Ten-Second Takeaway

A tiny beach town wedged between Gokarna and Goa, Karwar offers great experiences for the beach bum and the adventure seeker. From snorkelling to dolphin spotting, and spice-laden seafood — there’s plenty to indulge in.

For The Beach Lover

Photo: Prashant Dobhal

Photo: Prashant Dobhal

While Karwar is not the place to strut around in your two-piece {Gokarna wins brownie points here}, the place does have gorgeous beaches where you can relax. Of the handful of beaches, the main Karwar Beach is the most popular. Despite the constant ebb of people, the beach is clean and it’s a great spot to catch a spectacular sunset. There’s a Warship Museum, right on the beach, that’s housed in an actual Navy Ship. You can also visit the aquarium close by if you are looking to while away time.

Next on your itinerary should be the Devbagh Beach. You’ll have to take a muddy road to get to the beach. But once here, the frothy waters come surrounded by hills, in the distance, make up for your pains. This is one of the best places for a long leisurely walk. Do carry a picnic basket if you’d like to spend a good chunk of your day here. Just outside Karwar, a short trek from a village called Majali, is the secluded Tilmati Beach. Here, you’ll be greeted by black sands and a practically empty and untouched seaside that’s ensconced between green hills. 

For The History Seeker

Photo: Rane.abhijeet

Photo: Rane.abhijeet

Of the handful of historical sites around this beach town, the Sadashivgad Fort is a must visit. A picturesque setting by the River Kali Bridge {the river meets the Arabian Sea here}, the fort is in ruins. But a short climb to the interiors of the fort will reward you with a breathtaking view of the sea and the also of the surrounding hills. 

For The Gourmand

While Gokarna tends to cater to international tastes, you can concentrate wholly on relishing local flavours in Karwar. Like much of the Konkan coast, Karwar’s cuisine too infuses spices, coconuts, kokum, and local ingredients into its preparations. For the seafood lover, especially, Karwar is paradise. Don’t forget to visit Hotel Amrut — an institution here — for their fish thalis that come loaded with flavours. Their fish fry and their Prawn Ghee Roast too are stellar.

Photo source: Swetha Lunch Home

Photo source: Swetha Lunch Home

Swetha Lunch Home too is an icon around here. The humble restaurant is known for its Crab Masala apart from the Prawn Rawa Fry and the Mussels Sukka. Of course, you have to wash it all down with tumblers of their Solkadhi. If you are on a budget, then, try Parvathi Fish Land. Their fish curry rice, mackerel fry, and crab sukka will leave you with a big smile on your face.

For The Underwater Explorer

Watersport junkies will have a field day in Karwar. At the Aligadda Beach, you can sign up for plenty of activities that come for a fraction of the price you’d pay in Goa. Along the beach, you can sign up with local operators that offer the kayaking, banana boat rides, speed boats, and wave balance. Surfboards are available too but you will need to be a pro since there are no instructors.

Photo: Sarangi B

Photo: Sarangi B

Prefer to go diving instead? Then, head to Kurumgad Island that’s just off the coast of Karwar. Snorkeling and scuba diving are offered here and also at Devbagh. The best times for these activities is between the months of October and February. You can sign up for these experiences with a local operator or if you are staying at a resort near these locations they’ll be able to organise these for you.

Featured Photo: Prashant Dobhal