When the Gods made this Earth, according to what many of us have been led to believe, they must have thought of keeping a few vacation destinations exclusively for themselves. And maybe that explains how, even in this mad and busy world of today, we have a place that has almost never been touched by a crowd, never yet been spoilt by the excessive commercialisation that the human race is so famous for. There are many such places here and one of them has a name called Harihareshwar.
Lying peacefully along the Konkan border of Maharashtra, this place is a mere 200kms from Mumbai and a travel time of just a little less than 2 hours from Navi Mumbai. If you ever want to experience the sheer joy of seeing a beach and a hill station at the same time then this drive is for you. We travelled in the month of October, the drive up the hills was breathtaking and we were surrounded by clouds. As we drove downhill the beach spread in front of us as if by magic, it took our breath away. You have to be there at least once in your life to know that this will be one of the best drives you have ever had. The road is a little bumpy at a few stretches and those who have a problem with hill drives are advised to carry adequate remedies (read Lemon juice and Hajmola) as the hill curves are pretty sharp.
And now for the details.....
Distance to destination by road: From Mumbai approx 200kms, from Pune approx 140 kms.
Time taken to reach destination by road: From Mumbai approx 3 hours and a little short of 2 hours from Navi Mumbai.
Connectivity: By air reach Mumbai and then you can either drive, hire a cab (approx Rs.3500-Rs.4000 rent). Tourist buses ply from Mumbai and Pune. By train the nearest station is Mangaon about 65kms from Harihareshwar.
Accomodation where we stayed: MTDC resort, District Raigad, Harihareshwar beach.
Contact Info: 02147-226036.
Check-in Time: 10:30am
Check-Out time: 09:00am
Type of accomodation: Konkan House AC.
Room rates: Rs.1500-Rs.2000/- per night as per 2009.
Room Info: Spacious and clean, double bed which is comfortable enough for 2 adults and a child.1 extra bed can be placed on request. A huge balcony overlooking palm trees and the beach. Attached bathroom equipped with a hot water system. Clean and spacious. TV and Intercom that can be used to converse with the staff and with occupants in other rooms.
Type of food: The best bet here is surely the day's fresh catch. Be sure to have a word with the chef who will personally guide you about what will suit your taste. We had a lot of help in deciding the fish as we were travelling with a baby. Also check out the onion pakodas, they are simply a must have with those steaming pots of tea. The North-Indian is alright, as this is not their forte and expecting so would simply be a mistake on our part. South Indian fare is also delightful.
The resort is extremely picturesque and has a sea-side open breakfast area, a park with swings for the kids and lots of greens where you can walk and spend a quiet private date with nature.
Food to be had at the local market: A must-visit place for all the fish lovers is a small eatery called Hotel Prasad in the local market. Ask anyone at the resort and they will guide you, they did so to us too.
Nearby attractions: Shreevardhan beach at a distance of approx 20 mins from Harihareshwar MTDC Resort. Apart from this there are several temples in and around Harihareshwar, one of the most famous being the Kalbhairav Temple. But I will not be able to shed any lights on the same as we were only attracted by the beach.
That’s more or the less the main info that you would need to take into consideration before planning a trip. Do so and have a wonderful time.... Happy travelling :)