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Shrivardhan

Shrivardhan:


Shrivardhan is counted among the popular tourist destinations and is located in the Indian state of Maharashtra in Konkan Region. Shrivardhan is a small beach with black sand on the Konkan coast. Shrivardhan beach is a secluded place which should definitely feature in the itinary of a weekend traveller. Shrivardhan is a hub of activity. While in Shrivardhan you can really enjoy your holiday by visiting many places in and around the Shrivardhan. Visiting Shrivardhan, you can come here for a family holiday, weekend break and general vacation tour.  Take a break from the activities of daily life and head to Shrivardhan. A holiday here will leave you relaxed and rejuvenated. Nevertheless, even the most ardent of tourists have failed to explore these beaches properly. It carries a different kind of natural beauty that has an unusual appeal and can give a sense of ultimate bliss. Shrivardhan is full of religious places and other attractions like the exotic cookery spread (particularly, the seafood), leafy meadows and pastoral standard of living of the regional fishermen. Shrivardhan is an ancient place of historical importance and is mentioned as being visited by Arjuna Pandav in his pilgrimage. Shrivardhan is notable as the birthplace of Balaji Visvanath, the first Pesva (1713–1720) who was the Desmukh of the town. In 1713 Shriwardhan was one of the sixteen fortified places in the Konkan ceded by Balaji Visvanath Pesva to Kanhoji Angre of Kolaba. Balaji was the first Peshwa of Maratha Empire appointed by Chattrapati Shahu, grandson of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Shrivardhan is one of the oldest towns in Maharashtra. It is a town of Peshwas. The Bhat Deshmukhs of Shrivardhan - later popularly known as Peshwas. Though the capital of Peshwas was Pune, the actual Peshwa started here in 1713. The third Peshwa Balaji Bajirao built a huge house here in 1750, which has been recently renovated. The statue of Balaji Vishwanath was also built here in 1988. The temple in the town - Shri Laxminarayan Temple - is the main temple of Peshwas. The idol in the temple is quite old and said to be of Hoysala architecture style. The other temples in the town are of Kusumdevi, Somjai, Bhairavnath and Jivaneshwar. Shrivardhan is located in Raigad District of State of Maharashtra. Shrivardhan lis known for its betel nuts plantations and large idyllic beaches such as Diveagar. Shrivardhan lies about 18 kms from Harihareshwar, a major Vishnu pilgrimage centre. Shrivardhan nestles amidst the mountain in the north, the sea on the west and the creek in the south. The two main roads, Tilak Marg and Prabhuali Marg are parallel to each other and traverse the whole town and reach up to the sea. Shrivardhan has many historical and cultural sites to attract visitors. The etymology of the name is also obscure. One theory is that the sequence of weapons in the deity’s hands indicate the word “Shri” . “Vardhan” means development or growth. So a place which developed, or grew, with the blessings of Shri ( God) came to be known as Shrivardhan. The coast is about 3 kilometres long, very clean and very calm. This is the main attraction of Shrivardhan. Walk around the beach and feel exhilarated. An occasional wave will wash your feet. The sunsets are particularly fascinating. The dipping sun, the golden waves, and the occasional boat crossing the waves, is a sight to behold. 

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Nearby Shrivardhan

Ganesh Gully

LaxmiNarayan Temple

Diveagar

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Ganesh Gully is a narrow channel which is located in between two mountains. As the name suggest is a culvert which is very narrow of about 3 feet wide in between two hard Rocky Mountains. Believers say  that at the end of the culvert, there is a holy niche, a place where Lord Ganesh Idol is placed. The niche is about 30 feet under water and it is assumed that during the tidal periods one can observe the Ganesh idol placed perfectly at the niche. The place Ganesh gully itself is in the backdrop of natural beauty and calm winds. It is one of the unique temple as the idol of Lord Ganesh placed at the end of a culvert between two Rocky Mountains. Many tourist to Shrivardhan and Harihareshwar visit this place to have a glimpse of the Ganesh Idol. 

Tale-Kuda Caves

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Kuda Caves is located in the small village of Kude on the Eastern side of the North shore of Murud-Janjira in south Konkan. Kuda Caves, part of the Janjeera Hills. These are a group of 13 rock cut caves built by Buddhists. Sculptures of two elephants and several paintings and inscriptions can be seen at the entrance of the caves. Stupas of Lord Buddha can also be found inside the caves. As per the inscriptions, letters and paintings found in the caves, it is believed that these caves were built during the period between the 1st and the 6th century. The Kuda caves are also worth your visit but are slightly off the road. Tale is a small town located at the base of Talegad fort. There are ancient “Leni” inside the fort, but you will have to make a trek up to the fort to see the leni. The Kuda Leni located near Tale is definitely a place worth your visit. Caves carved out of mountain in King Shilahar’s time are still intact. Vehicles can go up to Kuda caves. The view around the caves is breathtaking. 

The Sri Laxminarayan Temple has been standing since the time of the Bhat Peshwas and the temple is built in Hoysala architectural style, it is said that the idol in the temple is nearly 700-years-old. Shri Laxminarayan Temple - is the main temple of Peshwas. Shri Laxminarayan Temple is counted among the major attractions of Shrivardhan. Shri Laxminarayan Temple is situated close to Harihareshwar and Diveagar. The Shri Laxminarayan Temple in Shriwardhan is home to one of the oldest idols in the region. The temple can be reached by a small path from the Peshwe temple of from the Narayan Pakhadi road. The sculpture of Lord Vishnu is out of this world. It is carved out of black rock, is about two feet high, and is in the South Indian style. At the base, on the right is the garudand on left is Lakshmi. On either side are sculptures of Jay and Vijay. 

Peshwe Mandir

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It was here that Peshwa Balaji Vishwanath was born in 1660. Although the external structure is modern the plinth is ancient. A statue of a standing Balaji Vishwanath has been placed in front. He is shown in full Maratha regalia with a sword in his hand. The whole image evokes self confidence. The seal of Balaji Vishwanath is placed below the statute. On either side are images of Chhatrapati Shahu Mahraj of Kolhapur and Brahmendra Swami. There utterances in praise of Balaji have also been chiselled. Peshwe Smarak is must visit place where one finds the residence of the Peshwas of the Maratha Kingdom. 

Diveagar is a village located in Shrivardhan Taluka, Raigad district in the Indian state of Maharashtra, approximately 170 kilometers south of Mumbai. The area is peaceful, clean and sparsely populated. The region includes a fishing settlement, a beach, a temple, local businesses engaged in coconut and beetle nut tree farming, and some tourism businesses such as restaurants, cottage rentals and hotels : Velas, Musalmandi, Agar Panchaitan, Diveagar, Borlai Panchaitan and Karle. The beach, facing the Arabian Sea, is approximately four kilometers long. The beach is accessible from the Mumbai-Goa highway via Kolad or Karnala. Diveagar is a popular beach destination from the nearby towns of Shrivardhan and Harihareshwar. Sand-bubble crabs can be found on the beach and at nearby Harihareshwar one can find dolphins. Some seaturtles still lay their eggs on the beach. Diveagar, is a prosperous village located at one end of the triple Raigad beaches. Diveagar is about 4-5 hours away from the two major cities of Pune and Mumbai making Diveagar a popular weekend spot. Diveagar is about 40 kms off the NH17 from Mangaon. Murud Janjira, the famous sea fortress is off the coast of Dighi, half an hour from Diveagar. A beautiful drive along the coastal road via the village of Shekhadi takes tourists to Diveagar. This strip of the coast is also abundant in flora and fauna. The fiddler crabs, starfish, sea shells and rich marine life draw nature lovers. The Roopnarayan Temple could be said to be the main place to be visited at Diveagar after the beach. The prime attraction of the temple is its beautifully carved 900-year-old statue of Vishnu that was carved during 12th century C.E. Although the temple and idol are referred to as ‘Roopnarayan’ it must be pointed out that technically the idol is a depiction of Lakshmi Keshav. The carvings of the ten incarnations of Vishnu i.e. the Dashavatar along with the carvings of Brahma and Mahesh are particularly noteworthy. 

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