Tarkarli  ('Queen Beach' of Sindhudurg)


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Tarkarli, also known as "Queen Beach of Sindhudurga' is situated just 8 KM from Malvan and 546 KM south of Mumbai (400 KM from Pune) and just 120 KM from Goa. This beach was once very secluded and not known to many almost couple of years before. Now tourism is getting lot of attention here mainly due to (1) Close proximity to Goa and as alternate destination since Goa is saturated (2) Proposed Sea-world Park between Tarkarli, Redi and shiroda (3) Discovery of Coral Islands near the shore (4) erstwhile Deputy CM of Maharashtra was from this region and (5) Adventure Water sports activities like Scuba diving, Snorkeling etc which you don't on most of the beaches in India except for Lakshadweep & Anandmans.

Tarkarli is very special due to long coastline with white powder sand beaches, pristine backwaters and transparently clear seas.On a clear day, you can see the sea-bed through a depth of 20ft. The most wonderful part about Tarkarli is the amount of variety that’s available once you reach here. The choice ranges from a long stroll along the clean beaches to revisiting the past glory of Maratha bastion and forts. Also include to the list the boat ride on the backwaters and historical temples nearby like Kunkeshwar, pristine dhamapur man-made lake, adventure watersports, dolphin watching and not too miss- sumptuous Konkani meals (known as Malvani cuisine). 

How to Reach?

Malvan is located in the South Konkan (North of / Goa but south of Ganpatipule - Ratnagiti). From Mumbai, it is 540 KM where majority of the travel is on NH 17 Goa highway except for last 30 KMs (Kasal - Malvan). From Malvan, Tarkarli is just 7 KMs. Malvan can also be reached via Kolhapur from Pune. Pune - Kolhapur is 225 KM on NH4 Bangalore highway where as Kolhapur - Malvan is around 160 Kms. There are multiple ghat routes to travel to Malvan from Kolhapur and each takes about same time.

  • Gaganbavda or Karul Ghat (via gaganbavda - Vaibhavwadi) -
  • Phonda Ghat (via Radhanagari)
  • Amba Ghat (Via Panhala)
  • Anuskura Ghat

Tarkarli / Malvan does not have any train station of its own and nearest realhead is Kudal which is 45 KM away. Most on the trains on Konkan Railway route stop at kudal. State transport buses ply From Mumbai, Kolhapur or Pune to Malvan and from Malvan to Tarkarli, rickshaws are available for local commute. There are few private buses available to Malvan as well. Another option could be to take Goa bound private Volvo and get down at Savantwadi. From Savantwadi, you can travel to Tarkarli / Malvan using state transport service.

Important distances -

  • Tarkarli - Malvan = 7 KMs
  • Tarkarli - Devbagh Sangam = 3 KMs
  • Malvan - Kolhapur = 160 KMs
  • Malvan - Ratnagiri = 175 KM
  • Malvan - Ganpatipule = 200 KM
  • Malvan - Kankeshwar = 30 KM
  • Malvan - Dhamapur = 20 KM
   

Winding roads towards coastal Konkan through Gaganbavda (above) and Radhanagari Phonda Ghat (below)


 

Where to Stay?

There are not many star / luxary resorts in this area however, MTDC Beach Resort is one of the best place to stay when you visit Tarkarli. It is right on the beach and offers array of accomodation options ranging from Konkani Huts Non AC, Konkani Huts AC, Boat Shaped Deluxe Accommodation, Dormitory and 2 houseboats - Karli & Hiranyakeshi (named after 2 rivers).

 

Konkani Huts AC / Non AC - There are 20 cottages in a pair of 2 out of which 10 are fitted with split airconditioners. Most of the AC cottages are on the beach side in a row where as non AC ones are slightly behind. Accomodation is basic with Clean rooms, linen, bath, TV etc. Each cottage has a verrandah facing the beach side with 2 chairs. There is hammock in-front of each pair of the cottage. Konkani AC Huts # 119 and 120 are the closest to the beach as compared to the rest. 

 
 

Boat shaped accommodation - These are 2 storied (upper deck and lower deck) boat shaped wooden structures, at the extreme corner of the resort property and slightly far off from the reception / restaurant but again bang opposite the beach. Infact these units have a exlisive access to the beach. Interiors are quite luxurious as compared to the Konkani Huts and so is the cost. See if you can get the accommodation at the upper deck.

