January 10, 2010

Malvan Magic

For the long weekend of 24th December, 2009, we decided to visit our native place Malvan. Due to the last moment planning it was very difficult to get the confirmed railwayand Bus tickets. All the buses & train tickets were already booked, So we decided to hire a car for our trip to Malvan.
On 24th Dec.2009, in the afternoon we started our journey at 4.30pm and we were total 8 people in the vehicle. By the time we cross the city limits, it seems people were heading out of the city for the long weekend. We decided to travel in the night so that we could reach at my Uncle's place early in the morning. But traveling in the day time to Konkan is fun, one can stop at various places to enjoy the scenery and food. We reached at my uncle's place at 5.00am, & directly headed to bed for the much needed sleep.
The real feel of vacation begins when you get up late in the morning and were not in a hurry to go for work. Also, for a change you wake up not with alarm but with beautiful birds chirpy songs. I love the mornings at the my native place as you can get up at any time, have your breakfast leisurely, and then take a bath or just sit somewhere with a book or just do nothing particular. This morning was also not different, and the best thing was my aunty made ghavane ( Neer dosa)for breakfast.

After feeding our taste buds, we started our journey for Malvan.Our first destination was Aangane wadi.Anganewadi Temple is very famous temple in malvan of Goddess Bharadidevi. This wadi of village Masure, is 14 Kms from Malvan . Every year, in the month of february, there is a big Jatra (fair) of Goddess Bharadidevi, Known as "Jatra of Anganewadi. The trust of Aangane wadi temple are in the process of beautifying the old temple. After taking the blessing of Goddess Bharadidevi, we started our journey towards my father's native place, Kandalgaon, where I wanted to visit our Kuldevata Lord Rameshwar. In Konkan, every village has Lord Shiva’s Templeand the names will be different in each village. As per the legends, the original temple was build by Chatrapati Shree Shivaji Maharaj.

We decided to feast on Seafood for which Malvan is very famous. We decided to have lunch at hotel Chaitanya, at Bharad Naka, which is very famous for its mouthwatering fish thalis. My self, Dhanshree & Dinesh decided to try the different variety of fish thalis and Priti & Shubangi stick to vegetable thali. After finishing our sumptuous meals, we were unable to move anywhere and wanted to just take a nap. But we had to move because, we only booked one room and needed another one for three of us, but the availability of room was very difficult as all the hotels and home stay were packed. So the searched begin for our room after Dinesh & Shubhangi settled in their hotel. But it was our lucky day and
we somehow manage to get hold of a room with help of one Mr. Achrekar who was kind enough to contact the Sarjekot Machimar Society and requested them to accommodate us.To our delight, the Sarjekot Machimar Society was located near the sea shore. Sarjekot is asmall village of fishermen and near the society there was a small jetty where one can see fishing boats withtheir anchor down rocking with the waves.

After settling, we decided to head out to the famous tarkerli Beach to watch the sunset. But to our disappointment we miss the sunset by few minutes and only mange to capture the last remains of the magical sunlight. The beach was very crowded, it feltlike we were back in mumbai and sitting on juhu beach . But everyone was in holiday mood and enjoying themselves. We sat on the beach observing the activities happening around us and making joke of it. In city every day is a busy day wherein everybody is busy in their own life. But that day on the beach, all the activities were moving very slowly, Everyone was busy enjoying themselves.

After sometime we decided to call it a day, as next day morning we decided to go for the much anticipated Dolphins tour. When we reach our room, we were very tired, but stillDhanshree was making small talk with me & Priti, but during that conversation I just fall asleep.

On 26th Morning, we woke up at 6.00am and got ready for our dolphin tour which cost us Rs. 600 for the boat. We were pretty excited and apprehensive about the tour (basically I was apprehensive because I cant swim….lol…. ). Everyone settle in the boat and we started our journey towards the deep sea for dolphins. I was very scared as the boat taking us away from shore (My imagination was running wild and I was having all the bad thoughts at that moment. It was a very scary feeling when you are in the middle of the sea and everywhere there is only water which is 15-20 feet deep and you can’t swim). Everyone was busy scanning the sea for dolphins and then Dhanshree saw the first dolphin. After that it happened like a movie and there were dolphins everywhere. We saw around 25 to 30 dolphins swimming around us. Everyone was very excited and  busy taking videos/photos. Finally, the dolphins got tired of modeling for us & went away in deeper sea.  The sight of dolphins opened the Pandora of chatter, and each one of us were talking about the dolphin sightings

We decided to head back toDevbaug Beach, as it is one of the beautiful beach in Malvan.Devabaug beach is confluence of creek & sea. In rainy season when we visited this beach  the sea was very rough and scary. The waves were trying to break free the sand barriers and were trying to swallow whatever blocking its way.

