We travel to make new Memory.
This time we travel to again Konkan but at Sidhudurga Fort. It is almost 360 Km form Pune. As a fan of driving we went on our car only.
Road condition was perfect there is small patch after Kolpuar to be specific Nipani diversion in single lane but road is good.
We started around 4 30 am and we reach to Resort Village Maachli,Parule around 12 45 pm. Sindhudurg is approximate 23 Km far form Parule so we have already done booking decided to stay at Resort Village Maachli. Maachli is concept of living in the nature. We had great time their great cottages with all provision and very clean, there they have made complete handmade cottages with lots use of solid wood, cottages been made such way that existing non tree get disturbed, there vassal making of food are completely eco-friendly very much impressed with management.
Resort Village Maachli : http://www.maachli.in/
After settling down and post our lunch we went to the nearby beach Bhogave Beach. It was fantastic, simple, clean and serene – the best part being that there were very few people around. Being less crowded meant we could have the beach to ourselves and we had loads of fun. While going towards the beach we had seen a sign board of a Fort on the way and decided to visit it on our way back. The fort was called Nivati Fort and we had to take a de-tour for it. After some 30-45 mins of travel we reached the fort to find it completely in shambles. We din’t get much of the details about it but it must have been nice because it has a beautiful and mesmerizing view of sea from Fort.
We had our dinner at the resort. Post dinner while in conversation with the resort’s owner Mr. Pravin Samant we came to know about “Dashavtar”. He told us that sound blasting through the loud speakers was coming from Village’s local Folk Play which got us excited and we proceeded towards the direction of the loud speaker. Dashavtar is a story of Lord Shiva, it was being enacted in one of the temples of the village. It was very first of my experience to see this kind of a local play and that to also at the local place. The entire show was completely mesmerizing – the way they were delivering the dialogues, makeup, acting each was a masterpiece in it’s own sense. We were really lucky to be able to witness such performance.
While having lunch and dinner at Maachli we observed that they served in hand made plates which were sturdy and not the usual ones we get in the market. Upon enquiring we came to know they were made out of Betel Nuts leaves. We found the ceoncept very interesting and eco-friendly so we asked from where they get the plates to which Mr. Pravin told us that they were made in the village itself and told us the address to source them if we wished. The ext morning while leaving for Sindhudurg fort we went to the place Mr. Pravin had referred us to. He specifically told us to ask for Nair Teacher/Sir. On our way we asked quite some people for the directions and everyone seemed to know Teacher Nair. Finally we were able to find their house. The experience of meeting them was a high point of our trip. Such humble, beautiful and welcoming people were they. Mr. Nair’s Son Prathamesh handles the handmade dish making work. He explained us the entire process ind etail and also showed us the process. We got delayed on our schedule but this was every bit worth for the delay. It was fantastic.
He took us to two small wells which been such way that water can always be found in them. They were 3 wells in total with sweet water right in middle of the ocean. There was a temple which was a small secret way to the city to be used in times of distress. He also took us to Shivaji Maharaj Temple. The guide also told us to visit the place where Shivaji Maharaj’s Foot print and Hand Print can be seen on top of the fort but only my Father-in-law went there as we all were so exhausted because of severe heat and humidity. i would suggest not to visit the Fort during the summer times especially during the heat hours of the day.
Today I want to share one of my most favorite areas of Pune City which is CAMP. For most of the people, Pune Camp is for Shopping and Eating outlets but for me it is more than that. This place has always been very fascinating and very attractive for me because of the beautiful houses of this area, if I am not wrong this was the most developed area during the British rule. Now we can only see some signs of that in the remaining elements of Camp. Since it been developed by Britishers you can see lots of British elements in exterior of house which is very much original and intact.
Right now, people who are living here have done some changes as per their choice and somewhere as per their religious beliefs, some of them for renting out their place while new shop owners are changing the building as per current Interior decoration trends ( He/She has forgotten that they already have a beautiful place). The building’s identity is vanishing but people are forgetting that they are also losing their own identity with it. If they keep the same elevation and do refinishing of the building will maintain corrector of building. It is very simple, you keep the building’s identity safe and the building in turn will keep the identity of the area intact and the area is what defines you and your status . I wouldn’t say don’t rent out the place, definitely rent out your place but make sure you lay down the terms right like the exterior should not be changed, the changes should be within the interior part only that also should be in accordance to the building. Importantly don’t start any work without consulting an Architect. There will be many Architects who would love this kind of beautiful old buildings and they might give you advice for free or you could always walk to an Architecture college where the final year students can guide you very easily and I am sure they’ll not charge more than few cups of tea 😊. Most of all if house owner themselves start taking care of the buildings then Camp will become more beautiful and a touristy area of Pune. The entire world might just come & visit Camp or may be learn about it in history books. 😊 We need to preserve our Heritage.
Next time when you visit Camp while walking on MG Road just look up and observe the beautiful balconies, I am sure you’ll also fall in love with Camp just like me.
Sharing some amazing photos of the Camp Area.
Love your City just the way you love your home.
Lonar Crater – Big Beautiful Carved Lake by Nature.
Lonar Crater is located near Jalna, Maharashtra. What all I knew about the place before I went there was that a huge stone come from sky and fell on earth causing a huge big giant hole on the earth’s surface – this is what my wife had told me 😛 But the visit changed my perception about it and opened a new interest zone for me.
