My Essential guide to Kaas Plateau
Kaas plateau, locally known as Kaas Patthar is located in the Satara district of Maharashtra. It is a hotspot of the Western Ghats. Kaas plateau is known as the valley of flowers of Maharashtra and has wide varieties of flora. It is estimated that 70% of Maharashtra’s flower are found here. It is stated as world’s heritage site by the UNESCO. Kaas plateau is the home for many endemic species. The bright colourful flowers among the lush green grasses look horribly beautiful. The dry, nude trees too look so green in the valley. The beautiful, unique butterflies and other insects are very adorable. The caterpillars too look colourful and pretty.
How to travel to Kaas plateau?
It is advised to go to Kaas plateau in a private car or group of travel buses. There are local buses, but the frequencies of those buses are slow and hence, it would be better if you would go by vehicles arranged by yourself. Suppose you start your journey from Satara then the auto-rickshaws are available. One can reach Kaas plateau easily by an auto.
When is the best time to visit Kaas plateau?
Kaas plateau will be officially opened for the public to visit and enjoy the beauty usually from the month of August. There are specific times for the public to visit the place. In order to protect the flora, from this year onwards i.e. from 2016 only 3000 people will be allowed to visit Kaas plateau. Kaas plateau looks different at different times. You will experience different faces of the valley during the beginning, in the middle and at the end of the season. There are some flowers which bloom once in few years. So it would be difficult to visit at that particular time. Therefore, you need to research and plan when to visit the place. People who wish to see purple flowers all over the place can plan their trip anytime in between the months of August and September.
Where to stay?
There are only very few hotels and resorts to stay. So it is recommended to book the rooms well in advance. There are hotels in Satara which requires you to travel for 45 minutes. Some of the resorts and hotels are Kaa pathar village resort and hotel, Nature Plateau Paradise, Hotel Kaas Pathar Lake View, Hotel Sahyadri Pushpa and Kaas Holiday resort.
The hotels near Kaas plateau provide dishes like mutton biriyani, Bharli Vangi, and many other local dishes. You can view the lake, sit there and have your food. It gives a different experience. In the plateau, you will not find any restaurants but if you get down the parking place, you will find few local hotels and restaurant.
Few more basic tips:
Carry a lot of water bottles with you. The plateau is isolated and does not have any shops nearby. Also, you will be prone to get tired very soon. Therefore, carry lots of water when to visit the valley of flowers of Maharashtra.
Do as much of research on the place before you plan for the visit. Get to know about different varieties of flowers. Try to identify the flowers and their differentiating characteristics. This will add on beautiful memories. Going with someone who knows a lot of flora and fauna would be good. Otherwise, it is recommended to buy a book at the ticket counter.
Do online bookings as fast as possible as there are only limited number of people to enter into the plateau. The entrance fee is Rs. 100 on the weekends and government holidays. It is Rs. 50 on the working days.
It is advised to carry an umbrella or a raincoat since Kaas plateau will be opened for public to visit in the monsoon. Rain is very common in the plateau and also takes waterproof covers for your mobile phones and camera. Also, make sure you don’t wear expensive clothes and shoes. They might get dirty and become useless after the trip.
There are various charges if you want to visit Kaas plateau. So you better carry money along with you. There are entry fees. The fees differ according to the age. Then, you need to pay for parking the vehicles and carrying cameras. Even you need to pay for the guide who takes you and introduces to each and every flower in the plateau.
To conclude, visiting Kaas plateau is like visiting a magic world. The plateau has infinite varieties of flowers which will add colour to the eyes. One should always book his tickets before in hand; carry water bottles, umbrella, camera, and other necessary things. Also, dress accordingly as the plateau will be open for public during the monsoon seasons. It the best time to visit, travel and have memories.