Visit To Khandala,
Panchgani, Mahabaleshwar, Ganapatipule & Mumbai -
Mr. Debashis Bose,
We reached Mahabaleshwar at 05.20 PM.
for night halt and stay.
30-10-06 : Today's programme for local sightseeing is by
Govt. Tourist bus leaving at 09.30 AM. One after the other, we had
been to Handicraft Centre, where there were lots of handicrafts
mostly of wood made by local artisans. There were Chikkies also. Next, we
went to Pratapgarh, a fort built by Shivaji. Inside the fort
there is a temple known as Bhowani temple, named after the goddess,
whom Shivaji worshipped. Here, Afjal Khan, representing the then Sultan,
was murdered by Shivaji.
The story goes like this - it was decided through ambassadors
of both, that they shall meet at a place with the condition that
both of them will be without arms and with an open mind. But, none
of them kept their word. Afjal Khan tried to hit Shivaji with a
weapon that was hidden within his robe. Shivaji killed Afjal Khan
with the help of a nail of a tiger. There are cemetries of Afjal
Khan and his body guard, and a tower under which lies the head of
Afjal Khan. There is a big statue of Shivaji also.
Next, we went to Loadwick Point, on top of a hill, named
after the first British General of Mahabaleshwar, there is a monument
built in his memory. There are Needle-hole point, which looks like
the head of an elephant. An Echo point is also there. Then,
we went to visit a strawberry farm. There we found strawberry
flowers in full bloom and some fruits also. There's one stall for
strawberry juice and ice cream with strawberry.
Elephant's head - Mahabaleshwar
Our last places
of visit were two temples of Otibaleshwar and Mahabaleshwar,
after whom the name of this place was derived. Our tour by
bus ends at 06.30 PM and we took shelter in a lodge.
Western Ghat Hills - Mahabaleshwar
: We got ready and left the lodge for the bus-stand.
We had our breakfast there and left Mahabaleshwar by bus at
09.45 AM, and reached Ganapatipule at 04.40 PM. Later
on, we went to the beach and to the temple of Ganapatiji.
We took shelter in a lodge.
Temple of Ganapatiji - Ganapatipule
Sea Beach - Ganapatipule
: We left for the beach before sunrise, to witness the
sunrise but there were clouds on the east. We had Darshan of Ganapatiji
and went round the temple, known as 'Porikroma,' - the road
goes round a hill and the hill has taken the shape of Ganapatiji,
by nature itself at the base over which the temple has been constructed.
2-11-06 : Some of us went to the temple to worship at 05.00 AM.
We had our breakfast, and left Ganapatipule by a Tata Sumo at
11.05 AM, and reached Ratnagiri at 11.40 AM. By the same vehicle,
we visited Potit Pawan Mondir, Temple of Bishnuji and Lakshmiji, the birth place and residence of Tilak, Bhagawati temple and Fort
built by Shivaji. We also visited a museum, that was a palace of King
Shiva – Raja, who was exiled from Burma (now known as Myanamar). We
reached Ratnagiri Railway Station at 02.45 PM, and took rest at the
Arabian Sea Through The Fort Wall, Ratnagiri
: Scheduled departure time of our train for Mumbai,
was at 12.20 AM, but she was running late by one and half
hours. Anyhow, we arrived at Lokmanya Tilak station
at 09.48 AM. After taking shelter in a lodge, we had our lunch,
and left for sight-seeing. One after the other, we had been
to Ballard Pier, Green Gate, Mumbai
Natural Historic Society, Nariman Point, Commercial Complex,
Assembly House, Air India Building, Natural Centre for performing
Arts, Marine Drive, and then we went to Malabar Hills. We
also went to see the Hanging Gardens,
Boot House etc.
Next, we went to
Gateway Of India and nearby,
there were two statues of Swami Vivekananda and Shivaji. Finally
we reached Juhu Beach and back to the lodge.
Boot House, Mumbai
Marine Drive, Mumbai
From Gateway of India, we started by a launch for Elephanta
Caves at 12.15 PM. There at the cave no. 1, the statue of Lord
Shiva was very nicely carved. In other Caves, carved statues were
beautiful. The sculptures of the Elephanta Caves were built between
450 to 750 AD, on an area of 5000 square metres, and there are 28
pillars. We returned to the Gateway of India by launch and then
we went to our lodge, picked up our luggage and headed for Lokmanya
Tilak station. Our train for Howrah, Jnaneshwari Express started
at 08.35 PM.
Gateway Of India, Mumbai
: Whole day and night was spent in the train, discussing
6-11-06 ; We arrived at Howrah station, one and
half hours late, at 4.15 AM. We were back at our Home, Sweet Home.
Contributing Traveller: Mr. Debashis Bose
is a 72 year old retired Railway employee whose hobbies include travelling
& tourism, photography and amateur radio. He is a nature lover and prefers
to visit little known places as opposed to big cities with the aim of
enjoying nature in abundance. Before going on his regular tours with
family and friends, Debashis spends time in studying different places and
collecting information about them. On returning from the visit, he
prepares a travelogue, with sketch map & photos, so that he can inspire
others to visit these places and enjoy nature.
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