I relocated to Mumbai three years back and my love for the ocean is increasing ever since. I have heard about the pristine beaches of Alibaug and always wanted to go there. Specially because beaches in Mumbai are over crowded and the sea is over polluted. So one morning, in January, I set out for a two day weekend trip to Alibaug with two of my friends, Deepak and Swapnil.
Day 1 :
I reached CST at 7:00 AM in the morning from Harbour line. Our plan was to meet at CST and then head out to Gateway of India, from where we were to catch ferry to Alibaug. We took a cab to Gateway of India and straightaway went for the ticket counter which were selling ferry tickets to Elephanta Caves and Alibaug. Meanwhile Deepak ordered some sandwiches from the nearby snack counter. We came to know that next ferry to Alibaug was supposed to leave in fifteen minutes, and the next ferry was after 45 minutes. So we hurried to board the ferry and somehow managed to board it in time. However the ferry didn’t leave the shore for the next 15 minutes.
The ferry ride was mesmerising with the refreshing morning breeze and playful waves. However it was short lived and we landed in Mandwa after 30 minutes, from here we boarded the bus provided by the operator towards Alibaug. The bus was passing through lush green roads with some old style small houses here and there. The bus left us at the Alibaug bus station.
There are three ways to go to Alibaug:
- By a ticket to Alibaug from Gateway of India. The ferry will take you to Mandwa and from there bus of the operator will be waiting to take you to Alibaug. The price of bus from Mandwa to Alibaug is included in the ticket itself.
- You should hurry up in taking seats in the bus as it can get petty crowded and you may have to complete your journey standing in the bus and you will miss the beautiful lush green roads.
- By Road:
- Government buses leave for Alibaug at regular intervals throughout the day from Mumbai. I know that some buses start from Dadar and may be from some other part though I am not sure.
- Or alternatively you can take your own vehicle.
Alibaug to Murud:
After having some refreshment at Alibaug we inquired about the bus to Murud. We had to wait for a while to catch the next bus. This journey was taking place at snails pace and it got really boring after a while. However I could see the untouched and clear sea shore now and then, the sight of which kept the bus journey lively. After deboarding the bus we took and auto ride to Murud Janjira fort.
There were not many restaurants there and food choices were limited. We had lunch at a small eatery and continued our journey towards fort in a small sailboat. This ride was bumpier than expected.
Sailors of the boat were telling us stories about the fort. I came to know that it is a 17th century fort built by Malik Amber for Nizamshah of Ahmednagar. This fort was never conquered by other kings. Even great Maratha King Shivaji could not capture this sea fort even after more than a dozen attempts. His son, Sambhaji also tried but failed and then he started construction of another sea fort, Padmadurg, near Janjira fort which was to be served as bastion for further attacks on Janjira.
It took us around two hours to explore the fort. Then we took a bus towards Alibaug and got down at Kashid beach just in time to catch the sunset. After sunset we headed towards the main road where there were many hotels. People also give rooms of their house for the night. We managed to get a decent room for three people at a reasonable price. The night went in eating Konkani style food and chit chat.
In the morning, we got freshen up, had breakfast and directly headed to the beach. This day was going to be an adventurous one. There were numerous activities offered on the beach such as Jet- Ski, Banana Ride and Horse ride.