Weekend Trip to Diveagar Beach
Diveagar is usually not the first option which is considered when someone from Pune wants to go for a weekend beach trip. Mostly, the first choice (as it is the nearest by road) is Alibaug. But, Alibaug beach is dirty. The next on the list could be either of Nagaon, Kashid beach or for the slightly more travelled, Akshi beach. Akshi is a secluded beautiful beach. Kashid is very popular with tourists and has lot of water sports options too. But, the problem with these is the lack of convenient accommodation. Of course, if you want to do a one-day trip, these would fit the bill. Further south is Murud, the black sand beach. But, i would visit Murud for a trip to the Janjira fort and that would qualify as a separate trip. The next nearest (and easily one of the best) would be Diveagar beach and a weekend trip to this place is what this post is about.
I have been going to Diveagar for the past two years and each time (once in Jan and once in June), we had a great weekend. Diveagar is great all throughout the year. Visiting during the monsoon (off season) presents a altogether different face of the Konkan, green and wild.
Route to Diveagar Beach from pune: The most straight-forward route is through the Tamhini Ghat section, then to Mangaon and then onto Diveagar. It should take around 4 hours to go without a break. If you are travelling during the monsoon, allow more trip for the numerous photo breaks you WILL take in Tamhini! You can stop for food (any time of the day) at Quick Bites at the start of Tamhini. Their Maharashtrian fare is amazing. Many a time we drive over to Tamhini, stop at quick bites at the start, enjoy the ghats and stop over on the way back too. If you are not comfortable driving on the bad roads of Tamhini (Edit 2017: Tamhini is now a pretty good paved route, so no reason not to use tamhini), you can take the much longer route through the expressway and then come over on the Goa highway through Pali.
Stay at Diveagar: I have always stayed at Maitreya Beach Resorts and have always recommended this place for friends. A very clean place and i love their food. The price is reasonable at around 1000-1500 per double room depending on the season. They also have couple of dormitories for bigger groups. The walk to the beach from the resort takes around 10 mins and is through a grove of dense trees starting right from the backyard of the resort. A drive would take you less than a few minutes.
Diveagar apart from the beach: There is a Suvarna Ganesh temple, where it is said that a ganpati idol hidden centuries ago was found in the 90s. This temple is very popular in the area. You can also go for a short drive towards Dighi (where you can get ferries for Janjira fort, not the preferred point for the fort though). The drive is through small roads next to the coast. We had lot of fun on a huge banyan tree which had natural swings on its roots.
The beach: Go to the beach in the late evening and early in the morning. Also, go when there is low tide (check with the locals/hotel guys). We typically reach Diveagar at noon, have lunch, rest for sometime and then off to the beach until it becomes dark (usually on a saturday). On Sunday morning, we start early for the beach, spend 2 hrs and then come back for a heavy breakfast. The light during the evenings and early morning is just amazing. Due to the opposing direction of light during the morning/evening, you get twice the opportunity to take great and very different photos. If you are able to catch the sunrise from behind the trees, you would love it.
In the mornings, it gets hot pretty early. So, the best time on the beach would be from around 4 pm until dark. The low tide gives the kids a wonderful opportunity to play in the water, but still be far away from the waves. Akshara was in her elements this trip and she just wanted to keep going into the water, in the direction of the waves. We had a tough time keeping her within safe limits.
The tide starts coming in only late into the night. So, we had a lot of time to spend safely in the water considering that the best swimmer among us can swim across a 10 m wide pool (with some breathing difficulty)! We splashed around a lot in the water. Btw, Diveagar beach is very clean and the water is also extremely clean. One wave did sweep Akshara off her foot, but it was ok as we were pretty far away from the deep areas.
In the evenings, you also have dune buggy rides available. You can also do parasailing along the beach, tied to a jeep
As the sun begins to set, the whole place turns magical with the water logged surface almost turning into a mirror. Only your imagination can limit the photographic opportunities.
Side trips from Diveagar: The drive from Diveagar to Shrivardhan is regarded as one of the best coastal drives in the Konkan. A 45 minute drive from Diveagar will take you to Harihareshwar, the temple famous for its cliff-side pradakshina walk.