Aren’t you tired of planning your weekend trips to places like Lonavla, Khandala, Matheran etc? Wondering if there are other places you could enjoy a nice weekend; something offbeat and has plenty to offer. Well, we have collated a list of 10 offbeat places to visit near Mumbai and are sure to put the life back into your vacations! From the solitude of the Taked village to a firefly festival, we have it all listed down here!
It is rumored to be one of the most dangerous places to reach and is located between the plateaus of Panvel and Matheran. This fort was built during the rule of Bahmnai Sultanate. The rock-cut stairs leading up to the top provide trekkers with the thrill of a lifetime! On a clear day, views as far as Mumbai fill the eyes with wonder.
How to reach Kalavantin Durg:
No vehicles ply up to Prabalagad so the only way to reach the fort is by trekking. The base point for Prabalgad or Kalavantin Durg trek is Thakurwadi which is located around 25 km from Panvel.
- By road: You can also take a state transport bus from Mumbai to Shedung Phata and then take a rickshaw from there to reach Thakurwadi. If you have your own car, you can drive to Thakurwadi and trek from there.
- By train: You can catch a train from Mumbai to Panvel and then hire a cab or auto to reach Thakurwadi. A number of trains ply between Mumbai and Panvel.
- By Air: Mumbai airport is the closest airport to Prabalgad. You can take the road route from Mumbai to reach Thakurwadi and then trek to Prabalgad.
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Taked is a small village located 48kms from Nashik and a little ahead of Igatpuri. It is blessed with massive lush green Sahyadri’s that are packed with windmills. The countryside will surprise you with lovely tarmac roads, clear blue sky, and alluring water bodies. There are no hotels in Taked so one should be well equipped with camping gear (Tent, power banks, sleeping bag, Emergency light, water, and snacks).
It is the ideal place to camp as it takes you away from the daily hustle and bustle of the city. The villagers are very pleasant, they will help you set up your camp and serve local homemade food. Poha for breakfast, Freshwater fish, mutton/chicken Konkan curry and bhakri. Read about Taked in detail here!
How to reach Taked:
- By road: From Mumbai, Taked is approx 120 kms and the drive should take you around 3 hours. You can also drive from Nashik for 45 kms
- By train: The closest train station is in Igatpuri and from there you can hire a cab to Taked
- By Air: Mumbai and Nashik airports are the closest to Taked. From there you can hire a cab to reach Taked
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The sea fort of Vijaydurg is surrounded by the Arabian Sea on 3 sides and is a historically significant site. Vijaydurg fort was built in 1195 and it was virtually impossible to conquer without swimming through the sea as the shallow waters around it made it impossible for larger vessels to enter.
How to reach Vijaydurg:
- By road: Vijaydurg is around 440 kms from Mumbai, 370 kms from Pune and around 206 kms from Goa. It is a well-connected city on Mumbai Goa national highway NH 17. It takes around 9 hours to reach Vijaydurg from Mumbai city by road. State transport buses are also connected to Vijaydurg and nearest cities.
- By train: The nearest railway station from Vijaydurg is Rajapur Road at 63 km and Kankavli Railway station at 76 km. All express and passenger trains stop at Rajapur and Kankavli stations.
- By Air: The nearest airports are Mumbai, Goa, and Pune situated around 440, 370, 206 kms away from the town. Goa is the nearest international airport to reach Vijaydurg.
It has the added distinction of being the only coffee-growing area in Maharashtra and is located in Amaravati district of Vidarbha region. Chikhaldara is full of deep valleys, and these valleys are full of velvet mist and majestic trees. It abounds in wildlife, such as tigers, panthers, sloth bears, sambars, wild boar, and rarely seen wild dogs. Keeping in mind that it is a forest area, wearing bright clothing is not recommended. Earthy/pastel shades are best suited and especially necessary for the wild-life Safari.
How to reach Chikhaldara:
- By road: To go to Chikhaldara from Mumbai by road head towards Dhule. From Dhule head towards Mhasva and reach Chikhaldara via Burhanpur. It is approximate 12-13 hours journey to reach Chikhaldara from Mumbai.
- By train: The nearest railway station to reach Chikhaldara is Badnera and Akola, at around a distance of 80 km from Chikhaldara. There are many trains from Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur to reach Badnera junction.
- By Air: The nearest airport is at Akola which is 150 km to Chikhaladra. Airports are connected to Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Pune etc. Nagpur which is located 250 km away is a convenient way to reach Chikhaldara by air.
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Thoseghar village is known for the beautiful Thoseghar waterfalls. The waterfalls are surrounded by luxuriant woody slopes and even a placid lake nearby. Its beauty comes even more alive in the midst of the Monsoons when the roads and the landscape dons a beautiful velvety green garb!
