Velneshwar

….. Rajesh Deshpande (based on my personal visit in February 2013)

Situated in the Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra, 20 Kms south of Guhagar town, Velneshwar is a cove having a crescent shaped beach. It is largely populated by the fisherman community. Velneshwar gets its name from the temple of Lord Shiva. The beach is clean and unspoilt, totally free of rocks and thus ideal for swimming. Velneshwar is an ideal destination for a weekend getaway or for a quick escape for relaxation.

Velneshwar Temple

Velneshwar Temple

How to reach?

By Rail – Velneshwar is approximately 330 Kms from Mumbai. The nearest railhead is Chiplun (65 Kms). From Mumbai, it takes almost 3.5 hrs. to reach Chiplun by Konkan railway. From Chiplun’ s Central State Transport Depot, regular buses are available for the town of Guhagar. It takes almost an hour to reach Guhagar which is 45 Kms. away. From Guhagar bus depot, one can hire an Auto-Rickshaw to Velneshwar (Rs. 300/-). It takes about 30 mins. to cover a distance of 20 Kms.

By Road – Regular State transport buses are available from Mumbai, Pune and Kolhapur up to Guhagar. From Guhagar, local state transport buses for Narvan and Tavsal stop at Velneshwar. Auto-Rickshaw from Guhagar Bus Depot charge Rs. 300/- up to Velneshwar.

By Air – Mumbai Airport is the nearest airport (330 Kms)

Things to do

Velneshwar is a small village, hence there’s not much to do except for relaxing, swimming in the sea, watching Dolphins and enjoying the delicious Konkani cuisine. Seafood is the quintessential part of the Konkani cuisine and is found in abundance at Velneshwar. An excursion to Hedvi village down south (5 Kms) through the winding and bumpy road full of greenery is worth the effort. Hedvi is known for the temple of Dashbhuja (ten armed) Ganesh. The marble idol of Ganesh is known to be gifted by the Peshwa who had got it from Kashmir. On the outskirts of Hedvi is a place called as Baman Ghal, which is a gorge from which sea water gushes out during high tide making a fountain about 20 ft. high.

Velneshwar Village

Velneshwar Village

Gorge known as Baman Ghal

Gorge known as Baman Ghal

Where to stay?

Undoubtedly, MTDC is the best option to stay put in Velneshwar. The resort is situated on a hillock (with a private pathway to the beach) with independent cottages (AC and Non-AC) having a direct view of the ocean. The cottages provide basic amneties like a king size bed, LCD Television, Hot and Cold running water. There’s an in-house restaurant serving delicious Konkani cuisine. The resort staff is very hospitable and attentive.

MTDC Velneshwar Resort

MTDC Velneshwar Resort

Besides MTDC, the only decent option to stay put in Velneshwar is the Kinara Beach House of Navneet Thakur.  Jeevan Sugandh hotel is one more option for a budget stay. The locals also provide stay options at nominal rates.

One can also opt to stay at Guhagar being a town. The pricy Modi Villa is the height of luxury at Guhagar, other Hotels like Nisarg Resort (away from the beach on the outskirts of Guhagar), Kismat Residency, Annapurna, and Sagar Lodge provide decent accommodation at affordable rates.

Sunset at Velneshwar

Sunset at Velneshwar

Velneshwar is a small village yet to appear on the tourist map of Maharashtra, hence do not expect city like luxuries. It is best suited for travellers looking out for solitude and relaxation. There are no eateries except for few stalls selling biscuits and snacks in the temple area. There’s a small chowpatty adjacent to the Velneshwar temple where the Jeevan Sugandh hotel and few stalls sell fast food, Cold drinks and Thali meals. The villagers are friendly and hospitable people. Marathi is the widely spoken language. Hindi and English is also understood and spoken by the locals. Being a coastal village, Velneshwar has a tropical climate and is humid throughout the year. Best time to visit is in winter (Nov. to Feb.). Summers are generally hot but with abundance of mangoes, jackfruits, jambul and berries. Rains are equally enchanting.

Sandcastle on Velneshwar Beach

Sandcastle on Velneshwar Beach

What to eat?

Food options are limited at Velneshwar with typical home style Konkani cuisine. One can feast on sea food, especially prawns, mackerel, salmon, pomfret, king fish and black pomfret (locally known as Saranga) and non-veg. dishes like chicken curry or sauté  accompanied by Bhakri (bread made from rice) and the ubiquitous Solkadi. Vegeterians can relish on Pithla Bhakri, Valachi Usal, Amboli, Ghavne, Modaks. At Guhagar, many eateries and hotels are available. For seafood, the best place is Shamkant Khatu’s Annapurna Hotel (also has lodging facilities) and Hotel Shraddha. For vegetarians, Hotel Suruchi and Hotel Musale are the best options.

