Culture and history info
Other than scenic sandy beaches, this coastal town has a great historic past. According to few historians, this place was developed by Shivaji Maharaj, but this town was developed Kanojhi Angare, a naval officer in Shivaji’s army in the 17th century. Originally, Raigarh was addressed as Kolaba. The Raigarh fort was the seat of Shivaji the great, where he was coronated as the king. This place was named after Israelite Jew, Ali, who owned sprawling mango orchards and coconut groves that grew in this place. Hence, it came to be known as Ali’s garden or Alibaug.
This place is mainly occupied by farming and fishing communities. An exclusive Jewish community thrives in this place, because of the ancestral Jewish Diaspora. There are few temples that hold a prominent place in the beliefs of villagers. Kankeshwar temple, Datta temple, and Nageshwar temple, Kankeshwar temple is one of the oldest shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva. Situated on a hillock, this temple is accompanied by 500 steps. Nageshwar and Datta temple hold importance because of the yatra and fair that are held in the temple premises. These both temples have yatras, which occur between November and January. The vicinity of the temples is bustling, with natives and other visitors, while the temples are splendidly decorated with flowers and lights. Festivals that have a magnitude for the locals are Pola and Nag Panchami. Being mainly populated by farming community, these two festivals are primarily associated with farms and agriculture. During Pola, bulls are magnificently bedecked, and villagers congregate at one place to exhibit the bulls and oxen that they own.
In the Alibaug itself, there are small shops that sell handicraft articles. To taste the real flavours of this place, fairs are the best occasion to visit. This is the time, wherein the small traders come together to sell the specialities of this place. Therefore, grab the opportunity to visit fairs and shop for things from these small stalls.