Goa Souvenirs is a way to take a bit of Goa with you back home. I know it is not possible to carry back its pristine sandy beaches or the carefree vibe. However, we have tried to compile a list of Goa Souvenirs for you that would keep reminding you of our sunshine state.
When I sat down for the list of Goa souvenirs, I figured out that besides a couple of things like Cashew and Feni, there are not many obvious souvenirs. So, we went around, asked a few people, and compiled this useful list of Goa souvenirs for you.
Goa Souvenirs Shopping
Everyone knows these things to buy, so let us get over them.
Cashew in its various forms like Cashew with its peel on, salted cashew, masala cashew is the most popular one. Cashew shops can be seen almost everywhere in the state. Serious buyers though prefer to buy it from the Panaji market. Here you have big shops with lots of variety and relatively cheaper.
Pro Tip – Chocolate Cashews or Cashews covered with a layer of chocolate are a great souvenir for kids.
This is not a gift that I recommend as I have not tasted it. However, this is the most popular one. Remember there are two types of Feni that you can pick – Cashew Feni and Coconut Feni. Cashew Feni is more popular and easily available.
You can see the Feni making process at Chitra Museum in Benaulim. In April, a cashew festival is celebrated during which you can participate in Feni making.
Stand at an airport departure lounge and you can easily point out people headed to Goa. One they are all happy and second they are dressed up to be heading for a holiday. At Miramar beach near my home, I can see people from all over the country in their Goa wear.
So, the state has to be the best place to get your beachwear – be it Bikini, Sarongs, Shorts, Hats, or funky Flip-flops.
You will find rows of shops selling all these in colorful designs close to all popular beaches like Calangute, Baga, or Colva. You would find many honeymooners shopping here.
It’s only in the state that you get to see women wearing Bikini with Chooda.
To be out in the state means to be out in the Sun. You need to cover your head. Buy a typical Goan hat – a big one for the women and a relatively smaller for the men.
For women, they come in all possible pastel shades with colorful ribbons to go with. For men, it is usually shades of brown and beige with a black outline. And for the experimental ones, there are palm leaf hats. Technically, they resemble the Panama Hats but of course with a bit of local touch.
Hats are one of the most popular items sold.
Pro Tip – Using hats is a trick photographers use to take care of bad hair day 🙂
Handicraft Souvenirs from Goa
The Azulejos tiles are the best souvenirs. You would see these tiles outside Goan homes, on sidewalks, in street art, and at hotels. These colorful tiles in one glance tell of their own origins. The paintings on the tiles tell the stories of the state – its Tavernas, its Kunbi Dance, its carefree people, and its lovely landscape.
You can buy a single tile or a mug or a plate or a custom-made nameplate. You can even get your favorite family photograph painted on the Azulejos tiles.
This is a souvenir to suit all pockets – right from a small tile costing less than 100 Rs to anything costing in thousands for a custom-made tile is available.
Most souvenir shops sell Azulejos. My personal favorites are the Kunbi dance tiles.
Pro Tip – Buy Mario Miranda artworks on Azulejos.
Read More – Azulejos – charming hand-painted tiles
These are simple cotton Saris with large checks on them mostly in Red color worn by the local tribal women. Lately, a few designers have revived these Saris and it is being projected as the local weave. A big credit goes to Wendell Rodricks for reviving the Kunbi Sari.
You can buy a fine but costly version at the Wendell Rodricks store in Panaji or you can buy not so fine but cheaper versions at the local stores or village fairs.
Sea Shells Galore
In all probability, your Hotel would have welcomed you with a garland of seashells. Well, you can buy many types of jewelry made out of seashells – neckpieces, bracelets, and earrings.
You can buy lamp shades, seashell curtain strings, and other items made of seashells.
Pro Tip – Just buy or pick some seashells and creatively use them to decorate your home.
Coconut is the state fruit of Goa. It can be seen everywhere in the state. Any local would tell you that every part of the coconut is used. The coconut shells are used to make bowls and artworks. There are a few artisans who produce lovely coconut shell pieces – organic art if I can call it.
I have mostly seen these in fairs in the state.
Goa Souvenirs for the Foodies
This section will tell you what to buy in the state for your foodie friends.
Kokum or Kokum Sherbet
Kokum is the quintessential fruit used as a souring agent in food here. It is mild with a lovely pink color. You can find fresh Kokum in summers when markets are full of them. Dried ones can be found almost around the year. Perfect to make Kokum Curry or Kokum Juice.
If you are too lazy like me, go get the packaged Kokum Sherbet. Just mix some water and it is ready to drink.
Read More – Pink & Purple Fruits
This is ready to eat dessert. Made from flour, eggs, coconut milk, and sugar and baked layer by layer. This is a short shelf life souvenir but it is available in good packaging that is easy to carry. Pick it up from any supermarket or bakery.
Another popular dessert of the state is made with coconut and jaggery. Personally, I prefer this over Bebinca as it has no egg in it.
A good alternative to Feni I mentioned above is fruit-based wines. Most of these wines are homemade, made by locals from fruits in their own gardens. You would find a lot of them at many of the food festivals that keep happening around the state.
Do you know the state has extensive salt pans on the southern end of Mandovi, next to Ribandar causeway? You can buy the local sea salt at the Mapusa market. The best day to visit is Friday when the Mapusa market is buzzing with traders from across the city.
Like the rest of the coastal belt of India, this state is also a spice producing state. Nutmeg and Triphala are the most popular spice grown here followed by Black Pepper. You can buy the spices in general markets in the state. But I would recommend you to buy them in one of the spice gardens. You can get a tour of the spice gardens, have an organic meal, and pick up the local spices.
You can also buy pre-mixed masalas for the state’s traditional recipes like Xacuti Masala.
In the state, Vinegar is made from Coconut Toddy. It is one of the most popular ingredients in Portuguese Goan cuisine.
Goan bakeries are always worth a visit. There are festivals where bread is celebrated. Poi – the staple food of the state is sold like milk is sold in other cities. The Bread wala comes on a bicycle with a basket full of bread to choose from. Pick up some bread as souvenirs for your foodie friends.
Now, I have no idea where all these exotic flavored teas come from. They are certainly not from the state, but I have seen them only in the state. They come in all the spice flavors and fruit flavors. I cannot even think how the Mango tea would sound, but you have all the options to experiment.
The best place to pick these tea leaves is Anjuna Flea Market, Saturday Night Market, and Mapusa market on Fridays.
Mario Miranda Art Works
The Mario Miranda Art can be seen anywhere in the state – be it the Panjim Market or the Madgaon Railway station. These artworks have become the signature exports from the state depicting the Susegad Goan life be it the fisherwomen or a Taverna.
You can buy his art on T-shirts, Azulejos Tiles, Coffee mugs, Curios, and all kinds of tourism merchandise. There are Mario Miranda galleries around the state where you can buy them, although you would find them at any souvenir shop.
My recommendation is to buy Mario Miranda Books
Read More – Mario Miranda
The Funky T-Shirts
There is no better place than flea markets to get funky T-Shirts. They have all kinds of prints including Gods and Goddesses on them. They come in all colors but the black ones remain the most popular. Team them up with the hippie style pants and sarongs.
If techno or trans music is something you have heard – go to any flea market to pick up that music. They still sell the music on CDs. I am reminded of the 90s when I see those piles of music CDs in plastic covers.
Shopping on your holiday? Do you know of any other Souvenirs to buy?
Excellent article which makes us think to visit goa
Prabhu – Treat it as another excuse to visit Goa.
I will be visiting Goa shortly so buy all the souvenirs for my frds and family
I found them are more fabulous
If I haven’t read this then i might have miss some of the above souvenirs
Thank you `
what a lot of lovely things to buy! I adore the hats – and the seashell jewellery – but know me I’d end up with cashews and other Goan food. Fascinating to see the Portuguese influence in the Azulejos too
Fiona – Goa was ruled by Portuguese for 450 years, you would see their imprint everywhere. Azulejos too came with them, though now it has been adapted and adopted by Goans.
I don’t know why chocolate covered cashews would only be for kids… I would love that too. Of course, I have a bit of a sweet tooth so I would go for the fruity wines too. Goa has so much color and flair, it would be a shame to return home without a souvenir.
Yes, of course, chocolate cashews are for everyone. I do not like chocolates so much so whenever I look at chocolate I think of children. Yes, there is something for everyone.
If I’d go shopping, I’d be most interested in the Azulejos tiles- they look beautiful! I had no idea that they were a thing to get in Goa.
Natasha – you will find Azulejos in every damn souvenir shop in Goa, but you can go to shops that see only Azulejos too.
I love the funky t-shirts and clothes, especially the beachwear. The street markets are so colourful and full of such clothes and accessories, I love it! I also like buying funky footwear from there. As for fenny, I tried it myself and did not like it at all, so I did not take it as a gift for anyone, though it does make a typical Goan gift 🙂
Medha – I guess clothes is what most people end up buying in Goa. Most people prefer Arak or fruit wines to Feni. So, you are spot on.
I’m so glad to see an article like this! Every time I travel to a new country, I google which souvenirs to take home and I always have a hard time finding a good article. Will bookmark for future travels 🙂
Happy Traveling and Souvenir Shopping, Sofia.
The bread seems really unique and the Bebinca delicious! I would buy though a tile with all the nice images from Goa daily life!
You should have bread and Bebinca while you are here and take the Azulejos with you 🙂
I really enjoy bringing home things like spices and flavored teas – it allows me to remember my time there, as I find tastes and smells have a powerful way of transporting you back to a memory 🙂 Seashells look like they would make fabulous souvenirs too lol though I would probably be tempted to try and find my own on the beach 😀
Megan – I also pick up spices, things that I can use and not just sit at home. You can find lots of seashells on beaches of Goa, though not on the touristy ones.
So much to buy in Goa! Thanks for sharing this informative post! The food really looks so delicious and the souvenir items really are so cute. That beach wears and spices are also a must buy. Thanks again for this post!
There is a lot to buy in Goa.
This is a great list! I would be buying chocolate covered cashews, shells and tea. I can’t believe how many flavours of tea you have in Goa.
Lucy – Even I can’t believe there are so many flavors of tea sold in Goa – wonder where they come from.
What a fantastic post Anuradha – I had never thought of so many souvenirs from Goa! Next time I am around, I am certainly going to buy some Azulejos Tiles, apart from joining you for a cup of chai 🙂
And maybe a Kunbi saree for my mom 🙂
This is what happens when you get too many questions about a place, you go out and find the answers. Come over, will take you shopping in Goa.
I’d have to watch my wallet in Goa, as there are so many items I’d want to purchase! I’d love to get the chocolate-covered cashews and try the coconut vinegar. I also love bringing home spices from trips I go on to incorporate in my cooking.
Good choices, Marissa. I have also started picking up consumable things as souvenirs.
I’d definitely be picking up some sea salt, spices, and the cashews – I’ve never had them so fresh and close to the source and I bet they’d be delicious. (I just realized that I’m keen on souvenirs mostly for myself and not so much for others! Oh well….)
Vanessa – when you travel a lot, you end up picking up stuff for yourself, how many can you pick up for others…good choice of local souvenirs 🙂
‘ve never been to Goa but I have been elsewhere in India and loved shopping so was very interested in your recommendations for souvenirs from Goa. I had no idea about hat making but I have a bit of a hat addiction, so this is good to know. I also adore the Portuguese style Azulejos tiles for use in the kitchen particularly. Lastly, anything foodie has my name on it, I’ve never even heard of kokum sherbet but I want it plus the spices and teas.
Kavita – how can you not visit Goa. Go, plan a trip to Goa. We will take you out for shopping.
So many more reasons why to get to Goa. Would love to bring home some of the tea and spices. Oh and one of those colorful saris.
Megan – Goa does have a million reasons to visit it, that is why I choose to live here 🙂
Oh wow, I am feeling so bad now. I visited Goa two years ago but didn’t hear anything of the sweet deserts or the Goa bread. I would love to buy a coconut bowl. I actually do like shells (who doesn’t). But many countries don’t allow you to take them with you to the plane and I think it’s a good idea. The ocean has suffered too much anyhow. If the shells are on the beach it’s fine but I don’t like it when fishermen go and hunt for shells just to sell them. Great article and obviously I missed a few good things to try out in Goa. Unfortunately I was traveling for a longer time and couldn’t take a souvenir with me, except photos.
Melanie – may be these souvenirs would be your reason to come back to Goa 🙂
It’s so hard to choose! I would love a funky tee shirt and a sunhat though. I would definitely be picking up some tea! I love tea.
Paige – tea seems to be a favorite choice with readers of IndiTales 🙂
I’ve never been to Goa, and I did not know cashews were such a top thing to buy! I definitely wouldn’t miss out on those. If I’m honest, I’d probably be very typical and shop for tea (being a Brit and all), although I love the idea of the pop art souvenirs!
Samantha – Cashews are the cash crop of Goa. They came to India via Goa with Portuguese. Now they are the best-bought souvenirs from Goa.
I totally love the Goan markets. Particularly the Panjim market for dry fruits that you pointed out, the flea markets and the shops along the way to the beach. We have been to Goa twice. We brought home a lot of cashews from there, the yellow and long ones. And then we bought bag, t-shirt, hats and a lot more. Even my little one who was just 1.5 years old loved the shops. Can’t wait to explore them again. Your article brought an air of nostalgia with it 🙂
Neha – there is so much to explore in this small state that I am still exploring after 4 years.
Woot woot….This list is so tempting and exhaustive that it compels me to plan a trip to Goa as ASAP!
Never knew about this wide variety of souvenirs..well, only a localite with in-depth knowledge can churn out such a compilation. This post is sure be the most sought after list, ma’am 🙂
I have ticked my picks…and made a mini-list in an excel sheet here 😀
Come, will take you shopping in Goa 🙂
Goa is the dream destination for almost everyone and getting the best souvenirs from there would be loved by all. Thanks for sharing the amazing list.
ill be visiting Goa shortly, I really am looking forward for some cool clothes shopping. would you suggest me where at in Goa is a best place and which place is a good stay for a cottage too around for 2 nights.
Very useful information in a neatly flowing narrative. Thks
Thank you for sharing so much of information.though it will be our 4th trip to Goa,we hardly got any souviners except for cashews.Hope this time our bags are full of not only memories but also the goodies.
Lavanya, hope you go back with bag full of souvenirs this time 🙂
Hi, Thanks for sharing so much information. Please do visit goa once it is really a beautiful place.
Shweta, as of now I live in Goa 🙂
Wow, an amazing post about Goa shopping. Literally I search for shopping when I visit any place. But I thought that Goa is famous for beaches and night parties didn’t expect these shoppings. Thanks for sharing a lovely post!
Great list Anuradha. will be in Goa this weekend.
Enjoy your Goa Holiday.