Sunday, November 16, 2008

Travel From Mumbai to Alibaug

The first Journey Mumbai to Down south Coastal India:

As I start this blog to share my experiences in my pursuit to follow my dream of travelling to every nook and corner of this great country India and let you all see them thru my words, lenses and not to mention guide you in case you would like to come and stay at these places thru my travel portal.

I was joined by Ali in my maiden trip and we decided to start with the western coast of India by road. Our mandate was to travel thru the small roads connecting villages and avoid highways as much possible. We did not want to miss any village around the coast; so that we come across the most unexplored areas. We wanted to discover virgin beaches, forgotten monuments of historical importance, local faiths and stories around the worshiped deities and also get a flavor of local cuisine, customs and home stay that we could share with all people.

I had decided to start a portal on the concept of home-stays (Bed and Breakfast) while Ali was on the lookout for an irresistible spot where he would start his resort. Though both of us were sure about what we wanted to do however we had different approach to our business (but obvious, Ali was all the time trying to convince me that how dumb I was; and without his guidance I would be nowhere in life).

Following is the extract of our journey and also about lots of people whom we met; their approach to tourism, business and of course have a slice of their way of life, faiths, believes, convictions, aspirations – we were dealing with personalities totally different and some of them probably you would never meet in your day to day life. We saw lots of places and had tremendous insights into the interiors of this giant nation. Hope it makes interesting reading for you all.

Before we start I need to specify that I have travelled a lot in India before, ranging for Kashmir to Badrinath (in Himalayas); from Jaisalmer to Benaras etc. However I had not travelled much on the coasts. My earlier travels were about seeing places and a hurried running around with the local guide to complete one tourist location to other. On the contrary this time I was a traveller and not a tourist – I had time at my disposal so I spent at least a day even in a smallest location that held me with its heavenly beauty rarely known to many others. I spent time with locals. So this not a journey only about places, rocks, trees, rivers and sea but this is about living beings as well. Who I believe are the real essence of India... so welcome to my version of real India and real life...................

We began at from Mumbai by 4.00 p.m, Ali had landed at airport by 12.oo to join me. We had lunch meeting with Khan (our engineering college friend) at Vashi and moved on towards Panvel. The moment you cross Panvel and turn right to Goa highway; you cross from grey concrete world to emerald world, with lush green hills around. The air becomes clean and to feel it well a/c needs to be switched off.

Approximately 12 km head of Panvel 12 km is the fort of Karnala. Just 5 km before you reach the fort is Shirdhone, birthplace of Aadya Krantikarak (first Revolutionery) Vasudev Balwant Phadke.

Born on 4th November 1845, he was grandson of Fort-in-charge of Karnala, due to which he had happy and luxurious childhood. Since early days he was fond of bullock carts so he was presented with a Goat Cart by his family and you can see it even today.Born on 4th November 1845, he was grandson of Fort-in-charge of Karnala, due to which he had happy and luxurious childhood. Since early days he was fond of bullock carts so he was presented with a Goat Cart by his family and you can see it even today. While he was working with British Military Finance Dept in 1870, his mother expired and he was not granted leave. This episode had deep impact on him and he decided to revolt against British Rule.

In the famine of 1876 while people were dying of starvation, he raised a force of locals and to raid the rich and famous in order to feed the poor. His vision was to achieve freedom for nation, and create Indian Republic. Subsequently, he was caught British and charged of treason. He was sentenced for life imprisonment and shifted to jail of Eden in 1880.
On 17th Feb 1883 he died of tuberculosis. His old home is today in dilapidated state; but there is a memorial built in his
honour. While you travel on this road please do not forget pay homage to this hero of the nation.

I had seen this place before but Ali was pretty excited to see it. While I was clicking pictures of the Memorial, he explored the rest of the village. We then moved on to fort and bird sanctuary.

Karnala Fort and Bird Sanctuary:
The climb to fort of Karnala is approximately 3 km, however the last 1 km is slightly rocky path and hence difficult for those who are not used to it. It can be really refreshing trek as the surroundings are lush green.

There is also a small bird sanctuary around the fort. As per laws birds can’t be kept in cages now (earlier this was the case); therefore try nature trail of 1 km in the sanctuary. There are close to 130 varieties of birds here, morning and evenings are better times for bird watching. Do not forget to carry binoculars.

I had climbed to the fort twice before and Ali once, besides it was getting late in the evening so we decided to move on further............

For information of good quality stay options and homestays visit:


Supernova696 said...

can you provide any recommendations or contact numbers in Alibaug.

Galagali Multimedia said...


Galagali Multimedia said...

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