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Leisure Maharashtra
 
Bhatye

There are several Site-seeing options around Bhatye. 

  • Light house
  • Birthplace of Lokmanya Tilak
  • Bhagwati Mandir
  • Mirkar Wada

There are also excursion options around Bhatye:

  • Ganpatipule Pilgrim Centre
  • Pawas : "Samadhi Sthan" Swami Swarupanand, Purangad Fort
  • Derwan : "Shivshrusti" a mini museum - Parashuram Mandir - Chiplun
  • Guhagar : Virgin Beach - Hedvi : Ganesh Mandir
  • Dapoli : Agriculture College

Bhatye Beach, Bhatye Tourism Bhatye is on the outskirts of Ratnagiri town. You can camp across the bridge in MTDC's tent resort, amidst whispering casuarinas. Water sports facilities at Bhatye offer you some exiciting options. Join the excursion to Pawas to see the Swaroopanand Swami Ashram.

Getting there :

By Air : Nearest airport is Mumbai.

By Rail : Nearest railhead is Ratnagiri 6 kms. on Konkan Railway.

By Road : Mumbai-Ratnagiri, 356 kms.

State Transport buses ply from Mumbai, Kolhapur and Pune to Ratnagiri and also from Ratnagiri to Pawas via Bhatye.

   

Essel World

Mumbai's first and largest amusement park, Essel World, located just a few kilometres outside city limits at Gorai, is situated on a green landscaped, island on an area of 64 acres. It can be reached by ferry from Gorai creek or Marve beach.

Alternately you can drive down by Western Express Highway, take the Bhayender turn and reach Gorai Island. Essel World offers over thirty four thrilling and scintilllating rides, games and amusements.

Ridings for Children:
Commando Park, Kinder Carousel, Yard Train, Caterpillar, Big Apple, Mini Tele Combat, Junior Crazy Cars, Boat Ride.

Ridings for Adults:
Zyclone, Rock-o-plane, Snowball Rainbow, Senior Dodgem, Senior Crazy Cars, Super Round Up, Rock-N-Roll, Slippery Sultan.

Family Rides:
Maha Nimboo Dive, Monster, Tilt-A-Wheel, Fun Net, Zipper Dipper, Road Train, Highway Cars, Haunted Hotel.

Besides these rides there are also coin-operated games, like Crazy Shuttle, Derby Racer, Aqua Blasta, Water Lazer etc. For the food lovers, Essel World caters to all palates. Whether your choice is quick pizza or a bhel-puri or a leisurely chinese meal, one outlet or other, spread throughout the park.

Essel World has recently started Wet World (a park within the park) with separate entry charges. It is a dream come true in the hot summer months. This has six water-related rides - Rain pool, Splash pool, Croc pool, Lazy river, Large activity pool and Small activity pool.
 
 
 
Murud Kashid
 
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Kashid Beach Resort is located just off Kashid Beach on the Konkan Belt at 30 kms from Alibaug and 135 kms from Mumbai (Maharashtra, India).

Kashid is reputed to have one of the best beaches on konkan belt. Kashid beaches are normally uninhabited during weekdays and only sparsely inhabited during weekends.

PHANSAD WILDLIFE SANCTUARY (Sanctuary Asia Aricle)

A withering dry leaf reveals itself to be  a blue oakleaf. A brightly coloured black  and orange rock turns out to be a fungoid  frog. At a distant, the melancholy, romantic  call of the curlew beckons. As you walk further, a shallow depression in the short  grass reveals two young Red-wattled  Lapwings as the concerned parents fly  noisily above.  An open grassland patch on a plateau  (ideal for raising lapwing young), streaks of  hardened, black laterite, thick forests, hills  and the Arabian sea — what a mix of  habitats! 

The Phansad Wildlife Sanctuary  is an amazing revelation. Primarily a bird  sanctuary, Phansad is also home to a whole array of insects, amphibians and mammals.  Spread across 52.71 sq. km., Phansad is located in the Murud and Roha talukas of Raigad District in Maharashtra. As you drive further from Kashid towards Murud- Janjira, you come across the board of the Phansad VanyajeevAbhyaranya or Phansad Wildlife Sanctuary. 

The gentle hills of this Protected Area are located between the northern Sahyadri range and the western coast of India and though these hills are not directly connected to the main Western Ghats range, the species found here are quite similar. The forest is mainly moist teak, southern moist mixed deciduous forest and west coast semi-evergreen. Ain, teak, kinjal,  dhavada, jamba, hirda are some of the main species found here. Mango and ficus are  found along the stream. There is also a patch of mangrove vegetation to the southwest. A number of endemic flora and fauna species are found here.  One can see wild boars digging up roots, frogs that are endemic to the Western Ghats, limbless amphibians or caecelians, and White-bellied Sea Eagles soaring high above. 

Barking deer, sambar and leopard are also found in this coastal woodland ecosystem. Insect-lovers will enjoy discovering the varied species on offer. Phansad's star attraction is, of course, the beautiful giant Indian squirrel but this arboreal animal is shy and wary and not so easy to discover. If one is really lucky, you can watch one slide down a tree before it slips away into the dense undergrowth.  This is definitely a birding paradise with a number of species including the Black Eagle, Malabar Pied Hornbill, Pompadour  Green Pigeon, Yellow Footed Green Pigeon,  Asian Paradise Flycatcher, Forest Wagtail,  Black Drongo, Shikra, Brahmini Kite, iora,  Spotted Owlet, Plum-headed Parakeet,  Common Wood Shrike, Golden Oriole,  Paddy field Pipit and Green Billed Malkoha found here. About 71 butterfly species such  as southern birdwing, the tiny pale grass-  blue, the large blue mormon, painted lady,  spot sword tail and common map can be  seen here. An ideal time to observe them is  the morning when they bask in the sun.  

