrem
- Mandrem Beach Resort Goa