Why You Should Go On A Boat Ride in Bhedaghat – Ritesh Shetty
If you think boating is overrated and boring then you’ve never been to Bhedaghat. To be fair, I used to feel the same way. I’m surprised that this place in Madhya Pradesh is so damn crowded yet people outside of Madhya Pradesh barely know about it. For those wondering, Bhedaghat is not just another Indian town. What makes this place so interesting is that it’s situated right on the banks of the Narmada River. It’s not too far from Jabalpur and is just around 25 to 30 kilometers.
But coming back to boating. This is where things get interesting. Remember the bollywood song, “Raat ka nasha abhi” from the movie Ashoka? The song was shot here and so was the famous fight scene of Hrithik and a crocodile from his movie Mohenjo Daro. The reason this is such an exotic experience is because of the massive hills that are all made of limestone and marbles. I honestly felt like I’m in some mysterious foreign island of sorts. For just 100 rupees, you can get a boat ride for 45 minutes.
My suggestion is that whenever you’re visiting here, use the evening time for boating.The huge cliffs are so pristine and they reflect the sun rays in a very divine way. While you’re boating, you might get a bit of an eerie feeling as the waters can seem really calm and still and if there aren’t other boats around you, the only sound you’ll be able to hear is probably the distant gushing of the Dhuandhar Falls.
If you’re going with your family or a small group of friends, you can take the 5 seater boat. Personally I find that the most apt. For solo travellers it probably won’t make a lot of difference but you’ll also find 10 seater and 20 seater boats over there. At the starting point you’ll notice how the rocky cliffs are really tiny and they look nice but nothing super special or anything like that. But as you keep going deeper inside, the height of the cliffs keep increasing and the colour also starts transforming into white with marble rocks of different patterns and heights.
The trees and bushes on top of the hills just add another touch of beauty to it. If you’re lucky, the captain of your little boat will be a very witty poetic lad who will thoroughly entertain you. The one riding our boat totally was. He would say the funniest of rhyming stuff. He would point out and tell us where the rocks turn pale, where they’re white, how deep the Narmada River is. Which is around 500 to 600 feet according to him by the way.
That’s the deepest it goes which is usually during the monsoon season. There’s also a spot called Bandar Kudni (Monkey’s Jump) where both the cliffs are very close to each other and the river path is super narrow. The spot gets its name as a lot of monkeys would jump from one side to the other here. We didn’t spot any though.
The way the colours of the marbles keep changing is just pure magic. But all that gets even more mind blowing during the sunset when the rays hit the marble and is reflected on the river. Trust me in that moment and throughout the whole experience you will also start thinking why are there so many great places in India but are not that known. I genuinely feel like there’s so much for me to explore in my own country. I even went to check out the Dhuandhar Falls before the boating. I think visiting during August was a good decision because the flow was very strong and the blaring sound of the water falling gave me goosebumps.
There are railings created for safety purposes but the waterfall’s force is so strong that you still feel a lot of sprinkles on you. If you want, you could try a cable car ride on top of the River Narmada and the falls too. It takes you from the right side of the river to the other side and the top view can be fun.
Also, I’ve myself not experienced this but there are night tours also that you can book during full-moon nights. I’m sure you can imagine how amazing that must be, right? Some really random interesting sights you come across are kids jumping from smaller cliffs. Remember the movie Masaan? That kind of happens here too. Sometimes, kids have their own competition to get coins from the river.
Of course, this is in spots where the water isn’t too deep. Overall, if you tell someone to go boating in Madhya Pradesh, they will not take you seriously. But just show them these exotic pictures and they will know they’re missing out on an underrated and magnificent experience.