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!

 

 

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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.

 

 

 

 

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 🙂

Nisarga parichay kandra (SGNP)- Nature walk cum mini trek

When winter has just started and you are up for beautiful and exciting nature trails, you might search for a location to hang out. The Nature Information Center is one such beautiful destination where you must go if you are interested in wild flowers, butterflies, birds and regional plants. The Nature Information Center (Nisarga Patriarchy Kendra) is a part of the Sanjay Gandhi National park and is situated in Thane.

Location:

This place is around 8 km from Thane station and next to famous resort Tiku ji ni wadi. One can easily get auto or bus from Thane station to reach there.

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The park opens at 6:00 AM in the morning. You can get your day pass at the main entrance by paying 44 Rs. Please see the rate card below if you are going by your own vehicle.

Soon you enter the park, there is butterfly zone and its a real treat for your eyes as you can find many butterflies hovering around – I’ve got some clicks on them.

 

After watching birds, on your way to the top, you’ll also see a small lake. This lake can be dangerous as its a breeding center for crocodiles. After having looked at nearby scenario we started the journey towards our main destination that is towards the top of the hills



while passing through dense forest you”ll see amazing views there and city started appearing into trees.


 after a walk of around 25-30 mins we reached at the top and the location was like any village on hill station there are couple of houses are there and people do farming we reached at the top of hill had some awesome shots of surrounding view and city.

 

after resting for some time we started our return journey. it took around 30 mins to reach at the main gate again. though t was a journey of 3-4 hours it made our day as we had such a beautiful and memorable moments .

 

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Adventurous trek to Mahuli – highest point in Thane district

About the fort:

About Mahuli Fort:

The creator of this fort is unknown. In 1485 this place came under rule of Malik Ahmed who was the founder of Nijamshahi. When Shahaji Raje became the secretary of Nijamshahi, Adilshahi and Mughals of Delhi together tried to end Nijamshahi. In the year 1635-36, in difficult circumstances Shahaji Raje transferred himself with Jijabai and Shivaji to Mahuli. Khan Jaman, son of Mahabat Khan beleaguered this fort. Shahaji Raje asked for help to Portuguese. They refused and Shahaji Raje surrendered himself.

Shivaji took this fort from Mughals on 8 Jan 1658. In 1661 it was given back and was won again by Shivrai. In treaty of Purandar, in 1665, Marathas lost these forts again. The Moghal sardar Manohardas Gaud was the in charge of this fort. He did much construction on the fort. In Feb 1670, Shivaji Maharaj tried to conquer Mahuli, but failed. Thousand of Marathas were killed by Moghals. It was a bad blow to Marathas. Even after this victory, Manohardas Gaud, the chief of the fort gave up his position and a new chief Alveerdi Beg was appointed. On 16 June 1670, after two months, Moropant Pingle conquered the forts and Mahuli, Bhandargad and Palasgad became part of Swarajya.

Getting there.

We have visited the this fort in late mansoon and it was one of the best trekking experience which I ever had.

Our journey to Mahuli forth started at 7.00 in the morning we took local train from thane and reached Asaonagon at 8.30 approx. then we hop in rickshaw which cost us Rs 250/- for 4 seats  .

Thought the road to Mahuli village was not that good but  green farms,chirping of birds in between and beautiful views of surrounding  made that journey pleasing.

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One can see pinnacles of the  Mahuli forth from the base village itself which were covered by fogs .

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The village of Mahuli has a temple, which provides accommodation to trekkers for overnight stay.Please note his mobile number too +91 92095 26268. One can book meals over the phone . Then we had some tasty breakfast made by locals. and we started our journey.

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As this fort along with its surrounding jungle declared as sanctuary they have provided markings and maps which helps you in navigation. Entry fee for the  sanctuary s 20 rs per person.

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It was getting humid and the ascent becoming steeper. though it was rainy season, it was not raining at all  but suddenly we saw clouds passing from Mahuli forth and it was raining.

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After 1 hour we reached the section where the walk along the ridge and that was best part of the trek as it was awesome view from the top and greenery everywhere.

small mosquitoes and other insects roams there and you will get some good macro shots but at the same time you need to have some preventive measures to avoid mosquito

Sometimes it rained, sometimes it was the blue sky. But now our destination looked near to us.

after that we reached at final  and critical part of the trek where path was full of rocks. there is ladder provided to avoid climbing on rock which allows one parson to go at a time

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once  we crossed ladder we reached a plateau . the view was just getting better! there and had a small break .

This trek took us around 2.30 minutes will take you longer if you travel in a larger group

There was a small temple of Mahuli devi which was built by shahaji raje we had some food there.

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There are small small waterfalls in between and you can enjoy there after few minutes, we were surrounded by fogs and it was raining heavily. it was raining in the sunlight. and we saw some awesome views of nearby villages from top from there.

The fort has many things to see (Palas gad , Bhandargad,Lake and few pinnacles).If you want to visit pinnacles  you need to spend night there.

We started decent. There was a long queue on the ladder that we had climbed up, to go back home. we reached base  village after 2 hours and  had some food and hired rickshaw to go to asangaon railway station.

 

few details :

Entry fees : 20 rs /person

Timing : Open

Trek Level : Medium

Best for – Nature Lovers, Photographers, Waterfalls

Best time to visit :Rainy season

Parking : available at base village

  • do carry 2/3 liters of water as this trek takes approx 3 hours
  • wear full sleeves cloths as there are many mosquitoes and small insects.
  • Passing through ladder is critical part of this trek.
  • Parking / Food (veg/n.veg ) is available at base village

 

One more A memorable trek!  🙂

Trek to korigad (Kumwarigad)

About fort

Korigad is a famous hill fort in Lonavala, in Pune District.The fort is built by Shivaji Maharaj in the year 1657 .This fort witnessed several battles between the Marathas and the British army, and finally on 14th March 1818, this fort was conquered.

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It is about 929 m above sea level. the fort can be visited in anytime in the year but if visit in rainy days you will love the  beauty around this fort through fog and rains

Route :

Korigad trek is an easy trek that takes about 1 hour to reach the summit.

One can reach korigad by public transport,there are ST ( state transport) buses available from lonavala depot to peth (base village)  after every  1-2 hour till 3.00 PM .But its always preferred to go by own vehicle as ST bus frequency is less and there are chances to cancel Buses from base village due to heavy traffic in rainy season

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Passing through such roads is awesome experence

There are two ways to reach the top of the fort. The first way, and the one that this trek takes, comprises a series of steps which take you all the way to the top of the fort. The 100 odd steps take about 45 mins/ 1 hour to climb

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The second route is the shorter route (the ones used by the Marathas to escape the fort)is tricky and requires you to pass through dense jungles and bamboo trees.

There are simple staircase available to reach on the fort

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walls of fort

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Lake on the fort

places to see on fort:

  1. Two lakes on the fort
  2. korai devi Temple
  3. Canons Near Korai devi temple
  4. beautiful view of surrounding
  5. beautiful view of Aamby Valley city

Availability of food / parking etc.

There is a facility of parking at base village also there are couple of hotels at peth village near bus stop.

Difficulty level : easy

few clicks of ours :

Overall it is a nice simple and mesmerizing experience !!