Ganapatipule


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About Ganapatipule -


Visit the vast strech of unpolluted silver sands on the western cost of Maharastra, Bathed in the golden sunshine and silver moonlight, Lapped by gentle foam-flecked waves from the expanse of the arabian sea, Laced with the unforgettable aroma of fruits, flowers and mangroves, Carrying the timid wispers of saying coconut trees.

This is Ganapatipule Land of the 400- year old Swayambhu ganapati and eager tourists. Set along the western coast of Maharastra, is a small little village called Ganapatipule. It is known for it's serene sedate beach. Unlike most beaches which are spoilt by tourist traffic, the Ganapatipule beach is as natural and pristine as ever. Even today, the waters are blue and the sands, white.

Traveling to Ganapatipule by road is a vacation in itself. The entire 'kokan' region is paradise- for miles there is something new to discover, in whichever direction you go: narrow roads, red soil roofed houses, clean courtyards, innumerable fruit- bearing trees (including mango, betelnut, banana, jackfruit, etc.) and casuarinas lining the cost are a common sight. Meeting the ever-friendly and hospitable 'konkanis' and chatting with them could unearth innumerable delights of holidaying in this naturally gifted countryside.

Besides the beach Ganapatiphule is an important pligrimage centre. The temple of the 'Swayambhu Ganapati' is known for its unique idol of Lord Ganapati and its magnificient temple ('Swayambhu' or self originated, not man made, 'Ganapati' or the lord of 'ganas' or army. 'Pule' or sand dune. That's how the name Ganapatiphule). The temple is 400 years old and is at the foot of a hillock. Most pilgrims believe in taking a 'pradakshina' around the hill instead of just the temple. (Pradakshina is a form of showing obeisance wherein devotees walk in a circle around the idol of the deity or around the temple in which the idol is housed ).

Geographic location :
Approximately 375 kms south of mumbai, along the 'konkan' coast. 330 KM from Pune (Pune - Karad - Umbraj - Patan - Koyananagar - Chiplun - Ganapatipule)

Best Season to Visit -

The climate is moist and humid but healthy and devoid of pollution. From march, the temprature starts rising but rarely crosses 38 C.May is the hottest month. Monsoon is between June and October. Rains are usually plentiful and regular. The winter season is perhaps the most pleasant with temperatures dropping at nights.

Click here for the current Weather at Ratnagiri / Ganpatipule


How to Reach?:

Via Pune - Satara - Umbraj - Koyna Nagar - Chiplun - Samgameshwar with halt at Koyna lake Resort (Total 330 Kms)

Take NH4 (Mumbai - Bangalore Highway), cross - Shirwal - Surul - Satara - Umbraj - get down off the highway at Umbraj village around 130 KMs from Pune - Join Karad - Chiplun State Highway after another 12 KMs - Cross Patan - Koyna nagar Junction - Kumbharli Ghat - Pofali - Elore - reach NH 17 at Chiplun - Sagameshwar - Nivali Phata - Ganapatipule
Travel Time required : 7-8 Hrs with few quick breaks.

Distances :

  • Pune - Umbraj (around 137 KM)

  • Umbraj - Koynanagar (45 KM)

  • Koynanagar - Chiplun (45 KM)

  • Chiplun - Sangameshwar - Nivali Phata (75 Km)

  • Nivali Phata - Ganapatipule (30 KM)

  • Ganapatipule - Malgund - Karhateshwar - Jaigad Fort (20 KM)

  • Ganpatipule - Ratnagiri - Pavas (around 50 KM)

  • Ganpatipule - Hedvi Via Rai Bhatgaon Bridge (60 Km)

  • Hedvi - Velneshwar - Guahagar (25 KM)

  • Guhagar - Chiplun (42 KMs)

Alternate route:

(with halt at Kolhapur / Panhala) : Pune (0) - Satara (120 KMs) - Kolhapur (225 KM) - Panhala (20 KM) - Ratnagiri/Ganapatipule via Amba ghat (140 KMs)

