Punekars, come the weekend and you’re left planning a trip to Lonavala, Mahabaleshwar or Matheran. But we suggest you look beyond these famous getaways and plan a trip to offbeat destinations in Maharashtra instead. From monsoon treks, historical forts, mysterious caves to adventure sports, Maharashtra has so much to offer. So, here are 5 offbeat getaways from Pune that no one told you about. And we’re here to spill the travel secrets.
Rajmachi is a charming village in the Sahyadri mountain range of Maharashtra’s Konkan region. Adventure enthusiasts must visit Rajmachi for an exhilarating trek up to the famous Rajmachi Fort. It’s famous for the two historical fortified peaks- Shrivardhan and Manaranjan forts. It’s great for a beginners trek thanks to the simple and clearly marked trekking trails. The fort houses aeons of history dating back to the time of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj in its rugged pillars. This is one of the best offbeat weekend getaways near Pune that you must visit.
2. Tamhini Ghat
Nestled 55km from Pune, Tamhini Ghat is a picture-perfect destination. Blessed with lush green vegetation, cool weather, romantic rainfall, and seasonal waterfalls cascading from the hills, this is your abode. If you want to avoid crowds, you can visit Tamhini Ghat during the weekday. The ultimate highlight here is the 50 to 70 mesmerising waterfalls. When you’re here you can go camping, cycling, bird watching or just embark on a leisure evening stroll to soak in the beauty of Tamhini Ghat.
Water babies must add Panshet to their bucket list. Situated 50km southwest of Pune, Panshet boasts of a plethora of adventure sports like kayaking, jet skiing, boating and more. The Panshet Dam constructed in the 1950s on Ambi River is a lovely picnic and camping spot. The picturesque landscape and surreal beauty of Panshet will attract travel enthusiasts from various walks of life. Get away from the hustle-bustle of the city and embrace the lush greenery and serene waters here in Panshet, in the lap of the Sahyadris.
4. Sinhagad Fort
If you’re yearning to tap into the glorious history of Pune, then do visit Sinhagad Fort. This 2000-year-old fortress stands tall at 1290m high on a hill. Sinhagad Fort has located around 35km from Pune. Previously known as “Kondhana” this is one of the most revered forts in Pune. Tanaji Malusare, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj’s most trusted aid and general fought bravely, against the Mughal army. When Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj came to know of Tanaji Malusare’s death, he renamed the Kondhana Fort as “Sinhagad”.
5. Lenyadri Caves
Lenyadri is believed to be the birthplace of Lord Ganesha as per the Ganesha Purana. Lord Ganesha was born at the hill after a 12-year penance by Goddess Parvati. This abode in Maharashtra is among the ‘Ashtavinayakas’. Lenyadri has around 30 Buddhist caves. Girijatmaj Ganesh has been carved on one of these cave walls and it’s adorned with sindoor. Devotees must climb 283 steps carved out of a rock to reach the cave complex of Lenyadri. The Lenyadri Lord Ganesha temple is situated 100 feet above the plains. And it’s truly a sight to behold.
So, Punekars, these are 5 of the most underrated destinations near Pune that you must visit. These beautiful weekend getaways house a cocktail of spirituality, adventure, beauty and breathtaking scenic views.