Vajreshwari - Tungareshwar (Thane - Maharashtra)

The day I visited Vasai Fort, my other destination was Vajreshwari & then Thungareshwar Waterfalls. Well, I've heard of hot water springs since long, but never seen one. When I came to know Vajreshwari has some hot water springs, how would I miss it?
So of I went to Vajreshwari. The info I had in hand was that the Tapth Kund or Hot Spring were somewhere near a temple of Lord Shiva. On enquiring for Vajreshwari Temple I was lead to a temple. It was the Vajreshwari Yogini Devi Temple and not a Shiva temple. A flight of about 70 steps, bare foot in boiling May heat was really difficult! This temple was built in the 16th C, by the Marathas soon after they captured Vasai Fort and the nearby areas from the Portuguese. But what stands here is not an old structure. Wish all renovations were done keeping the old world charm intact, but sadly no. With tiles et all, the temple is pretty much modern now.
I enquired to the priest about the Shiva temple, he said its further up. I wanted to re-check and asked him if the 'Tapt Kund' was there as well. He then clearly said that its further down the main road approx 2 more km. Again my search continued and I kept enquiring for Shiva temple and Tapt Kund and locals did not understand! I was led to a small village weekly bazaar in the midst of which a Krishna Temple was situated. Near that temple, I was guided properly to the Shiva temple which I had to go further for 1 more km. So the message is, here refer to the temple of Lord Shiva as Sankar Ji ka Mandir and not as Shiva and refer to the Hot Springs as Garam Kund and not as Tapth Kund as it is called in pure Hindi!
Finally I reached the temple, but disappointed. Here again what I saw was a concrete-ized modern structure. A Shiva lingam was in the sanctum sanctorum and just opp to it were 3 Tapt Kund. See those small pools? No, they are not man-made pools, they are Hot Springs with cement walls raised around them! 
Almost half a km on the way back, in the midst of some random small kiosks and opp. to a hotel (sorry, I forgot its name!) were 4 more Tapt Kund. Its easy to spot them, as the river is open to the main road only at this point. 3 of those were open and 1 had a roof atop. 
Again all of these had concrete, cemented walls & steps around them. Wish I had seen atleast some pond like structure with crude granite steps, instead of such a concrete structure!!! I was depressed!!!
But just seeing the Hot Springs was a new experience for me. I had imagined it to be warm water, but then only on actually feeling it, I realized it was indeed 'hot' springs! In some 10 secs, I had to withdraw my hand out hurriedly! See the hot water emanating from beneath, forming bubbles on the surface?!!!
After Vajreshwari, on the way back to the main road, a dirt track which invited us to the Balayogi Ashram, which was also a portion of Sanjay Gandhi National Park, was the base of the hill top where Tungareshwar Waterfalls was located. The track was indeed very much a dirt track, thanks to the mid-May summer, the place was dry and brown, not lush green as I had read about! No streams and mini waterfalls here n there that I had read about! The road was being laid at places and it was getting harder and worse. It was noon the workers who were laying the road were sleeping. After going half way in the ghat roads atop, enquiring them about the waterfalls, they said there was nothing atop except the Ashram, no waterfalls! May be it was a seasonal one, that's in full glory only in rain, not in mid summer. I didn't want to proceed in that worse track anymore and reach a point where we can't even reverse our vehicle. Bad luck with the waterfalls!!!


TO GET THERE:
To Tungareshwar Phata (Jn.) beyond Mumbai:
From Dadar: 50km from Dadar via Andheri, Borivali, Vasai on the Ajmer Road
From Virar: 20km on Veer Savarkar Road and then Ajmer Road
From Bhiwandi: 28km on Chinchoti-Anjur Phata Road
To Vajreshwari Hot Springs:
From Vajreshwari Phata: 24km beyond Ganeshpuri.
Enquire for a Shankarji temple and Garamkund, locals will guide you.
To Tungareshwar:
Almost 4-5 km before reaching the Ajmer Road on the way back from Vajreshwari Temple, to your left you should spot a dirt track with an arch that reads Balayogi Sadanand Ashram. Uphill is the destination in rainy season. Miss it in summers...


Dediated to Mom & Pop

Bhushavali N

An ardent traveler by passion. I am a wanderlust.. Read more about me here.

27 comments:

  1. Good Pictures with interesting narration...

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  2. thats news to me! any idea when this concrete tank was done on the spring?

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    1. You've been to this place before the concretization was done?
      I have no clue when was it concretized and tiled! :(
      But it was a very bad idea and spoils the serenity of the place! :(

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    2. I had visits at Vajreshwari Temple and Ganeshpuri Hot Springs during 1987-90. I reminiscent temple with changes mentioned in blog. But Kundas were all concreted then with no tiles around. This place was so crowded and so slippery. one must have experience once in life time

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    3. Once in lifetime is enough. The crowd is so much that going again isn't recommended, is it???!!!

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  3. While at Mumbai I too went to this place. Unfortunately I was not aware of Tungareshwar temple.

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    1. Oh! Vajreshwari has a temple. Tungareshwar kind of has an ashram, not a temple. But it has a great falls and a gorgeous bird sanctuary, coz its a section of SGNP, but only in rainy season...

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  4. Good article.... Keep writing. In north we have some hot springs....

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    1. Thanks Venkat. Kasi, Ganges etc has a lot of these sulphur springs. But I haven't been there. This was the first time I saw them!

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  5. I have seen hot springs in Manali...The water can be 'HOT' as you rightly said... :)

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    1. Manali also had hot water springs! Oh, I didn't know that!! Thanks for the info Jaish! :)

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  6. These situations happen sometimes. bad luck. Nice article otherwise.

    http://rajniranjandas.blogspot.in

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    1. Thanks Niranjan. It was so disheartening!!!!! :(

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  7. Hi Bhusha
    Trust you are in the pink of health and cheer.
    Nice springs. Travelling a lot these days! You may like to see my latest post at http://sankriti.blogspot.in/2012/06/thani-illam-our-ancestral-house.html .
    Please visit and give your impressions.
    Regards Ram

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    1. Ram Sir, Long time No C!!!! I'm fine. Hope you're fine too...
      Coming just over to your blog... :)

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  8. This blog is so great! I'm totally love it! :D

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    1. Thanks Virginia. Welcome here to my space. Do drop by often! :)

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  9. beautifully narrated...

    photos of temples also good

    thanks bhusha

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  10. A very beautiful place. I really like the photos.

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  11. Too bad many of the temples are renovated with modern day material and losing all the rustic charm

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    1. True! Wish the temple authorities and Hindu Religious Endowment take the guidance of archeologists & historians before renovating and temple!

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  12. wow nyc article but was is the reason of this hot water,is this natural n if yes hw come

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    1. Reason lays under the ground Sweta. There are geological reasons like volcanoes, hot rocks etc....

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