Trek to Korlai Fort 

Since last few months the heat in mumbai is increasing day by day and the side effect of this is that my treks are getting all dried up. To brave this scorching heat and go for the trek in itself is a task perhaps this prompted me to take up something simple yet satisfying my exploratory urge.

Based on this premise I started to narrow down my choice to go for trek and ended up with Trek to Korlai Fort.

So suddenly the plethora of activities began with putting an update on facebook ,calling up friends ,counter calling and in the end we finally ended up with a small group of six people ( Vaibhavi,Swapnali,Deepali,Samarth, Mamta and myself).
Deepali Kamble, Samarth Narula,Swapnali Kamble,
Aashish Chawla, Mamta Chawla,Vaibhavi Gandhi

We left early in the morning and all of us met at Churchgate station at 6.30 am, fortunately for us as this was a small group so all of us were on time and from here we all started our morning walk to Gateway of India.

Early morning walk to Gateway of India.

We reached Gateway of India well within our required time limit and were able to catch 7.00 am launch to Alibag via Mandwa port. The sight of Gateway of India was just something out of the story book specially with dash of different coloured launches scattered around the Gateway Port…. UFF kya Nazar tha…Dekho to janoo

Uff !!! kya nazaara hai…(Pun intended)

As the launch came into the harbour  our  gang all jumped into the motor launch and dashed straight to the upper deck so as to have good viewing place. Aakir me Mumbai ki Local train me chadne ki aachi practice jo hai…so idhar bi kaam aa gayi…..
Fatafat upper deck per seat pakad liya gang ne….

As it was quite early in the morning so the heat of the sun was not so harsh as to bother us and the slight breeze made the morning all the more beautiful.
Enjoying the Sun and Breeze with Samarth and Mamta

Our journey of the sea began …. The water of the ocean looked like a golden sheet glittering in all its brightness. 

Golden sheet glittering in all its brightness. 

As we went deeper into the sea we were surprised to see Dolphins skipping and jumping… Oh ! what a sight it was !!! if only my camera was handy at that time I could have captured the moment. Our small bunch was quite a happy lot we were cracking jokes, pulling each others leg, Its surprising that  just a moment ago we were strangers and in just few minutes we all gel into a common unit.

Having a great time cracking jokes !!!!
As our boat was moving we could see a fast approaching Speed boat coming towards our boat, as the speed boat neared our boat I realized that it was a coastal guard patrolling boat and he was waving at us frantically. We were wandering now what has happened I was worried that as were clicking pictures of the ships around us that must have bugged them however it turned out that our boat has drifted off course and the Coastal Guard was shouting at the Boat driver to change his direction. Kaas usne agar warn nahi kiya hota toh shayad hum Goa me hote…(Ek wishful thought aaya tabhi) per hamari kismet kahan…
Coastal gaurds giving our boat the chase ( this pic is only for representational purpose)as I was too afraid to click the actual photo at that time…Marna thoda hai !!! 

Direction thik hua hi tha ki boat started to rock very hard !!!!… I joked to Vaibhavi ki …Be ready for Titanic part 2 minus the iceberg. This rocking of the boat was because of the high waves and  this rocking was making almost all the passengers little nervous but thankfully our boat managed to reach the Mandwa Port safely where we all got down to take the connecting bus to Alibag

Mandwa Port our first stop

 but Lo! In our frenzy to click photos and bantering we missed our connecting bus to Alibag but were pleasantly surprised to note that the 8 seater driver called us and said sir please sit… it is the free ride for you from the launch service. We all jumped into the 8 seater auto before anyone else get a better idea.

Photo clicking frenzy
Swapnali shouting lo bus nikal gayi …aur photo nikalne ka time pass karo….

