Trek to karnala fort

  • Place – Karnala
  • Height -1440ft
  • Type : Hillfort
  • Difficulty level: EASY
  • Entry fees: 25 Rs
  • Timings: 7AM to 5:30 PM

Karnala is a famous bird sanctuary located on Mumbai Goa Highway. It also houses a small fort at the top. Many rulers have ruled this fort from Yadav dynasty, Tughalq, Gujurat Sultanate, Nizamshah of Ahmednagar. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj captured this fort in 1670. It held strategic importance because of an entrance to Raigad region and overlooked Bhor pass. Aurangzeb captured it after Shivaji’s death in 1680. When Peshwa dominance grew it was recaptured in 1740 and later fell to British East India Company in 1818.

On top of the fort are ruins and small pinnacle is known as Pandu’s tower. It was primarily used as a watchtower. Climbing on this tower is now prohibited by the forest department. One can see Prabalgad, Matheran, Chanderi, Dronagiri fort, and Rajmachi.

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Adventurous trek to kamalagad

ABOUT KAMALAGAD:

Kamalgad is a hill fort in Wai region of Satara district. This fort is also known as Bhelanja or kattalgad. This fort is situated close to the picturesque Hill Station of Mahabharata in the Satara District near Wai and can be seen from the Pasarani Ghat. This fort is seen in the background in the movies ‘Swades’ and ‘Being Cyrus’. Despite this proximity to one of the most famous tourist spots in Maharashtra, this fort is not very well known. Surrounded by the waters of the Dhom Dam on 3 sides, this fort is covered with thick forests at the top.The fort is square in the shape and covers almost 3-4 acres of area at the top.

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Fort type : Hill fort
Height: 4200 msl
Distance from Mumbai- 350km approx
Difficulty level :Medium to difficult
Location : 17°58′02.2″N 73°44′42.7″E

History:
The builder of the fort is unknown.In April 1818, Kamalgad surrendered after resistance to a British detachment commanded by a Major Thatcher.Under the British, it was used to execute prisoners of war.There is a base village to this fort called “Kondhawali” where Ch. Shiwaji Maharaj’s Bodygaurd Veer jiwa mahale (Who saved Shiwaji on Pratapgad durng Afzal khan was killed) used to stay.There is no much information available about history of this place study is underway.

TREK:

This fort can be reached by three ways
1.From Base Village Kondhawali
2.From Nandagane (Easy)
3.From Vasole

How to reach:

From wai you can take state transport’s bus which will leave you till Wasole, Kondhawali,Nandagane whichever the way you wish to.we Decided to go through Kondhawali’s way as it was bit challangng.

Trek:

we started trek at 10:30 in the morning it was very humid and sunny climate as it was October this makes our trek little more difficult.after 15 mins of walk by road we started walking across the hills which was very sloppy. as you keep walking and go above you will see the views more beautiful after 1 hour of walk we reached a point where couple of houses were there. View from there is actually pleasing. you can see Panchagani at one end and Pandavgad at another end. after short break we again continued towards the main point and after 20 mins of walk there comes a difficult part of the trek and there is a big rock of approximate 10 ft height which you need to climb to reach the kamalagad plateau.

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Once we reached kamalagad plateau it was amazing jungle walk through the big and dense forest.There are no wild animals present in the Jungle but you will find monkey’s at one point.after good walk of 20-25 mins we came of of the forest and saw couple of houses and people farming there Kamalgad(balekilla) can be seen from this place.

There is no proper gate for the fort but a ladder is there to climb from the gate of fort.and you”ll reach the fort 🙂

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It is said that there was an artificial tunnel, which started at the base of the rock and emerged on the top. Now, this tunnel is blocked by a big rock which fell into it and was never removed.

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the fort has a well or hole of approx 20ft which is made up of red stone (geru).I also came to know that this place was used to place criminals in old times.

From the top of fort you can see Krishna River,Mahabaleshwar’s kets point, Raireshwar fort, Pandavgad fort,Panchagani.

The view from top through dense forest is very amazing.

After exploration of 1 hour, we started descending the fort. On the plataue there is a Gorakshnath Temple, fortunately, we had time to visit that as well.you can see back side of the fort from Gorakshanath Temple point.

we started to descend and it took us 90 mins to reach to kondhawali again. from kondhawali one can get State transport buses to reach wai.

It was one of the memorable and adventurous treks.!

Here are some memories.

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Matheran via Garbet point – Long though beautiful journey!

 

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Matheran is one of the splendid places for a picnic for all seasons but in monsoon, it turns into trekker’s playground.there any many points to trek Matheran.Garbet is one of them which looks very beautiful surrounded by many waterfalls at one side and long hill ranges at another side.

