Everyone looks for amazing experiences, and sometimes also with the budget. Mostly, foodies look for best serving outlet during the trip. So, to make your Kaas Plateau tour memorable, I have written a complete guide to Valley of flowers. If you are really interested in exploring it to the fullest, let me first clear that your tour to Kaas plateau will not be a leisure tour. Rather, I must say it is an adventure tour. One needs to walk a lot across the Kaas plateau . But, I assure you that it will be one of a kind heavenly walk which you will remember forever.
Information about Kaas Plateau or Kas Pathar Satara
Why the name Kaas Plateau? Actually, it is derived from the Kaasa tree (Elaeocarpus glandulosus). Plateau is nothing but long flat ground. However, Kaas Plateau is also called as ‘Kaas Pathar’ in Marathi. The whole area of 10 sq km is identified under Kaas Plateau. Later, it became world heritage site of UNESCO. It is said that it’s the only one such a place in India where approximately 850 various species of flowers and plants can be spotted. Surprisingly, some of them are only seen here which makes this Kaas plateau unique and brings tourist from all over the world. Here, it happens to be the best suitable weather for the flora. Besides, there is one more such a similar valley of flowers in South Africa, said local naturalist.
How to Reach Kaas Plateau?
- Mumbai to Kaas Plateau distance – 300 km (5-6 hrs drive)
- Pune to Kaas Plateau distance – 140 km (3 hrs drive)
- Satara is the nearest station to Kaas Plateau. There are many trains available from the major cities like Mumbai, Pune and Bangalore. From Satara, Kaas is just 30 km away and it takes 1 hr to reach by road. There are frequent state transport buses available for Kaas Plateau. Otherwise, one can go for a private taxi as well.
- Nearest Airport is Pune. One can hire private Cab from Pune to reach Kaas Pathar of Satara.
Various Kaas Plateau Stay Options
Valley of flowers is a restricted area of forest. Here, construction is not allowed because of which there is a scarcity of hotels and resorts for the stay. Still, there are few options, run by local villagers Kaas Plateau where reliability is a big question mark. Apart from that, these are 5-10 km away from the valley of flowers.
One can go for adventurous home stays nearby Kaas lake or Bamnoli village. It is advisable to book your stay in Satara city, which is easily available and more reliable.
Please don’t think of carrying a tent and camping on Kaas plateau. It’s a restricted area. More importantly, there are forest guards. However, you can pitch your tent beside Kaas lake with the permission of local villagers but again not recommended.
There are few hotels run by locals near Kaas lake which is 2-3 km after the Kas Pathar. During the first visit, I tried few breakfast menus which tasted mediocre. But later on, I found one of the best hotels which serves tasty rural delicacies located 8 km before the Plateau, The Heritage. Veg Thali comes with the 8-9 different items. How about tasting homemade Shrikhand? Do visit & please share your feedback as well.
Kaas Plateau – Best time to Visit
Mostly, everyone says that the month of September is ideal to visit Kaas Plateau, as you get to see many flowers blooming just after the monsoon. But, I will tell you, there are flowers during monsoon and winter, it’s just that you need to search as most of the species are difficult to find. Small Steps Adventures always provide a local guide on their Kaas Plateau Tour, who knows exactly where on the huge plateau which flower is located. He is uneducated but over the period has gained so much of knowledge that he sometimes tells you the scientific name of a particular flower or plant. In the same way, he knows which flower blooms in which month, daytime or night, also belongs to which family.
Instructions or Humble request for Kaas Visitor:
- No drinking and smoking allowed.
- Don’t pluck flowers. Most of them are endangered.
- While walking, avoid stamping.
- Don’t lie down on flower carpet just to get a picture.
- Don’t play loud music as it’s not a party location.
- Very Important: Don’t throw any garbage, plastic or anything that you brought along with you. However, try to bring it back with you. Use dustbins kept at the entrance of Kas Plateau to throw your garbage.
Important things to know before visiting Kaas:
1) Kas Plateau – Pathar online booking is compulsory. Thus, restricting it to only 3000 visitors in a day. I have seen Satara Police, sending people back from the entry route of Kaas Plateau. On weekends, It gets overly crowded. I will request you to visit on weekday if it’s possible for you. Otherwise, you can choose to go with Small Steps Adventures as you hit the Kaas plateau in the morning according to their Itinerary. And, before it gets crowded you exit the place.
2) There is only one washroom cabin that too for ladies only at the entry gates of Kaas. Hence, this might create difficulties while exploring Kaas with aged people or kids.
3) Without visiting a Kumudini lake your trip to Kaas will be incomplete. Kumudini lake is famous for Kumud flowers which is nothing but a type of lotus. Usually, it blooms at night and fades after 10-11 am. Lake covers 2 hectors of whole plateau and sometimes it gets covered with the white carpet of Kumud flowers and their green leaves.
4) Carry a lot of water as Kaas Plateau is an isolated place without any shop.
Kas Plateau Sightseeing options:
- Kaas lake: This lake is easily accessible and just 2 km after Kaas Plateau.
- Vajrai Waterfall: It is one of the top waterfalls of India by height. Moreover, it’s a 3 tiered waterfall. And, one can easily trek to the second tier. Bhambawali is the base village and 6 km away from the Pathar.
- Vasota Trek: It’s an amazing jungle trek and requested to be visit along with the experts only.
- Bhairavnath Boat Club, Bamnoli: Boating in Koyna River gives stunning views of surrounding area. A good place for landscape photography.
- Thoseghar Waterfall: Just 45 km away from the Plateau. Stunning view of waterfall is visible after a walk of 5 minutes. There is entry fee of Rs. 10 per person.
- Chalkewadi windmill farms: This countryside location is on the way to Thoseghar waterfall. You can halt to see how big windmills are? No permission & No entry fee.
- Sajjangad: Road almost goes to the top of fort. One has to climb some steps to explore.
- Ajinkyatara: Easily accessible fort from Satara city, just 15 minutes drive will take you to the entrance gate. One can have bird’s eye view of the Satara city.
- Baramotechi Vihir: It’s an ancient step well of Maharashtra, located near village limb. Google map doesn’t work at the end but you can ask villagers anytime.
What to buy?
Kandi pedhe is famous sweet and easily available on every sweet shop of Satara.
To summarize, don’t expect anything fancy here. It’s not a leisure tour. Enjoy your Kaas tour and do let me know if there are any changes/up gradations.
Keep Reading! Keep Travelling!