TBI Weekends: 5 Hidden Getaways From Pune You’ve Probably Never Heard Of!

We all wait for weekends eagerly. An outing with friends, a family gathering or maybe just a lazy Sunday – we all have different ideas of a perfect weekend in our heads. But there’s probably nothing better than discovering something you’ve not seen before.

And the monsoons give us one more reason to travel. Not just travel but to explore a location which is far from the regular, crowded tourist spots where everyone heads to.

Here is our list of five lesser known weekend getaways near Pune-

1. Kolad

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Located near the Kundalika river, Kolad lies on the Mumbai-Panvel-Goa Route. It is one of the top rafting places in India. It is also a great camping site. The place is located amidst the beautiful Sahyadri mountain range in Raigad district of Maharashtra. Mostly famous for trekking, the monsoons is an amazing time to visit the place as the ground is covered with a green carpet. You can also enjoy various adventure activities and lovely waterfalls. The USP of the place is that the activities are operational throughout the year.

Check out the website to know more about river rafting at Kolad.

How to reach there?

Kolad is around 140 kms and takes around two hours from Pune. The most convenient way to reach there is to hire a private taxi from Pune to Kolad. The cheapest way to reach Kolad from Pune is to take the Pragati Express from Pune to Lonavala, then take a taxi from Lonavala to Kolad. There are many private buses that will take you to Kolad from major stations of Maharashtra.

Where to stay?

There are many homestays and hotels in and around Kolad. You can check out some of these places here.

2. Murud Janjira

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The historical fort has the great distinction of being the only fort that remained undefeated despite several attacks from the Portuguese, the Marathas and the English East India Company. It is one of the strongest marine forts of India. The amazing fort is located at  around 161 kms from Pune and can be a great place to visit on a good weather day.

How to reach there?

Nearest railway station is Nagothane railway station. There are many durect buses from Pune to Murud. Check out your options here.

Where to stay?

Spare some time to relax and enjoy some awesome local cuisine. Check out some of these places to stay.

3. Sagareshwar Sanctuary

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This sanctuary is interesting to visit as it is a man-made wildlife sanctuary. 15 years of convincing the villagers and hard work by one man – D.M.Mohite, resulted in transforming the dry mountain slopes into a beautiful forest replete with flora and fauna. In 1985, approximately 52 animals were set free in the area to re-introduce wildlife here. The hiking at the top of the hill is the major attraction and the famous Shiva temple attracts a lot of devotees. It consists of a large temple and a group of 51 small temples. Best time to visit is August to February.

How to reach there?

The sanctuary is around 220 kms from Pune.  All mail, express and superfast trains stop at Sangli and Miraj railway stations. MSRTC buses, private cars and auto rickshaws are available from Sangli and Miraj to Sagareshwar. You can get down at Takari railway station and even walk to Sagareshwar, which is 2 kms away.

Where to stay?

There is a government rest house available for accommodation at the sanctuary.

4. Kaas plateau

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This breathtakingly beautiful place is located around 133 kilometers from Pune. It is also called the “Valley of Flowers” or “Kaas Pathhar”. During the monsoon season, the whole valley is filled with blooming orchids which are a treat to the eyes. The place is located 25 kms from Satara and has around 45 species of flowers. It is also called western India’s Switzerland.

The 1000 hectare plateau was declared as a bio-diversity site by UNESCO in June 2012. Read about the amazing work being done by conservationists and the locals in preserving the fragile eco-system, and make sure you respect and appreciate that when you visit. Monsoon (August-October) is the best time to visit this place. So if you are planning to go, pack your bags now!

How to reach there?

There are many buses and trains to Satara from Pune. And from there you can take a private taxi.

Where to stay?

There aren’t any hotels in Kaas Plateau, though some villagers do provide home stays, which would be great options to know more about the local community. Good accommodation can be found in Satara or Mahabaleshwar, which is very close to the Kaas Plateau.

5. Khed Shivapur

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This place is very close to Pune, so in case you just have one day off you can travel 25 kms and reach this amazing destination. The small village near Pune is famous for a mysterious stone. It is said that if 11 people touch their finger to the stone and shout the name “Qamar Ali Darvesh”, the stone that weighs around 200 kgs flies up in the air. Though this claim has not been scientifically proven, but it’s still worth trying, isn’t it?

How to reach there?

Since the place is pretty close to Pune, you can take a cab or bus that will directly take you to your destination. Or, you can enjoy a nice bike ride!

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