Don’t miss the colorful Kaas
If you haven’t visited this incredible, small sized plateau near Satara in Maharashtra, you have missed the striking panorama of nature’s delight. Without wasting any further time, take a trip to this spot because this is the right time of the year just about two months of September and October. The plateau is full of wild flowers with ascetic colors and the blooms which last for about a month and a half.
The plateau is known as Kaas Pathar in Marathi language. The name Kaas originates from Kaasa tree (Elaeocarpus Glandulosus). This tree has a magic; its leaves turn green to red as they mature. It gives white flowers only for 15 days in the month of March. The area of plateau is approximately 1,000 hectare.The Kaas Plateau is situated in the Western Ghats of Shyadri range, just about 22 kilometers from Satara city in Maharashtra state of India. Pathar in Marathi means plateau.
Believe it or not, the entire plateau looks like a carpet of flowers of every hue of colors, they wild and alien, the flowers are small and medium size, with more than 900 different species of flowers, orchids and carnivorous plants such as Drosera Indica which are found only in Kaas.
Wear your walking shoes to keep your feet feeling good mile after mile, be prepared to walk. Don’t stop, keep moving. Take a good camera to click pictures. Do carry magnifying glass with you so that you can enjoy the beauty of very tiny, micro flowers – they are so tiny in size that if you want to see their beauty with naked eyes you will miss the charm of them; hence carry your magnifying glasses. Do not pluck the flowers, or don’t even touch them. You are not allowed to do so.
Recently Kaas has been declared as Biodiversity World Heritage Site by The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNSCO). There is a stunning Kaas lake also which is surrounded by dense forests and it lies between Sajjangad fort and the Kanher Dam.
It takes about seven hour drive from Mumbai and 3 and half hour drive from Pune. Due to its beauty it attracts many tourists, scientists, botanists and nature lovers. It seems Kaas Plateau was formed by volcanic actions and is covered by a thin soil cover as a result of which, no vegetation thrives in the region. This area experiences very high rainfall. You will experience sudden showers of big droplets of rains accompanied by fragrant lazing breeze. Due to its unique geographical and ecological features you will find unique flora and fauna in this region. It is one of the hotspots of biodiversity. You will have gratifying experience of trekking through the flowerbeds, enjoy the scenic beauty, if you are tired wait for a while, and take lazy strolls through the meadows.
Best time to visit Kaas Plateau is after the rains till October end. Many people visit Kaas during the rains; however, the plants bloom only in late August.
Recently the procedure for visiting Kaas has changed and it is a BIG change. You have to pre-register yourself on a website. Only 2000 people per day would be allowed to visit the place. This is a good decision taken. The website is www.kaspathar.com you have to give your details along with the number of people with you. They charge you Rs.10/- per person.
They don’t allow you to park your vehicle on the road at the stretches of the flowers. Instead, you have the following options: 1) Park a few kms earlier and take a government bus to get dropped off in the main stretch. Or you can drive ahead and park at the junction where the main road becomes a one-way stretch from Bamnoli. And, last pieces of advice – visit this heavenly plateau on weekdays instead of weekends. You can avoid the maddening crowd.