Sunday, July 31, 2011

Malshej Ghat : Hills Station near to Mumbai & Pune, Tourism, Introduction, Beauty, Location, Major Attraction in & around, Shivneri fort.

Introduction :

Malshejghat is in Pune, Maharashtra. This hill station is known for its special attraction for trekkers, hikers, adventurers, and nature lovers. Malshejghat is at an altitude of 700m above the sea level. Malshejghat is a beautiful hill station with wooded countryside and colourful bird and animal, rugged mountains, historic forts, high-plateau forest houses, resorts and sanctuaries and venerated rivers all around.
The best time to visit is between August and September. At this time of the year, the hills are clothed in a soothing shade of mint green and the weather is cool due to the monsoons. Known for its misty tops and ice cold cascades at this time of the year, the site is a very popular weekend getaway for most of the city's residents at that time of the year. It has got number of waterfalls and the greenery is just awesome during the monsoons
The site is home to hundreds of different kinds of flora and fauna especially the avian population such as quails, rails, crakes, flamingos and cuckoos.

Malshej ghat is situated in Pune district near the borders of Thane and Ahmednagar districts. It is at a distance of 154 km from south Mumbai towards northeast and 130 km north of Pune. The nearest railhead is Kalyan near Mumbai. To go to Malshej ghat by road from Mumbai, take NH3 to Bhiwandi and turn towards Murbad or take state highway via Kalyan, Murbad, Saralgaon and Vaishakhare to reach the ghat. To go to Malshej ghat from Pune, take NH50 (Pune-Nasik highway), turn left at Narayangaon and pass through Junar. State Transport buses are cheaper and available from Kalyan, Karjat and Pune at regular intervals.

Malshej Ghat is also home to hundreds of different flora and fauna. Be there during the months of July- September and you will find yourself surrounded by thousands of pink flamingoes doing their mating dance at the Pimpalgaon Joga Dam, a long bund located 4 km from the Flamingo Hill resort and 2-3 km from Khireshwar. Drive a bit further from Khireshwar village and you will find yourself at the base of the 4,671 ft Harishchandragad Mountain. Trek uphill (if you are brave enough) for a wonderful view of the Harishchandra, Rohidas and Taramati peaks and the majestic horseshoe shaped Konkan Kada valley. Also on the top is the Harishchandragad Fort, a huge plateau and the 11th century Harishchandreshwar Mandir dedicated to Shiva, Vithoba, Rakhumani and Ganesh. When at the top find and follow the nearby Mangalganaga Stream and you will come across the Kedareshwar Cave where you can pay your respects to a huge shivling surrounded by a pool of icy cold water.

Shivneri fort, where Shivaji was born, is 40 km from Malshej ghat.
Not far from the fort is Nane Ghat that offers lovely views of the Konkan Plateau and the Jivdhan Fort which is famous for trekking.
A few kilometers from Malshej Ghat are the Asthavinayak temples of Ozar and Lenyadri (35 km) and Bhimashankar - an ancient pilgrim center famous for the Jyotirlinga of Shiva.
Note: Landslides are frequent during the monsoons so be careful while driving. Otur, 36 km and Murbad 50 km away are the nearest towns where one can get some medical aid and public telephones.

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