For Mumbaikars, best option is to catch Konkan Railway or Overnight bus or travel on NH 17 via Panvel - Rohe - Mahad - Khed - Chiplun - Sangameshwar - Nivli phata - Ganapatipule. Road is good but with no dividers and have lots of twists & turns. It again takes 8-9 hours to cross 375 KMs on NH17

Click here for the Road map of Ratnagiri District, Raigad District & Satara District

Suggested Pit stops / Rest areas

(With parking facility, open space, good food and clean toilets)

  • Joshi wadewale (NH4) -> snacks corner just after crossing the Katraj Tunnel on your right. Tasty food like Wadapav, Misalpav, Tea / Cofee, wada Sambar etc. lots of space.

  • Hotel Natraj (NH4) -> near Khed Shivapur (on your left while traveling towards Satara). Good place for south Indian breakfast. UDUPI management.

  • Vitthal Kamath Restaurant (NH4) - in the premises of "Company Operated HP Petrol Pump" on your left at village Kikwi before Shirval. Good food, lots of space and clean toilets. You will get only Pure Veg. south Indian / Punjabi / Chinese food. Petrol is also Rs. 2 cheaper there than pune city. "Vitthal Kamath" is chain of restaurants started by none other than Kamath Hotels, owner of 5 star ecotel hotels like Orchid in Mumbai. You will see Viththal Kamath restaurant on Goa Highway after every 100 KMs.

  • Milestone Food Plaza (NH4) - Between Satara & Umbraj (on your left while traveling towards Satara/Karad). This is similar to SMILESTONE Food Plaza on Pune - Nagar Road.

  • Navami Food Plaza (NH4) - just before reaching Umbraj (on your left while traveling towards Satara). UDUPI Management.

  • Motel Drive Inn Near Sangameshwar (NH17)


Where to Stay?

1st Choice would be MTDC Konkani Huts and Tents which are right on the beach at the confluence where river meets the sea. Excellent Location! ask for AC Huts. They are on the front side. MTDC has over 100 rooms in different categories and resort is well maintained.

There are lots of other good Hotels in and around Ganapatipule but they are few minutes away from the beach. Refer to the following list -

  • Landmark Resort, Ganpatipule (02357 - 235284 Or Mumbai Booking : 022-26354124)
  • Hotel Durvankur, Ganapatipule (02357 - 235764)

What you should Eat -

While you are traveling in coastal Konkan, make it a point to sample culinary delights of the region – kurkuron bombeel (crispy fried Bombay duck), surmai / Pomfret fry, Kombadi-Wade with Chicken, sol-kadhi (a tangy smooth appetiser), kelyache panchamrut (a sweetish medley of bananas and vegetables), tisrya-che kavlan (clams in thick spicy masala), kelphoola-chi bhaji, (a Konkan favorite, made of banana flower), Jackfruit bhaji, Kaju Usal, Ambole (like Appam or thick sada Dosa). Especially ensure that you try Lord Ganesha’s favorite steamed delight, the Modak* (made up of sugar / Jaggary and rice floor)!

* Where to get Modak - At Kelkar's Lodging and Boarding just outside MTDC Resorts on Temple Road. You need to inform them well in advance. Else, you get it any time at the "Aaswad" restaurant of the "Prachin Konkan" exhibition.

What to Shop in Konkan -

Ratnagiri / Devgad Alphonso mangoes (April-May), Mango & other fruit products (Mango pulp, aambapoli, phanaspoli), Kokam Sharbat, Cashews, Wooden toys from Sawantwadi, Malvani Masala, Aachar etc.

Places of Interest In and Around North of Ganapatipule

(Can be visited in 1 Day)

Ganpatipule Ganesh Mandir and Beach 

                  

Prachin Konkan (1 Kms) - Permanent Exhibition 1 Km from Ganapatipule to depict life in typical Konkan Village 500 years ago. Guided tour for 45 min. Rs 15 entry ticket. Worth visiting. Commentary available in Marathi and Hindi. Dont miss the shopping mart and restaurant at the end of tour that serves Aluvadi, Thalipit, Solkadhi and hot Modak!

