If you are in northern or central Goa on a Friday, the Mapusa municipal market is a real event, worth making the trip for. About 25 mins from Anjuna, Calangute or Candolim by taxi (about $AUS 16 for a round round trip and waiting) it’s an easy day trip, full of local colour and interest. (It’s open other days, but Friday is the big event, from about 10am).
Check out the fish market, meat market, fruit, veg and spices. (And grab some of those delicious mangoes if you see them.)
Plenty of opportunities to try Goan specialities along the way like Bebinca, Pina (tasted a bit like rum balls, but is made of rice flour,coconut and jaggery), Sorpotel, which was a rich tasty stew that I have since read is ‘The pig’s blood, liver and heart cooked with plenty of vinegar, chilli and spices and left to ‘ mellow’ for 3-4 days to make the sticky dense stew’ eaten with a sweet steamed rice cake ‘sanna’ , and Doce.
There’s some textiles and jewellery worth checking out too. Just be a bit aware of the tricky marketing strategy that can be difficult to free yourself from, whereby retailers, selling their wares out of a bag rather than a shop, seek customers by being helpful and then obliging you to see their ‘cheap rubbish’, and then their sister’s/friend’s etc. It can wear down even the most hardy market shopper.