Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Dang - Saputara- Forest Area and Hill Station

Dang - Saputara- Forest Area and Hill Station

Way :
Ahmedabad - 420 KM
Dang - Saputara- Forest Area and Hill Station Dang - Saputara- Forest Area and Hill Station
Dang - Saputara- Forest Area and Hill Station
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Dang is an important region of Gujarat from several points of view. Saputara is the only hill station of Gujarat. Dang is a forest region and the Adivasi life adds one more hue to Gujarat's already colorful lifestyles. Dang is in the eastern side the hills of Thane district and forests. The forests of Dharampur of Valsad district to the east, the Vansda-Dang forests, to the east of Bilimora, to the west the straight coastline and forest strip. Here we find the old principalities of Dharampur and Vansda, royal even when founded in the midst of thick forests. Although no longer boasting of former glory, the surrounding natural beauty is the same as ever. Dharampur area comes under Valsad district and Vansda under Surat district. Dang is a district by itself. Its backward tribal population, mostly Bhil community, is thus separated so that they can make independent progress. As we proceed to east from Surat we come to Ahwa, situated a little above sea level and the headquarters of the district. The old railway of narrow gauge joined Bilimora with Vadhai, another city of this area. The Govt. offices are in Ahwa. Every year a 'Dang Darbar' is organized here.

It is interesting to see the fairs and dances of the Adivasis, and the prize giving ceremonies for the old Thakors of the villages. For other business, the main center is Saputara. It has thick forests on all sides. A sanctuary for wild animals is set up here at Bardipara and there are a large number of them found here. Ghelubhai Nayak and Chhotubhai Nayak have started many activities for the inhabitants of Dangs by their Ashram at Ahwa. As we climb a serpentine road we come to the only hill station of Gujarat, Saputara, and the Government has developed it. There ' are Sunrise Point, Sunset Point, Echo Point, boating facilities, Deepkala Udyan garden, Triphalavan, Honey Bee Center, Ritambhara Vishvavidyalay, etc. that pass the time of the tourist very pleasantly. The climate is very pleasant and the rains are heavy in the season. On the hill is a gate indicating the border of Maharashtra State. We can enter its Nasik district from here. The city of Nasik is very near too. It is so close that in one day the tourists can go and return from there. Tourist boarding and lodging facilities are developed by the Government at Saputara, and there are other hotels too. This hill station has developed well. Mrs. Poornima Pakvasa has set up and developed a unique educational center here for the Adivasis, specially their girls. There is Honey Bee Center and many housing facilities by both the government and private enterprise. A small dam and a little lake allows the tourist to enjoy boating too, while at one end he can wait to witness one of the most beautiful sunset in the world. The serpentine road that carries him all the way up is itself a thrill for him.

During the festivals of Holi and Dang Darbar the Adivasis arrive to worship the Serpent God on the coast of River Ganga. Legend says that this is the area of 'Dandakaranya' described in Ramayana. The Dang Adi vasis have a culture of their own. Arrangements have been made for the tourist to witness their songs and dances. The Nature lovers must enjoy the cool natural beauty of Saputara.

Actually the whole of Dang district is hilly. The highest peak in the east is 1100 m high. The main rivers are Puma, Ambika and Sarpagandha. The first named river is the longest of the three.

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