Diveagar….Aah! What a splendid place. Some places are very close to your heart and you end up travelling to that place time and again . Only the reason changes. Every time you visit, one notices the big changes and some times there are small but subtle changes in the place. Our first visit to Divegar was in 2008. We had just bought a new Enfield Bullet and a brand new Cramster and wanted to desperately take go for a ride somewhere far but close! 200 kms seemed just fine.
First Bike trip!
Diveagar lies about 200 kms from Thane. One can take the old Mumbai- Goa highway from Wadkal Naka. The Mumbai Goa highway is getting upgraded to 4 lane highway. Hence there are lots of traffic disruptions and in some places one has to simply switch of the engine and recline the seat and relax for 15-20 minutes. My advise is to avoid this route totally. Instead take the Mumbai-Pune expressway and exit at the Khopoli ramp and then proceed towards Pali Ganpathi temple and then join the Mumbai -Goa highway at Wakan. 20 kms from Wakan lies a small town of Kolad. Again, Kolad brings home some great memories. A water rafting expedition with some of my friends ended with an everlasting memory of launching an all out attack on Hotel Prabhakar. I remember the hotel staff had a tough time catering to our fast and furious food demands. At last we finished our lunch so we thought.. couple of my friends spied on the gravy of a much devoured chicken handi. A call for steamed rice was made and it was poured into the vessel and Lo…Handi rice is ready. The general feeling was that we had invented a new dish which will take the culinary world by storm!
Since that time, a halt at Hotel Prabhakar became mandatory. Food is good and the service is extremely efficient. 32 kms from Kolad lies Mangaon. Once your reach Mangaon, drive till the far end of the town and take a right towards Mhasla Ghats. The drive becomes extremely pleasant and pleasurable.Winding roads ,rustle of leaves, the simple landscape and the temples which dots the hamlets we passed by becomes a heady cocktail indeed.
Diveagar in 2008 was a quaint little hamlet. Anant Parker’s khanaval (lunch home)was one of the most sought after eatery. We had to call them before hand and tell them our preferences. Hotel Pinaki was another place to stay. Cut to current scene, each street has a khanaval and place of stay to suit your budget. Diveagar came into prominence when an idol of Ganesh in gold was unearthed from one of the courtyard of a local resident. The idol was installed in a temple and gradually devotees began to throng the temple. Recently, the idol was stolen and melted. Tragic!
There were hardly any visitors then and we felt we were on a private beach. But now, all kind of aqua sport activities have sprung up with the usual accompaniment of carts on the beach serving various kinds of food.
Couple of years back, we had been to Diveagar during monsoon and we had delicious hot steaming modak right on the beach with rains falling on us like needles. What an experience!
Cut to our recent visit, just as we were about to enter Divegar, the local police diverted us to a new route. The locals, on enquiry ,informed us that we would have to travel another 4-6 kms along Aravi Beach and then we would reach Diveagar. We did not mind the detour at all since we already had planned to visit Aravi Beach during the course of our stay. By the time we reached Aravi, the sun was bidding goodbye to us and what a sight. There is always something about a setting sun, beach and the wind. I think it plays havoc with our brain and somehow manages to soothe our sensory nerves and leaves us spellbound and make us wonder the how Mother Nature manages to paint those colours in the sky.
Approach to Aravi Beach
We reached Diveagar and we checked in to Sai Shraddha Resort. The resort is good with clean rooms. The kitchen staff was extremely courteous and the food was exactly as per our requirement and taste. For sea food lovers, it doesn’t get better than this. Since we had been during the Holi weekend, i think the rentals were in premium.
Sunset at Diveagar
From Diveagar, one can visit Harihareshwar temple which is about 40 kms south of Diveagar.
Please do not forget to climb the flight of steps which starts right beside the temple and ends on a high perched cleft. From there you can go down by taking a steep flight of steps and enjoy marvellous sight of waves slamming against the rocks with Pandits chanting hymns to sooth the souls of those passed away. Harihareshwar is also called Dakshinakashi.