INDIA. Goa: Vagator is one of the pristine, calm, less-crowded, and serene beaches of Goa. This beach is quite famous for its breathtaking sunset view. However, Vagator remains among the less explored beaches in Goa. With clean blue-green seawater, soft sands, and a mountainous region on one side, Vagator is the ‘hidden gem’ of Goa. Vagator is a Portuguese word that means “I wander, I stroll”, which rightly describes the scenario of the beach.
A seaside headland splits Vagator Beach into two main beaches. One is North Vagator Beach (Big Vagator) and the other is Ozran Beach (Little Vagator). The seaside headland which divides the beach is the place for car parking and many stalls that sell clothes, soft drinks, juices, and snacks. To the right of the North Vagator Beach, there is another small beach where one can try various water sports like Jet-ski, banana ride, parasailing, and scuba diving. This place is a paradise for adventure-lovers and sports enthusiasts. Vagator beach became quite famous among tourists after the famous Sunburn Festival shifted its base from Candolim beach to Vagator Beach in 2013.
The effect of COVID-19 on the beach shacks
There are various shacks at Vagator Beach, but ‘Fish-Tail’ is the most popular and convenient shack to visit. It has a wide variety of sea-foods and very quick and polite waiters to serve plus a free Wi-Fi connection. But the present COVID -19 situation has put the shack owners in trouble. Talking to Transcontinental Times, ‘Fish-Tail’ shack owner Joseph told, “With present restrictions on the foreign tourists, we are facing some serious economical issues. In the previous year, I needed 20 waiters to serve the tourists, but now, I have only three to Serve.
The plight of stall owners
Just above the Vagator Beach, you will find small stall owners selling cold- drinks, fruits, and fruit juices, tea, coffee, and noodles. Before the pandemic, these people used to earn a decent amount of money. However, now the COVID-19 restrictions have put their livelihood in shambles. A six-month lockdown, present restrictions, and fewer tourists have hampered their business.
One stall owner, Sagar Walke, told Transcontinental Times, “In the past six months, we have suffered a lot financially. Even in the present situation, we are finding it difficult to make both ends meet as there has been a drastic reduction in tourism due to COVID-19.”