If you are looking for the specialty of Mahabaleshwar then it is worth to be noted that this is the largest hill station of Maharashtra and has served as a summer capital for erstwhile British Presidency. Located on the height of 1438 meters (4710 feet) above sea level in Sahayadri Hills of District Satara, Mahabaleshwar is gaining popularity for its scenic splendor and serene atmosphere, quite away from the hustle and bustle of city life. The lush green forests, exhilarating hills, splendid lakes and frothily vivacious waterfalls captivates the tourists from far and wide. The bungalows, mansions, cottages and churches of the colonial era lend it a charming composure.
Though the hill station is believed to be established by British officers but you will be amazed to know that the historical account of Mahabaleshwar dates back to 1215 when King Singhan visited here. But the recent account says that Sir Charles Malet was the first Briton to set his foot on this land in 1791. After it came under the British territory, it was called 'Malcolm Peth' after the name of the British Governor Sir John Malcolm. No wonder, it was only under the British rule the region got its connectivity with rest of the country, there were massive infrastructure development, roads were built, followed by the bungalows, rejuvenating resorts, churches and Mahabaleshwar Club. In 1928 a sanitarium was built and a polo ground and race course where opened. Today Mahabaleshwar has everything what one could ask for from its splendid vistas to modern life style. Plan a weekend tour to experience the generosity of nature and elegant décor and colonial architecture offered by the British structures.
This hill station promises you to make your week end the most enthusiastic, adventurous and thrilling. A tour to this hill might be a good idea if you have a guide and good time plan to visit all the sight seeing. All the tourists who make their visit here first head for the sunset point or Mumbai point. The place is a riot of colors at the time of sunset and presents the majestic sight of Pratapgad and Makrandgad etched clearly on the horizon. Arthur Point is the other Viewpoint named after the British Actor who would sit and ponder the nature of the wind at this place. The other view points that offers the spectacular view of the hills, forests, lakes and water falls from different angles are Malcolm Point, Kate's Point, Marjorie Point, Lord Elphinstone, General Lodwick and Elephant's Head Point. In total there are 30 designated sightseeing spots that makes a perfect setting for small picnics. Besides view point spots there is also a beautiful lake called Venna where you can pedal the boats or enjoy the scooter boat ride through its pristine waters. The spectacular waterfalls of Lingmalla is a must see for every tourist.
On the mount Malcolm stand the house of Sir Malcolm - the
first citizen of Mahabaleshwar built in 1829 with the impressive
architectural style.Pay a visit to this place and find the royalty
characterized in its every section. Second comes the Roman Catholic Holy
Cross Church, although falling apart this church attracts many tourists to
its stained glass windows, a sight to behold. The Mahabaleshwar Club a
quarter century old built by the Britishers retains its charm even today.
The club is famous among the tourist for its golf course where you can
also view this game. You can also visit Morarji Castle the place where
Mahatma Gandhi stayed during his Mahabaleshwar visit in 1945. And the
colonial style bungalows built during British Raj. This monumental
heritage provides it with the extra edge over other hill stations.
Pratapgad fort built by Moropant Trimak Pingle under the command of Shivaji and just 24 kilometers from Mahabaleshwar is worth a visit. This fort has many tales to of encounter, much famous among are the battle between the mighty General of Bijapur, Afzal Khan and Shivji in which the former was killed and has a shrine in the premises of fort namely Afzal Burj. The 4,500 kilo bronze statue of Shivaji is one of the major attractions inside the premises of the fort. This fort also offers some of the most splendorous views of Kyona River snacking through the valleys below.
To gain the spiritual experience you can visit Mahabaleshwar temple housing the natural formation of Shivlinga more than five hundred years old. The Panchaganga Temple is the confluence of five rivers - the Krishna, Gayatri, Savitri, Koyna and Venna. And you can also see the separate outlets of the rivers at temples. The temple is considered very auspicious and is visited by devotees throughout the year. Pay your tribute here for your wishes to come true.
The Mahabaleshwar is 115 and 247 kilometers away from Pune and Mumbai respectively. Accessible by road you can get the Volvo as well as simple AC's buses from both the cities. But from Mumbai it is advisable to take the express highway, as it is the shortest and fastest way to this place. From Mumbai there are Volvo tourist coaches available with reasonable charges. Non- AC and simple AC buses are even cheaper.
Top 5 Reasons to Visit Mahabaleshwar
Hill Station That Cools Your Heels
Fort of Undaunted Marathas
Temples of Reverence
Window to Nature
Architectural heritage of Colonial Era
Caves and Beaches
Unique Rajasthan and Goa
Adventure Tour of India