My work schedule story is the same as many working professionals across the world… busy life, hectic schedules and no decent break whatsoever. Weekends are busy with preparing for weekdays and for a comfortable life ahead.
And, the days rolled on…
Then one day, one of my best friends, living in Murud called me. He had scheduled a trip for few of our best chums to the Kashid Beach on the ensuing Friday.
The plan was a one-day getaway… starting early Friday morning and returning to base the next day.
I live in Ahmadabad, so I decided to take a flight on Thursday evening and night-stay at my friend’s house at Murud. The others lived nearby and had no qualms whatsoever to start at early on Friday morning, around 4.30 a.m.
So, off we went, six school friends with some water and few snacks to the Kashid Beach. The cool November weather was best suited for our travel in my friend’s Maruti XL6.
We reached Kashid by 5.35 a.m.
The first view was of the amazing azure waters, white sand and swaying casuarinas shrubs and trees was ethereal. Located between two popular locals Alibaug and Murud, Kashid beach is a beach-lover’s paradise. It has the cleanest waters and a sparkling white sand beach.
Getting down from an hour’s long ride, we stretched ourselves in anticipation for some fun under the sun.
My friend knew some anglers who took us with them on a deep sea fishing expedition into the Arabian Sea waters.
We had some tea and snacks en route.
Since we knew them, they did not charge much. However, if one is looking for professional services, a small payment is to be rendered. The anglers who offer this service provide snacks and tea as well as life jackets during these fishing trips. The catch we net can be retained as well.
In our case, our rods did not catch much fish. The fishermen however netted fish species such as “Rays, croakers and Groupers.
Later we all went for a swim. The waters are gentle here with no high waves, safe for people with basic swimming skills. One can even venture into the waters by walk, as it is shallow up to a short distance.
Water sports were the next on our agenda at the Kashid beach. There were many options at this beach – Jet Ski, banana boats, parasailing. Scuba diving and snorkeling. Horse rides and horse cart rides are also well-sought activities here.
We friends opted for snorkeling and Jet Ski for the first time in our lives and enjoyed very much. The colorful hammocks tied to trees beckoned us after taking our lunch.
Two of my friends decided that they would extend the stay at Kashid to two days. They hence decided to go trekking. They started to Phansad to watch nature up-close. An erstwhile hunting ground for princes, presently Phansad is a great place for nature lovers. The place is home to amazing creatures of the wild such as Giant squirrel, Mouse deer, Hyena and Sri Lankan frog-mouth.
There are many tourist attractions near the Kashid beach such as Janjira Fort, Kanakeshwar forest, Alibaugh beach. However, the remaining four of us preferred to visit the Padmadurg Fort in the afternoon. Locals advised us to hire a personal boat top reach there.
This Fort is also called Kasa Fort as it is built on Kasa Hill. It lies just 10 kms from the more famous Janjira Fort. One needs to take permission of Customs/Navy to visit this fort.
Spread over 9 acres, the Fort we visited has a celebrated past. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj built it in the year 1676 to quell the exploits of Siddis of Janjira fort. The purpose was to oversee activities in Arabian Sea.
This fort was built with Lime and stone has six bastions. As soon as we entered we saw the Pakali Buruj (bastion), named so as it is shaped like a lotus leaf. There were also numerous lotus motifs on various parts in fort. The Archaeological Department of India found about 250 cannon balls in 2012. Presently 40 cannons remain on location. We walked past the ruins along with our guide who was describing various parts of the fort.
Our footfalls fell on every inch of the fort. We friends were greatly amazed at the engineering skills and technical aspects of the Maratha’s who built such a fort in middle of the sea.
After a hectic and adventurous day out it was back to the beach for dinner. One of the reasons we visited this place was the lure of delicious sea food. Kashid did not disappoint us.
We had many options for dinner…
Some top restaurants here included Green Valley Restaurant and Bala Krishna Restaurant, Patil Khanaval and Neel Garden Restaurant.
We opted for one that had authentic Konkani food on the offer – Kombadi-wade, Kelphoolachi Bhajji, Jackfruit Bhajji, Sol-Kadhi and bombeel. For dessert, we tried the modak.
There are other alternatives too. Small joints on the northern side of the beach serve delicious seafood, Konkani chicken and mutton. One can also visit one of the home stays for dependable ghar ka Khana.
After a sumptuous dinner, we rounded off the day with camping on the beach and gazing at the innumerable stars in the clear sky. Saturday morning we left Kashid with many memories and a promise to visit it again soon.
Kashid Beach is 125 km from Mumbai, around 170 km away from Pune
Best time to visit is between October to February. It is a good idea to visit here on weekdays to enjoy solitude and delectable Konkani meals.