How to reach Thoseghar:
- By road: The best way to get here for people staying in Mumbai and Pune is to take a bus/car. Distance from Mumbai is about 280 km and from Pune, it is 140 km.
- By train: The nearest railway station is in Satara, which is well-connected to all big cities and towns in the state.
- By Air: Pune airport is the closest and from there the falls is a couple of hours drive.
Purushwadi is home to millions of fireflies and these magical creatures form a spectacle of sorts during their mating season. Drive down to the beautiful village of Purushwadi near Mumbai, which is the site of one of the most astounding spectacles of nature – the firefly mating dance. Read about the Firefly festival in detail here.
Every year between May 23 to July 6, the valleys of Purushwadi come alive with the fiesta of a million fireflies who are in the midst of their mating rituals as they fleet around dancing from tree to tree.
How to reach Purushwadi:
- By road: The road trip from Mumbai is about 200 km and takes 5 hours to complete.
- By train: There are local trains from Mumbai to reach Kasara. Direct local trains are only available from Kurla and Thane. From the station, you can hire a jeep to Purushwadi.
- By Air: Mumbai airport is the closest one and from there you can either drive down or take the local train to Kasara.
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The Lonar crater is the world’s largest basaltic impact crater on earth and has its own importance. Not only known for the lush green crater, but it is also important for the graceful ruins of Temples and history around Lonar. It is a notified National Geo-heritage Monument saline soda lake located at Lonar. A Hanuman Temple near the lake has an idol apparently made out of the meteor rock having magnetic properties.
How to reach Lonar Lake:
- By road: Government and private buses run frequently between Mumbai and Lonar.
- By train: The nearest railway station is in Jalna, located about 90 km from Lonar. One can hire a cab for the further journey.
- By Air: The nearest airport from Lonar Lake is Aurangabad Airport, located 157 km away. One can hire a cab from the airport to reach the lake.
Velas is a small eco-village settled in Ratnagiri district and are very famous for the “Velas Turtle Festival” for the conservation of the Olive Ridley turtles. Witnessing the tiny baby turtles coming out of the egg and then moving to their home is such an unforgettable moment. If you want a beach vacation with a rustic, isolated feel, Velas beach fits your itinerary perfectly. Read about the Velas Turtle Festival in detail here!
Enclosed by mountains on its three sides with the lovely Velas beach on its fourth side, this small village also has a historical connection as it was the hometown and birthplace of Nana Phadnavis, who was a powerful minister of the Maratha Empire.
How to reach Velas Beach:
- By road: You can reach Velas via NH-17 which is the Mumbai-Goa highway. The drive is about 210 km from Mumbai and should take you around 6 hours.
- By train: The nearest railway station is in Chiplun. Taxis are available for hire to reach Velas from Chiplun. The distance from Chiplun Railway Station to Velas is 107 km and takes 2 hours and 50 minutes to reach by road.
- By Air: The nearest airports are in Pune and Mumbai. From there, you can drive down, hire a cab, take a train or bus.
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Jawhar is a tropical hill station location about 150 km from Mumbai. Situated in the ranges of the Western Ghats, Jawhar is known for its picturesque setting and a vibrant cultural heritage. It is also one of the few remaining tribal regions of Maharashtra and is famous for its vibrant Warli paintings.
If you are looking for a quick escape to a hill station, Jawhar would be ideal. There are a few waterfalls and a sunset point for sightseeing.
How to reach Jawhar:
- By train: Igatpuri railway station in Nasik is the nearest railway station from Jawhar. It is at a distance of 60 km and it takes around 2 hours to reach Jawhar from there.
- By Road: You can take a cab from cities like Mumbai and Thane to reach Jawhar. However, public transport like buses from neighboring cities is few and not frequent.
- By Air: Closest airport to Jawhar, at a distance of 80 km is Nasik Airport. Else you will need to fly to Mumbai
The Manori-Gorai-Uttan area is a picturesque and ecologically rich region with a large area under mangroves. Uttan is a small coastal village located next to the Gorai beach. If you are a seafood lover, then this beach has varieties of fresh fishes like Prawns, Bombil, Bangara, Pomfret and Chala fish. A connected beach adjacent is called ‘Uttan Virgin Beach’ of Bhayander since it is smaller and bit isolated fewer footfalls.
Also note that locals near the beach also referred to it as Velankanni beach as the surrounding has the famous Velankanni Church, Vandan Gruha and Our Lady of Velankanni Shrine.
How to reach Uttan:
- By Train: Nearest Railway station is Bhayander. You need to get down on the west side and take a private auto or bus to Uttan from the station.
- By Road: From Mumbai, Uttan is about 60 kms and located very close to Essel World.
- By Air: You can fly to Mumbai and then hire a cab to Jawhar from the airport
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