But this time the sea was very clam and peaceful. We decided to take a boat ride covering the dolphin sighting, NivatiBeach, Nivati Fort,

Bhogawe Beach & island. When we were crossing the confluence of creek & sea, the waves became little rough and our boat stared rocking. In deep sea the color of water becomes mysterious emerald green and it looks very beautiful. We saw the Nivati fort, which was in a dilapidated state. It’s very sad to see thatwe have such rich history but due to the neglect by the state government and ignorance of people, all the historical buildings were turning into a ruin reminding us of our glorious History. After Nivati Fort we saw Bhogave Beach, which is very clean & unspoiled by humans(hope it remains that way ). Our next stop was Nivati Beach, where we got down on the beach & climbed one small hillock, which was facing the sea. The view from the hillock was very beautiful. The beach is in U shape, and the boatman told us that on this very beach the movie Kaho na Pyar was being shot.

After walking on the beach for few minutes, we started back towards the shore. When we visited the island, it was very sad to see that people had spoiled the island with garbage. Our overall 
tour was very satisfying , as we sighted 2-3 dolphins also. After reaching the shore we were famished and decided to have our Lunch. It was very crowded in malvan bazaar, everywhere people were waiting in the queue for the food.
 After unsuccessfully trying in 2 restaurants, we settled in Hotel Ruchira, where the food was not up to thestandard, but enough to satisfy our hunger pang.
After lunch Dinesh & Shubhangi headed to Amboli, and we return back to surjekot to freshen up. We went to the famous temple of Lord ganesha, which is made of gold. The teWe decided to proceed towardsSuvarnakada for the sunset. Our guide & boatman Pravin & his friend were very sweet and offered to escort us to suvarana kada.
Suvarnakada is a very impressive wall of mountainfacing the wrath of the sea. Due to the constant hitting of the waves on the wall, in some places natural caves are created. According to local stories some people smuggled gold on that particular mountain, and some of then in that process got hold of that gold bricks, and hence they name it as Suvarnakada.

The sunset was mesmerizing but without the shades but nonetheless beautiful. After spending some time and conversing with Pravin & his friends we turn back to our room.

When we were walking back there was a small grocery shop, wherein you get the fried fingers, which was a fun to eat. All three of us relived our childhood by eating milk pepsicola and the fried fingers. After Bath & eating delicious dinner made by the local women’s, we decided to take a stroll near the society. The night was peaceful and starry and we could hear the sound of waves in the distance and love talks of small insects....LOL...

On 27th ,morning, we decided to again go for the Dolphin ride. As soon as we started the ride, the wind started blowing fast, so the waves were little rough, resulting in rocking the boat from side to side. As the boat started rocking, myself & priti got very scared, and asked Pravin to turn the boat. Thankfully, we reached the shore without any mishap, but it was embarrassing also as the local people who were sitting on the jetty witness the entire fiasco and were laughing at us. To kill the time we started wandering on the shore, and decided to take photographs of the Eagle nest. We got some good shots of the sea eagle, but in that process we drove the poor eagles away from their nest a couple of times( Which was a bad thing).

After checking out from our room & bidding bye bye to Sarjekot, we decided to visit 300 year old Aadinarayan Temple (Sun Temple), of Parule.
On the way to the sun temple, the scenery was very beautiful. Everywhere one can see coconut trees laden with coconut and in the air you can smell the sweet fragrance of cashew flowers.

The Temple is very peaceful and beautiful. It has a big sabhamandap and in the main temple one can see the idol of Suryadevata.
Next on list was Laxminarayan Mandir of Walaval village, theTemple is very beautiful. The carving on the pillars and also on the ceiling was beautiful. In the temples are very colorfully decorated and the deepmala enhance the beauty of the temple

Later, we headed to the famous picturesque dhamapur lake, this lake is situated between Are and katta village. This man-made lake was constructed in 1530 by the king Nagesh Desai. There is legend associates with this lake, in the ancient times, on the occasion of marriage, poor villagers of this village (Dhamapur) used to dip the basket full of flowers in the lake and wished for whatever they wanted for the ceremony. When the basket was later taken out, the flowers were turned in to the things the villagers ever desired. The only condition was that after the ceremony the villagers were supposed to return the things after there usage But onegreedy villager didn’t return the utensils after the ceremony and afterwards all the things stopped coming out of the lake. ( Konkan is full of all these legends & ghost stories, and hearing about them is my favorite passed time).

After, finishing our sightseeing we asked our auto rickshaw driver to drop us in Malvan bazaar near the athithi Bamboo resturant. We decided to have our lunch at athithi bamboo and which we didn’t regretted as the food was delicious and reminded us of our home cooked food.

By the time we finished our lunch, we decided to wait for Dinesh & Shubhangi, who were suppose to come from sawantwadi. After there arrival we visited the rock garden for yet another sunset. The rock garden was very much crowded, people were sitting on the rocks and waiting for the sunset. Each and every sunset is beautiful & different with lovely shades. One can never be satisfy with these mesmerizing sunset.
With the sunset, our trip of Malvan come to an end. We decided to shop for cashew nuts and other delicacies. After shopping we headed back to my Uncle’s place where my mom & my aunty cooked a delicious dinner for us.

On 27th morning, we started our return journey, with a full a bag of memories.