What's better than a day of being at the beach? A day that starts with a breakfast smoothie, has a surf lesson in the middle, evening beers when the sun sets and finally ends at a cosy bamboo hut. And where can you find all of this? Well, but one place in Goa: Vaayu Village in Mandrem.
Surf & Sand: There's No Place Like Vaayu Village For Adventure & Nature Lovers
What Makes It Awesome
Away from the crowded beaches, Vaayu's lucky to have a slightly off-the-beaten-track location all to itself. Now, don't mistake it to be just another pretty-looking guest house. It's got its heart and mind in the right place. To be fair, Vaayu isn't just an accommodation but a way of life. This is why, they've got sustainability and creativity at the heart of everything they do. They've got a cafe and bar, a surf school, bamboo huts and an artist residency, all held together in a comforting huddle.
Their in-house Prana Cafe has made it its life's mission to serve innovative healthy food. Think everything between holiday-special Lavender Bourbon Sour (yum) to detox-essential quinoa avocado stack. They do breakfast, some pasta (no more mopey kids), sandwiches, salads and meal bowls. And, in case that meal turns bitter with an unexpected email from the boss, just walk over to their gorgeous community working area and draft a diplomatic reply (in yo' face, office politics). Did you say you're your own boss? Even better. You can just take your laptop, enjoy the green cover, the artworks and the company of a reliable wi-fi to get shit done.
Their varied stay options also mean that everyone's sorted after a long day at the beach. You can pick between the AC rooms, villas with a view, the rustic but gorgeous bamboo huts or even a coconut dome that looks like an eco-conscious attic like no other. And, if you're going with friends and fam, pick their duplex villa that offers a view of the Mandrem river and lets you chill on a bed right by the river side.
There's also a tiny shop stocking The Ikat Story clothes for when you're done spending a lazy afternoon at their terrace cafe. If you're sticking on longer and want to learn a new skill, Vaayu has courses you could sign up for. From kitesurfing to wakeboarding, they offer lessons and trips that will have that adrenaline pumping and challenge you.
The Vaayu team is extremely helpful, and they provide you with professional gear and training, so you never find yourself at sea with anything. Do remember that these water sports become unavailable in the monsoon months.
What Could Be Better
Their shop at the reception is a tad too small. We just wished we saw more brands supporting a sustainable lifestyle here.
They host fun events including pop-ups, movie screenings, live gigs, surf camps and more. A good way to keep track is on their FB page.