Kaas Plateau or Valley of Flowers
Kaas Plateau or Valley of flowers-A paradise for nature lover and for those who are interested in flora.
In our search for visiting a unique place for long weekend of Sept that was 30th Sept, 1st Oct and 2nd Oct a 2N/3D plan we zeroed in on Kaas Plateau as our next destination which has become a part of UNESCO world heritage site in 2012. The entire grassland turns into valley of flowers during monsoon season, August to early October. The reason to schedule this plan was that to celebrate my daughter’s Birthday which is on 2nd Oct and which is also a birthday of our Nation’s father Mahatma Gandhi. I specially wanted to surprise my daughter by this unique idea of spending those 2 days in the midst of the nature. But due to her school schedule and office schedule we had to start it on 30th Sept as it was Sunday and returned back on 2nd Oct. As usual, we had questions and curiosity in our mind about the place which eventually turned out to be a surprise package for us.
The journey towards Kaas started in the morning on the very first day that is 30th Sept, 2018 at around 8.00 a.m. from Thane first by refueling our car to full tank and air checkup at nearby fuel station. We straight away headed towards Pune via Expressway and were cruising at a decent speed on the highway. So, after covering the distance till Pune, we decided to take a halt for filling our empty stomach and getting afresh. We took a break of around 45 minutes and had a decent brunch and left from Pune at around 11:30 a.m.
Our journey from Pune till Satara was surrounded by greenery and hills which were so amazing and soothing to eyes. Even the rain and sun were playing games with us which in a way were making their way for a beautiful rainbow that accompanied us for some time. While cruising along the highway we were just discussing that it’s so amazing that by covering just 190 odd kms we had a green, clean, & amp; serene environment from that of a hustling and bustling city like Mumbai.
While going in the lap of nature we switched off our car AC and opened our windows to enjoy the climate. The more upward we moved the more beautiful picturesque it had become and it felt like heaven. It felt like a perfect portrait painted by the great almighty. We were moving zig-zag, up-down, on the hills and after around 17 kms from Satara we reached to a hill top at around 2.30 p.m. We were lucky enough to get a clean & decent room in homestay at Anavale Village which was pre booked with the help of team Sahyogmantra Tours from where we had a spectacular view of the sunset. It’s amazing to see colourful sky while the sun was getting past the hills. We were mesmerized by the sight of the sunset with our evening tea and that was a lovely combination!!! We were relaxing in the hotel room remembering the journey covered and were eagerly waiting for the next day. After having a good dinner at the hotel we went to the bed and fell asleep in no time.
The next morning started on a positive note and everything went as per our scheduled plan. We got up on time and were ready for our excursion to Kaas Plateau. We had our breakfast in the hotel room and were out at 8:30 a.m. to get the answers that were in our mind.
In just 15 minutes’ drive we reached to the parking point and boarded the bus which was organized by the management of Kaas Plateau. When we got down from the bus we didn’t want to miss any opportunity and what welcomed us was a glimpse of Kaas with a bed of yellow flowers. This was the Yevteshwar plateau full of yellow flowers and valley on both sides of the hill. The table top mountain and lake view on both sides of the plateau was amazing. We stopped there for approximately an hour, clicked some pictures and headed for our destination. We were now clear that something spectacular is coming our way. When we walked further we were amazed by the site. The moment we saw the Kaas Plateau – it was like awe!!! For few minutes the time paused for all of us and we felt blessed by the purity of the place. We hardly see such natural colours in our day-to-day life and this place was full of colours. The blue, white, purple, pink flowers, green herbs & shrubs were so mesmerizing that, it was like love at first sight. Everybody can get hypnotized by such sight of flowers, a mix of earthy fragrance and the fragrance of flowers.
We started exploring the plateau and went deep into it and were enjoying the atmosphere. It’s a magic box where at every juncture you had something to unfold. We were blessed with a very pleasant weather with cool breeze flowing through the plateau. We were capturing the scene through our lenses as much as we can. While exploring the place we came across a small pond surrounded by colourful flowers. It was an awesokme sight and we spent a lot of time there. The carpet of white flowers looked like gems strewn all over the place. It felt like the God had well-knit the carpet with colourful flowers.
The area of plateau is approximately 1,000 hectare. The whole plateau looks like a carpet in various colors. These flowers bloom on their own and stay for about 2–3 weeks (depending on the monsoon and other weather factors during August -1st week of October every year). It has been declared as Biodiversity World heritage site by The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). It’s a unique place for flora researchers, nature lovers, and photographers. There are many types of flowers here on Kaas Pathar which grow naturally (Around 850 species of Flowers). While most of the areas were fenced to protect the nature, but entry to the visitors were allowed at one point. Apart from tourist we saw botanist, professional photographers, and drawing artists all over the place. After spending some time we came back to the entrance to see other sides of the plateau as well.
You can also visit Lotus Lake fully covered with small white Lotus flowers. You have to walk 1-2 km to see Lotus Lake.
You cannot pick the flowers, it is not allowed. You can take pictures with your mobiles and cameras but commercial photography is not allowed.
There are other spots around like Bamnoli river boating, Waterfall and windmill site.
While returning back we visited Thosegar Waterfall.
On the second day, we had booked our hotel in Satara city as we wanted to visit Ajinkyatara fort. We visited Ajinkyatara fort on Second day. The climb to the fort is stiff and on the top of that roads are not in a good condition. Felt very sad about it –It’s completely ruins nowadays. Government authorities should look into the matter seriously.
It was a very refreshing experience which is still afresh in our memories after coming back home. The visit had given us a new dimension and has added colours in our life.
How to reach Kass Plateau?
Kaas plateau is situated 30 kms from Satara city
Kaas is located 40 kms from Mahabaleshwar in Maharashtra.
The distance between Pune and Kaas Plateau is 140 kms and it can be reached in 3 to 4 hours via NH4.
Its distance from Mumbai is 290 kms and takes around 5 hours to reach by road via the Mumbai-Pune Expressway and then NH4.
Fact File of Kass:
Why Kaas: Full of biodiversity, truly a paradise for nature lover and for those interested in flora. A Perfect weekend gateway during monsoon
Best time to visit: Mid-September till October first week
How to reach there: Nearest Railway station is Satara and from there by Private vehicle. There is scarcity of public transport.
Entry Fee: Very nominal Rs.100/ per adult and child below 12 years is complementary and extra charges for camera
Parking: 1.5 kms from the entry point
How to roam: By walk only
Food: No stalls available at Kaas Plateau
Public convenience: Not available at Kaas Plateau
Places nearby: Kaas Lake; Waterfalls