From Udupi we took a 3 hour or so train ride to the beach town of Gokarna. It’s south of the world renowned Goa resorts and still relatively unspoiled and undeveloped. There are 4 beaches near Gokarna and we ended up on Om Beach. The name is a little silly, but one of the others is actually named Paradise Beach! We didn’t visit that one but from what I’ve heard it has no developed place to stay at all. You have to bring in everything you need and camp and it’s about an hour walk from the closest point you can ride to. Om Beach does have one developed hotel/restaurant but it’s still pretty bare bones. That one fills up fast each day and if you don’t get in you have to trudge farther down the beach to one of the places offering huts with no lockable doors and no power. For 50 rupees a night that suits some of the people attracted by a place like Gokarna just fine.
The beach itself is beautiful and relaxing. I was sad to have only had one short day and a night there. I have a few pictures that probably don’t really capture it. A couple days and nights more would have been a nice way to finish off the trip, but alas! We did take the time for a quick swim in the ocean and it was quite a perfect temperature.
This morning started off a little early with a quick job packing things up with time left for a final breakfast looking out over the Indian Ocean. While sitting there we met up with an American woman from San Francisco (small world, yeah yeah) who had just gotten in that morning and was in need of a room. Lucky timing for her! The three of us finished breakfast together and it was time to begin my long journey back. A train to Margao, then a taxi to the airport in Margao, flight to Bombay, shuttle bus to Bombay’s international terminal, flight to Paris, and final flight to San Francisco. So far I’m in Bombay’s international terminal but cannot check in until 10:30. Delays in Margao and the slow inter-terminal shuttle setup have put me close to 4 hours past the time I expected it to be, but that just means 4 fewer hours sitting and waiting later. In about 28 hours I’ll be stepping down back in San Francisco.