lohgad

One-day Treks Locations near Pune

As in many things, Punekars also take pride in the huge and historic forts that are located in the close vicinity around Pune. As each city has its tradition, Pune has the tradition of taking trekking tours to these forts over weekends. Though the number has lessened in some recent years, some of these forts attract huge crowds of youth from Pune. While we are afraid to start traveling again after the Pandemic, here we suggest you some of the extremely adventurous yet joyful treks for the trekker hidden inside you. All these 8 Treks are within 100 km from Pune, they all are amazing one-day destinations, especially in Monsoon. Just take some food and water with you, and let’s go to explore new terrains and experience the adventures we are missing out on for almost 2 years.

Lohagad Fort

Lohagad Fort can be the quintessential one-day destination for those all who seek weekend pleasure in various adventurous activities or treks. This lovable fort lies merely 66 km away from Pune and 11 km away from Lonavala. Easy to climb, readily approachable from Pune and Mumbai, and Ariel view of Pawna lake establishes itself to be very demanding in people of all age groups.

Sinhagad

The fort that has a very special place in heart of every Marathi person for its tragic history, is Sinhagad. Shivaji Maharaj renamed this fort “Sinhagad” after the loss of Maratha warrior Tanaji Malusare while fighting for the victory, it was called “Kondana” earlier. Located 30 km from Pune, it offers a quick getaway from the city bustle despite the increasing commercialization.

Shivneri Fort

Another fort that is immensely popular amongst trekkers in Pune is Fort Shivneri for its close relevance to Shivaji Maharaj. Built in the era of Satavahanas, Shivneri Fort is the birthplace of Shivaji Maharaj and he spent his entire childhood here as well. Around 94 km away from Pune, this fort is situated near Junnar in the Pune district.

Tikona Fort

At a distance of 25 km from Lonavala and 53 km from Pune, Tikona Fort is said to be structured in the ‘Maval’ region. As the name suggests, this fort was constructed in a triangle shape and is situated near Pawna lake. Difficulty-wise, this Trek ranks on the easier scale and can be enjoyed with families, however beloved amongst trekkers from all over Maharashtra.

Rajgad Fort

Termed as Murumdev formerly, Rajgad served as the capital of the Maratha Empire for 25 years, before shifting to Raigad. Set at 54 km from Pune, this enormous fort acquires an area of 40 km at the base. Suvela Machi, Padmavati Machi, Balekilla, Pali Darwaza are some of the places on the fort that you would not want to miss at any cost while climbing up here.

Rajmachi Fort

Rajmachi Fort was strategically constructed to control the Borghat. Borghat is located between Khopoli and Khandala; that served as a trade route historically. Located at the distance of 15 km from Lonavala and 82 km from Pune, there are two routes to climb up the Rajmachi Fort, one from Lonavala and another from Karjat. However, it is advisable to take a Lonavala route for beginners. Camping is preferred here at night by many trekkers.

Visapur Fort

Built by the first Peshwa of the Maratha Empire, Balaji Vishwanath, Visapur Fort is 18 km away from Lohagad Fort. Being larger and having higher elevation than Lohagad Fort, Visapur Fort was constructed to guard the Lohagad Fort. Having two trekking routes, trekkers absolutely love this fort as it offers excellent panoramic views.

Tung Fort

Hardly 67 km from Pune and 24 km from Lonavala, Tung Fort was built by the Adil Shahi dynasty. Also known as Kathingad in Marathi, meaning “difficult fort”, it is actually difficult to climb up due to steep climbs and narrow routes. It offers stunning panoramic views of the Maval region, Pawna lake, Mulshi valley, Tikona Fort, Lohagad Fort, and Visapur Fort, this fort also served as a watchtower for many years.

Near Pune

‘Must-Visit’ Places around Pune (within 100 km)

The beautiful city of Pune! Want to look beyond the stunning skyline of the city? Don’t worry, The Oxford of East is gifted with the most amazing gateways and tourist destinations that will make your weekends special. There are a lot of places to visit near Pune under 100 km including spots with forts, alluring hill ranges, natural waterfalls, and various picnic spots which are perfect for your weekend getaways and family get together. While we prepare to welcome the rainfalls, we too are drawing up a list of places for you to visit with your kin.

Sinhagad Fort

Sinhagad Fort is situated atop a cliff on the Bhuleshwar range of the Sahyadris, about 36 kilometers southwest of Pune Sinhagad road. Sinhagad Fort, which means “Fort of the Lion,” has a long and illustrious history. It was originally captured by the Mughals before falling into the hands of the Marathas. Tanaji Malusare, a courageous Maratha warrior who fought alongside Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and helped him win the fort, eventually giving his life in the conflict, is honored here. After the defeat of Malusare, Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj famously said, “Gad Ala Pan Sinha Gela,” and the fort was renamed Sinhagad. It has recently become a popular tourist destination, especially among trekkers and adventure seekers.