The rulers of the janjira state had preserved  this forest as a hunting reserve. After years of  exploitation and degradation, it was declared a sanctuary in 1986. The ruins of the Siddi Nawab's bungalow at Kesauli offers a splendid view of the Kashid beach. A temple of the Dhawir Vardhini who is revered by the Aajri tribals is located inside the reserve. Winter is the best time to visit the park for bird and animal sightings.  Explore this sanctuary and take in the fresh earthy smell of the jungle air... enjoy the sight of birds and butterflies and a whole variety of insects and amphibians. Phansad is a wilderness not frequented by too many people and the forest reflects this with its green vistas and varied wildlife that will tempt you to stay back.

Fact Box

  • Best time to visit: November to March.

  • By Air: Mumbai (140 km.)

  • By rail: Roha (30 km.)

  • By Road: From Mumbai via Alibaug (50 km.)

  • or Pune (246 km.)

Lonar

LonarLonar  Leisure

It has a history that goes back more than 50,000 years, carved out when a meteor struck it. Lonar Lake, near Lonar village in the Buldhana District of Maharashtra, is a source of excitement not only for tourists but also for the scientist community.

Lonar is the third natural salt-water lake in the world, with a diameter of 1800 meter. It ranks third amongst the world’s five largest craters.
The Lonar Crater is the only meteorite crater in basaltic rock, very much like the craters on the moon. It is a scientific phenomenon and a

national treasure that must be preserved. The crater has not only been attracting numerous foreigners to study the impact of a meteorite that occurred 50,000 years ago, but also tourists from around the country to enjoy the beauty and visit the temples, some of which date around the 11th century. A road moves around the upper edge of the crater with lookout areas. Unfortunately the path inside the crater, along the lake runs only part of the way. Though there are others that one can stroll along, admiring the beauty and tranquility of the place. Peacocks and monkeys are sighted in abundance as are numerous ducks and partridges. Winter, brings migratory flamingoes.

The soil where the meteor hit and created the crater is extremely fertile. The area in and around became lush green and has led to the growth of an incredible ecology, supporting numerous species of birds and animals. The animals and birds visible here are migratory Flamingoes, Indian Moorhen, Coot, Dabchick, Langoors, Chinkaras, Peacocks and Gazelles.


Facts at a Glance

State : Maharashtra
Area : 1.80 kms (Diameter)
132 mts (Deep)
Best Season :
Lonar can be  visited any time of the year . However the best time is winter -
January to be precise. An excellent month since the sun is not too hot, the crater is full of water and you can explore it at leisure.


History


According to scientists, about 50000 years ago a massive meteor entered into the Earth's gravitational forces range. 60 meter long and weighing 20 lac ton it was racing at a speed of 25 kms per second towards the planet.

When it struck the earth the energy released was equivalent to that released by six-megaton atom bombs. The impact was so severe that rocks from all sides came to the surface and reached the height of 20 meters. So strong was the impact that it left a massive crater 170 meter deep and with 1800 meter in diameter. Today it is a natural salt-water lake.

The lake was first brought to notice in 1823 by British officer C J E Alexander. In 1896, American geologist G K Gilbert conducted studies to prove that Lonar was created due to meteor strike.

An extensive study conducted on the spot under the leadership of Prof. K Fredrikson by officials of Geological Survey of India, United States Geological survey and other institutions, proved using Cosmic Ray-dating that the lake was created by a meteor hit 50000 years ago.

The officials dug up the heart of the lake and conducted experiments on the material gathered from there, before making their announcement public. The scientists also found some minerals found mostly in meteor hit areas. Traces of Sodium Carbonate and magnetic properties were also observed in the soil there.

Nawegaon Bandh

Nawegaon, Vidarbha's most popular forest resort, is the ultimate adventure spot. It is said to have been buit by Kolu Patel Kholi in the beginning of the 18th century. There's a picturesque lake set in the midst of hill ranges, with watchtowers that enable you to view wildlife.

Make sure you visit the deer park, the Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, the three beautiful gardens and the children's park. Almost 60% of the bird species found in Maharashtra have been recorded in Nawegaon. Every winter, huge flocks of migratory ducks visit the lake. Sign up for jungle safari and you may see a leopard, sloth bear, gaur, sambar, chital or a langoor.

Also stay in the unique tree-top retreat. And for more excitement, hire a power or sail boat at the lake.

Getting there :

By Air : Nearest airport is Nagpur, 142 kms

By Rail : Nearest railhead is Devalgaon, 1 km. On South Eastern Railway.

By Road : Mumbai-Nawegaon, 995 kms. (Mumbai-Dhule-Akola-Amravati-Nagpur-Bhandara-Nawegaon) Nagpur-Nawegaon, 132 kms. (Nagpur-Bhandara-Sakoli-Newegaon). Devalgaon-Nawegaon, 1 km.

State Transport buses ply from Bhandara, Nagpur and Devalgaon to Nawegaon.