Ganpatipule is a seaside town located in the konkan coast of Maharshtra. The place is famous for the Ganpathi temple which is located right on the beach.
It is approximately 320 kms from Pune. We made a road trip from Pune in our own car. We have been to Ganpatipule twice. Once during the monsoon and again in winter. Both the times we stayed at the MTDC resorts which is also located over looking the ocean opposite to Ganpathi temple. In my opinion this is the best accommodation option you can find in Ganpatipule as we can just walk to the beach. They have different types of rooms mostly all overlooking the sea.
Travel date : Sept 2- Sept 4 2016 and Dec 23 – Dec 25 2016
We started from Pune around 10 in the morning and reached by 6 :30 in the evening. Checked in to the resort and we directly went to the beach to see the sunset but we missed it by 15 mins. Winter time is the best season to visit Ganpatipule or any beach side place. This time I could see the beach more lively than monsoon time with shops, restaurants and some water sport activities. But I would suggest visiting at both the times as the drive across the western ghats during the monsoon was so spectacular and the drive itself is amazing. We crossed so many waterfalls,blooms and we could see so much of greenery till the eyes could reach.At few spots the fog through the roads made it little more adventurous as we could not see the road 100 mts ahead.felt like walking through the heaven.. Chillness in the air is so refreshing. We just captured few water falls but all along the way there were more than 50. It is a treat to our eyes to see so many of them and it will really make you think why people are wasting their money to go to Switzerland.
Ganpatipule beach is one of the cleanest and less trashed compared to many other beaches in India. Very serene and beautiful the water is so clean and white surfs make it look even more beautiful. During the winter we saw lot of seagulls and sand pipers flocking around the coast.
The beach was not much crowded during the monsoon , but the water is cold and if you are lucky then you can take a dip in the water if it is not raining. But Winter is the peak season, there were many visitors and devotees visiting the Ganpathi temple. The morning walk in the beach was so energizing, the freshness in the air , seeing the seagulls flying over the ocean made the morning walk even more amazing. The water was so clear that one can see tiny fishes swimming and also the star fish.The sand is so fine and white makes it look exotic.
Apart from spending time in the beach we visited the Ganpathipule temple and there is a little market beside the temple where you can shop for trinkets and local food item. If you like Solkadhi you can buy the kokam syrup. The next day morning we took a dip in the water spent some time in the beach and after freshening up we went to Prachin Kokan museum. The place has a very good display of the history and culture of konkan. Also there is a shell museum inside where they have collections of shells of different shapes and sizes. You can also shop for shells and jewelry made out of shells. It takes about 1 hr to see the the whole place and there are free guides who will walk through the history of the konkans.
After that we went back to MTDC resort to have lunch. If you are in Konkan and love fish this is the place where you have to order fish Thali. You get both Surmai fish thali and pomfret fish thali. All the items on the plate tasted awesome. Dont forget to taste the Sol Kadhi. May be you wont like it at the first but if you are willing to taste it again then it is very addictive.
After Lunch we took a stroll around the temple and market and then went to the beach. The beach was lively with shops, restaurants, horse riding ,camel riding ,boat riding and other water activities. We went for speed boat riding and he took us half km inside the ocean stopped there for a while and returned us to the shore.
Then we settled in a place to see the sunset
While returning back during the winter the grass all dried up and felt like a african safari at some places .
Next day we traveled towards north along the beach and passed through some amazing sceneries. At one place we had to take the sea way. Ferries are available which will take you to the other side of the land along with your car. We were headed towards Guhagar. On the way we took little diversion to have lunch at another MTDC resort at Valenshwar. It is also a seaside resort. After that we checked in to Mango Village resort in Guhagar around 4pm and we inquired about the places to see around , the resort people suggested us to visit a light house which is 14 kms from Guhagar. We went there just on time as the closing time was 5 pm. We got a real good view of the Arabian sea and on the way back we spotted a wolf. It was running ahead our car for almost a kilometer. This made my husband Aka the photographer very happy.
Then we spent some time in the Guhagar Beach and returned to the resort. The resort is a new one and they had villa types room. Though the rooms were extremely small for the price we paid but they provided a good service. Morning we went trekking to a water hole which was just behind the resort and we spotted few birds there. Upon returning we had breakfast and checked out from the resort.
Our plan of the day was to visit Thosagar falls near Satara and then drive back to Pune. But destiny had a different plan. We religiously follow Google map for navigation . In the name of short cut google took us to a top of the mountain where we couldnt see anyone even to ask for directions. The roads were steep and crooked and google suggesting us to cross a pile of rocks to reach Thosagar falls. It is one of the most unforgettable slash scariest moment of life. Thank goodness we always prefer driving during the day time. I cannot even imagine what our state would have been if it was dark. So my advice here would be follow google map but be sure to ask for directions to the locals. It will take you extra few minutes but will save you from unimaginable. So what we did, we just followed the mountain road and asked for direction to the first person we encountered. And without second thought we drove back straight to Pune.
But the mountain was very beautiful , if i have to tell you exactly where we got trapped, when you drive through a highway you see lot of windmills in a far away mountain. Thats where we were driving through.
To visit Ganpatipule please check the MTDC website for availibilty of rooms on any long weekend. Plan little ahead during peak season because the rooms are always on high demand.