Guhagar is not my native place. I am not visiting this scenic village as an urban tourist checking out a quick getaway. I am here to witness how life in this laid back Konkan village has remained almost unchanged over the years. Coming back to Guhagar after 30 years, it is delightful to see how it has more or less retained its own special character.
Guhagar is a small village located in Ratnagiri district,
Maharashtra. Stretching along the Arabian Sea with clean pristine sands, it offers a panoramic view of the Konkan coast. Early one day, when I went for a jog on the beach, I was pleasantly surprised to see I had no company, except a dozen odd fishing boats trying to get a decent morning catch. Sometimes, we do tend to be indifferent towards the most beautiful sights in our own backyard, I thought as I tried to handle the rigours of running on the dry sand. However, the beach did see some visitors in the evening – mainly local college goers and a few tourists – each getting ample space of their own on the long stretching sands. I watched myself basking in the sun’s setting rays and drowning in the sense of vastness that solitude by the seaside offers.
Back in the village, the two important nerve centres of Guhagar are the local State Transport Bus Stand and the single main road that runs through the village leading upto Varcha Paat, an adjoining habitation. The Bus Stand also doubles up as an open air movie hall during important village events and I remembered as a child watching “Main Tulsi Tere Aangan Ki” on a curtain-screen sitting on the ground. The
Vyadeshwar Temple and the are important religious destinations. I was able to attend the annual celebrations at the Durga Temple and the experience offered an intensive induction into the socio-cultural life of Guhagar. Durga Temple
Some of the other interesting must-see places around Guhagar include: Modke Agar which roughly translated means Broken Station and is created due to backwaters of dam built over river Vashisht; Velneshwar temple and beach; and Dabhol which can be accessed by ferry from Dhopave. I also visited the Khatu Masala factory at Patpanhale and picked up loads of local specialty spices.
Back home in
, a city that has changed almost beyond recognition in the past two decades, I am wondering if the variable of time uniformly applies to all geographical spaces. And if it does not, should it really? Bangalore