Yab Yum Resort

Mandrem, Anjuna & North Goa, India Book from Book from £59 per night

Soften your edges in playful thatched igloos, hidden within a magical sand garden behind the nearly deserted white-sand Ashvem Beach
Chivalric white pennants flutter above the discreet entrance, then a winding path leads from the beach into the dappled, swept-sand garden of Yab Yum (Tibetan for 'father-mother'/'two-in-one'). The resort has 15 comfortingly rounded, grass-roofed domes and 5 simpler blue-and-white cottages. Shaded by coconut palms during the day and twinkling with strings of fairy lights and white paper lanterns by night, it seems to have leapt from the pages of a fairytale.

Manager Charanjit (he's happy to be called by his surname Pal as that’s much easier to remember) clearly knows the importance of caring details. An incense-burner is in each room; hand-woven, richly-coloured Rajasthani 'paintings' hang above every bed; muslin curtains waft in front of the mango wood window shutters. Countless baby potted plants are lovingly watered daily. A tasty organic breakfast is served on your own little table outside your pod or cottage. You can either sunbathe by the paddling pool and beach gate, or have sunloungers carried down to the beach.


  • The wide-open, nearly-empty, silky-sanded beach is just outside the garden - perfect for long romantic walks
  • The protected, enclosed peace of Yab Yum is safe, well-kept and great for families, too
  • The yoga shala has Astanga and Iyengar classes, and good Ayurvedic treatments are available in the thatched massage room
  • There are clusters of beach life a short walk left or right, with beach restaurants, stalls and lots of masseurs
  • We loved the complimentary incense and candles, and the bowl of water by your door to wash sandy feet in


  • This is not a hotel - think of it as a superior, charming beach shack and you won't be disappointed
  • The cottages are pretty basic inside - we preferred the quirky, lilac-painted igloo interiors
  • It's staffed by young locals - friendly and competent enough, but don't expect over-eager, Western-style service
  • With fans rather than air conditioning, the igloos can get stuffy - though it's more eco-friendly

Best time to go

Yab Yum is normally open from October to May, before closing for the monsoon season. The peak season runs from mid December to the end of January, when temperatures are around 32C (90F).

Our top tips

Make sure you leave time in the evening to relax in the bar area overlooking the beach - the sunsets here are breathtaking and paint the sky a bright ruby-red.

Great for...

Cheap & Chic
  • Beach Resort
  • 15 domes + 5 cottages
  • Restaurant (guests only)
  • Only Children aged 3 years and over are accepted
  • Open all year
  • Pool
  • Spa
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym


All the rooms - domes and cottages - are simple, spacious and fun, decked out with muslin curtains that flutter in the sea breezes and vivid hand-woven Rajasthani patchwork paintings above each bed. You get one of the loveliest incenses in the world - Nagchampa - and candles for those tropical romantic nights. And we loved the bucket of water beside your door to wash sandy feet in - an inspired touch.

The Standard Domes (or igloos) are each constructed of 3 circular bases made of blue-and-purple-painted concrete and cement, all topped by rounded domed roofs of shaggy dried grass that reminded us of Dougal from the Magic Roundabout. The first circle makes the entrance, with banquettes to either side. The second and largest is the bedroom, which features stone-platform beds with cotton linen, hand-made mattresses, blankets and feather pillows. The third is the bathroom. The circular construction and unfussy but pretty decoration makes for a magical and organic space. Wherever possible, local materials have been used such as lava rock blocks, mango wood for the tables, and mud, clays and sand. Our only caveat is that sometimes the domes can get stuffy at night.

Top of the range are 3 larger domes: a pair of Honey Pods, which each sleep 2, and sit on the top of the dunes that conceal the resort from the beach; and the neighbouring Double Suite Pod. This consists of a double dome with 2 bedrooms, a shared bathroom and a sea-facing terrace. There are also Large and Medium Family Domes, both of which have 1 double and 2 single beds in the main sleeping chamber.

The white-walled cottages are old Portuguese buildings which have been there for many years (you’re no longer allowed to build on or right beside the beach thanks to coastal conservation regulations). Inside they're plain and simple, with glass windows, verandas and air-conditioning. Two have been extended to accommodate a family in comfort.

All the bathrooms are clean with fresh towels, although there was a suspicious trickle coming from the base of our toilet. Rooms are cleaned daily, if you remember to leave them unpadlocked so the staff can get in, and linen is changed every other day.

