Near the border region of the state of Maharashtra and the union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli, nestled on the banks of the Daman Ganga River and close to the Madhuban Dam is a small village – Kauncha. Home to the native tribal of the region, the Government of Dadra and Nagar Haveli is now trying to promote the village as a tourist destination. The village is full of lush greenery and a few cottages and bungalows have been built on the government plot to provide accommodation to those tourists wanting to experience the native tribal life.
Located 50 kms, away from the NH-8, this small village is ideal for those tourists looking to spend some quiet time away from the hustle and bustle of the urban life. Reaching this village is very easy. One needs to take the NH-8 up to Talasari and then deviate inside towards Khanvel. From Khanvel, road signs direct one towards Dudhani and thereafter to the Dudhani Jetty. Once there, one can park their vehicles in the free Government parking lot and thereafter take a small shikara like boat, which reminds one of times spent in the Dal lake of Kashmir.
A Jetty service also exists for the locals who can even carry their motorbikes and cars in the boat from one side of the river to the other, i.e. from Dudhani to Kauncha and vice versa. That is a free service by the government however the locals do not allow tourists to use the service as it enables them to earn some money by providing the Shikara like boats for them. The boat men row the boats with the tourists from one bank to other and are quite knowledgeable about the local history and geography of the place which they are only pleased to share with those who as.
The native language is Warli but the locals can also converse in Marathi and Gujarati along with Hindi quite fluently. Some private air conditioned rooms are also available for stay and are priced much more economically than the government provided Non AC rooms. Food needs can be taken care off by a canteen located quite near to the rooms themselves. For those who love to hog, one can also carry raw food themselves and the canteen owner is quite happy to cook it for them in the way they desire.
All in all, this place is ideal for a couple of nights stay, to rejuvenate oneself and feel refreshed surrounded by the luscious greenery. The place is also a heaven for those interested in nature photography as the river and the greenery provide for some stunning shots. Colorful butterflies and flowering plants only add to the beauty. This place is only 180 kms away from the heart of Mumbai and definitely worth a weekend trip.