Pune- the cultural capital of Maharashtra, located gracefully between the Western Ghats in the south and the Sahyadri mountain range in the north, is a quintessential destination for all types of travelers. There is almost everything in or around this beautiful city, to satisfy the explorer in you. Head to these beautiful tourist spots, most of which are less than an hour's drive from the city. Below is a list of places that you can count on if you are looking to de-stress yourself from the hustles and bustles of daily monotonous life and peacefully revel in the solitude of nature.
1. Sinhagarh fort
Sinhagarh or Lion fort is a popular trekking destination and a picnic spot in summers, located atop the Kondhana hill near Pune. This magnificent fort is replete with history dating back to the 17th century and has historical ruins belonging to Shivaji's era. The steep walls and bastions in the fort were primarily erected only at key places to provide a natural shield. Once uphill, the fort offers a beautiful landscape of the neighboring valley and there are some great street food stalls serving traditional Marathi food to satiate your hunger pangs.
Entry fee/charge: N/A
Timings: 9 AM to 6 PM
How to reach: The fort is 30 km from the city and is an easy drive uphill.
2. Visapur Fort
This hill fort near Visapur village in Pune district is one of the famous trekking places to visit near Pune. The fort is situated at a height of 1,084 m above sea level and was built under the regimen of Balaji Vishwanath, the first Peshwa of Maratha Empire. There are decorated caves, arch houses, and several temples scattered in the compound, in addition to a huge carving of Lord Hanuman. The scenic surroundings and the majestic panoramic views of the plains make up for the ruins that are remaining of the fort. Visapur also offers a mesmerizing view of the neighboring Tikona Fort, Lohagad Fort and the Pawna Lake.
Whether you are an adventure enthusiast, photographer or a plain nature lover, this amazing place will provide you with opportunities to spend your share of time with nature and appreciate it. For adventure seekers, the huge mountain and its surrounding dense forests present an excellent opportunity to explore and trek on its meandering ways.
Entry fee/charge: N/A
Timings: 7 AM to 7 PM
How to reach: The fort is at a distance of 10 KM from the nearest Malavli railway station. From Malavli station, you can take a shared auto/taxi that will take you to the base village of Visapur Fort.
3. Panshet Dam
Panshet is one of the other great places to visit near Pune within 50 km, for a relaxing time with family or friends. Situated beautifully in the Sahyadri ranges, the dam is a visual delight with a picturesque landscape and offers a calming retreat. One can spot a number of cascading waterfalls which makes it a perfect place for nature lovers too. It is one of the closest destination for water sports in Pune and one that you can count on if you are looking to de-stress yourself from the hustles and bustles of daily monotonous life.
Entry fee/charge: During the weekdays the entry fees for adults is 250 Rs and for children is 170 Rs
For weekends the entry fees for adults is 300 Rs and for children is 230 Rs
Timings: 10 AM to 6 PM
How to reach: The dam is conveniently located at about 50 km from Pune and you can enjoy the drive on the sweeping roads.
4. Tikona Fort
Tikona Fort, also known as “Triangle Fort”, is one of the popular places for trekking and sightseeing near Pune for a day trip. Built in a triangular shape, the dominant hill fort encompasses the famous Trimbakeshwar Mahadev temple and enchanting Buddhist and Satvahan caves as well as innumerable water tanks and lakes, which served as the major source of water in earlier days. The fort's huge entrance is a special attraction. Once uphill, one can have a panoramic view of the adjacent Lohagad Fort and Visapur Fort. June to September is the best time to visit this gigantic fort when the hill is covered with lush greenery and the cool air with a pleasant, musky smell of the earth rejuvenates you throughout the trek.
Entry fee/charge: N/A
Timings: 8 AM to 6 PM
How to reach: The nearest town is Kamshet which is about 51 km from Pune. The base village of the fort, Tikona peth, is further 26 km from Kamshet. There are good hotels and lodging facilities at Kamshet.
Whether it is a bunch of crazy friends, a loving family or a cute couple, Pune has no dearth of places to escape the daily grind of life. If you are here for a long vacation or are a resident of the city, then these are some of the most popular places to visit near Pune where you can spend a memorable weekend!