FORTS ON THE BEACHES OF MAHARASHTRA
INTRODUCTION-AS THE JOURNEY STARTS FROM RATNAGIRI TOWARDS GOA
Road trips have always enchanted me with new destinations and geography of our incredible country. The versatile scenery with different forms of landforms always keeps me anxious to continue further. So I always strive to explore my beautiful country and this time it was to find the best sea fort in maharashtra. After a marvelous road trip till Ratnagiri I was eager now to set off in discovering the history associated with the Konkan road trip . I wanted to visit the forts along the pictorial beaches.
UNKNOWN SEA BEACH ON THE WAY TO GOA
It was only after a few kms drive from our resort. I suddenly my eyes caught a glimpse of Casuarina forest and eucalyptus trees on a lonely beach. Immediately I stopped the car and rushed with my camera towards this unknown beach.
Waves were splashing on the sea shore which was filled with shrubs of mangrove leaves all along the beach. On the two longitudinal ends of the beach, hills were standing high creating a rocky periphery on the shore. To my surprise what I could see was a vast space of empty sand drenched by the crystal clear blue colours of the Arabian sea . It was fenced by a forest and two hills on its other sides.
As a traveller I was overjoyed to see myself as the only tourist in the vast stretch of this scenic beach. The beach had every geographical feature of my entire trip till that date.
Yellow clean sands, mangrove shrubs, forest and hills painted the shore as the waves were being dispersed due to cosmological efects from the clear blue sky, onto the shore. But I had to leave this beautiful spot to visit the sea forts in Maharashtra.
Vijaydurg fort-amazing sea fort in maharashtra:-
It is the oldest sea fort in Maharashtra in Sindhudurg ,constructed by Raja Bhoje 2, which was later extended by Shivaji. This is the only sea fort in Maharashtra other than Torna where Shivaji hoisted the saffron flag. This sea fort in Maharashtra got its name after Shivaji won it from Adil Shah in the Hindu Solar month called “Vijay“(Victory).
The original name of this sea fort in Maharashtra was Gheria. In pre-Independence era the fort was known as the “Eastern Gibralter” since this sea fort in Maharashtra was unconquerable. The large enemy vessels couldn’t enter the shallow water of the creek while Maratha ships would be anchored there, always ready for the onslaught.
According to some data there also lies an under water tunnel in this fort in Maharashtra . If proven, this tunnel can also serve as an important part in the tourist and historical significance. Though most of the structures inside this sea fort in Maharashtra are in ruins now but the remains still serve as classic examples of the Maratha culture.
During the British rule it was also believed that English astronomer Normal Lockyer observed helium for the first time on the surface of the sun from the observatory which was set up in the fort. Thus , every year on 18th August , since 2009 the world helium day is celebrated in this fort in Maharashtra. The famous fort in Maharashtra is now under the protection of Archaeological Survey of India . They have undertaken the restoration work.
Malvan – Food paradise from Mumbai to goa
Malvan boasts of some picturesque clean beaches , offering kaleidoscopic sunsets to the tourists. Chivla beach is one such pristine clean beach, which is a must visit to experience a romantic stroll by the seaside . It took me 2.5 hours to reach Malvan from Vijaydurg fort. On the way the Konkan coast kept me engaged with numerous beaches over the backwaters of the Arabian sea . There are also plenty of plantations in the countryside. When the road was not along the seashore , it was intersecting huge plantations of mango and coconut trees.
After arriving in Malvan we decided to have our lunch since the coastal town is famous for seafood in the konkan. I took help of one of the locals from the area and he advised me to visit Chivala beach. It was already late afternoon and since I wanted to spend more time in visiting Sindhudurg fort, I decided to appease myself with only one beach in Malvan.
Like all the Konkan beaches it offers some breathtaking view of the weekend coastal landscape with absolutely clean sand by the seashore. The beach had huge lines of coconut plantations on its right side. The right side of the beach was rocky . The left side had vast stretches of clean unpolluted sands that enhances romantic walk by the seashore .
Water sports in konkan:-
Tourists can also try out scuba diving activities here ,which is organised mainly by the local fishermen. In the era of trawlers and motorboats people can still see numerous fishermen boats on this beach . With the help of these boats , fishermen catch fish manually in the early morning or evening. The fishermen still follow traditional methods in catching fish manually through fish nets in this beach. The huge contour of coconut trees, the pristine yellow sands and the delectable Malvani sea food were relevant enough to give me the jovial feeling of my presence in the konkan coast.
Sindhudurg fort-A sea fort in maharashtra for sea gulls:-
When I was planning my golden coastal route in konkan,I was ever so anxious to visit the Sindhudurg Fort . Sindhudurg Fort is another sea fort in Maharashtra and it is situated in Malvan. Sindhudurg Fort was built by the great Maratha warrior Shivaji in the 17 th century on an island away from the Malvan shore. Tourists need to avail a motorboat ride for 10 minutes in order to reach the island. Sindhudurg Fort is also regarded as a famous fort in Maharashtra.
It has a significant place in the history of the Maratha warriors . It was build to stop the advancement of the foreign forces and the Siddhis of Janjira. This sea fort in Maharashtra is now a protected monument where some inhabitants still live. This fort can also be called as the best fort from Mumbai to Goa. I hope that this article enlightens tourists about the best fort from Mumbai to Goa.
Last but not the least before the sunset and entering the vibrant city of Goa, I went to Tarkarli beach. It was my last pit stop in this coastal route. Tarkarli beach like any other Konkan beach is well guarded by a picturesque wall of casuarina and coconut trees along the length of the beach. The locals here charge Rs 50 for parking cars near the beach. The sand is clean and yellow and the beach is very less crowded.
Perhaps Tarkarli offers a secluded vacation in the MTDC resort on the beach. As we move towards Goa the beaches become crowded with numerous shacks and resorts. The sunset on this beach has relevantly concluded the golden coastal trip with the golden hues of the magical refractions in the sky.
Similar to the many konkan beaches a lonely standing wooden fishermen boat can be seen on this beach waiting for the high tides to sail it away. Capturing numerous photos of this scenic beach I commenced my journey with a fresh jovial feeling to spend my valentine vacation in Goa. These are the few famous forts in Maharashtra that you can surely visit while traveling here.