Am back with my travelogue about trek to Haji Malang and to Malanggadh.
Me and my brothers (Sanket and Vijay) decided that we should explore places in and around Mumbai. We started with Haji Malang which was suggested by Vijay and after looking up about it on Google; we decided to go there on 30th January 2011.
We decided to start our climb as early as possible to avoid the heat (strongly advisably)… We boarded train for Kalyan at around 5:40 am from Vidyavihar. We reached Kalyan station around 6:30 am, had a cup of hot tea and caught a rickshaw to base village of Malanggadh. It’s a 13km (30 min) ride till the base. We were freezing ‘coz it was really cold in the morning and none of us had any warm clothing with us……
Around 7:15 or so we reached the base of the gadh, had breakfast and then started our hike to Haji Malang Dargah. The entire climb is lined with small shops and houses. There is a myriad of color on both the sides owning to the chaddars to be offered at Dargah. The steps at some places are old (dated back to the time of the fort) and some are new. Due to the steps, the climb to the top is exhausting and one requires frequent breaks. The only thing which might irritate are the beggars who keeps on pestering and its best to ignore them….. We did see monkeys also on our way and it was fun to take their snaps… Some of them were too cute with their babies hanging on their bellies…
After about an hour of climbing we reached the ‘Peheli Salami’ or the Dargah of Haji Bakhtar Baba. The view while climbing is spectacular. This leg of the climb is most exhausting and energy draining. We decided to have a tea and biscuits before starting off again. I was really surprised to see the idol of Ganesha on our way to Peheli Salami. I was equally surprised to see ‘Nav Durga Devi’ temple on our way to 2nd Dargah. Another 15 – 20 min of climbing, we reached ‘Doosri Salami’ or the 2nd Dargah of Haji Sultan Shah. At the summit is the main or Badi Dargah of Baba Haji Malang.
After having visited the dargahs we decided to venture ahead for a trek to Malangadh. To find the way to the Malanggadh, we had to retrace our steps a little back to a paanwala from where a small path leads to the fort. We made over way through rugged rocks, loose soil to reach the base of the fort from where the steps begin to take us to the main bastion of the fort. Before heading up there, we took a path to the right which leads to another durgah. Here we rested for a while and went back to the steps. The view was really spectacular. Vijay and I climbed the half way and Sanket went till the bastion. The steps were extremely steep and Sanket did find it difficult to climb down till the base of the fort.
I took us around 4 ½ hours with frequent breaks to reach the fort bastion. We climbed down to the base of the mountain in about 2 hours. We decided to take lunch at Kalyan Station before heading home…..
I must say that though the climb was tiring, it was good experience and I would suggest people who haven't been there yet to visit the place….
Here’s me signing off for now……..
This was my first study tour Post College and job…. I was very excited when I came to know that the course which I am doing has study tours where we will get firsthand experience on things…. Our 3 day tour was in Ratnagiri and Malvan.I boarded a bus on 20th Dec ’10 for Ratnagiri…. Ratnagiri is a port city surrounded by Sahayadri Mountains in the east. The road trip was exciting, bus travelling on serpentine roads of the ghat… It was just beautiful….
I reached Ratnagiri on 21st Dec early morning (6:30 or so). Our booking was done at Hotel Swaroop on the Bunder road. The Hotel is 10 min away from the bus stop and the hotel tariff is reasonably cheap (double occupancy – Rs 700/- per room per day).
The next day we started for Malvan via Ambolgadh. Ambolgadh plateau which is a study site is almost 2 hours from Ratnagiri. The Jaitapur nuclear power plant project has been proposed which will affect the ecology in 100km area all across. This study site might also get disturbed so BNHS is proposing options that might reduce the thermal discharge and minimize the effects of it. We were explained in details about this project.
On the last of our study tour we went to Sindhudurg fort. We went there again to study about the marine conservation projects and all. This was the last session of our study tour post which everyone departed for their respective places…
I stayed back for one more day to roam about a little. To start with let me first give you a little detail about the homestay, Chivla beach and the fort post which I will pen down about the other places I visited.
Homestay: The place where we stayed was Vasanti Bed & Breakfast which is on Chivla beach and near to Nath Pai Sevangan. The owner was Mr. Ramchandra Patil who is a retired air force veteran and his wife Vasanti Patil. The homestay is MTDC approved and the charges are Rs 500 - 550/- per room per day.
Sindhudurg Fort: It stands tall and impregnable on a rocky island barely a km from Malvan. The fort is approached by a boat through a navigable channel between 2 smaller islands of Dhontara and Padmagadh. Sindhudurg was built in 1664-67 AD by Shivaji Maharaj. The construction was done under the supervision of Hiroji Indulkar, an able architect. One of the best preserved forts of the Marathas, the 48 acre Sindhudurg fort has a four kms long zigzag line of 9 metres high and 3 metres wide rampart with 42 bastions. On the parapet, close to the entrance, beneath two small domes are the imprints of Shivaji’s palm and foot in dry lime. Also, in the fort there is the Shivaji temple 'Shri Shivarajeshwar temple’ the only one of its kind in the country where the image of Shivaji is without a beard.
Devbaug beach: A confluence of Karli river flowing into Arabian Sea can be observed from this beach. The beach is situated around 14 kms from Malvan. The beach offers an enchanting sight of hundreds of seagulls flying in a harmonized manner. The beach offers a picturesque view of the sunset. Because of its remote location, very few tourists venture here and as a result the beach is clean and the serene aspect of it has been maintained.
Jai Ganesh Mandir: The Ganesh idol is of pure gold. This main idol in the sanctum sanctorum is in the traditional pose with Riddhi- Siddhi (consorts of Lord) on both sides. The hall has eight idols of Ganesh carved in the ceiling. One gets a very comfortable feeling of Lord Ganesh looking generously from all the eight directions at his disciple. The interior of the temple is very rich and has used soothing colors.
On 24th Dec, I left from Malvan by bus and reached home on 25th around 5 am. I must say, that this trip I enjoyed thoroughly and I got to learn a lot from Mr. Apte. I would definitely love to go back to Malvan and experience the tranquility which the place offers again.