Forts have always been fascinating to me, especially forts like the Golconda Fort which has some amazing features, hidden passages and trap doors. Accompanied by its folklore and legends, there is always a mystic to these structures. And Murud Janjira fort is further interesting for the fact that it is right in the middle of the Arabian sea, making it even more exciting and thrilling to explore.
Located along the Konkan coast, close to Alibaug, this fort has a history of being an undefeated fort. The fort was built by the Siddi dynasty. The fort was attacked by the Marathas and the Dutch but despite several attempts, failed to conquer this fort. The approach to fort it through the sea. There are several boats that ferry you across. As your approach the entrance, you see the waves lashing onto the steps, and the fun of it is when you need to literally jump across to these steps from the boat.
At the entrance, you can also, see a carving of 6 elephants trapped by a single tiger. A symbolic representation of the strength of this fort.
The fort itself is in ruins, and has around 23 bastions. The fort had a 5-storied palace, which now, no longer can you see. As you enter the fort, you can see quite a few cannons. It is said that they have been made from 5 different metals.
There was a Fresh-water tank for drinking water purposes within the fort. One can still view that around the quarters for the army. A few hidden passages are also, visible along the way.
From the fort, one can see another fort – the Kasa fort or the Padmadurga fort. There is no approach to this fort and the same needs special permission from the Indian authorities. It is said that this fort was built by the Maratha chief Sambhaji.
Murud Janjira is a short visit and the exploring this fort itself would not take your more than 2 hours. A great-weekend get-away or day trip from Pune and Mumbai, mark this place as an adventure cum heritage trip. Not a bad idea if you would want to team it with some water sports and fun on the Murud beach.
Getting to Murud Janjira:
Murud Janjira is around 160 kms from Mumbai as well as Pune and around 50kms from Alibaug.
Travel by road is the easiest way to reach this place
Once here, one needs to take a ferry from the Rajapuri jetty to the fort.
Wear light cotton clothes and carry a change, just in case you get wet. Weather here is fairly pleasant and warm throughout the year.
Flat, comfortable shoes are a must, especially, if you end up having to jump to the fort entrance.
Fort is open from morning sunrise to sunset.
The ferry ride could cost anything between INR30 – 50. One can even hire a guide whilst here to understand the fort better. The guide needs to be hired at the jetty.
There are some lovely restaurants in the town for some good Maharashtrian food.
For a stay, there are some small hotels and guest homes available. One can even stay at the Kashid beach, 20 kms away, where there are plenty of resorts and home-stays available.