                                               
 

Birth Place of Kavi Keshavsut (renowned Poet of Maharashtra) at Malgund (2 KMs)

Malgund a place two km from Ganpatipule is famous for natural bountiful beauty. At this place Shri Krishnaji Keshav Damle, alias, Kavi Keshavsut a revolutionary poet has his house, where he was born. Recently a monument has been built in his memory. This monument has become a place of pilgrimage, for the Lovers of marathi Literature. The tourist can reach the place by auto or State transport Bus from Ganpatipule.

Fort Jaigad (18 KMs)

Jaigad, a port on Konkon coastline is famous as a natural and safe port. It is situated on the mouth of river Shastri. The fort Jaigad is magnificent. The lighthouse and the jaigad creek is spectacular. Inside the walls of the fort on the right is a monument of Jaiba Mahar. The story about Jaiba is splendid. When the construction of the fort was in progress, the arch over the main gate collapsed for number of times. The remedy suggested was Narbali (sacrifice of a human being). This Jaiba Mahar was ready to be the victim, on the condition that the fort be named after him, so it is Jaigad. The king of vijapur built this fort having twenty outwardly curved construction (Buruj). The fort was in the custody of Kanhoji Angre commender in chief of Chattrapati Shivaji's naval armada. In 1818 English army took over the fort. Near the main gate of the fort, Ganesh temple is there. The fort is Situated 35 to 40 km from Ratnagiri town. The temple of Mahamai Sonsakhli, the village deity is situated in the dense forest near village Tavsal.

MTDC’s catamaran “Gateway Glory” at Rai-Bhatgaon, Jaigarh

On 6th of April 2005, MTDC started their catamaran ‘Gateway Glory’ at Rai-Bhatgaon, Jaigarh for Indian tourists & also taking foreign tourists of “DECCAN ODISSEY” in the region. The ‘Gateway Glory’ is a double decker catamaran, having capacity of 120 passengers. Tickets for the same can be booked at the MTDC Resorts, Ganapatipule

Karhateshwar (18 Kms) - Just before entering Jaigad, there is cross road and one towards your left goes to karhateshwar and straight goes to the fort.

The tourist gets spellbound to see astonishing beauty of the nature surrounding Karhateshwar Devsthan. No one could anticipate how splendid the bounty of the nature would be there till he reaches the place. Karhateshwar Devsthan is situated in the village Nandiwade near the coastline 4 to 5 km from Jaigad. The temple is of wooden structure, built during the regime of Shilaharas. In the night, temple is closed for visitors. On the slopes of the hill by the side of seashore between the cuttings of the hill, water springs in small stream, throughout the year. This spring water is stored in two small tanks for bathing purpose. Even during winter the water is warm. One who takes bath gets fresh and energetic. Shri Narayanbhau Jog, a Ramdasi, has described the place in following words.The deity of Karhateshwar is installed at a beautiful lonely place, at whose feet the roaring sea is there for ever.From Jaigad this place is at 5 km distance.

Laxmikeshav Temple of Kolisare (20 KMs) - 10 KMs inside from the Ganapatipule - Jaigad Fort road.

The temple of Laxmikeshav is situated in the dense forest on the hills at Kolisare, Twenty centuries ago when Rashtrakut Dynasty was ruling the place, they built number of temples of various gods and goddesses. During the rule of Yadav dynasty, Moghals led various invasions every where. At that time efforts were made to keep idols at a safe and secure place, away from invasions. The idol of Laxmikeshav is one of them. This idol was taken to Kolhapur and was kept immersed in Rankala tank.

Shri Joshi, Vichare and Kane, the devotees from village Waravade had a vision and they came to know about this idol. The idol was taken out and was being brought to original place through warvade creek in a boat. On the way, they took halt at Kolisare. Next day morning when they were to start the journey, the idol became so heavy that it could not be moved from the place. One resident of Kolisare Shri Bhanuprasad Teredesai had a vision and the idol was installed at Kolisare. The temple was built in 1510 at Kolisare by Shri Teredesai, the keeper of the fort.

