Saturday, December 14, 2013

Karnala Fort Trek Through Bird Sanctuary

Karnala bird sanctuary is a small forest in Raigad district of Maharashtra.

The fort lies within the bird sanctuary perimeter. Its a thickly forested hilly region. The Karnala fort pinnacle can never be missed from Mumbai-Goa highway due to it's peculiar Thumbs-Up structure. The following image would make it clear:

Panvel -> Karnala Bird Sanctuary = 12 KM

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Lonavala: Pavana Dam Boating Trip

Pavana/ Pawana Dam is about 45 mins drive from Lonavala. Since we were already based in Lonavala it served as an ideal place to spend time.
The drive as expected is entirely through hilly narrow one lane roads, so just be careful. Nevertheless the scenery is quite picturesque green especially since we were going at end of monsoon.

The main attraction here is the boating in the lake. View from the parking lot:

There's a garden near the boating club. It also houses a cafeteria which was a relief considering the hot sun.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Valley's With A Name: Khandala's Tiger and Lonavala's Lion

Tiger Valley

Located in Khandala in the beginning as soon as you cross over the ghat; has magnificent views of the valley. Almost anyone travelling to Pune will never have missed it. Although seen several times over, never really had stopped to see it. It's best observed from Old Mumbai-Pune highway since that is at a greater height.
A couple of scenes from the valley:

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Unexplored Murud: Khoda Beach & Jetty

Khoda is a small village between Murud-Janjira and Rajpur. To reach proceed on the way to Janjira fort, and just as you cross the bridge you will come to a village. Take a left or ask someone for directions to the jetty and you'll reach there. The beach/jetty overlooks the Janjira fort too.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Anjanvel - Fish, Fort, Sea and Lighthouse

Anjanvel village is under 20 kms from Guhagar. It's also near from Dabhol village; infact midway between the two.

Anjanvel is a sleepy village but it does have some great beauty. There are no options to live or dine here; so you can explore this place while using Guhagar as a base. Reasons to visit this place:
1. Gopalgad Fort
2. Spectacular views of the sea (with lots of fishes jumping around).
3. Tolkeshwar Lighthouse.
4. Dabhol Power Plant (formerly Enron).

Dabhol Power Plant

From Guhagar, head towards Dabhol and mid-way there will be a diversion towards Anjanvel village in the west (near power plant).

Strange thing is that the power plant is very near to Anjanvel rather than Dabhol and it should have been named after this village.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Guhagar Beach, Ratnagiri

After our stay in Dapoli, we moved towards Guhagar using the ferry service at Dabhol. This ferry saves you almost 50 km road and since it carries vehicles too, there can be nothing better than that.

Guahagar is a beach facing small town, very little commercialized and even in this peak season had only a few tourists.

We reached the place in afternoon and had no bookings done for stay; praying that we get some place to stay.
Maybe because it was a Monday, we got two dormitories in an managed MTDC house named Kinara. The cost is a pretty decent one of Rs 200 per head for stay. Good that we could explore our options for food on our own.

Fields behind our Hotel:

Dabhol - Shahi Masjid and Ferry to Guhagar

From Dapoli, we started towards Guhagar. The road distance is about 100 km. However, there is a ferry service connecting Dabhol and Dhopve villages over the Dabhol creek which cuts the distance by half.

The ferry service is not just for carrying people but it carries vehicles too. The charges are Rs. 10 per head and Rs. 50 per car/ SUV.

Although it did not save much time as we had a 45 minutes waiting time for the ferry, I think it gives a good break from the road driving and breaks the monotonousness.

During the waiting time, I wandered around the village and stumbled upon this historical masjid.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Around Dapoli – Murud & Ladghar beaches

The Travel

Dapoli is a town in Ratnagiri district. It is somewhat of a hill station as it is some height above sea-level. It is not exactly at the sea but very close to a number of beaches within 10-15 kms.

Following is the route undertaken from Vashi. Significant towns are mentioned:
Vashi -> Mangaon -> Lonere Fata -> Goregaon -> Ambet -> Mandangad -> Kherdi -> Dapoli

The drive after Lonere Fata is great. The views are scenic, there are hardly any other vehicles around and the only points of congestion are through some large villages. Much of the path is through twists and turns of hills, but the roads are good and you are usually the only person driving around.

Stay at Aryawarta

As far as location and connectivity is concerned this is a great place to live. It is nearby to the Dapoli S.T. Depot.
Situated on a hill, you get to have your own spacious bungalows with huge gardens around it.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Lone Fort in Navi Mumbai: Belapur Fort/ Shehbaz Killa

Finally, after planning for months of visiting this place; in-spite of being the closest fort to my home; the visit materialized one rainy September weekend.

The major reason for wanting to go to this place was because it was built by the Siddi's, some distant relative. So I set out with my cousin on a drive to the fort.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Unexplored Murud: The Khokri Tombs

About 6 kms. from Murud-Janjira (and 1.5 kms. from Rajpuri) lies the Khokri (a.k.a Khokari) Tombs. They are just a km ahead from Rajpuri jetty where people board boats going to Janjira fort.

You will need to have your own vehicle to reach that place. Although you may get some local transport; you could struggle for the return journey since that place is secluded with no settlements nearby. Expect this to change after the construction of the Dighi-Agardanda port.

The tombs are of the earliest Siddis (probably the black African descendants). There are 3 major tombs  - One large and two smaller ones.