Around Velneshwar

The town of Guhagar was once what Velneshwar is today. It was a quaint little village, primarily dominated by the Brahmin community engaged in the trade of mango and beetle nut. Guhagar got fame due to the controversial Enron project (now the Dabhol Power Company) which brought in many migrants to the area. At the centre of Guhagar lay the Vyadeshwar Shiva temple, a deity of many Brahmin families. Guhagar has a long and wide beach, unspoilt, serene where hardly any soul could be spotted on weekdays. The beach has golden sand and is sparkling clean. Behind the Vyadeshwar temple, a small pedestrian way leads to the beach. There’s a small chowpatty with stalls selling tender coconut water, cold drinks, ice-cream, Chaat, corn candies and meals. The beach is ideal and safe for swimming. Just about 2 Kms north of Guhagar towards Dabhol is an ancient Durga Mandir which is worth a visit.

Vast Expanse of Guhagar Beach

Vast Expanse of Guhagar Beach

On the way from Guhagar to Velneshwar are two villages with secret beaches. The village of Palshet and Budhal have beaches which are known only to the local population, completely unspoilt they are an ideal place for beach buffs for camping.

A drive down south (12 Kms) from Velneshwar leads to the Ferry wharf at Tavsal. The ferry can take one to the other side of the Tavsal creek (even with a car or small vehicle in the ferry barge) to Jaigad (a small surveillance fort built by the Maratha’s now in ruins). From Jaigad a 20 Kms drive southwards leads to the famous town of Ganpatipule via Malgund.

On the way from Guhagar to Chiplun at the village of Rampur, one may spot salt water crocodiles sunbathing in the swamps near the creek on a sunny day. A little ahead on the Chiplun Guhagar road a small detour leads to Maldoli village, the dwelling place of salt water crocs in the backwaters of the Vashishti river.

Rajesh Deshpande © 2013

22 Comments

22 thoughts on “Velneshwar

  1. m

    Hi,
    Awesome blog! Do you have any contact info. for the Velneshwar location?
    Thanks!
    M

    Like

    • Hi,

      Thanks for posting a comment. Keep visiting for more destinations. Pushkar and Jaipur to be added soon.
      The best place to stay at Velneshwar is MTDC Velsneshwar Resort. It is situated on a hillock overlooking the ocean. I had stayed here during my visit. I could spot Dolphins right from the resort in the ocean below. Carrying a binocular is highly recommended. There’s a private pathway from the resort leading to the beach (5 mins. walk). The resort has good restuarant serving regular maharashtrian fare run by Nagvekar family. For more details and reservations, log on to MTDC website http://www.maharashtratourism.gov.in or toll free no. 1800229930

      Another good place to stay bang on beach is Kinara Beach House of Navneet Thakur – 09870217021. For more details visit http://www.kinarabeachhouse.com
      There are many small budget hotels / homestays in Velneshwar like Jeevan Sugandh / Atithi etc.

      Hope this helps.

      Cheers!!
      Rajesh

      Like

  2. ramdin

    Hi,
    Great Blog,
    I like the way you’ve written the post.
    You’ve written very nice information on Beaches,
    It will be very useful for a new traveller.Images are very clean and easy to optimize.
    I like to visit Velneshwar beach.
    Thanks for sharing such a nice blog…

    Like

  3. Deepak Gadgil

    shri rajesh,
    about velneshwar mtdc, r u reqd to book in advance or can u go there n get on spot accomodation?

    Like

    • I would recommend to book in advance through MTDC website. The resort wasn’t fully occupied while I was there, but suggest not to take a chance, especially on weekends.

      Like

  4. S Ghosh

    Hi Mr. Rajesh,

    Is it possible to have an auto from Chiplun station to Velneshwar.

    Like

    • Hello Mr. Ghosh,

      Thank you for taking out time to read my blog.

      From Chiplun Station you’ll have to take an Auto to the Chiplun Central ST Bus Depot in the heart of the city. From here, you’ll get an auto to Velneshwar (approx. 70 Kms, Rs. 1000/-, 2 hrs.). I strongly suggest you to take a ST bus to Guhagar from the Chiplun central ST bus depot (about Rs. 75/- pp). Buses ply every 20 mins. to Guhagar and are not crowded at all. This is more comfortable than a rick. You may take a break at Guhagar, visit the fabulous, unspoilt Guhagar beach (5 mins. walk from ST depot), the Vyadeshwar Shiva Temple, relish fresh seafood and take an auto from Guhagar ST depot to Velneshwar (approx. 22 Kms., Rs. 400/-, 35 mins.).