When digging started for the construction of the temple, the water trickled from the streamlet which is flowing continuously even today. The water of this streamlet contains medicinal attributes. It is said this water was taken to Pawas for Swami Swaroopanand. At this place number of trees, creepers, rivers, streamlets, hills were found in abundance. The natures bounty attracted the man and made him stay there forever. The surroundings of the temple are calm, serene and a place for performing austerity. The climate is cool and pleasant, even during summer, where number of families comes to enjoy the holidays.

The idol of Laxmi Keshav is splendid sculpture carved out of black marble stone, very beautiful and bright, which develops godly virtuous feeling. The idol is five feet in height with four hands holding conch (Shankh) chakra, Gada, Padma (lotus flower), on its right is eagle and to the Left Laxmi and Vijay. Laxmi Keshav is family deity of thirty-eight different family ancestors. This place is at 50 Kms from Ratnagiri.


In and around Ratnagiri - South of Ganapatipule

(Can be visited in 1 Day) 
 
Ratnagiri town is about 30 KMs from Ganapatipule and road is very scenic like in California. One side you have hills and other side there is sea.

Bandarpule (2 KMs) - Secluded Beach & home for Krishnali Beach Resort

Birth Place of Lokmanya Tilak at Ratnagiri

One remembers the slogan given by Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak that "Self rule is my birth right and I will achieve it." The challenge given to British Government by Rashtrapurush, the owner editor of Kesari (Newspaper) Lokmanya Tilak was born on 26th July 1856 in the house rented by Smt. Indirabai Gore, in the Tilak Lane His father was a teacher. This house is declared and maintained as a national monument. Where a full size statue has been erected. Lokmanya stayed in this house till 1866

Patit Pawan Temple

Swatantrya Veer Sawarkar kept in confinement in Ratnagiri by then British Government. During those days he rendered yeomans service to the downtrodden in the society. He worked for restoring respect and emancipation of untouchables in the caste system. In this respect, names of prominent personalities, that come to our mind are Mahatma Fule, Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar, the name of Veer Sawarkar can also be associated for the social work done in Ratnagiri. His act of keeping open the temple to untouchables was a revolutionary act, in the conservative Ratnagiri. With the help of Shri Bhagojiseth Keer a common dinner both for higher caste and untouchables was arranged. The temple is situated near Swatantrya Laxmi Chowk, where statue of Veer Sawarkar has been erected.

Fort Ratnagiri and Bhagwati Temple

By the side of seashore on the hill this fort is there. It is shaped half Circle like horseshoe. It has experienced, Bahamani, Adilshahi, Shivshahi and Peshwai Rulers. The area is 120 acres with sea on all the three sides. At the end of western side stands a light house. The hill on which the fort is situated has stone walls in a good condition, though at some places it has collapsed. The main part is having a Devi Bhagwati temple. A small tank and a deep well is there. From the first day of the month Ashwin till Tenth day (Navratri) a fair is organised. The temple is spacious and magnificent, recently renovated. At the foot hills the Bhagwati port is there. The state transport buses ply to the Bhagwati temple, it is very pleasant to watch the passing ships from this temple fort.

Thiba Palace

Thiba was a king of Burma (Now Manmyar). He was not willing for kingship, but he had to, as all his brothers got killed in the revolt, that took place in Burma. I desired to put on saffron colour clothes, preach and propagate, Buddhism. At the age of nineteen, he got married to his sister and ascended the throne.

On 17th April 1886 he was dethroned by British and kept him at a far off place Ratnagiri in isolated confinement. The king collected the wealth and jewllery as much as possible, and had to come to Ratnagiri, in state confinement. He was learned and an authority on language Pali. For him the British got built in 1910-11 a palace on the area with 25803 sq meter. The palace was 60m. by 43 m. in area. The construction was of Laterite Stone with a roof covered with Manglore tiles. The King Thiba used to celebrate the festival of lights (Deepavali) with pomp and grandeur. The candle lights brightened the Palace. Only invited could attend this function.

On 15th December 1919 Thiba died. British took over the custody of the Palace and since 1926 it became the residence of District Collector till 1961. Afterward government polytechnic was housed in this palace. Presently there are hostel buildings, and the palace is taken over by Archeological department.

