Wildernest-Goa and Sindhudurg 4

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Where I stayed
Mayekar's Holiday home

Flag of India  , Mahārāshtra,
Sunday, December 27, 2009

The day started off with a short walk towards the Malvan Jetty. The plan was to go to the Sindhudurg fort - a half an hour boat ride in the sea.
We got our tickets and some 30 odd people assembled and got into the smallish diesel powered boat that ferries people to the fort.
This was an amusing experience. I felt as if though I had traveled back 50 year's in time. The "Swades" experience. Old fashioned boats filled the harbor giving the whole area a rustic feel.

It was amazing to say the least. And then seeing the fort looming up ahead in the middle of the sea was an experience. The fort took nearly 30 years to build stands as a testimony to the foresight at that time to keep foreign powers at bay.
There's not much to explore inside the fort, but the fort itself. There's a watch tower, a Shivaji temple etc. You can catch some wonderful vistas of the arabian sea as well as the mainland.

A coral reef was discovered just beside this fort a few year's back by an individual called Dr Sarang Kulkarni. This discovery changed the lives of the residents here and catapulted Sindhudurg as a tourist destination. A lot of private operators offer guided snorkeling tours of the reefs.
Snorkeling was probably the highlight of our trip!. We got into a boat and put on our snorkeling gear and were helped into the water by a guide who was kind enough to answer all our questions on marine life.
It was an experience of a lifetime to see life underneath the sea, the school of fish swimming and moving together, fishes of different colors and sizes as well as the beautiful multi-colored corals that adorned the sea bed.
Once you get on to the island, there are various operators inside who can help arrange for the trips.
After a refreshing snorkeling experience we headed back to the mainland in the swades style boat. Another intriguing aspect to mention here is that tea is  not available on the island fort.

It was time for lunch and we sought the highly recommended Chintamani lunch home. The restaurant was packed with tourists and after a bit we finally had a table for us and Malvani Thali to grub.
After some rest in the afternoon we walked towards the Rock Garden by the sea to catch the sunset. From there on we walked towards the well known Ganesh temple. The temple is beautiful and is a must see for everyone visiting Malvan. The only problem is that the streets are not well lit and there are very few people on these inner roads. Peepal trees line up both sides  and with either very dimly lit street-lights or none at all, it can be quite unnerving.

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