Lonavala-Khandala

Lonavala, a hill station near Pune and Mumbai which is extremely popular with hikers and trekkers, is undoubtedly one of the most popular places to visit within 64 kilometers of Pune mainland via Mumbai-Pune Highway. It is well-known for its medieval caves, spectacular forts, and splendid lakes. Sir Elphinstone discovered Lonavala in 1871, and it was previously known as Lonali, which means “surrounded by caves.” The Yadava dynasty originally dominated the sparsely populated hill outpost, which is surrounded by deep forest. The Mughals and Peshwas are responsible for the majestic forts’ existence. The territory near Khandala was dominated by Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, the founder of the first Maratha Empire. It was afterward ruled by the Peshwas. When the British vanquished the Peshwas, they took control of the city.

With its scenic valleys, grassy hills, serene lakes, and misty waterfalls, Khandala, perched on the foothills of the Sahyadri, offers an excellent weekend full of tranquility and places to discover.

Matheran

Known as the “forest on the forehead”, Matheran is merely 81 km away from Northwest of Pune. Your wonderful journey begins from Mote Mangal Karyalay Rd connecting to the main Mumbai-Pune Highway. It’s believed that Hugh Poyntz Malet, Thane district collector, discovered Matheran as a wonderful place in 1850. He was camping around the village Chowk when he paused on a hilltop for a drink of water from a spring that carries his name.
Matheran welcomes by stretching its arms of green mountains, scenic waterfalls, and tourist spots around the town for you to enjoy sunsets and sunrises. A place for you to click memories without the honking and flashing of cars. The most eco-friendly place in Maharashtra, Matheran has been free of pollution and vehicles for decades. A mecca for trekkers, your weekend will definitely have a series of fun trekking activities and tranquility from the panoramic scenery.

Pawna Dam

A paradise situated 40 km away from Mainland Pune city via Aundh – Ravet BRTS Road., Pimpri Chinchwad, Kamshet, and Pawannagar.
 An artificial lake built in 1974, Pawna Dam was built primarily to generate hydroelectric power and supplying water and since then, Pawna Dam has been a weekend getaway paradise.  The presence of various tourist attractions including Lohagad Fort, Tikona Fort, Tung Fort, and Visapur Fort adds to the beauty of the Pawna Lake setting. Its soothing ambiance makes it a lovely weekend getaway spot near Lonavala and Khandala.

Panshet

Established in the 1950s, Panshet and Panshet Dam is a charming tourist spot 40 km away from the southwestern region of Pune via Sinhgad Road. Earlier known as Tanajisagar Dam, Panshet is a perfect getaway to relax and soak in lush greenery and clear waterfalls. Panshet makes the list because of the various water sport activities that you can enjoy all year round. From banana boat riding to kayaking, this spot has everything. Surrounded by the alluring verdant hills, Panshet also offers you many hiking and trekking activities! A picnic spot suitable for all ages, Panshet is also a very picturesque place to enjoy camping with your family.

Mulshi dam

A green utopia situated 35 Km away from the Mainland of Pune via Paud Rd and Mulshi Rd/Mulshi-Paud Rd, Mulshi Dam is a hotspot to visit during Monsoons. The Paud Road route is the shortest. To get to Nandivali Road, use Paud Road, Mulshi Road, and Dattawadi Road/Lonavala Road west of Shivaji Road.
This marvelous destination has everything for you to enjoy in your monsoons. Blessed with magnificent mountains, Mulshi Dam is a splendid place to trek and camp overnight. You will always be surrounded by refreshing weather and a panoramic natural view.

Khadakwasla

The peak season of monsoon beautifies Khadakwasla to give you a memorable getaway. Just 20 Kms away from Pune mainland via Narveer Tanaji Malusare Rd/Sinhgad Road. Your monsoons are empty without hanging out by Khadakwasla. The dam was built on the Mutha River, which flows from the junction of the rivers Ambi and Mose, on which the Panshet and Varasgaon Dams are built, and the outflow from Temgarh Lake into Khadakwasla Lake via Temgarh Dam, which is located about 15 kilometres  north of Varasgaon Dam. The Khadakwasla backwaters are almost 22 kilometres  long, with widths ranging from 250 to 1,000 metres .With various destinations just a ride away, Khadakwasla is a picturesque spot to enjoy local eateries and watch the sunset.

With so many places to visit near Pune within 100 kms, weekends in this city will never be monotonous. There are diversified places which not only hold historic value dating back to centuries, but also have a tenacious religious importance as well. So matter what your quirk is, these tourist spots will cater to all.

Passport

Essential checklist for International travel

Your Passport expiry should not be within six months of return to India travel date.

Documentation required for international travel is critical, where you have to take care of many minute things. Your passport is your identity when you are on foreign land. Hence, this document comes in the first place in the Essential checklist for international travel. Your passport must have a validity of at least 6 months from your return travel date after finishing your tour. If you do not meet this criterion, most of the countries will not grant you their visa. For the countries offering Visa on Arrival, you will not be allowed to board the onward flight if you have your passport expiring within 6 months of return travel date.