This short journey was another high point of our trek because we suddenly discovered a new oldies song singer in Swapnali and our new found Rockstar in Samarth.The journey from Mandwa beach to Alibag got over with few hindi hits ranging from Devanand era to Ranbir Kapoor.
On reaching Alibag the next task for us was to arrange for transportation from Alibag to Korlai Fort.There are various options to go to Korlai either you hire a eight seater or you take ST bus. As we were coming for the first time so it was a journey of discovery for us.Swaying like clock pendulum kabhi idhar toh kabhi udhar ( in our case kabhi ST stand toh kabhi Auto Stand) We asked the auto guy and he said he will charge us Rs 300 for a trip so we told him to go for a walk .In India on seeing a tourist the attitude of the locals are generally always .. ki Loot lo saale ko…Kyo ki kaal yeh ho na ho….hearing these auto fare hum ne aaw dekha ha taaw..seeda ST stand ki taraf mu kiya …..and we decided to check out the ST Bus option . We searched for our bus station Maharastra ke ST stand per apna Bus dondna konsa aasan kaam hai  even an educated man becomes like dumb bimbo asking like fool Murud ka bus kahan se jayega.. but  finally we managed to know that there is a bus to Murud on which we can go.

Waiting for the Murud Bus at Alibag ST Bus Stand

And luckily for us within minutes the Murud bus arrived Deepali lept into the bus first and we all followed her lekin sab Dhaka dhaki turned out to be a waste of time… Conducter bola chala khali uttara bus cha tyre puncuttar aahe.He bus aata pude janar nahi… Dejectedly we got down, we were worried that as the time was passing on the heat was gathering strength perhaps this prompted Vaibhavi to ask me to again try the 8 seater and This time around we were little wiser(atleast thats what we thought) and decided that we will haggle and get a deal for us . So off both us went to Rickshaw stand and started all over again this time someone quoted us 350 to drop at Korlia Village and 500 rupees to drop till fort. I felt like telling him to F…k off per kya karu Vaibhavi sath me thi… we came back to ST stand but this time were lucky the bus to Murud had just come in and as you all know India ki halat ek annar sau bemaar  ek bus aur us me safar (Suffer) karne wala anek… again like circus people we jumped into the bus lekin yeh kya bus to pehle se hi bhari hai…not a single seat to sit aur khade rahane ke liye bhi competition. Later I came to know that this bus was coming from Mumbai. This bus journey took around 45 minutes and we touched down at Korlai Village Bus stop.
Entering Korlai Village

Here we met a very interesting Character his name was Jai Hind he told us that he is from this village and he will lead us near the fort. Korlai village had a distinctive look of coastal Village 

Korlai Village Alibag
Korlai Village , Alibag

We were happy chalo bach gaye jyada search button nahi use karna padega google map hath me aa gaya hai..LOLZ

As we were walking we got into a small conversation with this Jaihind Guy who very sweetly invited us to his house we readily accepted his invitation because we were feeling very thirsty and wanted to conserve as much water as we can. His mother provided us with chilled water bottle which we all drank heartily and Swapnali and Vaibhavi also filled their water bottles.

On the way to Jaihind’s House

 Just behind his house we could see the lovely sea so all of us just dashed to the sea shore and began to enjoy Mamta , Deepali,Vaibhavi started to enjoy the sea 

meanwhile Samarth, Swapnali and me got engaged in a photo session. 

Just because this was not a organizer driven trek so our itinerary was quite flexible. Everyone was enjoying with no one pushing to move forward. We started to walk along the beach and reached the main road which takes you to the light house.

The walk from the Village beach to the  light house was very interesting because the sight of the sea below looked mesmerizing, the breeze was so inviting that you forget that you are on a trek in the middle of April. We all again went berserk again jumping
Freaking Out !!!

 And shouting. It was this weird enthusiasm which was making this whole trek more and more enjoyable.

Road leading to Light house
Road leading to the Light House

We entered the light house where we were introduced to new form of bribery the gate keeper at the guest house greeted us with a warm smile (a rarity from a security personnel) Lekin asli baat to baad me samaj me aayi when he informed us that if we want to visit the light house we will get a guided tour of the light house but in return we must pay unofficial fee to the caretaker of Rs 10 per head and Rs 20 for the camera if you are carrying any. I thought sahi hai boss jab ministers log mal bana rahe hai to neeche wala ka to param hak banta hai…Ab bechara anna bi kya karega…. Anyway lets not get political,

Inside the Light House

View from the Light House

 after visiting the light house we moved from rear of the Light House to the farthest end of the fort.

beautiful landscape like background

As we made our way the beauty of the surrounding locales were overwhelming us. The splash of water on the rocks and beautiful landscape like background is a sight which I cannot still shake off. 
We entered the fort from the sea side and Korlai Fort  being a sea fort it is indeed very beautiful.Something the words cannot describe.

