Nature’s Wonder at Dudhsagar Falls
One of the major attractions of Goa featured in several Pop-cultural references and Bollywood movies, the Dudhsagar Falls located 60 km (37 mi) from Panjim by raod is a beautiful sight to behold. A majestic gush of foamy white water rushing through the height of 309.98 meters (1017 feet) is a humbling sight for a man. The term Dudhsagar in local language means the sea of milk, probably a reference to the white water that falls from the height.
Located in South Goa’s Sanguem Taluka, the waterfall is the part of the Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary and Mollem National Park overlooking the Western Ghats. To reach the park, one can either hire a jeep or hike from the Kulem railway station. Surrounded by the deciduous forests, the waterfall attracts a huge number of thrill-seekers each year.
Home to several local myths and legends, the Dudhsagar Falls are an interesting destination for thrill-seekers.
Keynotes on Dudhsagar Falls
Address: Mandovi River, Mollem National Park, Sonaulim, Goa 403410
Time required: Almost the entire day
Ideal for a day trip and can be commenced by group, solo, couple
Best time to visit: July to August
Entry fee: INR 400 (from Castle Rock)
Geographic Description of Dudhsagar Falls
One of the prime rivers of Goa, Mandovi River (also known as the Mahadayi River among the locals), runs its course from the Deccan plateau and moves westward towards the Arabian Sea. Passing through the Western Ghats, the Mandovi River falls across its highest peak on the Goa-Karnataka border, creating this beautiful waterfall. The water divides into three parts while plummeting into the cliffs, creating an awe-inspiring sight.
Also, referred to as Tambdi Surla among the locals, the Dudhsagar Falls is currently maintained by the Goa Forest Department. The place is frequently visited by experienced trekkers, who come to explore the magnificent beauty of the place.
A Myth Associated with Dudhsagar Falls
Home to several legends, the place has a deep connection with the local folklore and culture. According to one, the place was once used by a beautiful princess – daughter of the King of the Western Ghats. The princess used to bath in the nearby lake. After her bathing, the princess and her handmaidens would assemble together for fun and frolic.
One day, a prince walking by the nearby woods was attracted by the laughter of the princes and stopped to look at the matter. To preserve the modesty of the princess, the handmaidens poured milk in front of her creating a curtain of the liquid.
Many believe that the cascade of milk that protected the modesty of the lady became the namesake for the waterfall.
Trekking to the Dudhsagar Falls
The trek to the summit of the Dudhsagar has been closed to the general public; however, trek to the base of the waterfall is still available. However, due to safety concerns, railway trek has been suspended officially.
To reach the waterfall through trekking, trekkers can go from the nearby Kuveshi village or, trekking from the Castle Rock station at Uttara Kannada. These treks are extremely dangerous and often remain closed during monsoon season.
Among the trekking routes, one runs from Kulem. The route follows a jeep trail running straight to the bottom of the waterfall. Another route runs through the Sonaulim station and joins the mud trail road. During the rainy season, the trekking becomes very risky. Authorities have mandated hiring a guide and renting a life-jacket as mandatory during the trek.
How to reach Dudhsagar Falls?
To reach the Dudhsagar Falls you have to either book a cab from the nearby village, Molem. These six-seat taxis usually charge around INR 1,200 (but the prices are subjected to change). Ideally, the entire trip (from Molem to Dudhsagar and back) can be commenced in one hour and thirty minutes. This ride is extremely bumpy, but at the same time adventurous enough.
• By Road
You can hire private taxis to reach the entry point of the Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary and Molem National Park. From the park, you can hire the Official Management’s Jeeps.
Expenses – INR 500 for Jeep Ticket + Miscellaneous charges (subjected to change)
• By Train
The nearest railway station to the Dudhsagar Falls is located at Kulem and Castle Rock. From the station, trekkers can head for a difficult expedition towards the base of the waterfall. The average length of the trail is around 11 km (6.8 miles) and would take almost a day to complete.
P.S: This trek is not recommended for travelers with young children or elderly.
Important Things to Remember while Heading Dudhsagar Falls
• The trek to Dudhsagar Falls would consume almost an entire day. Most of the time, it takes around one hour from Mollem to reach the base of the fall. However, sometimes the waiting time for the cab at the taxi bay might take another 30 minutes. At the base, passengers are given around 1.5 hours to enjoy the view.
• Usually, the jeep charges per passenger from Mollem to Dudhsagar are around INR 500. The jeeps are a 7 seat Bolero jeep and can be hired entirely for a fee.
• At the base of the waterfall, you might find several trekkers and travelers enjoying themselves or swimming at the lake. Do pack your swimsuit, if you want to join them.
• Pack your food and water, as you won’t find any eateries at and after the Mollem jeep ticket counter. There are several portable restrooms throughout the route, so during nature’s call trekkers can use them.
• Goa Tourism has opened online ticketing portals for the continence of the trekkers.
Overall the Dudhsagar Falls is an interesting destination, suitable for an adventurous trip.