Day 1: I reached Kudal, its 40 Km (approx) from tarkarli (1.5 hour by an auto). You will readily get autos outside the station. Our auto driver was quite friendly, providing us tips on places to visit and where to have meals. He showed us the backwater on the way to our resort, trying to familiarize us with the surrounding area. We reached our resort “blue sea resort” and were welcomed with their local snack “poha and Kokam sharbat”. The sharbat is to die for, tangy and refreshing (much needed post a long train journey). As our room was getting ready, we decided to take a walk around the area and found a home stay “Madekar”. I would recommend everyone to visit this place for its hospitality and warmth. We had our lunch there, I was served with “pomphert fry” in malvani style. Later in the day we headed to the Tarkarli beach, the water was perfect to calm oneself and get some tan. This is not the best season as it gets a little hot in the noons (best time is from October to March) while the morning and evenings are pleasant. The beach is not commercial and is devoid of shacks and other sources of entertainment. However the locals offers camel rides for the tourist, though they don’t press you hard with their selling.In tarkarli there is largely a concept of home stay where the owner will prepare the food of your choice, for which you need to let them know in advance. Everywhere you will get similar food and hospitality (with a lot of warmth among people).The most peculiar thing about the locals is they are not in a race of competing with each other, everyone praising their neighborhood, a rare thing for me coming from a city always busy in their own survival.Later in the evening we had dinner at the “Medekar” (to be honest, I had all my meals there). The family of mother and son and both are lovely cooks. I had some mouth watering “prawn curry” androti. They also helped us to make our day 2 plan.
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282 Kms from Kudal
Best time to visit - January,February,March,October,November,December
Called the Oxford of the East, Pune is a bubbling cosmopolitan city. A large student hub, this city loves art, culture and theatre. The Sahyadri hill range of the Western Ghats makes this destination ideal for hiking and wildlife spotting. A shower of rain brings the city alive. The Agha Khan Palace of Pune is a sprawling complex with emerald green gardens and sprawling lawns, perfect for a casual stroll. The Shaniwarwada is an ancient structure built by the Peshwas and the ruins of this marvellous architecture can still be seen in the city. Dedicated to the brave hearts of the Indian Army, the National War Museum is a popular tourist destination and houses militia paraphernalia. Those interested in meditation can get day passes from the Osho International Meditation Resort, which is very popular with tourists. Handcrafted beer, baked goodies at the Kayani Bakery on East Street and eateries such as Touche the Sizzler, Malaka Spice and Dario's will complete your trip here.
60 Kms from Kudal
This is the capital of the state of Goa and is probably the smallest state capital. Panaji is also the headquarters of the North Goa District and is situated on the banks of the Mandovi River Estuary is the Tiswada Region. The more popular name is Panaji but Panjim is also a commonly used term. This was the name by which the Portuguese used to address this city. When the whole of India got independence, Goa was still under the colonial rule of the Portuguese who freed it a number of years later. The Portuguese effect is what you will get in each and every thing of Goa and Panjim too. The attractions here are the lovely white church, the food that you will get here and of course the different types of building lined on the sides of the narrow streets. These houses are the remains of the various clans who have ruled here including the Latins and the Portuguese. The houses look beautiful and brightly coloured and many of them have simple yet pretty wrought iron balconies too. Many of these are now either resorts for budget concious travellers or restaurants for the ones who love to taste Portuguese and Goan cuisine.
53 Kms from Kudal
Today was only about getting the feel of Goa and it was not disappointing definitely. An evening walk near the resort on Calangute beach was the perfect end of the day. Few shacks were open with lesser customers but same excitement. The tranquility of seashore with clouds all over the sky was soothing.
98 Kms from Kudal
Best time to visit - February,March,April,May,June,July
Kolhapur, in Maharashtra, is a land of temples and regal palaces. The most revered of them is the Mahalaxmi Temple, which has a simple yet fascinating structure. Other temples here are the Temlabai temple, Jyotiba temple and the Bimkhambi Ganesh temple. The Shri Chhatrapati Shahu Museum, which was once the residence of the first Maharaja of the Maratha Empire, is a vivid display of artefacts representing the ancient history of the city. Take a walk through history at the Panhala Fort, which is an imposing fortification believed to have housed Chhatrapati Shivaji himself. Kolhapur is known for its spicy array of Maharashtrian food. Try some of the local delicacies at Padma Guest House, Waman Guest House and Parakh. Being a bustling tourist destination, Kolhapur has a lot to offer when it comes to lodging for all types of budget travellers. Don't forget to take back the local Kolhapuri Chappals, that make for lovely traditional footwear.
90 Kms from Kudal
Only thing we did different today was 40km ride to Benaulim Beach. Road was in very good condition and we took around 40 mins to reach there from Agonda. The beaches in the south Goa are clean, beautiful and less crowded. You can make out the difference if you visit Panaji or Calangute at this time of the year.
118 Kms from Kudal
Best time to visit - January,February,June,July,August,September,November,December
A lovely city in the Konkan region of Maharashtra, Ratnagiri is a port city surrounded by the beautiful Sahyadri Hills. If this is your first time here, you'll be spoilt for choice. Ganapatipule Beach makes for a great visit and is perfect for a leisurely afternoon. There is a Ganesh temple right next to the beach that is also worth a visit. The Ratnadurg or Bhagwati Fort, which is a beautiful structure constructed in a horseshoe shape, surrounded by the Arabian Sea, is also a beautiful place to check out. Thebaw Palace is another lovely touristy spot where the Burma King Thebaw was imprisoned. The palace is built in Pagoda style and is a must see. Bhatyachi Khadi is where the river meets the sea; the village near this place is Bhatye known as Bhatyachi Khadi. If you're here from March to June, do pick up some juicy Alphonso mangoes that the city is famous for. There are a lot of other scenic cities around Ratnagiri and depending on your mood, you can choose any of the cities to spend your vacations.
214 Kms from Kudal
Best time to visit - January,February,March,April,May,October,November,December
Of panoramic views, perennial waterfalls and picturesque landscapes, Mahabaleshwar stands out as the largest and most popular hill station in the Western Ghats. Owing to comfortable temperatures, Mahabaleshwar is thronged by tourists throughout the year, except during the four months of heavy monsoons from June to September. Being the erstwhile summer capital of the Bombay presidency during the British Raj, this place has a lot to offer — spectacular sunrise and sunset viewpoints, popular one-day treks to go on, and boating at the Venna Lake. Additionally, tourists can retrospect history at the centuries-old Pratapgad Fort and savour some toothsome jams and marmalades at the Mapro Garden. One must not miss out on the famous corn patties and strawberry cream when in Mahabaleshwar. Should you visit in March, you will be lucky to witness the gastronomically delightful Strawberry Festival that takes place every year. Plan a weekend getaway to this hill station and you will be impressed.
56 Kms from Kudal
Best time to visit - October- March
This is a village in the northern part of Goa and is on the southern side of the very popular Calangute Beach here. This is an extremely popular tourist attraction and witnesses a large number of tourists throughout the year. There are a number of restaurants and shopping options around. This is however a little more expensive for the backpackers but is an ideal location for those who love to eat out and shop. Apart from eating and shopping, the main attraction here is the pristine Candolim Beach. This beach is a little narrow at some parts which is because of continuous erosion. Also on the Sinquerin side you will find options for several water activities such as para sailing, dolphin boating and others. There are also a number of shacks here which sell authentic Goan cuisine which includes seafood mostly. The tiger prawns here are absolutely delicious. There are stalls which sell cheap clothes as well.