Ganapatipulé (गणपती पुळे in Marathi) is a small town located in the district of Ratnagiri on the Konkan coast of Maharashtra. The town of Chiplun is to its north. According to local folklore, the Hindu god – Ganapati गणपती, taking umbrage by a remark made by a native lady, moved to Pulé पुळे (a few km ahead of the town) from his original abode of Gulé. Thus the region was named Ganpati-pulé.
400 years old Ganpati idol at Ganpatipule is said to have sprung up from the soil. This deity faces the West, so as to guard the western gates, unlike deities in other Indian temples who face the east. The temple is at the base of a hill, and pilgrims walk around(pradakshina) the hill as a mark of respect.
Reaching thereThe town is easily accessible from the port city of Ratnagiri, which also has a railway station and an airport.
By Road: While moving towards Ratnagiri, on Mumbai Goa National Highway No. 17 (NH-17), after Sangameshwar a small village placed on this highway is Nivali. From Nivali one has to take right turn for Ganapatipule (32 km). Alternatively, one can continue on NH-17 till Hathkhamba (Nivali – Hathkhamba: 4km) and then take a right turn to go to Ganapatipule. Ample number of State Transport buses are available from Ratnagiri bus depot. Frequency is good for fast journeys. Ganapatipule is also connected with other cities by state transport buses.
By Rail: There is no railway station at Ganapatipule. One has to get down either at Ratnagiri station or at Karbude. All the express and local trains stops at Ratnagiri, being a city. Karbude is a small village and only passenger trains will stop. You may also Disembark at Sangameshwar and take a bus to Ganpatipule.
- The Ganpati Temple on the coast is the main attraction for Hindu devotees. And since the town itself isn’t easy to get to, the beache remains clean and the water clear. The Ganpati Temple is reconstructed in special Rajasthani style stones and look, and attracts thousands of Hindus from all over India.These god-fearing local devotees take a “Pradakshina” around the hill where the temple is located, not just around the temple.Pradakshina is a form of showing obeisance. The devotees walk in a circle around the idol of the Lord or around the temple, (the house of the Lord).
- Malgund: It is the birthplace of the famous Marathi poet Keshavsut and is just a kilometre away from Ganpatipule. Visitors like to take a look at the house of the poet, now a students hostel. They also visit a beautiful monument called the Keshavsut Smarak.
- Pawas: Naturally beautiful and serene the place is also prominent for the ashram of Swami Swaroopanand a spiritual leader who influenced an entire generation of Maharashtrians.
- Jaigad Fort: Standing high and proud on a cliff with a spectacular view of the sea the fort is at the entrance of the Sangameshwar river and is 35 kms away from Ganpatipule.
- Velneshwar: The beautiful village of Velneshwar situated north of the Shastri River, has its own peaceful, coconut-fringed beach. The village comes alive each year during the Maha Shivaratri far when pilgrims in large numbers visit the Old Shiva Temple.