It was the first long weekend, and hence A’s first trip around Mumbai was planned. Given how it seems that all of Mumbai moves into the Lonavalas and Kashids around holidays, we hopped onto a plan made by friends to visit Dapoli, a far off non-commercialized beach in Maharashtra. Or so we thought.
The objective of the trip was simple: spend two days away from the hustle bustle of life in Mumbai…and just relax. After an initial scare of almost booking non-AC rooms (Oh, the travesty!), we finally settled in on Silver Sands Resort, based bang on the beach in Dapoli.
The ideal time by road is around 3-4 hours, given it’s just a distance of around 240 km to the beach (the town itself is 215 km). But the ideal time might get hampered by discovering 3 punctures in your car wheel, construction ALL the way leading to a single lane highway and a never-ending Shiv Sena rally. So after leaving from our homes at 6, we finally reached the resort at 1 pm, a mere 7 hours of driving in the treacherous sun.
At this point I should point out, A did all the driving, and my job was to sit in the passenger seat and entertain him and Sunshine (our friend sitting in the back-seat…and this just somehow seems like a very very apt name for her, even though she might kill me later) by fighting over the radio, or talking, a lot. Both of which I’m very good at. So maybe A should be the one doing the cribbing. But then again, I’m the one writing.
Being hit by a cool breeze the moment we stepped out at the resort pretty much made it all worth it. We stepped right out on the sand, and had the vast expanse of the roaring ocean in front of us. Mumbai now seemed like a far off figment of our imaginations.
Murud, where our resort was located, is actually supposed to be one of the longest beaches in the Konkan region. It boasts of clean virgin sands, very little commercialization, relatively cleaner waters, and absolutely limited sightings of a particular species called human beings.
It’s known for its cool weather, but perhaps the best time to visit it is, well, two years ago.
Because what we found were oil deposits on the beach, frothy water, and chaat stalls and a crowd that made me think of a cross between Chandni Chowk and Juhu Chowpatty.
|The Breeze and the Greenery....|
Silver Sands has one HUGE thing going for it, and for that it shall always be recommended, it’s ON THE BEACH. You step out of your room, and it’s the beach. And the food was scrumptious and the waiters friendly and accommodating. But what you do give up on are some basic amenities like a bit of hygiene in the bathroom (the tub looked like it came out of one of my murderous fictions) and any particular issues you might have against sharing your rooms with other living things, specially lizards.
By the way, did I tell you, I’m petrified of lizards? Petrified to the extent that I have regular nightmares about them? And can’t even think of sleeping if I spot one in the room? And mind you, these were no ordinary lizards. They had Godzilla like noise making abilities! Well, almost. But they did make a bloody loud knocking noise all the damned night long! Loud enough to make one of the girls get up in the middle of the night to open the door because she thought someone was banging on our door.
So it’s actually a really good thing that we went with a close group of friends with no plans of getting much sleep at night. So I at least had company in which I could try and hide my fear of the tiny reptiles.
I didn’t actually manage to hide it. At all. But. Oh well.
It wasn’t the ideal trip. The beach was no longer what it used to be, thanks to oil spills and commercialization. There was a random version of para-sailing (but not on water?!) and camel rides on the once virgin beach. The resort had an ideal location but wasn’t very well maintained.
Was it better than Mumbai? Absolutely!
Is it a romantic getaway? Maybe, if you don’t mind a threesome with some creepy crawlies.
Did we achieve our goal of fun and relaxation? There were friends, cards, dumb charades, roaring waves, and a whole lot of food and liquidity. There was no way that goal wasn’t going to be achieved!
Casualties? The cutest whitest kitten stuffed toy and the feline species in general.