Dudhsagar is Goa’s most magnificent waterfall that is known to take its visitor’s breath away. Dudhsagar literary means Sea of Milk. But where did the name come from? Few remember the tales and mystical fascination of the name.
This glorious waterfall is found on the Karnataka –Goa border. It is the 5th tallest with the total height of 1017 meters. A four tiered waterfall that forms a part of the Mandovi River. Many travellers go trekking during the monsoon to become one with nature.
Story behind the name
All tour guides have their own version of the story. However the main matter remains the same. Years ago there lived a wealthy and powerful King who resided on top of a mountain in the Western Ghats along the Goan frontier (near present day Dudhsagar Falls). The palace was made of pure ivory and embedded in precious stones surrounded by an enchanting forest. At one end of the forest was a pleasant lake. The king’s daughter went to bathe and sipped sweetened milk which one of her maids served to her in a gold jug.
One day, while sipping at the milk, she found herself being watched by a prince, standing amongst the trees who stopped on hearing the sound of people nearby. The princess filled with embarrassment, poured the jug of milk in front of him into the pond to form an improvised curtain. Thus shielding her body from the glances of the stranger as the maids rushed to cover her. It is believed that the sugared milk still flows down in the torrents alongside the mountain.
Drowning due to undercurrents
The story continues. A devil reigned over the canyon, having complete control over all the lives, including the fish. A local who was tempted to eat the fish sought the devil’s permission, lying to him that he had some guests at home. The devil was hoodwinked many a time, but finally he caught the villager munching the fish. In a fury, he cursed that no one will be able to fish in the waters. Several swimmers are said to have drowned in the treacherous undercurrents of the river. The trees at this place cast long shadows on the path many Goan folk fear an ill omen.
Many people believe this curse has been responsible for the deaths at Dudhsagar waterfall:
- 2006-2007 = three deaths
- 2008 = six deaths
- 2009-2010 = three deaths
- 2011 = five deaths
- 2012 = seven deaths
Scientifically the undercurrents and slippery rocks are the only reasons for the accidents. The Government is trying to improve the safety of tourists by hiring more life guards.
So my advice to you, is to be cautious. Not that I believe in the story, as thousands of tourists have survived this place without a scratch. But you must follow the rules. It’s better to be safe than sorry.