It’s been over 100 days since we’ve stepped out of our homes. And we all know that Mumbaikars are known for taking quick weekend getaways, solely to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. But, with times changing, I think we may need these getaways more than ever. Most importantly, we’ll need these vacations or staycations to set ourselves free from the four walls, both physically and mentally.
And so, if you too miss driving through green canopies, twisted roads and the salty air? Then continue reading this blog, for I have sketched an ideal road trip for you and your family to Mumbai’s popular weekend destination, Alibaug.
From the best route to drive on, and places you can explore to fully serviced private vacation homes, you’ll find everything here.
5-Day Road Trip Itinerary
- Mumbai to Alibaug
- Alibaug to Korlai
- Korlai to Murud
First Stop: Alibaug
Well, the quickest and simplest route to reach Alibaug has to be via Ro-Ro ferry of-course! But, since we are talking about road trips (Duh!) NH-66 is the ideal route to reach Alibaug.
Things to Explore
If I had to describe Alibaug in one word, it would be Elysian. Why? Well, this charming coastal town has everything. Right from tranquil beaches and archaeological sites to delicious Kokani dishes and gorgeous vacation homes, you are spoilt for choices.
So, here are some places in Alibaug which I would recommend.
1. Awas Beach
One of the cleanest beaches in Alibaug, Awas is the ultimate beach for those seeking solitude. Surrounded by splendid Casuarina or Suru woods, silver sands and clear waters, this beach is fit for family outings or long romantic strolls with your partner.
Fun fact: Awas means ‘to dwell’ in Marathi. And as the name suggests, you can stay on this shore for ages…
2. Thal Beach
Located 6 km north of Alibaug town is yet another stunning beach of Konkan Maharashtra, Thal Beach. Offering spectacular views of the sea and the nearby Khanderi-Underi Fort, this beach is perfect to capture stunning sunsets against gorgeous seascapes.
Did you know? These twin-island forts weren’t captured by the same ruler. While Khanderi Fort was under Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaji, the latter was under his opponents, the Siddhis.
3. Kolaba Fort
History lovers this one’s for you. In the year 1662, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj fortified Kolaba Fort and made it the Chief Naval Base of South Konkan. Situated at a distance of 2 km from the Alibaug shore, Kolaba Fort is truly a must-visit. This stunning fort has two primary entrances, one on the coast and the other towards Alibaug. The fort is dotted with several artefacts and relics such as canons, cravings of animals and birds on the fort wall and much more. You’ll also find many temples in the fort, the most famous being the Siddhivinayak temple.
An intriguing fact about Kolaba Fort is even though it’s a seaside fort, it still houses freshwater reservoirs in the premises.
Where to stay?
Situated right on Thal Beach, SaffronStays Thalassea is a 3-bedroom villa surrounded by green scapes making it a perfect place to relax and unwind. This charming house is furnished with modern amenities along with a mini-library, a family room and various sit out areas. In the evenings, watch the sun dip into the horizon from the luxury of your balcony or walk through the coconut tree-lined aisle to your private beach. Savour lip-smacking home-cooked meals prepared by our in-home chefs or visit Sanman restaurant (a seafood paradise) to enjoy authentic Gomantak delicacies.
Second Stop: Korlai
1-hour from Alibaug, is Korlai, a true hidden jewel of coastal Maharashtra. Built in 1521 by the Portuguese empire, Korlai was built on an island to guard the Revdanda Creek. Jam-packed with history, this town is a treasure trove for all the history buffs.
Things to Explore
I suggest you start your day early, and give yourself ample time to explore all these spots on your way from Alibaug to Korlai.
1.Alibaug Magnetic Observatory
Established in 1904, Alibaug Magnetic Observatory is considered a significant observatory in the world. This place provides records of geomagnetic observations. This observatory houses 2 buildings; the first building has magnetometers that record field changes while the second building consists of recording instruments, which gives data about the storms. So, do make sure you visit the observatory with your kids.
2. Revdanda Fort
Tucked away in the village of Revdanda, this fort is 17 km from Alibaug. Surrounded by coconut and betel nut trees on all sides and close to Revdanda Beach, this historic fort is a must-visit. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj ceased this 1524-built home from the Portuguese army in 1806. This place is also known for a rare aromatic flora called ‘Bakuli’.
Interesting fact, this is where St. Francis Xavier used to deliver his sermons when he first came to India.
3. Birla Mandir
Situated in a small village called Salav on the Alibaug-Revdanda route is the magnificent Birla Mandir. The temple is dedicated to Lord Ganesha. Built with white marbles and enclosed by lush greens, this place is perfect to soothe your mind and soul.
4. Korlai Fort
Korlai Fort is yet another splendid fortress that’s worth visiting with kids. Built in 1521 by the Portuguese, this fort has seen many rulers. The fort has 3 main entrances, the ideal one is via the Lighthouse. Make sure to visit the fort during monsoons to enjoy the 180° view of the Arabian Sea.
Where to Stay?
The name says it all, isn’t it? A spectacular 2-bedroom pet-friendly villa on Korlai Beach, this home is truly a paradise for all the ocean lovers. Besides, with no permanent inhabitants for half a kilometre on either side of this bungalow, it’s ideal for a Social Distancing getaway. Enjoy late-night conversations, while you gorge on hot Maharashtrian Fish Curry, made by our cooks and caretakers with freshly procured produce.
Final Stop: Murud
An hour away from Korlai is Murud, a small picturesque coastal village. See history come to life when you visit historical places, especially the majestic Murud-Janjira.
Things to Explore
1. Kashid Beach
A perfect combination of privacy and adventure, Kashid beach is ideal for beach enthusiasts. Go on a banana boat ride to pump up your adrenaline or get your flying with a horseback ride or simply pitch a tent to enjoy a starry night.
Created in 1986 to preserve the coastal woodland, this place is truly rich in flora and fauna. So, nature lover’s make sure you don’t give it a miss.
3.Murud – Janjira Fort
Witness the past come to life when you are at Murud-Janjira Fort. Located on a 22-acre island in the coastal village of Murud, this mighty sea-fort can be accessed by a short boat ride from either Murud or Rajapuri port.
Interesting fact, this is the only fort which wasn’t captured by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
Where to Stay?
Tucked away in the quiet little corner of Agardanda, near Murud, SaffronStays Little Paradise is a set of three beachfront wooden cabins – Lotus, Tulip, and Orchid. Indulge in a romantic candlelight dinner or arrange for a movie screening under the stars with your loved ones or stroll along the serene beach under the moonlit sky, the choice is yours.
Wish to stay longer? Check out these customizable long-term staycation packages, here.