This place is known as Thiba point, is at a considerable height from Sea level from where the small Rajiwada port can be seen. This place is famous for tourist to observe the beauty of Sunset. Near by, All India Radio Station Building and the Residence of District Collector is situated. The place is accessible by all types of conveyances.

Swami Swaroopanand - Pawas

Pawas, a place of pilgrimage, with beautiful natural greenery is situated at a distance of 16 km. from Ratnagiri. Dnyanehswari by Shree Dnyandeo has been rendered by Swami Swaroopanand of Pawas, in 'Abhang Dnyanehswari' (a poetic from of spiritual literature), which made him famous in Maharashtra. Swami has also rendered 'Amrutanubhav', besides 'Amrutdhara', 'Sanjeevani gatha' and other spiritual literature in a very easy to read and follow style for the common man - devotees.

On 15th August 1974, Swami took Samadhi. His sect of disciples is large. In various cities of Maharashtra 'Adhyatma upasana Mandal' has been formed by his disciples.

The devotees have built 'Swami Samadhi Mandir' a panoramic construction on a very beautiful Landscap. The serenity, cleanliness, discipline at the place is ideal and laudable. The administration is looked after by Swami Swaroopanand Seva Mandal. The Mandal has made available all the literature by Swami at a nominal price.

The period during 1938 to 1974 Swami dwelled in Anant Niwas, house owned by Shri Desai Ambewale, a place of remembrance where all the things used by Swami have been kept and maintained.The Mandal has made available, Swaroopashram and Bhaktniwas, both lodging and boarding free of cost, to the devotees.

In the village of Pawas, by the side of the river temples of Vishweshwar and Someshwar are situated. Near the temple, Sadhakniwas, a separate building is made available for the devotees coming for, meditation. This place is serene and calm, free from worldly atmosphere. In the noon from 11.00 am to 1.00 pm, the devotees coming to worship at Samadhi Mandir, are distributed 'Khichadi' as a prasad.

On full noon day in the month 'Ashadh' Vyas Pournima and on the date of birth of Swami festival is organised on a massive scale. Pawas has become a very ideal place of pilgrimage. Every half an hour, ST bus from Ratnagiri reaches Pawas.


Suggested Return Route to Pune -

    Ganapatipule - Rai Bhatgaon Bridge* - Hedvi (Ganesh Temple) - Guhagar (Velneshwar Temple & Beach) - Chiplun - Dervan Shivsristi (Optional) - Koyana Dam - Patan - Karad - Pune (400 KMs).

    Ganpatipule - Hedvi (via new Rai-Bhatgaon Bridge) - 60 Kms

    Hedvi - Velneshwar - Guhagar Circuit - 25 Kms

    Guhagar - Chiplun - 45 Kms

    Chiplun - Koyna Nagar - Umbraj - 90 KMs

    Umbraj - Satara - Pune - 140 KMs (On NH4)

    If you start 9 AM in the morning, you can reach Koyana Dam by 5 PM and should reach Pune by 11:00 PM with all sightseeing. Alternately, you can stay at MTDC Resort Velaneshwar or at Chiplun. There is also Riverview Chiplun Hotel (4 Star Hotel) at Chiplun.

    *Earlier, there was ferry available to cross the Jaigad Creek and Ganapatipule - Hedvi distance was reduced to just 40-45 KMs. But that ferry is no more available. Check at the MTDC Reception if the Ferry has become operational again.

    If you want to travel straight, you take Ganapatipule - Nivli Phata - Sangameshwar - Chiplun - Koyananagar - Patan - Umbraj - Pune route and will reach in 7-8 Hrs. Road is very good and can cruise at 80-100 KM. Umbraj - Satara - Pune is is NH4 4 lane Toll Road, where as Chiplun - Umbraj is 2 lane toll road via Kumbharli Ghat. Ghat section is safe for crossing even in the night. There is a Police Station on the Ghat Matha and Elore town at the foothills.


    Photo Gallery -