Confirmed onward and return air tickets

In the current changing global scenario, it is always better to have your return air tickets so that, your immigration will be done swiftly. Most of the countries demand your confirmed onward return air tickets to grant entry to their countries. This is not a mandatory criterion for each and every country. Check with your travel planner while booking an international travel plan. Do not provide fake return air tickets. This act may lead you into legal trouble.

Reconfirm your flight booking status frequently

Once you book your onward and return air tickets, check their status regularly until you fly. The aviation industry is under huge turmoil due to the pandemic and is frequently changing rules and regulations. Your flight may get preponed/postponed/canceled any time after booking, and there are huge chances that the airline doesn’t send you an email or SMS updating you about changes in the itinerary. You may end up missing your flight if you do not check flight status regularly after booking. The best solution to this is to book your air tickets from a reliable travel planner. The expert team will keep you posted in case of any changes in the plan announced by the airline company.

Carefully double check visa rules of the host country

Do not rely on verbally communicated inputs when it comes to visa-related information. Always, try to personally check all the visa-related rules mentioned on the host country’s website. Income proof, residential address, NOC from the employer, Travel Insurance, and so on. Depending on the country, you may need any of the above documents for the visa application. If you forget to submit any of the mandatory documents from the list, your visa application may get rejected. Hence, you should be very careful about documentation while applying for visa.

Also, in the case of the countries offering Visa on Arrival, you have to fulfill some prerequisites (i.e enough foreign exchange, confirmed hotel bookings, confirmed flight bookings, and travel insurance). Check all these details in advance before travel to save a last-minute rush.

Transit visa

If you are transiting through a different country’s airport, check if a transit visa is required. If you flout any rules related to a transit visa, you will not be allowed to board your onward flight. Airlines do not process any refunds in such cases. Ask your travel planner in advance about this. Choose your transit airport carefully.

Booking confirmation numbers of your stays during the trip

Make sure you have the booking confirmation numbers and the payment status details with you when you travel to an international destination. This will help you in avoiding any last-minute dispute at the time of check-in. Carrying booking confirmation numbers may also help you at the time of immigration. In case of failed bookings, your travel planner will be unable to provide you booking confirmation numbers and you can resolve the issue in advance, well before you start your travel.

Recheck your meal plans and room categories at all properties

This is a crucial point in the essential checklist for international travel. This point is the cause of most of the disputes during the tours. Travelers take it for granted. Assume that all meals are included in their tour plan. And for various reasons, travel agents do not all meals. On day one of the tour, you may get disappointed after knowing meals included and end up getting into a dispute with your travel planner. This all can be avoided if you get this confirmed in advance. The same rule is applicable for the booked room category. Briefly check about room description given on the hotel/resort website at the time of booking itself. Check room dimensions & view from the room, amenities being offered. You will not get last-minute surprises if you cross-check your room booking details in advance.

Pre-book your activities and transfers

Most of the travelers think that, if they book transfers and activities locally upon arrival, they can save a lot of money. But this is highly risky. In many cases, you may get cheated by the locals and end up paying an excessive amount. Also, you may waste a lot of time finding a reliable local service provider. Booking activities locally is a cumbersome task that consumes a lot of time. because of the language barrier, you may get frustrated. It is always better to book activities and transfers in advance before you start your journey.

Carefully reconfirm Covid19 protocols in the host country

Before travel, you must check Covid19 pandemic-related protocols in the host country before you board your flight. Traveling around the world has changed a lot after 2020. You should re-confirm the policies related to quarantine, flight operations, local lock-downs on a safer side. You have finished your vaccination, check the policies for the vaccinated travelers carefully. If you ignore these policies, you may have to face many unwanted surprises upon arrival at your destination.

Travel insurance

Mandatory or not, you must have travel insurance with you when you are on foreign land. Travel insurance can help you in many ways, from health issues to baggage loss while traveling, many things are covered in the travel insurance giving you more peace of mind.

International calling SIM card

Buy an international calling SIM card once you land at your destination. Avoid buying it in India, as plans are expensive and taxation is huge. You get more value for your paid money when you buy a sim card locally.

Local expenses

Get an idea from your travel planner about local expenses not included in the travel package. Carry hard cash and soft cash accordingly. You can carry prepaid cards, International credit cards with you.

Local restaurants serving Indian food

In most of the international travel packages, dinner is not included. You have to search for local restaurants serving Indian food. In the first few days, this search may frustrate you. Check with your travel planner in advance about the nearby restaurants serving local Indian food. Also, you can get more ideas from your friends and family who have already traveled to the destination.

Conclusion

If you follow this essential checklist for international travel, your trip will become hassle free and you can enjoy to the core. Happy journey!