The Petroglyphs of Konkan: A window into an ancient world

The Petroglyphs of Konkan: A window into an ancient world

India is home to a plethora of marvellous ancient architecture, art, and craft depicting fascinating artistry, which has withstood the test of time. Many of these wonders are yet to be fully understood. Some of the fascinating ancient ruins are full of thousand-year-old mysteries that offer a riddle to their spectators. Petroglyphs, the magnificent rock carvings, is one of the spectacular ancient art forms. Petroglyphs are one of the significant discoveries of recent times. The discovery of more than 1,000 rock carvings, in the districts of Ratnagiri and Rajapur in Maharashtra opens a window into an ancient world. Archaeologists believe that the Petroglyph could be 10,000 years old.

Local enthusiasts, Mr. Sudhir Risbud, and his two companions were the first to bring Petroglyphs to light. This was the result of almost six years of consistent efforts taken by them. These carvings depict a variety of images of animals, birds, human figures, and geometrical designs. It is expected that these Petroglyphs would provide an insight into the early history of the Konkan region.

Petroglyphs:

Petroglyphs are one of the prehistoric forms of art carved into the flat, open laterite rock surface/ laterite plateau. These Petroglyphs found in the districts of Ratnagiri and Rajapur depict numerous variety of images. They are mainly, animals, birds, aquatic Animals, Human Figures, Geometrical designs, etc.

 

Some of the petroglyphs depict rhinoceroses and hippos, two species that were never thought to be prevalent in this part of India. It raises various questions and doubts among the archaeologists studying petroglyphs. According to archaeologists, these petroglyphs, however, suggest that the Konkan may have once been a lot like the rainforests where these animals are typically found. Some of the rock carvings are life-size, for example, an elephant and tiger petroglyph at Kasheli in Ratnagiri district and some human figures.

Similar petroglyphs have been discovered in the Sindhudurg district, Usgalimal, south Goa, and Kollur, Karnataka. Other prominent petroglyph and rock art sites in India are the Bhimbetka rock shelters in Madhya Pradesh, rock carvings in Mirzapur in Uttar Pradesh, and petroglyphs from the Tindivanam and Villupuram districts in Tamil Nadu and Unakoti in Tripura.

The Significance of Petroglyphs:

According to State Archaeological Department, the discovery of Petroglyphs in the districts of Ratnagiri and Rajapur could open up a whole new chapter in the history of the Konkan region. Petroglyphs are very significant from the perspective of reconstruction of the history of Konkan. These Petroglyphs reveal various unknown facts such as how the man was, how he lived here etc. However the sites of Petroglyphs are at huge risk of being lost or damaged from road construction, tree plantation, mining, and erosion (human and natural).

 

Mr. Risbud, along with his companions has started convincing the local villagers about the importance of Petroglyphs, the sites, and the need to protect them. They have built a ring of bricks around the petroglyphs and have requested the land owners to build such boundaries protecting the sites. The Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporations has shown interest in developing some of the sites and converting them into a tourist circuit that would attract a lot of travellers and history lovers. 

Things to keep in mind while visiting Petroglyphs sites:

  1. The Petroglyphs sites must be well protected and conserved as they are the precious prehistoric forms of art.
  2. Do not visit the sites by yourself, as the Petroglyphs locations are on private lands. It is recommended to have a guide to show you the exact locations of the petroglyphs and help interpret carvings. One can contact the Ratnagiri tourism department or the local enthusiasts.
  3. Do not walk on any of the carvings as any human activity might cause irreversible damage to the carvings.
  4. Do not make any attempt to mark out the carvings of stone pens, chalks, or by some other method. It might cause damage to the carvings.
  5. Be aware of snakes and stick to the paths.

The petroglyphs are the hidden treasure, holding the secrets of the past.  Hence it is our responsibility to protect and preserve the ancient treasure. Do not miss to witness one of the marvellous prehistoric forms of art when in Konkan.

Scuba Diving

Water Sports at Andaman and Nicobar Islands

A wise man once said that happiness is counted by the experiences you have and not by the things you possess. Andaman and Nicobar Islands offer water sports experiences to cherish for a lifetime.

Scuba Diving

Scuba diving is one of the most popular water sports in Andaman. Untouched and alive coral reefs, vibrant fishes make the experience like none. Havelock Island, North Bay Island, Neil Island, and Port Blair are the best places to experience Scuba Diving at Andaman and Nicobar Islands, prices starting from Rs. 3000 approximately

Scuba Diving

Sea Kart

Sea Kart is the newest addition to the water sports of the Andaman Islands, introduced in 2020 itself. Only water sports vehicle which allows self-drive and takes you farther into the deep sea unlike jet ski and speed boats, sea is getting much love from tourists. Being new to the collection, sea Karts are available at the cost of around Rs. 4000 – 5000.

Sea Walk

This one is an altogether different type of experiencing marine life as you can literally walk through fishes, corals, and vibrant aquatic animals. Honeymoon couples are generally gifted with this in their package itself, otherwise one can book them for approximately Rs. 3500

Snorkeling

Much more affordable than Scuba Diving, Snorkeling gives you the equipment experience if you’re afraid of depth. You can watch the sea surface through the instrument on your face with magnifying glasses, while do not need to go deep, just float and relax on the water. The average cost is Rs. 500 for this.

Glass Bottom Boat

Watch the aquatic life from close without getting wet. Having a self-explanatory name, this boat allows tourists to see fishes through crystal clear and transparent bottom. Open to all age groups, this ride is enjoyable with family only from Rs. 1500 to 3000.

Semi Submarine

Similar to Glass Bottom Boat, this ride takes you much deeper into the sea to experience exotic marine life. However, unlike Glass Bottom Boat, you can watch fishes from all sides as viewing dorm is one floor down and surrounded by water completely. The price range starts from Rs. 1500 onwards.

Kayaking

With dense forests and mangroves, kayaking is a “not to miss” experience in Andaman. Along with day kayak trips, night kayaking, bioluminescence night Kayaking is also available when pre-booked to get the unforgettable experience only from Rs. 3000.

TSG Bella Bay

It is a luxury cruise, introduced only in 2018, that lets you experience a perfect holiday luxurious gateway. It offers exotic food, music, and entertainment deep in the sea only to assure your happiness starting from Rs. 3000.

Parasailing

Available at many beach destinations in India, Parasailing at Andaman offers the scenic view of Andaman and Nicobar Islands from above the sea which makes it memorable than others. Experience flying into the winds and then take a sma`ll dip in the sea to get refreshed at Rs. 4000 onwards.

Jet Ski

Affordable than most of the water sports offers at Andaman and Nicobar Islands, jet skiing is the cheapest one in the category of casual water sports, which is available on all tourists’ places only at Rs. 500

Banana Ride

One of the very rare adventurous water sports that can be experienced with family and friends, this one attracts all being most affordable around Rs. 400-700.