Greed, Gold & Ghosts: The Story Of How This Creepy Village Became The Subject Of A Bollywood Film


A recent release and a visual extravaganza- the movie Tumbbad might have intrigued a lot of you with its stunning visuals and extraordinary landscapes. Most movies claim to be a work of fiction, negating any claims of resemblance with anything or anyone living or dead. But Tumbbad is based on the story of a village that goes by the same name and has a dark history attached to it. And to your delight or fright, Tumbad does exist.

Where is Tumbad?

Photo of Greed, Gold & Ghosts: The Story Of How This Creepy Village Became The Subject Of A Bollywood Film 1/2 by Kanj Saurav
Source: Google Maps

Tumbad is a small village in Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra, about 15 kms from the nearest town of Chiplun. Located between Jagbudi and Vashishti rivers, the village is home to about a thousand people.

What is the legend of Tumbad?

While the movie talks about the god Hastar, the son of mother earth who lost his prominence due to his greed for gold and grain, and hence got wiped off the history of being worshipped by humans, it is difficult to find any texts or folklore about the god Hastar in real life. Hence, justifying the premises set by the movie that the other gods damned Hastar for his avarice and cursed him that he won't be worshipped ever or be remembered. However, the locals do believe that there is a vast treasure lying underground in the area which was preserved by their ancestors, and that some Konkani Brahmans evoked the ghost like spirit of the forgotten god for their benefit. The ghost which returns to bless them with wealth while taking away their peace and contentment. It is said that the wealth comes with a curse which passes on to the future generations.

Photo of Greed, Gold & Ghosts: The Story Of How This Creepy Village Became The Subject Of A Bollywood Film 2/2 by Kanj Saurav

Is there a treasure in Tumbad?

If there is a treasure in gems and gold in Tumbad is something that will be difficult to know, however, Tumbad does have a natural treasure that fills the eyes with awe.

Located a few kilometres away from Koyna wildlife sanctuary, Tumbad itself is rich in natural beauty. Lying on the windward side of Western Ghats, it receives heavy rainfall throughout the year, and the rivers are rich natural breeding ground for crocodiles. Thus making crocodile safari a popular tourist attraction here.

Credits: rupeshtalaskar
Credits: pratik_pathak_photography

The Sawatsada Waterfalls at a distance of 10kms from Tumbad is the perfect place to spend your weekend.

Credits: akshay.p.pandit

The ruins of the Gowalkot Fort provide the closest resemblance to the scenes from the movie, the Vashishti river can be seen in its magnificent form from here.

Credits: wranzeeet

How to reach?

If Tumbad has captured your fascination, this is how you can visit it:

By Flight: The nearest airport is Lohegaon airport at Pune at a distance of 210kms

By Train: The nearest railhead is at Anjani on the Konkan railways at a distance of 8 kms. The nearest major railhead is at Khed at a distance of 29kms.

By Road: A 25km diversion from Khed on Bombay-Goa Highway (NH 66) will take you to Tumbad.

Where to Stay?

The Riverview Resort Chiplun is a 4-star hotel that will make for the best experience to enjoy the nature at Tumbad and Chiplun.

For budget travellers Hotel Vaibhav is a decent option.