Features include:

  • Fan
  • Mosquito net
  • WiFi


A little breakfast menu is pegged on your door each night for you to make your choice - eggs any style, organic fruits and jams, locally grown fresh fruit salads, yoghurt and cereals, or local stone-oven-baked bread in little baskets. You tuck in to your morning feast on the little table outside your cottage or dome - there's no set time and no hurry (this is Goa, after all). Be warned: the wicker breakfast chairs can be tough on the posterior without cushions.

There's a lovely informal beachside dining area with a daytime menu of light continental and Indian dishes, as well as an evening menu of Indian thalis (available resort guests only). The drinks selection ranges from herbal teas, to beers, wine and some rather tempting cocktails. There's also a minibar service where fresh fruit juices, lassis, teas and coffees can be brought to your room, the beach or your lounger/hammock. Alternatively, you can walk along the beach to any number of places.

One of the best beachside restaurants is the excellent French La Plage to the south, which serves up great steaks and seafood in a superb setting (The Guardian called it "one of the most stylish beach restaurants on the globe"). Naturally, given the location, shellfish is plentiful, as are traditional vegetarian dishes, though salads can be a little plain and limp and one can’t be sure they were washed in bottled water. Because so many tourists visit the area, many beach restaurants also offer Chinese, French, Spanish, Italian, German, Israeli and Russian menu sections.

Do try the local stuffed papadums (you’ll want to make them at home) and a Goan vindaloo, which is far tastier and less-tastebud-nuking than the average Anglo-Indian version.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Children's meals
  • Restaurant (guests only)
  • Restaurants nearby


  • Laze in swinging hammocks beneath the palms, take to a sun-lounger on the beach, or recline in wicker armchairs on Yab Yum's beachside viewing platform to watch the flaming ruby sunsets
  • Take long walks on the quiet, endless beach and feel the silky-soft sand between your toes; watch tiny spider crabs making abstract art while scampering about
  • Swim and float in the warm and very salty Arabian sea (but do be careful of the occasional rip-tide) or lounge around the resort while the kids play in the paddling pools
  • Try a yoga class - both Astanga and Iyengar courses are offered in the purpose-built yoga shala
  • Have an Ayurvedic massage in one of the purpose-built thatched cottages
  • Hire a motorbike and cruise around with the sun on your skin and the wind in your hair - though do remember bikes don’t come with helmets or protective clothing, the roads have many a deep, jagged pothole and Indian drivers are famous for trusting too much in fate and not nearly enough in the Highway Code!
  • Visit the red ruins of Chapora Fort at nearby Vagator and see the face carved into the rock at Little Vagator beach
  • Catch the not-to-be-missed Saturday night flea market in Anjuna. It has a full-on English-summer-festival feel, with live bands, countless stalls selling bags, food, sculptures, fabrics, jewellery and souvenirs, plus laid-back hippies selling their winter-subsidising-wares alongside the rather more insistent locals
  • Explore the peaceful white sand beaches further north and the little fishing village of Arambol, or visit the temptingly named Paradise Beach and see if it takes you to heaven
  • Visit the seething tourist hot-spots, shops, nightclubs and bars of Baga and Calangute, a 30-minute drive away
  • Sample the metropolitan culture and history of the old Latin Quarter, Fontainhas, in Goa’s capital, Panjim, 45 minutes' drive away
  • Take to the waves with a Yab Yum boogie board (there are lots available) or go on a boat trip to look for dolphins and porpoises

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Birdwatching
  • Boat trips
  • Historical sites
  • Plantlife / flora
  • Shopping / markets
  • Swimming
  • Traditional cultures
  • Well being
  • Yoga


This is a magical space for younger children (they only accept children aged 3 and over), though it's possibly too peaceful for teenagers. Families love the wide, quiet sandy beach. Hopping on a tuk tuk for a trip to Anjuna market, Panjim or nearby beaches will keep everyone happy.

Best for:

Children (4-12 years)

Family friendly accommodation:

The Medium and Large Family Domes are the obvious choice, sleeping up to 2 adults and 2 children; the Family Cottage also has space for up to 2 children. There are only showers, no baths. Note, no domes can fit an extra bed.

Children's meals:

Food is available all day and there's a kids' menu (fish 'n' chips, penne pasta). There's also an early tea and a foodie guide to the nearby cafes and restaurants.

