After the day-long journey from Anmod the day before, the stay at Tambdi Surla was relaxing. We were relieved to have completed seven days of the hike with only one day remaining. We were still in the thick of the rain forest, but we were quite close to the excellent spot since there was road access.
The old temple, a stream next to our campsite, a massage center in the middle of nowhere near our campsite, and a cabin where we all sat together the entire evening conversing non-stop gave us a sense of contentment. It was the last day of our journey, so it was a mixed bag of emotions. Day 8 consisted of more forest walking via an old Shiv mandir (Mahadev temple) adjacent to the stream.
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Morning at Tambdi Surla campsite
The morning sunlight at Tambdi Surla began with our camp leader blowing a whistle and instructing us to hike up to the top for morning tea. After packing our belongings and taking a few group photos, we began our journey towards the Tambdi Surla temple. We filled our water bottles at the entrance and continued on the main road. We took a sharp left after roughly a kilometer of walking on the asphalt road and through a settlement. We left the rain forest and returned to the cultivated plain.
Few questions answered on Tambdi Surla
Who made Tambdi Surla?
According to history scholar Prajal Sakhardande, it was erected by the Kadamba queen Kamladevi and is composed of grey-black talc chlorite schist soapstone rather than basalt, as is often assumed. When was Tambdi Surla was built? – In the 12th century.
How old is Tambdi Surla?
Tambdi Surla, Goa’s oldest temple, is a Shaivite temple of Lord Shiva. Because of its distinctive building style, this temple is a visual pleasure. It is the only Kadamba-Yadava architectural landmark. During the period when this temple was built, the Kadamba dynasty ruled.
Hiking to another historic place
It was hot outside, and we had to cross many nearly dry streams. We made a lot of noise as we went through the leaves. We continued our journey, investigating the path till we arrived at an ancient Shiv mandir (this is not Tambdi Surla but 1 or 2 kilometers from this historic famous place and is not approachable by road).
A jump to the cool stream
The route runs parallel to the stream, with the main road on the opposite side. We took a stop at Shiv or Mahadev Mandir, and there is a stream right next to it. Camping near a stream was fantastic and fun at practically every campground. It was a scorching summer day, so we jumped into the cool stream right away. We had a lot of fun there, but we had to leave soon after because we had packed lunch.
End of YHAI Goa trek
Continue trekking for a few more hours, first by the jeep route, then back to the forest up and down the hill, until we reach the main road. YHAI had arranged for us to be picked up from this spot and returned to Panjim. The one-hour bus ride was enjoyable once more, and we were greeted at our Panaji YHAI campground. We stayed an additional day at the YHAI campsite to celebrate the new year, and the celebration was well-organized by YHAI.
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