Hiking - Destination

Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek: Explore the Magnificent 'Ocean of Milk' Waterfalls

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Imagine a towering fall of milky white waters, gushing down a rocky surface with pristine and lush greenery surrounding every inch and step of the area. In the background, you can hear the soft hum of the trains pass by and the atmosphere has a soft yet chilling air to it. The Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek is a sight that entices all of its visitors and can be found tucked away on the border between Goa and Karnataka. The Dudhsagar Waterfalls is one of India’s tallest naturally occurring waterfalls and the trail has prided itself for its rich, vivid and dense scenery. The area is punctuated with breathtaking spreads of flora and the Dudhsagar Waterfalls trek is actually accessible through the Indian Railway Network!

Dudhsagar waterfalls
Dudhsagar Waterfalls Underneath the Railway Bridge (source)

Due to the close proximity to the network, many private tour operators offer jeep and cab services to trekkers. The best time to visit the Dudhsagar Waterfalls trek would definitely be in the monsoon season, as the falls truly come to life. The water plunges to the bottom from a height of 310 metres and the trek is one of the most popular tourist destinations and landmarks in the region. The falls are, however, inaccessible due to safety regulations and prohibitions from the railway department. Tourists and trekkers usually get a glimpse of the glorious falls from the arriving trains.

Know More Here:

The Quick Breakdown

  • Distance: 570 kilometres away from Bangalore, 28.8 kilometres from Goa.
  • Basecamp: Dudhsagar Railway Station
  • Difficulty level: Easy
  • Endurance: Moderate
  • Duration: 6 to 7 hours
  • Dudhsagar Waterfalls Altitude: 310 metres

Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek: Enchantment From Above

The Dudhsagar Waterfalls trek is a four-tiered waterfall situated at the Goa-Karnataka border, on the Mandovi river. The name literally translates into the “Sea of Milk” and the falls are located 60 kilometres away from Panaji by road, on the Madgaon-Belgavi railway route. Standing tall at a height of 1017 feet (310 metres) and an estimated width of 100 feet (30 metres), the Dudhsagar Waterfalls is one the tallest waterfalls in the nation and is the 227th tallest in the world. The Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek is found in the Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary and Mollem National Park, in the Western Ghats. The entire area is encompassed by dense deciduous forests and a rich biodiversity of flora and fauna.

Dudhsagar waterfalls view
Dudhsagar Waterfalls Looks Like an Enchantment from Heaven (source)

Locally referred to as the Vajra Sakala Falls, the Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek is located close to the Kulem railway station. The falls have been celebrated for its beauty and spectacularity in the monsoon seasons, as the gushing water are fed by the rains, which form a strong force of water. However, they do get dry during the summer and the winters. Regardless, the trek is truly an experience that everyone must highlight on their “Goa Bucket list”.

Legend has it that the Dudhsagar Waterfalls were a place of residence of a princess. Every day, after she bathed in the falls, she would drink sweetened milk. One day, she noticed a prince watching her from the forests, as she was drinking her milk. And in order to hide from his prying eyes, she poured the milk to form a curtain around herself. It is believed that the Dudhsagar Waterfalls owes its name to this local myth.

The Best Routes to The Majestic White Falls

dudhsagar waterfalls
The Cascading Fall of the Dudhsagar (source)

The waterfall appears like a vast stream of milk flowing smoothly down the mountain and culminates into a gushing cascade at the bottom.

By Rail Route

Kulem station
The Kulem Station (source)

The Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek can be reached from the Kulem Railway Station.

  • From Mumbai: You can catch a train from Mumbai to Goa, and get off at Madgaon.
  • From Karnataka: Castle Rock is the last station that lies on the border of Karnataka and people travelling from Bangalore can get off at this station. You can also reach the Dudhsagar Railway Station, located at 570 kilometres away from Bangalore. You would have to take the Mas Vasco Express (Train number: 17311) which only runs only on Fridays.

By Bus Route

You can take a bus from Mumbai to Panaji, Goa. From Panaji, you can either take a private bus or drive to the Kulem station, near the falls, which is around 64.7 kilometers away.