The splash of water on the rocks

The moment we enter we see a big courtyard with cannons at various vantage points.

Large courtyard of the  Korlai Fort

Cannons are Vantage points

As the time was 1.30 pm so we thought of taking a break for lunch. We all sat down under the shade of the tree with lovely cool breeze and in the lap of nature had our lunch . My wife felt so comfortable here that she just lazed and was ready for a short nap. 

Caught Taking a nap..
Lekin kya kare the breeze was so enchanting…boss ek nap toh banta hai

No one wanted to move now as the pleasure of food,sea,breeze aur friends was irresistible so we all took a small break here and after ½ hrs started our further exploration of the fort.

Getting ready for Lunch…
Well Deserved Lunch break

The fort is maintained quite well, matter of fact some restoration work was also going on. I have not dealt much on the history and geography of the fort which  most of you are intelligent enough to check on Wikipedia I presume…Right Boss !!!!

Check out the glimpses of Korlai Fort 

Inside Korlai Fort

Inside Korlai Fort

After going thru the  fort  one realises that the fort quite long in 

length The fort is 2828 feet long, and its average breadth is eighty-

nine feet. The enclosing wall is  5′ 3″ high and has 305 battlements 

for guns. It is entered by eleven gates – four are outer and seven are inner. ..
Aaj ke liye itna gyan bahut hai…kyo ki is ke aage yaad rakna bii bhari kaam hai

There are different Portuguses inscriptions on the fort walls and stones ...meri samaj me toh ek bi nahi aaya phir bi maine pics nikal liya…koi na koi intelligent prani is ko samaj hi lega….Doosra as a wanderer and tourist yeh sab photos bi zaroori hota hai….

Portuguese Inscriptions at Korlai Fort 

Portuguese Inscriptions at Korlai Fort 

we moved on to descend from the other side of the fort which took us to the village 

Old Church in the Fort and on the left hand side you can see stairs, we took these stairs to reach the village while returning.

At the Village we had refreshing chilled …don’t get excited it was not beer but just a cold drink and then from here we started walking back to the bus stop, Just when we were nearing the Bus stop we were dismayed to see that the bus has already reached the stop…However Samarth ran like wild as if his life depended on this to stop the bus because missing this bus could have delayed us by atleast half an hour. Anyway we managed to halt the bus and all the member of the gang was onboard …Hurray!!!.

It was almost 4.00pm when we reached Alibag but here we were in for a shock because when we went to buy our return tickets of boat to Gateway of India we were informed that the launch service has been suspended because the sea is windy. Dil se awaaz aayi…lo lag gayi ab toh  Actually when you are confronted by such unexpected situation you learn new things and today it was our turn. We again went to the auto stand and again they started quoting astronomical fare and again we rushed back to ST stand because right now it was the only alternative for us for getting out of Alibag. We saw one Panvel Bus coming in, so one more final battle of pushing and plodding we all managed to get into the bus …Pura safar standing me kiya …Pen(it is a name of a place) tak ka pain and Finally reached Panvel.
Despite all hiccups and sudden change of schedule all of us enjoyed the trek immensely Each pain was sweet each delay a break for enjoyment and each journey was a moment to cherish.

Finally Thanks to Vaibhavi Gandhi for been such a wonderful support, Swapnali Kamble and Deepali Kamble for there mischiefs , Mamta Chawla and Samarth Narula for been a supportive companion.
Thanks to the entire team!!!

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Hi, I am Aashish Chawla- The Weekend Wanderer. Weekend Wandering is my passion, I love to connect to new places and meeting new people and through my blogs, I will introduce you to some of the lesser-explored places, which may be very near you yet undiscovered...come let's wander into the wilderness of nature. Other than traveling I love writing poems.

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