Kids Activities on site:

  • Toy and paints can be provided
  • 2 shallow paddling pools

Kids Activities nearby:

  • Big empty beach
  • Dolphin-watching boat tours
  • Take a tuk-tuk to the more touristy beaches in the south, or Panjim
  • Head to Morjim and watch turtles hatch (in season)

Families Should Know:

It's a fenced, secure property with a maximum capacity of 50 people including children, so the staff are always familiar with where children are. Those who bring little ones may want to bring nappies as there's nowhere nearby to buy it.


  • Airport: 80 minutes
  • Hospital: 10 minutes
  • Doctor: Ayurvedic doctor on-call, or 10 minutes to the hospital
Kid Friendly:


Yab Yum Resort is in northern Goa at the edge of the tranquil fishing village of Ashvem, which nestles halfway between the villages of Morjim to the north and Mandrem to the south.

By Air
Goa's Dabolim International (50km away) is the closest airport. Click on the links below for a list of airlines serving it.

From the Airport
The resort offers a transfer service - see Rates. A taxi will cost around IR1600 (make sure the meter is running or that you agree a price before you get in).

Getting Around
Yab Yum has 2 cars at your disposal (2 4-seater cars and 1 6-seater) and 3 drivers, who will taxi you wherever you want to go and don’t charge for waiting time. You can also hire a motorbike, but this is not for the faint-hearted.

Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.com.

More on getting to Goa and getting around


  • Dabolim International 50.0 km GOI


  • Beach 0.1 km
  • Shops 1.0 km
  • Restaurant 0.2 km

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 8 independent reviews from i-escape guests


We had a great chill out time at Yab Yum. The cottages are perfect for those who prefer less rustic accommodation (although the igloos are very cute. Loved the mosquito nets and breakfast on your veranda). We ate several times at the restaurant and the food was great. Ashvem is definitely the most quiet area of the beach and you can walk for miles


Sweet little paradise. Loved falling asleep hearing the sea close by, walking through the little village of huts with all the beautiful plants and lanterns swaying in the breeze, and the nearby beach was beautiful and clean. The yoga and massages were excellent and we found some gorgeous places to eat - La Plage being the nearest with beautiful boho stores behind it. Had the best prawn curry ever at Lazy Dog and sensational food at Cafe Nu to name just a few. Our only wish was that they played music in the bar - we had a fantastic 5 night stay.


I liked the coconut hut and use of natural building materials, although attracts bugs, but the staff were very helpful in getting rid off them. Credit has to be given to Yab Yum to have an eco-friendly view and spares the beach of a lot of rubbish, but unfortunately you do get some beach rubbish left from passers and close by restaurants. The choice of food is good and also with not spicy varieties.


Simple accommodation but an incredible location and the whole resort (thatched shacks and stone cottages) is beautifully set in lush beachside gardens. I'm just back from 4 very relaxing days, right on the beach.


Returning to Yab Yum is always a pleasure. One of the quietest places in Ashvem which has become increasingly built up. Gorgeous breakfasts served at your bungalow after revitalising morning yoga practice. The teacher this year, Shivani, was especially good. I do wish Yab Yum would encourage guests to bring their own water bottles to save on plastic. Filtered water is available but you have to ask for it at the bar or reception. Other than breakfast, the food isn't great but there are lots of local places along the beach or a short taxi ride away.


A magical tropical place to stay with a super friendly chilled vibe. The daily morning Yoga class was an excellent way to start the day followed by the delicious breakfast delivered to your hut to enjoy under the palm trees (try the homemade ginger jam...it’s amazing). The food in the restaurant was great, from the interesting tasty snack menu to the daily special Thali, all really good value for money. The beach is huge and brilliant for long walks, however, this is India and sadly the rubbish can’t be ignored. The friendly hawkers are persistent but eventually leave you alone. Neither of these issues would stop me from coming back. I would happily recommend a stay at Yab Yum for some tropical loveliness and can’t wait to go back.


Yab Yum is a lovely peaceful resort and would certainly appeal to the more refined traveller. They offer yoga with the delightful Kirstyn - definitely worth a try. We only ate in the resort at breakfast time and found the menu to be very limited. The staff were reasonably efficient.


The coconut huts are so cute. Service was fab, the staff all lovely and the beach was a little piece of heaven. If you're thinking of going in November - bear in mind lots of the best restaurants only open at the end of November.....


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