Goa's Lush Spice Plantations
Goa Spice Plantations Farm & Village
Goa's dense forested areas and favourable climatic conditions make it a perfect location to grow the spices liberally used in its cuisine. Spice farms dot the state, and a cluster around Ponda is open to visitors for a day of gastronomic discovery. A bonus is the birds that are attracted by the greenery. Practically all the spice farms use organic methods of cultivation. You can get a guided tour of the plantation and enjoy a mouth-watering Goan Saraswat buffet lunch at some farms.
Sahakari Spice Farm in Goa India
Enter the Sahakari Farm to a welcome of fresh tender coconut water or lemon grass tea and some snacks. A guide will take you around the 130-acre spice farm, where cardamom, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg, herbs, fruits, arecanut, betel and medicinal plants grow. Lots of butterflies and many species of birds are found here. You will also see crossbred cows, a cashew processing factory and a feni distillation unit. All this over, gorge on the buffet lunch of pao (local bread), rice, prawn or fish curry, chicken xacuti, other vegetable bhajis, a delicious veg kurma made with whole spices from the plantation, fried fish, fried rice or pulao, fried potato, salad, pickle and papad. Wind up your meal with desert and fresh fruit. You'll get cashew feni too, before lunch. A big attraction at Sahakari is its elephants who take you for rides and let you bathe them too.
NH4A, Curti, 3.5 km from the Shantadurga Temple at Kavlem and 1.5 km from Ponda.
Pascoal Spice Village
At the Pascoal Spice Village too, vanilla, pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, chillies, nutmeg, turmeric, ginger and fruits are cultivated. There is a large plant nursery with several bonsai here. There are also a great many birds here, and a rivulet that flows through the farm. Enjoy a spot of boating or just sit by the river and feed the fish.
When you got hungry try the chicken cafreal, the prawn curry, crispy vegetables and fried kingfish, all washed down with cashew feni or beer.
Off NH4A, Khadepar.
Savoi Plantation has a very rustic decor. Take a guided tour of the cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, turmeric, ginger, basil, nutmeg and pepper plantations and the cashew distillation unit. Return to a buffet of Goan Saraswat cuisine at Savoi Plantation's Sadafuli Restaurant. Starters like fried mussels bring on a buffet lunch of bread, rice, prawn and vegetable curries, chicken xacuti, fried fish, stuffed crabs, kismur, pickle, sol kadi, yoghurt and fresh fruit. One can also stay in the farmhouse here.
Savoi Verem is off NH4A, 13 km down NH4A from Old Goa, Turn left at Banastarim to Marcela, from where the farm is 6 km away.
Tropical Spice Plantation
Tropical Spice Plantation also has cashew and areca plantations, apart from spices and medicinal plants like aloe vera and neem. After a guided tour, go boating on the lake if you're here between October and April. Here too you can relish authentic Goan cuisine. Lemon grass tea, beer and feni are on offer to wash down the fish and chicken curries. But the speciality of the chef here is mixed veg kurma.
Keri, 6 km from Ponda and 6 km from Mahalsa Temple at Mardol.
At Abyss, also in Savoi Vernem, an Ayurvedic doctor takes you on a tour of the medicinal plants, fruit and betelnut gardens. They also offer Ayurvedic massage here. Chef prepares a veg lunch every day, but you can call ahead and request fish or non-veg. Banana halwa and gulab jamun are excellent.
Sai Farm, Savoi Verem, Ponda.
Have a wonderful time discovering Goa Spice Plantations on your Goa Vacation.
Enjoy your Goa Tours!
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