Mahabaleshwar, the land of strawberries, is the largest hill-station in theSahyadri Mountain Range. Due to its captivating beauty, Mahabaleshwar is often referred to as the queen of hill-stations in Maharashtra. Like any other hill-stations, Mahabaleshwar also presents the scenic beauty of hills and valleys but the five lovely rivers washing the plateau enhances its beauty beyond imagination.
The ideal Mahabaleshwar trip can be done in 3 days. You need one day for Pratapgad only. In the second day, you can visit Arthur’s seat along with some other points. The third day can be spent visiting Panchgani and Mapro direction.
Here is an interesting guide to lead you through Mahabaleshwar. You can either drive or take Volvo bus from Mumbai or Pune to the beautiful city of Mahabaleshwar. It is recommended to check the list of hotels in Mahabaleshwar in advance. Either book your rooms online or reach there in the morning as the hotels have the check-in time of 9 AM.
Once you check-in your hotel room you can put your luggage and start enjoying your time at the hill-station. You can book cabs for local sight-seeing from the taxi stand opposite to the Government Bus Stand. You don’t need to bargain for the rates of taxi are fixed here.
You can either start your trip by visiting Pratapgad that can take almost your whole day or you can choose going to different ‘points’ in Mahabaleshwar. These points are located at the various edges of the plateau and named after the British administrators who happened to find these splendid locations. Cabs and rental cars can take you to the points fast but for more adventure, you can choose to go on horseback.
You can also choose to go by government buses for a pocket-friendly trip. The government buses have two trip packages – Pratapgad Darshanam and Mahabaleshwar Darshanam. If you are single then the bus is the only option for you as taxi associations do not entertain solo-travellers. If you wish to hire cab then you’ll have to submit your identity proof in the local police station and assure them that you are not there for committing suicide.
Although there are about 25 lookout points at Mahabaleshwar many of them give the same view from slightly differing angles. To have different scenic views one can visit the following points during the Mahabaleshwar trip –
- Wilson Point (Sunrise Point)
- Bombay Point (Sunset Point)
- Lingmala Waterfalls
- Babington Point
- Arthur’s Seat
- Kate’s Point
- Lodwick Point
- Elephant’s Head Point
Apart from viewing sunrise, sunset and the scenic beauty of the plateau from different points, there are many activities you can do at Mahabaleshwar.
You can enjoy boating at Tapola which is about 50Kms away from the Mahabaleshwar. But don’t rush hurriedly to Tapola; go slow and enjoy vast stretches of strawberry farms. You can go boating in the Venna Lake where you have the option to sail yourself or hire someone.
When going to different points you can hire horses and enjoy a slow-paced ride with the horseman walking by the side for your safety. You can also ask for a faster ride to give yourself some adrenaline rush. Trekking is the most popular activity among the visitors of Mahabaleshwar. There are too many trekking trails in Mahabaleshwar so you can choose the one nearest your hotel.
If you are fond of shopping then you must buy the Kolhapuri footwear that is the local speciality of the place.
Obviously, you’ll eat lots of strawberries during your trip to the Land of Strawberries but there are more local delights. Mulberries, Carrots and Corn are also grown here in abundance. Corn patties of Mahabaleshwar are as famous as the squashes, jams and jellies of fresh fruits.
Mahabaleshwar is the place liked and enjoyed by people of all ages. Visit the beautiful place and make your unique experience.