So then after exploring all the famous places in and around Bangalore, it was time to rediscover the unmatched beauty of Goa. First up was the Netravali wild life sanctuary. As usual I surfed the net for info but couldn’t find anything worthwhile. I sorely miss the loads of info about anything and everything in Bangalore on the internet. I couldn’t get anything useful from the special Goa edition of the Outlook Traveller either.
So we set out from Margao in the morning with some vague info on the route and with the hope that we would meet some friendly locals who would show us the way whenever we felt we were lost. On we went, gliding past green fields and rolling hills. The Goan countryside is really magical in the monsoons. We passed through the towns of Curchorem and Sanguem. We gave lift to a couple of guys and in return got directions to the destination. It was a win win situation to both parties. Finally after riding for 55km we reached Netravalli village. We had a quick snack and collected some supplies for the trek from a small bar, yeah a bar!. If you ever feel that you might be lost and have crossed the border of Goa, just look around. Every village and hamlet in Goa, no matter how remote, has a bar. And Netravali was no different.
We rode on for another 3 km till the road ends at a small hamlet. We asked some locals for directions. After walking through backyards and front yards of small houses, we got a little lost. We came back and found a local who agreed to show us the way till the start of the path. It was fun walking in the forest on a path criss-crossing the stream. After walking for a good half hour the path came to an end abruptly. Soon shoulders and spirits were dropping and there was no waterfall in sight. We decided to walk along the stream.
Then suddenly I saw a speck of white around the bend. Finally we had reached the waterfalls, Savari Falls. It looked quite stunning. Suddenly someone spotted a snake basking in the sun near the edge of the pool. Now this was a wild life sanctuary and the snake had as much right to the stream as any of us. Soon expert comments on snake behaviour were flowing. Whether it was poisonous? Would it enter the water when were bathing, did it have a mate somewhere around? It was decided that one of us keep watch on the snake while the rest of us splashed around the pool. Then we wanted to take some pictures on the rocks near the snake. The snake was in the same position since we first saw it. Was it hibernating? After close examination we saw that its skin was shrivelled and ants were feasting on its body. The snake was dead! To think of all the fear a dead snake managed to instil in us. It was time to head back the way we came.
We wanted to explore the other waterfall. But time was short and we didn’t want to get late to leave for Margao. We decided to visit the other major attraction in the area. The Bubble pond, where bubbles erupt to the surface whenever you clap. But when we were there, bubbles were coming continuously. It is quite a mysterious phenomenon. I had read that such a thing occurs due to release of methane during decay of organic matter at the bottom of the pond. I could not see any decaying matter in this case as the water was crystal clear. And Goa is not known for seismic activity to assume that the gas is coming from the earth’s interior. So, I wonder how those gas bubbles are formed at the bottom of the pond.
That brought an end to our Netravali trip. We reached back to Margao after a serene uninterrupted ride through some lovely rustic scenery. See you at the same place for my next Goan excursion!