I along with my family had to gone to attend a wedding function at Jalna. Jalna is around 63km from Aurangabad (city of potholes K). Jalna is small city so one cannot expect much but yes you’ll get the basic standard quality stuff everywhere. Jalna has one (only) famous chowk called Shivaji Statue Chowk. It’s the heart of Jalna. We stayed at Hotel Madhuban, it’s clean, economic and very well managed Hotel. Food of Madhuban is also good – better than what is available at others restaurants in Jalna. We also came across a place called Jain Pav bhaji – the food was really good over. Since we had initially gone for the wedding as part of the wedding Baraat we stayed at Shivneri Hotel and our overall experience was not good especially with the service and hospitality part. We gladly moved into Madhuban post the wedding.
From Jalna, Lonar is about 96 – 100 kms and from Jalna’s Shivaji Chowak to get on the Lonar’s highway it was another 5 – 6 km from there we got a Sign Board indicator for Lonar and at some places we had to take help of Google Maps (a word of caution: do not rely completely on Google Maps). The initial stretch of roads had lots of potholes as big as a crater fall would have caused we were even joking about why go till Lonar we can see it here only but after the initial phase of 15-20 kms the rest part of the roads till Lonar are good and it a 4 lane road. Earlier there were no Petrol Pumps till Jalna but now on we could see lots of Petrol Pumps on both side & couple of Restaurants too but we had to be a little more patient till we could spot a good restaurant. We also had hard time with cold drinks – couldn’t get it anywhere but luckily we (apart from me J) are have not so much fond of cold drinks. We were traveling during the day and there wasn’t much traffic along the route but the strangest part was that we couldn’t spot a single sign board indication towards Lonar Crater, not sure what could be the reason behind it. Not all people are aware about such interesting places, if enough marketing and support is not given to reach these places lots of them would miss out on such beautiful findings. Since we couldn’t get to see these sign boards we were in a dilemma throughout whether we were on the right course of not., just because of my wife Mithila’s research we were little confident of reaching our destination.
So we finally reached Lonar it is a small village with a rustic look. We still couldn’t really find any indication of where we could spot the big Crater Lake. So we asked for information to the locals of the village but since we dint know what the translation of Crater is in local language we did fumble a little bit and become a humourous situation for us since we know the local language 😛
After finally decoding the word we were directed to a place by the locals. The place had an outer wall and a beautiful garden we weren’t sure this was the correct place yet we decided to explore it since there was a board outside the premises although the board had completely eroded and we couldn’t read anything yet we decided to give it a shot.
So after entering inside from a small metal gate we have to climb down quite a few steps and then climb up some stairs.
After that we had to climb a couple of many stairs and we could see huge greenish coloured water at a long distance. As we kept walking closer the greenish land became bigger and beautiful we could see the Greenish water with a white boundary and it was breathtakingly stunning and this was the Crater that we had come for. There was a platform from which we could see the clearly see the Crater and its edge.
After that we also saw some cluster of beautifully carved temples, a beautiful Kund and a wide view of the nature surrounding it. There was a small well where people were taking bath – couldn’t really understand where the water to the well came from.
We had to climb down a series of stairs to reach another temple down near the forest edge from where we could walk to the Crater base. We met quite a few people on our way towards the Crater who told us not to go towards the Crater form this route has there was a sighting of Tiger on this route and there were News of sightings from couple of days and hence was risky. I and Mithila were okay to still go ahead but my parents in law were against the idea so we dropped it. We were told that this was a longer route and there was another route from the MTDC hotel as well which was shorter and safer. So we decided to give that a try. Also we were really very hungry as it was almost the lunch time
As per Nikhilbhai’s ( my brother in law) instructions we decided to have our lunch at MTDC Hotel (Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation)- the place was really good with helpful and friendly staff and great food. The best one could have found there.
We decided to hire a Guide from the MTDC – he agreed to show us all in Lonar, his name was Shailesh Sardar and I can vouch that he made it all more enjoyable with all the intricate details he gave. Shailesh took us to the Crater , all upfront and close. We could see the green water and its various shades. We touched the water and it was all alkaline. He showed us quite a few amazing details about the place like magnetic sand, how the water is used for healing skin diseases and we even carried some water in a bottle to see how the greenish substance floated up and clear water beneath it when the bottle was placed in a steady position for a day. There were no living organisms in the water since its pH level was very high. There is strong smell of acid as one keeps on going near the water. Shailesh also explained how the crater was created the various evolution stages it has went through to reach were it is now.
The entire trek down from the MTDC hotel was among and filled with many more astonishing discoveries for us. On the way Shailesh took us to a very beautiful but broken temple. The temple was of Shri Ram but the fascinating part about it was that there was only one statue (usually a Ram temple has 3 deity statues that is Ram, Sita and Lakshman) The only statue there was that of Shri Ram the architecture marvel that the temple was as soon as one stand right in front of the Shri Ram Murti – 2 more shadows appear on the either side of the main deity statue. These shadows are representing Lakshman and Sita. These shadows were not based on sun’s position they appear all the time ( is what we were told we couldn’t stay there longer to verify). The philosophical thought behind this is that the God is within us. We stand as Lakshman and Sita with the Lord. It was totally worth the visit. On the way we could see lots of Peacocks, our guide told us that there were around 150 peacocks in the jungle which one has to cross to reach the Crater base. The jungle is dense and even has wild animals but they usually do not come to this side and are mainly in the denser parts of the jungle. The entire periphery of the Crater is lined with Temples and each has its own story to tell.
Each journey has its own story, just like ours had too.