Ratnagiri: The Budget Alternative of Goa

5th Jan 2018


Photo of Ratnagiri: The Budget Alternative of Goa by Vagabond

I know Goa is Goa, I understand all the emotions & romanticism involving Goa but still, if you want to get the taste of Goa without curving a hole in your pocket then Ratnagiri is for you. Planning a Goa trip needs time and money so if you want to relax in some splendid beaches this weekend without worrying much, head straight to Ratnagiri.

How to reach Ratnagiri:

There are several ways to reach Ratnagiri.

Train: Ratnagiri is well connected with all the major cities of Maharashtra. It is one of the main railway stations of the Konkan Railway and all trains including Rajdhani stop here.

Bus: There are plenty of overnight buses from Mumbai & Pune.

Car: Ratnagiri is just few hours drive from Mumbai (348 km), Pune (305 km) & Nasik (486 km).

Air: The nearest major airport is in Mumbai. From there, you can take a bus, train or car to reach Ratnagiri.

Photo of Ratnagiri, Maharashtra, India by Vagabond

Things to do in Ratnagiri:

Beaches: There are numerous scenic beaches in & around Ratnagiri. Most of the beaches are not much commercialized so you can enjoy a peaceful time there.

Bhatye & Mandavi Beach:

These two beaches are within the city premise. They are just 10 minutes drive apart, you can even see one beach from the other one. Mandavi is comparatively more commercialized & famous but I personally liked the peaceful Bhatye beach more.

Mandavi Beach

Photo of Mandavi Beach, Sadanand Wadi, Ratnagiri, Maharashtra, India by Vagabond

Aare & Ware Beach:

These two beaches are hidden gems, just half an hour drive away from the main city. They can give a good competition to any beaches of Goa.

Aare Beach: a lesser known, peaceful & scenic beach

Photo of Ratnagiri: The Budget Alternative of Goa by Vagabond

Ware is just 5 minutes’ drive from Aare & the road from Aare to Ware offers a breath-taking view.

Ganapatipule & Malgund Beach:

Ganapatipule famous for its beach & Swayambhu Ganpati temple (Which is situated on the beach) is around 29 km from the Ratnagiri city.

Another famous beach in Ganapatipule is Malgund. Less crowded & cleaner than Ganapatipule beach.

A mesmerizing Sunset at Malgund Beach

Photo of Malgund Beach, Ratnagiri, Maharashtra, India by Vagabond

Forts & Light Houses:

Ratnadurg Fort & Ratnagiri Lighthouse:

This sea fort is a major tourist attraction & offers a breath-taking view of the Sunset. The fort is a complete ruin excluding the Bhagawati Temple. The temple is famous among the locals as well as the tourists. The fort closes at sharp 6 o’clock

Sunset & History

Photo of Ratnagiri: The Budget Alternative of Goa by Vagabond

Just 10 minutes’ drive away from the fort is the Ratnagiri Lighthouse. The lighthouse remains open from 4-5 pm. You can enjoy the enthralling view of the Arabian sea & the Sahyadri range from here.

Jaigad Fort & Lighthouse:

Jaigad is around 45 km from Ratnagiri city & 19 km from Ganapatipule. The Lighthouse is situated in a beautiful location and the view from the top is amazing. It remains open from 4-5 pm and has an entry fee of Rs. 10/head.

View from the Jaigad Lighthouse

Photo of Jaigad Light House, Ratnagiri, Maharashtra, India by Vagabond

Monuments & Museums:

Thibaw Palace & Tilak Ali Museum:

Thibaw palace is a stone palace, built by the British for the King of Myanmar Thibaw during his exile phase and Tilak Ali Museum is the birthplace of freedom fighter Bal Gangadhar Tilak. Both are simple palaces but worth a visit.

Thibaw Palace

Photo of Thibaw Palace, Abhyudhya Nagar, Ratnagiri, Maharashtra, India by Vagabond

Marine Museum:

The Museum really has some good collections & some cool fishes. This place is a must visit while in Ratnagiri.

White Spotted Puffer

Photo of Ratnagiri: The Budget Alternative of Goa by Vagabond


Famous temples like Karhateshwar temple (Jaigad), Marleshwar temple, Kunakeshwar, Swayambhu Ganpati temple(Ganapatipule) are nearby and could be covered in one day.

Adventure Activities:

If you want some adventure in your life you can try Scuba Diving in Mirya beach & Paramotoring in the Malgund beach.

Paramotoring@Malgund beach

Photo of Ratnagiri: The Budget Alternative of Goa by Vagabond

Places to eat in Ratnagiri:

Ratnagiri is heaven for seafood lovers. You can taste best seafood in Vivek & Amantran. Apart from seafood try out the authentic kokanasthi bramhin thali, its superb.

Tandoori Surmai

Photo of Ratnagiri: The Budget Alternative of Goa by Vagabond

Best Time to Visit Ratnagiri:

Ratnagiri is a good place to visit in all season for different reasons.

Winter(November-March): For the Beaches.

Summer(April-June): For Alphonso Mango.

Monsoon(July-October): For Nature.

Me, chilling at the Ratnadurg Fort

Photo of Ratnagiri: The Budget Alternative of Goa by Vagabond

Photo Credit: Shamani Panja, Ankita Hajra

Find out more about Ratnagiri & our experience in my blog: The full guide of Ratnagiri

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