About Matheran

Matheran is one of the beautiful hill stations in Maharashtra located at 90 km from Mumbai.This place was discovered by Hugh Poyntz Malet, the then district collector of Thane in 1850.Matheran is located at an elevation of 2625 feet above MSL. It covers an area of 8 square kilometers in Sahyadris, The Western Ghats. It has also been declared as the eco-sensitive region by the Ministry of Environment and Forest, Government of India.

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Due to easy access and near to Mumbai it became a very popular weekend gateway.The hill station is also a home to the large population of monkeys including Bonnet Macaques and Hanuman Langurs. This place is a haven for snakes from harmless keelbacks to pythons to deadly cobras and vipers.

The trek:

It was Saturday, 9:00 AM on the clock and we started our journey from Bhivpuri Road.After a walk of 15 mins, there was a beautiful lake in our way.

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The way to Garbet plateau goes across the edge of the lake which makes the start of the journey very beautiful and exciting.

After crossing water stream we started climbing the first hill.

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As it was first few days of monsoon and it’s a time for farmers to plant rice. view from the top was very pleasing.

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after an hour of walk, we reached a village called. we took a small break and then started climbing another hill which was very sloppy and straight.

It started raining heavily and we were at a good height where the path is covered with fogs.before we reach Garbet plateau we pass through Hanuman caves.

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the caves are not good maintained but look good as covered with green grass. When we look back from the top it was the very long way that we covered through the water mountains villages.

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15 minutes from Hanuman caves and we reached Garbet plateau and it was the very pleasing view of the plateau. Greenery everywhere! beautiful valley at one side and Many small/large waterfalls at another side.

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we went to the west side of the plateau and pleased with the panoramic view of the surrounding through the fog. small small waterfall across the plateau are flowing in opposite direction due to high air pressure.

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we had some rest there in such a pretty surrounding and again started walking towards Garbet point.this is a part of Trek where one has to be very careful as this route is sloppy narrow and there may be the pressure of air.After climbing we reached Garbet Point of the Matheran and finally, we felt glad that we climbed almost 20kms.

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There are 2 ways coming out from Garbet point take the right one and keep walking until you get train tracks. it was 30 mins journey into the jungle for us. and we reached Aman lodge station of Matheran. and by local taxi, we came back to Neral and then home by lots of beautiful views stored in eyes!

 

 

Harihar fort – Trek into the clouds

July always has been very drizzly and exciting month for trekkers who likes to spend time with mountains, trees, and nature.I along with “Amhi Giryarohak “Group decided to trek Harihar fort and it was one of the memorable and adventurous treks for me till now.

History

Harihar fort is also known as Harshgad and it is one of the oldest forts in Maharashtra which was built during Yadava’s Period. The fort has been lately with Shahaji Bhosale, but he also has to surrender this fort to Khan Zamam along with Mahuli, Trymbak and few other forts in 1636. This fort was also under the rule of British for some time.

One of the vertical drops of the fort facing the Nirgudpada village is called ‘Scottish Kada’, perhaps because it was climbed for the first time in November 1986 by Doug Scott, the legendary Himalayan mountaineer & took him two days to do the climb. This cliff is about 170 meters in height.

About Fort:

Harihar fort is hill fort and falls under Upper Vaitarana range.Base village to this fort is Nirgudpada which is approx. 60 km from Kasara railway station. The Fort is rectangular in shape. And it lies at the height of 3676 ft from sea level.

Trek

We took a 10:30 train from CST and reached Kasara around 1:30 AM.  We Boarded Jeeps for Nirgudpada base village and reached Nirgudpada at around 3:30 AM. It was too dark and very early to start a trek so we took a rest at one room which was arranged by villagers for us.Till 6 we had breakfast and small introduction and briefing session.

It was 7:00 AM. in the clock. It was raining and we started walking towards Harihar fort.

First few kilometers are very easy to walk you’ll see beautiful rice farms around and after walking for around 40 mins we started getting a beautiful view of the surrounding.

After around 1 hour of walking, we took some rest at the entrance of the fort where it was a breathtaking view of the surrounding. After that, we were ready for the most awaited and adventurous part of the trek and that’s been climbing the rock.

The rock as 117 steps total. You have to be very careful while climbing as its very sloppy (80 degrees) and one needs to balance well using the rock cuts

Then we entered the fort by following steps through the tunnel and there was a plateau, which was covered with beautiful shrubs.

There were few water tanks as well. Couples of them are sources of potable water.

 

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Tank of potable water

 

 

There is a small temple of the Lord Hanuman.

 

 

We walked till the end of the plateau and had some dry food and moved towards the top point of Harihar fort.

