TBI Travel: Have You Explored These 5 Offbeat Weekend Getaways Near Mumbai?

Are you in Mumbai and don’t know what to do this weekend? Check out these five weekend getaways near Mumbai which combine nature, history and culture!

Mumbai is known for its amazing monsoons and awesome beaches. The street shopping and mouth-watering food cannot be ignored too. But, when it comes to taking a short trip, aren’t we all bored of that weekend trip to Khandala or Lonavala? Or the routine vacation to Mahabaleshwar and Panchgani?

Here are five lesser explored weekend getaways near Mumbai that will make you want to head out at once! So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags, and hurry!

1. Harihareshwar Beach

Picture Source: FlickreviewR/Wikipedia

Picture Source: FlickreviewR/Wikipedia

Who doesn’t like to spend a quiet time on the beach? But with the increasing footprints on Mumbai’s beaches, it becomes a little difficult to enjoy the beauty of the sea. For all the water-lovers, Harihareshwar beach can be a great option. Located around 200 kms from Mumbai, the place has two beaches near the famous 16th century Harihareshwar temple. Bounded by the Sahyadri hills, this place can be visited in any season. If you are travelling in mid-February, do not forget to check out Velas, which hosts an annual Turtle Festival.

How to reach?

If you are driving, this route is pretty simple: Panvel – Rohe – Mangaon – Mhasala – Harihareshwar. Harihareshwar does not have a railway station. Mangaon (MNI) is a nearby train station connected to Mumbai. Trains to Mangao depart from Mumbai CST (CSTM) and Lokmanyatilak T (LTT) in Mumbai. Many autorickshaws and taxis will take you to the destination. If you are taking a flight from anywhere else in the country, Chatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai is the closest airport.

Where to stay?

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC), a government body, has resorts in Harihareshwar which you should definitely check out. These resorts are located very close to the beach. You can check them out here.

2. Lonar Crater

Picture Source: V4vjk/Wikipedia

Picture Source: V4vjk/Wikipedia

Located in Buldana district of Maharashtra, this fascinating lake is believed to have been created over 5o,000 years ago due to a meteor impact which formed a depression 1.83 kilometers in diameter and 150 meters deep. Apart from the splendid beauty of the lake and a few treks, the place is famous for several temples like Daitya Sudan temple and Kamalija temple located around the lake. The lake is both saline and alkaline in nature and the historical documents say that the lake produces all the elements to make glass and soap.

How to reach?

Lonar is located around 500 kms from Mumbai. You can take a train to Jalna from Mumbai and then book a taxi from Jalna to Lonar which is around 70 kms away. Trains like Nandigram Express, Devagiri express and Tapovan Express will take you to Jalna. The nearest airport is at Aurangabad, which is around 122km from Lonar.

Where to stay?

MTDC’s resort, which is located next to the lake, can be a good and affordable option to stay. Check out this page for more details of the resort.

3. Malshej Ghat

Picture Source: Magnus Manske/Wikipedia

Picture Source: Magnus Manske/Wikipedia

If you have a thing for adventure, trekking and hiking, this is the place for you. The scenic beauty and mesmerizing landscape is worth a see. The most interesting part is that you can spot amazing flamingos in large numbers here in the monsoons. The hills also have Buddhist caves which are believed to exist from the 3rd Century. Several waterfalls add brownie points to the lovely location.

How to reach?

Malshej Ghat is around 130 kms from Mumbai and the nearest airport is also in Mumbai. Nearest Railway station is Kalyan. You can also take a private or government bus to the location.

Where to stay?

The best option would be to check out Flamingo Hill operated by  MTDC. Apart from this you can check out other private lodges which are easily available. In case you are looking for a more local experience, you can find accommodation in a nearby village called Madh which is about 6 kms from Malshej Ghat.

4. Panshet

Picture Source: Gppande/Wikipedia

Picture Source: Gppande/Wikipedia

Panshet Dam was constructed in 1950 for irrigation and now is an amazing destination to explore on a weekend. It offers you a huge range of water sports activities like boating and surfing. Panshet water park is a fun place to visit with family and friends. A splendid view of the Sahyadri hills from the dam is yet another attraction.

How to reach?

Located around 180 kms from Mumbai via the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, the place is well connected by bus and train. The nearest airport is Pune airport.

Where to stay?

MTDC again looks like a good option to try when it comes to accommodation. Located very close to the Panshet Dam, the quiet resort is located amidst forest and also gives you an opportunity to go for a trek. The deluxe cottages give you a lake view, so you might want to try them out.

5. Jawhar

jawhar

Picture Source

A hill station located at an altitude of  518m, Jawhar has a lot of tourist attractions like sunset point, Dabhosa waterfall, Kalmandvi waterfall, Hanuman point, etc. It is also famous for its beautiful Warli paintings which are called the hallmark of this place. Jai Vilas Palace, located nearby, is also a go-to destination. Jawhar is also called the Mahabaleshwar of Thane district.

How to reach?

Located at about 166 kms from Mumbai, Jawhar is well connected by train and bus. The nearest airport is Mumbai and several government and private buses can take you to Jawhar via Nashik. The nearest railway station is Igatpuri.

Where to stay?

MTDC holiday resort Kanhaiya Kunj can be an option to stay. In case you are looking for a more luxurious stay, Shanti Sarovar Resort can be an option for all nature lovers.

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