House Boat - There are 2 House Boats like one you see in Kerala. They are named after the 2 rivers as Karli (Standard) & Hiranyakeshi (Deluxe) and they are parked at the Devbagh sangam where karli river meets the see (Jetty near the Sagar Sangam resort). This place is some 3-4 Km from the MTDC Resort towards Devbag / Tarkarli. Each boat has 2 well appointed bedrooms and charges are per room (inclusive of all meals on board). These boats will ferry you around the karli backwaters and they do not venture into high seas. Stay is expensive but once in a life time kind of experience.

 
                      

Resorts serves delicious meals at the beach-side restaurant. Menu includes regular punjabi, south indian, chinese dishes apart from the authentic malvnani cuisine incluing sea food!. Try Surmai/Pomfret thali for the lunch. Awesome! You can notice the freshness of the catch (fish), salty taste which is missing in the frozen fish that you eat in metros. There are plenty of Veg delicacies available as well. Try out Ghavan / amboli (fluppy dosa) with coconut Chutteny for the breakfast.


There are other small resorts, hotels and homestay available in and around Tarkarli - malvan which provides comfortable stay for the visitors at a reasonable rates. few are listed below -


What you should Eat?

 

Malvan is considered as heaven for the non vegetrians especialy sea food lovers. local dishes includes, fish curry, fish tawa / deep fry, kombadi wade, Xaguti, Prwans (also known as Chingul) masala, solkadhi etc. while the homely food with local flavours would be available at the place where you stay, there are few restaurants within Malvan City which offers authentic Malvani food e.g. Chaitanya, . These are small restaurants / joints with less seating capacity but provides good food.

What to Shop in Konkan?

Malvani Masala, cashew nuts, wooden toys from Savantwadi, Kokum Squash


What to See
?

Tarkarli Beach - Tarkarli has a long and narrow stretch of beach, with pristine waters and white powder sand. Sea is so clean and clear here that you can easily see the water bed. This beach is still secluded, less crowded and do not have any chowpaty like any other beaches. There are no water sports available here either.

          
 

Dolphin Watching / Sea excursion Trips - 

 
There are various trips available ranging from 1 hr to 4 hr and takes you to places like dolphin watching spots, sangam, Tsunami island, Nivati fort, Bhogave beach, island etc.
 
Tsunami island was created during 2004 tsunami when the portion of the sea bed was lifted to create a small island. There are 1-2 shacks on the island where you can enjoy coconut water and some local snacks. Even breakfast can be arranged for the groups if you let them know in advance.
 
Tarkarli / Malvan is also famous for the water sports like snorkelling and scuba diving. It happnes near the coral reefs next to the Sindhudurg fort
 
Sidhudurg fort and statue (only) of Chatrapati Shri Shivaji Maharaj. You can see the sword used by him in one of the wars. This is the only temple of Shri Shivaji Maharaj built by Rajaram Maharaj 
Water is very shallow and you can see the bed
 
Small garden with train ride in Malvan.

 
Golden Ganesh (made from 16 KG of pure gold) temple near Malvan. This was built by Mr. Jayany Salgaonkar.

Dhamapur Lake

The lake is situated on a platue between Are and katta village, roughly 20 KM from Tarkarli and 14 Km from Malvan. This is one of the biggest fresh water man made lake (not a dam) in the district constructed in 1530 by the king Nagesh Desai (A tributary of Vijaynagar dynast). Lake is situated by the side of Bhagvati Temple and it has beautiful scenic hill ranges on its two sides covered with dense forest (dense plantation of Mango, Kokum, areca or beetle nut, coconut and palm trees). Water is very crystal clear and tourist easily feels the change in the atmosphere once they reach the spot. MTDC has made boating facility available in the lake and walk surrounding the lake the forest depth has also constructed beautiful huts on the bank to enable the tourist staying here to enjoy the panoramic view from their cottages.

Dont forget to buy a pack or two of Parle G biscuits from the local shop, relax at the banks of the lake near the temple and see fishes quickly coming towards ypu to eat the biscuits. Very relaxing experience and you will not notice how much time you have spent by the waters. 


 
 

To be continued ...