 

 

To reach the top point you will have to climb through the rock again, which was a bit difficult but more than worth. We reached the top of the fort and then what we saw was almost like a heaven!  Clouds everywhere!!! Everything was covered with fogs and we were above the clouds.

After having looked at all those mesmerizing views we forgot all out journey, hunger, all my stress melts awayThen we clicked few photographs there and then started getting down again to the plateau.
Then we started descending. You’ll have to be very careful while descending as rock may be slippery dung rainy days.

 

It took around 2 hours for us to reach Nirgudpada. We had some food there and after small discussion and rest, we left towards Kasara by jeep. And then by Local train towards home with awesome experience and beautiful memories.

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Naagfani Hills

Beautiful shrubs covering the plateau

 

The squad

 

 

KOLABA – A MAGNIFICANT COASTAL FORT

IMG_5549.jpgAbout Kolaba fort:

Kolaba fort or kulaba fort is also known as Alibaug fort and about 2km from Alibaug inside the Arabian sea.

History:

Maratha Empire Shivaji refreshed this fort after entire south Konkan went under his rule. The fort built in 1680 to strengthen the security and made kolaba as one of the naval stations.

The rule of the fort was given to Darya Sagar and Manik Bhandari under whom Kolaba fort turned into the middle of Maratha and attacked British ships. In 1713 under the decision with Peshwa Balaji Vishwanath, Kolaba along with a few different forts was offered over to Kanhoji Angre.

On 4 July 1729 Kanhoji Angre died on the Kolaba fort.In 1729 many buildings were destroyed due to a major fire incident near the Pinjara Bastion.In 1787 another major fire incident took place in which the Angre Wada was destroyed. In 1842 the British sold the wooden structures in the fort by Auction and used the stones for the construction of Alibag water works.

Best time to visit: Anytime except for monsoon.

Difficulty Level: Very easy

Approx exploration time: 3-5 hours

Entry fee: 15rs per person.

How to reach:

From Mumbai
Mumbai – Kurla – Navi Mumbai – Ulwe – Chimer – Pen – Vadkhan – Poynad – Alibaug – Kolaba Fort.

From Pune
ST buses are available from Pune (143kms)

The fort is about 25 ft (7 meters) above the sea level.one can reach the fort by getting rides from Alibaug beach but when there is low water you can walk for 15-20 mins to reach the fort.

Fort has two entrance one from Alibaug side and other from the seaside.

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There are carvings of animals and birds present on the fort walls. Carvings of animals like tigers, peacocks, and elephants can be seen on the entrance arch.

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Close to the gate, there are temples of Padmavathi and a Mahishasura and other gods.

The fort has small rocks windows after a certain interval of distance which was built to keep watch on the surroundings.

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There is dargah of Haji Kamaluddin Shah on the fort.This fort also has beautiful Siddhivinayak temple facing north.This temple was built by Kanhoji Angre.

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One interesting fact about this fort is this fort has wells of freshwaters and people living on the Fort get freshwater even in monsoon though they are surrounded by sea.

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There are a couple of houses of the people who live there and takes care of the fort. the place looks amazing from the top view.

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You can also visit other beaches near kolaba fort.

Places to visit near kolaba fort
1. Albaug beach
2. Varsoli beach
3. kihim beach

Kolaba fort is one of the best places to see the beauty of the Alibaug beach and surrounding during sunrise and sunset. I’ve got few clicks of the surrounding sharing those below.

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Thanks for reading this Travel Blog.
Happy traveling.

 

 

 

 

Makhamali Lake – Thane

Makhamali Lake – Thane, located about 35-km from downtown Mumbai, is known as the City of Lakes. There are around 30 lakes, of which Makhamali lake is one of the best known The area covered by the lake is 1 hector and It’s one of the peaceful lakes though it’s situated at the center of the city.

The lake has a small garden next to it and another side is surrounded by road. Water in the lake was highly polluted, but the Thane Municipal Corporation has undertaken cleaning and maintaining the lakes.

Here are some photographsInShot_20170417_145811

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Makhamali Lake Thane

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Makhamali Lake Thane

Exploring SGNP

We’ve been there at Mama Bhanje Hills which comes under Sanjay Gandhi National Park Forest Zone.

We’ve got few good click. Have a look.

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Thane from The Mama Bhanje Hills

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Beautiful Flowers through the path

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Colour of nature

 

Hope you like the pictures 🙂

First full moon of the year

Close to midnight of 13th Jan the moon was much bigger and bit yellow shade, this moon is in the sign of Cancer. Cancer is a water sign. With the water signs also comes a deeper ability to tap into our intuition and inner knowing. It is normal with this astrological placement, to have the desire to move through a cleansing and a detox for your spirit.

