Konkan road is a route for beautiful sights. But I’m in a situation where I have to move on before I could completely enjoy the beauty. I have to reach Ratnagiri before getting dark. When I took a turn, immediately I saw a valley. I said; Wow! I stopped the vehicle and took my camera. There are beautiful frames everywhere.
When my photography sessions got over, I saw a tea shop built with coconut leaves. The shopkeeper looks like a Malayali. So I decided to drink a tea from there and found out that he wasn’t a Malayali. He is from Maharashtra itself. The people who stop to see this viewpoint are his customers. He has a relation with Kerala. His niece is married to a Malayali in Kollam. It was a love marriage. When I was talking to him, I noticed a railway line going through the middle of the valley. The shopkeeper told me it is the Konkan railway. I have travelled in Mangala express through this route many times. But I never knew this place had such beauty. Moreover, Right now, I’m enjoying the beauty from the top of a hill in an aerial view. I wonder how beautiful will be the view of a train moving through the middle of the fields. I wished to take a picture of that scene. I asked the shopkeeper whether if there is any chance for a train to come. It was 9:30 am and he told me, at 11 o’ clock there is a train to come. So I decided to stay to catch that amazing sight. I knew it’s going to be worth that one and a half hour.
While I was waiting, a lot of people came to the viewpoint and went. The shopkeeper made bread and omelette for me. I also drank two or three tea in between that time. It’s 11:30 and I stayed holding my camera, waiting for the train. Nobody can predict the Indian railway time. When it was 11:40, the Mumbai to Goa express came, moving like a millipede on a wall. I took several pics without taking my eyes from the viewfinder. Within seconds the train passed. I continued my journey satisfied by the beautiful pictures I got from that viewpoint.
The journey is towards Kerala, climbing down the hills. But before that, I have to pass through Goa and Karnataka. I started to see the south Indian beauty of nature. It’s only 60 kilometres left to reach Ratnagiri. Ratnagiri can be seen early morning on a train journey to New Delhi. It is the place of “Vada Pav” and “Alphonso mangoes”. I just entered Maharashtra’s most important tourist place Ratnagiri in my motorcycle. I went to that town very excited. Before getting dark, I took a room in a lodge. It was a very good room for 400 Rupees. I quickly removed my thick boots, riding jacket, baggy jeans and wore slippers with shorts and t-shirt and went outside to see the sights of Ratnagiri at night. It’s good to walk after a long ride. I have to take care of my health to continue riding. I went to sleep after roaming around and dinner. I can only remember going to bed. Then I opened my eyes at 7 am. When it was about 8 am, I went exploring Ratnagiri in my motorcycle.
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Ratnagiri is a very beautiful shore among the Konkan areas. The main specialty of this place is the gorgeous beaches. Ratnagiri district has a 167-kilometre-long coastal area. Even if it is known as a coastal region, 85% of this place is Mountains and hills. It is 180-kilometre-long highland. There are several rivers which start from Sahya and flows west to join the sea. The Sahya mountain is the only reason for the abundant water and greenery in Ratnagiri.
It is said that Ratnagiri district has Alphonso mangoes cultivating in 80000 hectares of farmland. The mangoes are named after the Portuguese general and military expert Mr Afonso de Albuquerque who helped to build the Portuguese colony in India. The Portuguese are the ones who introduced grafting among Indians for cultivating these kinds of rare species of mangoes.
Most of the natives in Ratnagiri are fishermen. And that’s why Ratnagiri has a lot of harbors. They are less crowded and very beautiful to watch. There are many boat manufacturers in Ratnagiri. Most of them are fibre boat manufacturers. There is some amazing view where the river and sea join together.
Rathnagiri also has one of the best cliff beaches in India. I watched the waves of the Arabian sea constantly nourishing the sea banks in Sindusagar for a long time. Ratnadurga fort is the most important sight in Ratnagiri. The three sides of this fort are surrounded by the Arabian sea. It is 1300 metre-long and 1000 metre-wide and is made in the shape of a horseshoe. It is built on 120 acre of land on a hilltop. There is a Hanuman temple at the entrance of this place. The temple is very old but I guess it’s renewed. In 1670 the ownership was handed over to Chathrapathi Shivaji. Then after a lot of wars and fights, the British captured Ratnadurg in 1818.
In the evening, I went to the most famous beach in Ratnagiri called Murud beach to watch the sights. Still, this place is very less crowded. We can say that the coastal areas of south start from here. If we travel a 100 or 200 kilometres south through this coast, we could reach Goa. Because it’s less crowded, this beach is very clean and unpolluted.
Translated by Cameo Pieorit Christy