Alibaug to Kashid:
Clean water, sand beaches, fresh air, a couple of hours away from the city, that’s what earned Alibaug the position of Mumbai’s favourite weekend getaway. So many families even bought land, farm houses and holiday homes there. But that was years ago. Tourism was said to be the mainstay of Alibaug’s existence. But the neighbouring industries, and an unorganised tourism industry, over time turned it into a bit of a characterless destination that’s filthy, crowded and just no fun at all.
Kashid to Kihim:
That’s when all the holidayers ventured about 20km south of Alibaug to Kashid. And then Kashid followed suit in turning filthy and overcrowded. That’s driving the holidayers about 10 km north of Alibaug to picturesque Kihim beach. Unlike in neighbouring Goa, there isn’t much to do at Kihim, which is a major reason why this particular holiday experience stands out.
Getting there from Mumbai:
By Road: Kihim is a 110 km drive from Mumbai which is 3 hours via NH17 and NH48.
By Boat: Take a 45-60 minute Ferry/Catamaran/PNP Service from Gateway of India to Mandhwa Jetty, and then a 20-30 minute ride by auto rikshaw/ bus to Ivory Resort on Kihim beach from the jetty.
For Maldaar Catamaran call: (022) 2282-9695 / 2282-3841
For PNP Service call: (022) 2288-5220 & 2288-5221
The ferry ride is absolutely lovely, for even if the water isn’t really crystal blue or clean for that matter, it’s a beautiful feeling, bobbing gently in the water, enjoying the salty spray of the breeze in your hair, the gorgeous view on either side (the Gateway, the Taj, and open skies), the stark white seagulls that follow your boat, deftly catching any tid-bits you throw at them.
Where to Stay:
Ivory resort is a unique MTDC managed property located right on Kihim beach. Set amidst a five acre plantation of coconut trees, are the resort’s 10 luxury tents.
Yes, tents. But they’re all air-conditioned, with beds, tables, cupboards, fans and en-suite western bath and toilets with running water and hot showers. Done up in a rustic rajasthani style with printed patterns, the ethnicity feels really authentic, even with the orangey-yellow glow that the sunshine casts all over the room. There’s a small deck in front of each tent, with a table and a couple of chairs to relax and nap in the day, and sit and enjoy a drink by night.
The beach is great for a sunrise or sunset walk, but the water, rocks and oil spills make it impossible to swim in. Walk along the beach, and you’re sure to come across some local fishermen cleaning their boats.
The food here is nothing to write home about, but stick to the Punjabi and Tandoori and you’ll be alright.
It isn’t a phenomenal experience, but just a lovely quick, affordable getaway to relax and unwind in a different way on your weekend.
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