Ever heard of " Maharashtra's Cheerapunji”...the wettest place in our state? The hottest biodiversity region in Maharashtra? The cleanest and the quietest hill station near us?..... Come with Nature India & explore this amazing place called Amboli Ghat…… the dream destination of all the naturalists and which is at its Best in Monsoon.....Great walks, beautiful scenery, loads of biodiversity to look for, waterfalls, balmy climate and local delectable Konkani food…perfect menu set for a short holiday. (Above image: Copyright. Mr.Ajay Bijoor)
Amboli Ghat......Nestled comfortably in the midst of luxuriant foliage on the
Colonel Westrop, who was a British political agent, developed Amboli as a hill station after the opening of the
Home to innumerable species of animals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and medicinal plants, it has contributed generously to our country’s bio-diversity. The valley, hemmed in at all sides, looks protected, sheltered, unexplored, and holding in its secrets. Dense brown green foliage, roots above and below, intertwined branches, creepers, and moss hanging like an afro-braid from branch after branch. Layers of fog surround us, weaving a shroud of mystery as to what lay ahead. At times the strong winds clear the path before us, unfolding a panoramic view of the scenic valley. The walks to Mahadevgarh, Shirgaonkar & Parikshit Points offer fantastic opportunities to explore these rich forests and also offer spectacular views of valleys below and the Konkan area.
Though Amboli is emerging and is famous as a hill station, not many know that this place is extremely rich in Herpatofauna, wildflowers and birds. Home to myriad species of Amphibians, Amboli is a must visit place in monsoon for all the nature enthusiasts.The star attraction here are the wonderful array of reptiles that includes Malabar Pit Viper, Green Keel Back, Banded Racer, Olive Forest Snake, Beddome's Keelback Snake, Green vine Snakes, Shield tail snakes, Deccan-banded Gecko etc. While in Ambhibians, the Malabar Gliding Frog (Rhacophorus malabaricus), Amboli tree frog (Philautus amboli), Wrinkled frog (Nyctibatrachus humayuni), Koyna Toad (Bufo koynayensis), Beddome's burrowing frog, Criket frog, Fungoid frog and the Caecilians will take your breath away.
Amboli is also a hot spot for the variety of wildflowers that bloom in monsoon on sadas (the local name for lateritic plateau). It is also a heaven for wildflower enthusiasts with some rare plants recorded here.
The Birds, though difficult to see in monsoon is well represented with Scarlet Minivets, Puff-throated Babblers, Brown-cheeked Fulvettas, Red-whiskered & Yellow-browed Bulbuls, Crimson & Crimson-backed Sunbirds, Leafbirds and many of the Western Ghat endemics.
Beautiful insect life dominate the surroundings with all sorts of bettles, bugs, lantern flies, butterflies, moths, spiders and what not. Surely, this is one place which you wont like to miss.
Four kilometers away, the river Hiranyakeshi originates from a cave adjacent to a
To know more about Amboli Click here…….
There is one excellent blog on a typical amboli herpatofauna trip here…
Some interesting places around Amboli :
There are several trails and points to be explored in Amboli …some of them are
1) Mahadevgad (3 kms)
2) Manohargad- Manasantoshgad point
3) Shirgaonkar point (5 kms)
4) Kalvesad Point (10 kms)
5) Parikshit Point (3 kms)
6) Hiranyakeshi (4 kms)
7) Nagartas Waterfall
8) Sunset Point (2 kms)
(Above images: the Beautiful wooden craft and "Ganjifa" art of Sawantwadi)
TRAVEL & STAY ITINERARY. (Ex.Sawantwadi )
Assistant resource persons: Mr.Mandar Khadilkar & Mr. Adesh Shivkar
Day 1: Thursday 30th July, 2009
Departure from Mumbai by 0111 Konkan Kanya Exp. - 11.05PM from CSTM
Day 2: Friday 31st July, 2009
Arrival at Sawantwadi Station at 10.00 am .… Drive to Hotel Whistling Woods in autos…. Check-in….. lunch…….Mini nature trail in Amboli Ghat…return to hotel by evening ...rest… dinner… night trail to Shirgaonkar point
Day 3: Saturday 01st August, 2009
Morning visit to Parikshit point…lunch….Talk by Mr.Hemant Ogale on the Conservation activities of Malabar Conservation Club…..late evening trail to Mahadevgad…dinner.... night trail near the campus
Day 4: Sunday, 02nd August, 2009
Morning visit to Shirgaonkar Point…..proceed to see Hiranyakeshi temple before Lunch…..visit to famous Sawantwadi wooden toy factory…..catch 0112 Konkan Kanya exp. At 06.22pm from Sawantwadi
Day 5: Monday 03rd August, 2009
Early morning arrive in Mumbai by 5.30 am
Kindly note that there are several travel options available (given below) to reach Sawantwadi, but the best one is Konkan-Kanya express that leaves Mumbai on thrusday 11.05 pm and arrives Sawantwadi at 10.30 am friday.
If registered early, then Nature India can assist with your Travel bookings (subject to the availability of tickets)..... so register fast.
Travel options to reach Amboli:
Mumbai (549 km/ 10 hrs), Pune (390 km/ 8 hrs)
There are also regular AC buses (some Volvos) from Mumbai to Sawantwadi
Sawantwadi at 28 km away is the closest railhead on Konkan Railway.
By Air :
Nearest airport is
In Whistling Woods on triple sharing basis.The Hotel campus is wonderful and the rooms are spacious with clean bathrooms.
Food : Since meals are not served in the Hotel, we will relish the delicious food (including the famous "Sol Kadi" :-) in a good restaurant just a few meters from our hotel.
Mode of Payment: You can either...
2) Courier a cheque of Rs.2500/- to the following address
Name: Mr. Mandar Khadilkar
Address: B/702, Neha Apartments, Ashish Complex, Chh. Shivaji Cross Road, No.4, Dahisar - East, Mumbai - 400068
1) Once registered, the advance amount of Rs. 2500/- is strictly non-refundable
2) Alcohol & Smoking is strictly prohibited on Nature India Tours
3) We expect heavy rain throughout, hence will need to brave the rains during the trails.....please bring all the rain wears
4) Hot water facility will be available all day
5) A torch and water bottle is compulsory
Adesh Shivkar – 9820455713 / 9321463362
Mandar Khadilkar - 9967518665
Or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org