Mahabaleshwar is one of the popular hill stations in Western India. Chances are you have already been there. But in case you haven’t, this article will help you ensure that you have an amazing trip to this place. The ascending peaks, beautiful valley, cool, crisp mountain air, and the surrounding greenery will enchant you. Mahabaleshwar in Sanskrit translates to “God of great power”. Apart from the scenic beauty, the Mahabaleshwar temple is also popular and is frequented by the pilgrims. Mahabaleshwar contains a certain otherworldly charm that will woo you off your feet.
Getting to Mahabaleshwar
By Air: Pune is the nearest airport from Mahabaleshwar which is 120 kms away.
By Rail: The nearest railway station is Wathar. Major nearby railway stations are Pune and Mumbai.
By Road: Mahabaleshwar is well connected by good motorable roads. There is a regular bus service to Mumbai and Pune.
Best Time to Visit
The climate at Mahabaleshwar is pleasant throughout the year. But the best time to visit this place is from October to the following June. During monsoon, Mahabaleshwar experiences torrential rains which may shut down the hill station.
There are many places to visit in Mahabaleshwar. Some of the popular places are:
5. Mahabaleshwar Temple
Built in 16th century by the Chanda Rao, the temple complex is enchanting. Not only a must visit for the religious ones, but if you want to experience peace and tranquillity then visit Mahabaleshwar Temple. This rock-cut temple was built in Hemadanta style of architecture from South India. On entering the temple, you will be greeted by a huge Nandi. The Shiva linga resembles a rudraksha and is vast and unique in itself. This beautiful rock cut temple will make you marvel how this temple was built at such a height without any modern technology. Mahabaleshwar temple is a treat for architectural buffs.
4. Pratapgarh Fort
Located 24 kms away from the town, Pratapgarh Fort was built by Chhatrapati Shivaji in 1656. Here the historic battle of Pratapgarh was fought between Shivaji and his enemy Afzal Khan. The fort constitutes of a shiv temple, the tomb of Afzal Khan, a lake and Bhavani temple. The fort is divided into two parts the upper fort and the lower fort. The fort was well defended, here you can find a maze of chambers, long dark alleyways leading to trapdoors with a fall of 100 meters. At Pratapgarh fort experience the magic of history in conjunction with the beauty of nature.
3. Venna Lake
It is one of the most popular places to visit in Mahabaleshwar. At Venna Lake you can enjoy with your entire family. You can enjoy boating ranging from one hour to half an hour. Swimming is not allowed in this lake as this lake provides drinking water for Mahabaleshwar and Panchgani. There are food stalls surrounding the lake. You can also enjoy horse riding at Venna lake. Moreover, there are some rides for kids here. Being the most popular tourist attraction, it may be crowded at times. You may also face parking issues at the rush time.
2. Lingmala Waterfalls
The Lingmala waterfall is one of the popular places near Mahabaleshwar. Here you can view the Lingmala waterfalls diving 500 feet to join the Venna River. The best time to visit this waterfalls is during monsoons when the water is in its full force. As summer approaches, the waterfalls become thinner and thinner. There is a viewpoint about 1 kms away which offers breathtaking views of the waterfalls and the surrounding. There is also a small waterfall nearby where the kids can bathe and have fun in the water.
1. Pancha Ganga Temple
As evident from the name, the spring here has water from 5 rivers-Venna, Koyna, Krisna, Savitri and Gayatri. The architecture of the Pancha Ganga temple is exquisite. There is a beautiful idol of Krishna inside the temple and a Ganesh idol. The pure water from the spring comes out from the “Gaumukh” or the sculpted mouth of the cow. The water is really pure and sweet. This water will quench all your thirst. Pilgrims line up to taste this pure water. You can also bring along a bottle to take home back the pure water.
Apart from these some of the other well -known places to visit near Mahabaleshwar are Elephant’s Head point, Mapro Garden, Arthur’s Seat, Mumbai Point, Wilson point, Connaught Peak.
Set against the backdrop of Sahayadris, Mahabaleshwar offers breathtaking views. This place offers you a combination of natural beauty, spiritualism and old world charm. So this, summer pack your bags and visit this fabulous place.