By Road

There are two routes to reach the base of the falls. The first starts from Kulem and you can drive along the jeep trail until the bottom of the waterfalls. The second route is the path is via the railway track. You can trek up to the Sonaulim station and return back to the Mud route. This path is more preferred as it would end up saving 2 km on the Mud road.

By Trek

Trek route to dudhsagar
The Trek Route to Dudhsagar Goes Through Railway Tracks (source)

The best and more suggested route to reach the base of the Dudhsagar waterfalls is through the railway tracks from Castle Rock. This path is punctuated with all those seasonal beauties of small nearby waterfalls and lush green landscapes. It stretches for about 15 kilometres and should take about 4 to 5 hours. The other route involves trekking from the Caranzol station for about 8 kilometres to the Dudhsagar waterfalls.

Highlights Of The Trek

Railway route to dudhsagar
The Scenic Trek Route to Dudhsagar (source)
  1. A scenic trek along the railway to the base of the Dudhsagar Waterfalls
  2. A walk through the dense forest of Bhagvan Mahavir Sanctuary
  3. The milky gush of the Dudhsagar Waterfalls

Best Time to Visit

It is advisable to go between October to May when the level of the water in the rivers abates enough to permit approach the base of the falls. This is because the level of the water in the nearby rivers subsides just enough to allow people to approach the base of the falls. The Dudhsagar Waterfalls also boasts of its colossal altitude of 310 metres, and is even earned the status of the fifth tallest waterfalls in the country and the 227th tallest in the world.

Dudhsagar view from top
Dudhsagar Waterfalls Taking the Plunge into an Emerald Green River (source)

The Full Breakdown: Details You Will Need

Dudhsagar Station to The Dudhsagar Waterfalls

The Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek is ranked highly amongst tourists and adventure enthusiasts alike, and the trail from the Kulem station from to Castle Rock stretches for about 26 kilometres. The trail passes through a fire station on the Karnataka-Goa border and is filled with pebbles and gravel, as it passes alongside the railway tracks.

Dudhsagar station
Dudhsagar Station (source)

Castle Rock station is the nearest accessible station by road to the waterfalls and trekker are suggested to take a train from here to the Dudhsagar station.

Livingit Tip:
It should be noted that the Dudhsagar station is not exactly a well established platform. Trekkers are expected to climb down a steep ladder, in the rail compartment within a short 1 to 2 minute stop.

From the Dudhsagar stop, trekkers would have to walk for about a kilometre along the tracks, on which hikers can come across an unexpected abandoned railway track that traverses for around 200 metres. The tracks pass through a train tunnel and is a very popular tourist destination. However, the Indian Railways has banned the boarding/deboarding of passengers at the Dudhsagar railway station.


Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary to Dudhsagar Waterfalls

Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Santuary
Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary Near Molem Village (source)

Trekkers can also reach the Dudhsagar Waterfalls with the help of Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife sanctuary taxi and jeep services near a Goan village, called Molem. These transports usually take trekkers through lush green forests and they can even spot a handful of heavy flowing streams. The taxis will also return you to the Wildlife Park. Currently, this is the only easily available access to the Dudhsagar Waterfalls. The advantage of taking this route is that one can easily see a full view of the Dudhsagar falls.

Castle Rock Station to the Dudhsagar Waterfalls

Castle rock station
Castle Rock Station Near Dudhsagar Waterfalls (source)

From Castle Rock station, trekkers would have to hike for around 11 kilometres to reach the base of the Dudhsagar Waterfalls. The trail is simple and easy, and all one would have to do is follow the railway track all the way to the waterfalls. This trail courses through the Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Park and on the way, trekkers are treated to the lush and breathtaking views of the dense deciduous forests and other smaller waterfalls.

The entire trek takes about 6 to 7 hours to complete and trekkers usually camp at the Dudhsagar Station, which is the base camp.

Useful Tips For The Trek

  1. It is advisable to carry your tents and sleeping bags along with you
  2. Wear sturdy hiking shoes as you would walking across lengthy paths covered in pebbles and gravel
  3. Carry a set of waterproof wear if you choose to attempt the trek in the monsoon season
  4. It is important to remember that there are barely any sources of fresh drinking water or clean restroom facilities near the falls or the at the rail stop.

Trekking Essentials

  1. Clothing:
    1. Raincoat or waterproof covers for your rucksacks
    2. Thermals and warmer clothes for the night
    3. An extra pair of trekking pants in case they get wet
    4. Waterproof and windproof gloves
    5. An extra pair of dry clothes
    6. A dry towel
  2. Accessories:
    1. Sturdy and durable trekking shoes
    2. LED torches, headlamps, and matchsticks
    3. Sleeping bags
    4. A pillow/travel pillow for the night
    5. An emergency supply of cutlery, i., spoons, bowls, etc.
  3. Medical Kit:
    1. Crocin for fever
    2. Avil for allergies
    3. Combiflam as a general painkiller
    4. Digene for acidity
    5. Crepe bandage and ointment in the case of any injuries
    6. A small roll of cotton and gauze
    7. Band-aids
    8. Moov or Relispray for muscular pulls, aches, and sprains
  4. Toiletries:
    1. Dry towels
    2. Tissue paper
    3. Bug repellent sprays and creams
    4. Two 1 litre bottles
    5. Plastic covers
    6. Cold cream
    7. Hand sanitizer and antiseptic soap

FAQs about Dudhsagar Trek

1. Where is the base camp? And can we set camp at the Dudhsagar station?
The base camp for the trek is Dudhsagar Railway Station. Trekkers generally choose to camp out at the station. However, it is very critical to know that the station nor any other part of the trek has clean water sources or sanitary facilities. Trekkers must bring a sufficient supply of food and water and the appropriate equipment for the overnight trip.

2. Would camping equipment be provided at the base camp?
No, you would be required to bring your own equipment. Remember to bring dome-shaped tents (that can accommodate up to three people), mats, sleeping bags LED lamps/headlamps and ample amount of water and food.

3. Are there any water sources along the way?
No. It is highly recommended that you bring your own bottles of water and snacks to ensure that you don’t get dehydrated and fatigued along the way.

4. Can I attempt the trek at night?
No, you cannot. The trail passes through dense forestry and wild landscape. It is also better to attempt the trek at night in a sufficiently large group (10-12 people) and you must remember to always carry headlamps or LED lights.

5. Is a guide mandatory?
A guide is suggested for trekkers coming from the Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary.

6. Which is the best season for the Brahmagiri Trek?
Monsoon is the ideal time to attempt the trek as the terrain is full of lush greenery and the waterfall comes alive.

7. Is there any connectivity or network on the trek?
There is no access to power or cellular signal at this location. Neither is there any access to road transportation. It is very important that you inform your family and friends about your whereabouts before you embark on this trek.

8. Are there water sources on the trek?
No. There aren’t any reliable sources of freshwater along this trek and it is vital that you carry at least 3 to 4 litres of water along the way.

9. Is the gradient difficult?
The walk is easy and is suitable for first-time trekkers.

Summing Up

Dudhsagar waterfalls by the railway line
The Daunting View of the Magnificient Dudhsagar Waterfalls (source)

The Dudhsagar Waterfall Trek is one of Goa’s most attractive and ideal tourist destinations and offers all of its visitors a charm like nothing before. With a flair of charismatic natural beauty and amazing scenery that is in full flow during and immediately after the monsoons.Dudhsagar Waterfalls Trek is quite the popular spot amongst adventure enthusiasts and even movie makers! One can even see the iconic falls in the movie Chennai Express.

The complete stretch of the falls is visible while hiking towards the waterfalls and every trekker has returned back from the trek with the memory of the spectacular view of the gushing waterfalls. With the misty atmosphere and the luxuriant spread of greenery along the trek, this undoubtedly falls as one of the best treks to attempt in the Western Ghats.