Below are some images captured from Thane – India.

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May all your dreams comes true. happy full Moon 🙂

Avenue to sunrise.. Gadeshwar Dam Panvel

“Best Place around the city to visit in the morning with friends/families” thats how I can describe this beautiful place in a one sentence.

Its a Dam which is almost 7 km from Panvel railway station and still very quit and natural place to be with.

How to reach
you can drive from Panvel station to Gadeshwar Dam which will take approximately 30 mins.
One can also get ST bus from Panvel ST depot. Bus are available at the interval of 1 hour below is time table of ST bus.

Once you reach,you’ll find trees planted at the gate of the Dam.
Though you cannot go till another end of the dam as it is not allowed due to security reasons,you”ll truly fall in love with the views that you will see through the time of sunrise.
You can hangout around the dam as it covers lot of area where you can have fun!

You”ll get some Awesome outdoor clicks here for sure as dam is built in front of Matheran hills. There are lots of activities that you can do to spend time with your friend and families.

You can get a return bus from Gate of the dam to reach Panvel station

Few things that you need to remember are

  • There is nothing that you can get to eat or drink not even water better you carry all the things that you need.
  •  Do not stay in there for long time after sunset
    There is no fees to enter the premise
  • Swimming is not allowed inside dam.
  • Here are some of clicks captured by me.

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The squad

Places to hangout in Thane

Hello All!

I have come up with the list of places to hangout in Thane for those who are short on time, and high on the need for travel,photography

Upvan Lake

Distance from thane station : 8.4 KM (20 min from auto)
Location : Thane City
Time : Any Time Open
Entry fee : Free
Good for : Morning walk, Photography, Nature Lover, Famous for Upvan Art Festival(Jan_Feb Month)
best time to visit : Jan to Dec

 

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Talaopali (Masunda Lake)

Distance from thane station : 10 Min walkable from Thana station
Location : Thane
Time : Any Time Open
Entry fee : Free
Good for : Excersice , Photography, Nature Lover, Boating
best time to visit : Jan to Dec

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Kacharali lake

Distance from thane station : 3.1 KM (5 min by auto)
Location : Thane
Time : 5 am to 10pm
Entry fee : Free
Good for : Excersice , Photography, Nature Lover, Boating
best time to visit : Jan to Dec

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Mama Bhanje Hills

Distance from thane station : 5.9 KM
Location : Thane
Time : 7 am to 10 pm
Entry fee : Free
Good for : Trecking , Photography, Nature Lover,
best time to visit : winter , monsoon

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Yewoor hills

Distance from thane station :5.9KM
Location : Thane
Time : 5 am to 6 pm
Entry fee : 40 to 60 Rs.
Good for : Trecking , Excersice , Photography, Nature Lover.
best time to visit : Mansoon , Winter

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Kolshet creek

Distance from thane station : 10.8 KM(20 min by auto)
Location : Thane City
Time : Early Morning till Evening
Entry fee : Free
Good for : Kolshet Creek is a nice place for watching sunrise and moonrise, Photography, Nature Lover, Spend some free time with friends and family., Ganesh Visarjan.
best time to visit : Jan to Dec

 

Nagala Forest – butterfly zone

Distance from thane station : Approx 19KM
Location : Near Ghodbandar road Thane
Time : 7 am to 5 pm
Entry fee : Free
Good for : Nature walk with butterfly , Photography, Trekking.
best time to visit : Mansoon, Winter.

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Gaimukh creek

Distance from thane station : 16.3 KM
Location : Thane
Time : 5 am to 6 pm
Entry fee : Free
Good for : Quality time spend with family and friends, photoghraphy.
best time to visit : Jan to Dec

 

Ovalekar wadi- butterfly Garden

Distance from thane station : 13.5 KM
Location : Thane
Time : 8 am to 12 noon , Sunday Only
Entry fee : 100/- per head
Good for : Photography, Nature lover
best time to visit : Aug to Nov month

Ghodbunder fort

Distance from thane station :23.6 KM
Location : Thane Ghodbundar road
Time : 5 am to 5 pm
Entry fee : Free
Good for : Nature walk, Historical place to visit, Photography.
best time to visit : Winter

 

Gaimukh temple

Distance from thane station : 16.3 KM
Location : Thane
Time : 5 am to 6 pm
Entry fee : Free
Good for : Quality time spend with family and friends, photography.
best time to visit : Jan to Dec

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Nisarga Parichay Kendra.

Distance from thane station : 8.8 KM
Location : Thane
Time : 7 am to 5 pm
Entry fee : 40 to 50 rs per head
Good for : Nature walk, trekking , Excersice , photography, sunrise sunset watch.
best time to visit: Jan to Dec.