      Hope this helps. Enjoy your trip.

      Cheers!
      Rajesh

      Like

  5. Nilesh

    I could not search the exact location of MTDC resort on google maps. Is it in Guhaghar named as Annapoorna?

    Like

    • Hi Mr. Nilesh … MTDC resort is right in Velneshwar itself (GPS – 17.38, 73.2). It is situated on a hillock right opposite to Velneshwar Beach. The resort can be reached by Car or Auto. It has ample parking space.

      Annapurna is a restaurant cum lodge in Guhagar town which is 20 Kms away from Velneshwar. Annapurna is 15 mins. walking distance from Guhagar Bus depot. It is popular for seafood.

      Like

  6. PreetiN

    Hi,
    This is a very nice blog. Thanks a lot for useful information.
    Is there any bus from Chiplun or Ratnagiri which directly goes to Velneshwar. We are travelling from Pune.
    We have two options of Bus – 1. Ratnagiri 2. Chiplun
    so which one should we prefer?

    Like

    • Hi … Thanks for reading my blog. Velneshwar can be conveniently reached from Chiplun. I’d travelled more than a year ago when direct buses were not available from Chiplun to Velneshwar, not sure if there’s one now. From Chiplun Central ST bus depot, regular ST buses are available for Guhagar (45 Kms). From Guhagar ST bus depot you can take another ST bus to Velneshwar (20 Kms) or hire an Auto Rickshaw.

      Like

  7. Ajit

    Hello,

    Wonderful information about beach destinations in konkan.

    Whenever I travel in Konkan, I refer http://www.hotelsinkonkan.in portal, this portal gives me lot of options as per my budget for stay in Konkan.

    I think you can recommend http://www.hotelsinkonkan.in for Konkan stay to your readers.This site can help them.

    Like

    • Dear Mr. Ajit,

      Thank you for reading my blog and for referring http://www.hotelsinkonkan.in. I shall surely recommend it to my readers. I have stayed at quite a few hotels listed on the website at various destinations in Konkan. I hope the website shall soon include homestays and lodges in less known places like Nivati-Bhogwe-Khavne, Kunkeshwar-Vijaydurg, Ambolgad-Padavne to name a few.

      Cheers!
      Rajesh

      Like

  8. avani

    Would like to know whether velneshwar beach near mtdc is clean beach n safe for kids

    Like

  9. Swapnil

    Hi,

    How about Atithi Beach Resort …I am planning to stay there… How are the foods over there ?

    Like

    • Hi Swapnil,

      I haven’t stayed at this place. I can vouch for MTDC Velneshwar resort as I had stayed there in 2013 and it is pretty decent. MTDC always wins for its amazing location everywhere, so is the case here. If you wish to enjoy breathtaking views of the ocean then this is the place to stay. Food is also good here. The resort is on a hillock but has a direct approach to the beach downhill .. takes about 5 mins. to reach the beach.

      Happy Travelling!

      Rajesh

      Like

  10. Ashish Shinde

    Hi Rajesh,

    Let me first appreciate all your efforts to put up such a informative blog for all such travellers like me and many more. This really helps to decide the travel destination and plan accordingly.

    Also would like to know if there are any salt water crocodiles in Velneshwar/Guhagar? Though it would be an amazing photo shot but at the same time need to be careful about it.

    Like

    • Hi Ashish,

      Thank you for reading my blog page and posting a comment.

      You would get to see crocodiles at Maldoli village which is on the banks of Vashishti river, about 14 Kms. off the Chiplun Guhagar road (SH78). These are free range crocs so you must be very careful and take local assistance while going to see them.

      Cheers!
      Rajesh

      Like

  11. Supratik Basu

    Hi Mr Rajesh , We will be visiting Velneshwar during Ganesh Chathurti and staying at MTDC during those days. We dont have our own vehicle. Whats your suggestion ? How do we commute from the resort , in case we dont find the food suitable , etc

    Like

    • Hello Supratik .. auto rickshaws are available in Velneshwar for local sightseeing and transfers. Restaurant inside MTDC resort serves good maharashtrian delicacies esp. seafood. Velneshwar is a small village and you can actually walk to any corner of the village. You may find alternate food arrangement at Kinara beach house.

      Enjoy the trip.

      Like

Post a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

%d bloggers like this: