Just been to Dhamapur. A tiny but famous village in coastal Maharashtra. Originally known for its ancient lakeside temple, it is being promoted as a wholesome tourist destination by the state govt.
Driving towards Dhamapur via Kudal town in Sindhudurg District (about 15 Km), one is treated to such eye-soothing vistas of green which abound in Konkan.
Dhamapur hides under a bewitchingly lush canopy of beetlenut and mango trees. There is virtually no traffic on the road and this enhances the sleepy look that the place bears.
The temple is situated right on the banks of the Dhamapur lake and looks more like a village house, with its Mangalore-tiled roof. This is how all old temples in this part of the world look like. But renovations are robbing most temples of their charm as they get converted to cement-and-oilpaint prototypes. Fortunately, this one has been spared so far, though I am not sure for how long..
The row of pillars in the temple looked absolutely stunning.
After Darshan, I stepped out of the temple and found myself right on the banks of the lake, with a bunch of peddle-boats tied to the jetty.
There was no attendant present on the spot, though I felt sure he was around somewhere closeby. Even the small shacks selling assorted wares were unmanned, the owners presumably attending to domestic errands intheir respective houses just to the rear.
Because of the holy nature of the lake, no fishing is permitted. As a result, large schools flourish in the waters and even swim up to the jetty to scout for food.
The notice board with its righteously elaborate set of instructions for the tourists adds to the merriment quotient for those who know Marathi!
On my way back, I drove past this family-managed inn called “Bhawojichi Khanaval”, just outside Kudal town. Aficionados of Malvani seafood swear by its name. I reversed and parked up. A trip to the coast wouldn’t be complete without the culinary dimension being addressed.
The place is actually a house converted partly into a no-frills restaurant, with (perhaps) the presiding deity of the family watching over the restaurant as well.
The family lives in the rear portion of the house. The frontage has a clutch of trees providing the necessary shade.
A simple pedestal fan serves to cool the diners.
The menu is plain and is has been strung up on a board.
My hunger pangs multiplied by the kitchen smells emanating from the house. Fortunately, the food showed up without too much delay. A Mutton Taat (meal) with an additional side dish of Surmai fry. The place does not serve liquor or beer.
The taste was great and the portions were substantial. A godsend for a hungry traveller!