Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Forts of Konkan 5: Kille Jeevdhan किल्ले जीवधन

Location: Virar, Tal. Vasai, Dist. Thane
The fort is located on a hill on the eastern side of the Virar town. The height from Mean Sea Level 336m.

What to see:
Jeevdani Mandir situated in a cave, view of Vasai taluka- specially beautiful is coastline full with coconut palms, salt pans, urban sprawl of Vasai, Virar and Nalasopara, rice paddies in the kharlands, islands in the creeks and mangrove forests view of Vaitarana creek, view of Tungareshwar and Kamandurg hills on the south eastern direction

The hill was actually a home to a small fortress which was used for watching the movements in Vasai area. The earliest known holders of this fort are Marathas with a brief period of Portuguese for some years in 18th century before again getting into the hands of Maratha forces on 31 Marh 1739 when Maratha forces attacked Vasai and afterwords ended Portuguese rule in the Northern Konkan. There are some caves with a small water tank which are known to exist in the fort since ancient times. There are some stories associated with the Goddess Jeevdani and how the holy place came into existence. The temple became famous in 1956 when villagers established idol of the Goddess and erected the temple.

Though known in the past by the name Jeevdhan, nowadays it more famous for its temple and not as a fort. The hill is in the jurisdiction of the Forest Department and with the joint collaboration of Jeevdani Temple Trust, local Joint Forest Management Committee and Forest Department, various measures for afforestation, fire control and watershed development are being undertaken.

Nearby attractions:
A small lake with fountain and boating in Virar town

How to reach:
Coming by your own vehicle:
Routes for Virar:
Mumbai- Ghodbundar- Shirsad phata- Virar
Pune/ Goa- Thane- Ghodbundar- Shirsad phata- Virar

With Public transport:
From Mumbai- Reach Virar by Suburban Local train. Churchgate to Virar takes 1.20 hours and there is train for Virar from Churchgate/ Dadar station every 20 minutes., on east side of the station shared or private autorikshaws available to reach base of the Jeevdani hill.
There is alternate route from Virar -Chandansar road if one wants to avoid the route lined with shops and crowds. One can reach this entrance by taking shared autorikshaws going to Chandansar.

Nearby Places for stay: