Feb 18th– 19th 2017
Who doesn’t love weekend getaways? This time our choice of place was Alibaug, Kashid and Murud, in Raigad district of Maharashtra, all of them known for their beaches and forts. We planned a two day trip as it would be convenient to cover all three places.
We started from Pune at 9.30 A.M. on Staurday, and drove via the Mumbai – Pune expressway. The drive was quite smooth. We did face a little traffic once we reached Raigad district, but we made it to Alibaug by 1.30 P.M. Needless to say it was burning hot at the beach, but we were looking forward to the sunset at Kashid. So after a glass of cool lime juice we decided to explore Alibaug for a while. There’s a fort called Kolaba amidst the sea and to get there we can go walking (risky if not used to it), via a boat or a horse carriage! That’s right, this was the first time I ever came across a horse carriage being used to cross the sea. But it was fun all the same. The fort was like any other fort, with a temple in the middle and a beautiful view of the sea around it. We explored the place, got some great pictures and returned to the beach (this time by boat).
The horses that took us safely across the sea
Kolaba Fort, Alibaug
It was 3.30 P.M when we were done with lunch and started off for Kashid. It was an hour and a half drive to Kashid, around 35kms. from Alibaug. But we reached well in time to watch the sunset. We did play in the water for a bit, clicked some pictures, collected some stones as well and surprisingly I found a goggles too! It just came floating with the waves and almost made me feel like I had found a treasure!
I’ll let the pictures do the talking, although it was much more beautiful. I must say it was one of the most spectacular sunsets I have ever witnessed.
We left the beach soon after sunset as we had to drive 15kms. further to reach Murud. We stayed at a place called Nishijeet Palace. We got a good deal by bargaining as there were no other guests at the time. The beach was right opposite the hotel and a walk on the shore after dinner was extremely relaxing.
The next morning, we spent some time on the beach and then drove 5kms. to a village called Rajapuri, and from there took a boat to the Janjira fort. This fort has a great history, and the boatmen gave us a brief introduction to it. Later we took a guided tour of the fort and learnt some interesting facts about its history. It was built in the 17th century by the Siddis and stands sturdy as ever braving the sea water all around it. There’s a sweet water lake within the fort, although none can explain how it came to be since it is situated in the middle of the sea. What impressed me most of all is how the canons, some weighing 22 tons, were brought into the fort at that time. From the Janjira fort one can see the Padmadurg fort which was built by the Marathas to challenge the Siddis, but Janjira remained unconquered. The guide also informed us that several movies were shot in this fort and that’s when we realized that the climax scene of the kannada movie AK-47 was shot here too!
Sweet water lake within the fort
View from the top most point of Janjira
If you’re planning a visit make sure it is in not during the rainy season. The boat services will be unavailable from June to August as the sea will be rough and the water enters the fort.
We checked out of our rooms by noon and made a final stop at Kashid. Due to time constraints we skipped the water sports and decided to relax in the shade. On our way back we took a detour and stopped at Korlai beach for 30 minutes or so. Now this is the place to be if you love beaches and not fond of crowds.
The secluded Korlai beach
The drive back seemed a lot longer as it was weekend and there was a lot of traffic, but we did make it back to Pune by 7 P.M. It was a much needed refreshing trip and a treat for beach lovers! So if you’re in Maharashtra do visit these places, take it from me, you will not be disappointed.
Picture credits: Ponnamma and Pavan (excluding selfies of course!)