Located in the Western Ghats of the state of Maharashtra, at an altitude of height of 625 m, Khandala is one of the important hill stations and the pride of Sahyadri Mountains. The place is gifted with abundant natural beauty and is one of the popular getaway destinations for the people of the city of Mumbai and Pune. The place also has a strong Bollywood connection. Being one of the renowned hill station of Maharashtra Khandala has been an all time favourite shooting spot for many of the Bollywood film makers over the ages. Even the name of the place is mentioned also in one of the famous hindi song.
The origin of the place is uncertain. The founder of the first Maratha Empire Chhtrapati Shivaji ruled the area around Khandala and it came under the kingdom of the Peshwa ruler, the founder of the second Maratha Empire.
Places to see at Khandala: Khandala offers some beautiful tourist spot. These includes:
Bedsa Caves are situated very close to the region of Kamshet and falls on the Mumbai to Pune road. These caves are located around the city of Khandala. The Caves of Bedsa are known for their pillars that are adorned with the image of lions and a Chaitya hall having spacious reposing rooms. The caves of Bedsa are really well-maintained by the tourism department of Maharashtra. The BedsaCaves are popular for their superb art and architecture.
These caves are popular for their excellent architecture. The caves are built in identical manner with Karla Caves The most unique characteristic of the caves is that the beam of light of the setting sun enters the insides of the caves. The southern region of the caves consists of the sculptures of human figures and deities. There are many mythological tales that revolves around these images and sculptures. The BhajaCaves are adorned with 18 temple caves and are built in Hinayana style.
The caves are one of the most popular tourist attractions of Khandala. The Buddhist Karla Caves were cut out 2000 years ago. The caves of Karla were built during the rule of the Satavahanas. These caves have excellent architectural structures and possess maximum number of Chaityas. The purpose for making the caves was for the stay of the Buddhist monastics. The people have to climb 350 stairs in order to reach to the caves. At the entrance is located a temple which has been constructed very recently. The outer surface of the temple is full of sculptures of humans in various poses.
Kune Falls is one of the most beautiful tourist spots in Khandala. It is located centrally within the Lonavala Khandala valley and is worth an admiration. The KuneFalls is surrounded by lush green vegetation. People often hold picnics around the region of the falls. Built during Shivaji’s rule in Maharashtra, the fort of Lohgad is situated 10 kms away from Lonavala. This fort was constructed so that prisoners could be kept. Lohgad Fort belonged to Chatrapati Shivaji and later on the royal family of the Gaikwada and Dabhade were imprisoned in this fort. The Lohgad Fort reflects an old charm about itself. It is a majestic structure that stands tall through the sands of time. The Lohgad Fort is indeed worth admiring.
Rajmachi Fort is another eminent tourist sites in Khandala. It is situated about 20 kilometers from Lonavala. It is located mid-way between Khandala and Lonavala. The fort can be reached through TungarliLake: this trek is popular among the beginners. Tourists willing to reach Rajmachi fort in Khandala can avail the local transport from Pune.
The Reversing Station, Khandala is definitely one of the picturesque sites of the hill station. It was once used by the railway department but today it is an unused and secluded place. One can enjoy the breathtaking view of the surrounding regions from this site. During the night, lights from the distant Khapoli city present a heavenly view.
Sakur Plateau is situated at an elevation of 1000 feet and is located about 4 miles from the hill station of Khandala. It is situated on the way to INS Shivaji and village Ambavane and is one of the popular tourist attractions of Khadala, Sakur plateau is sparsely populated.
Nearby attractions from Khandala: From Khandala you can make a visit to Lonavala which is located at a distance of 11.4km from Khandala. This is the place to be if you want to take a break from your hectic life. This gorgeous hill station, located in Sahyadri ranges, is known not just for its pleasant climate and scenic views, but also for many tourist attractions like Valvan Dam, Lonavla Lake, Tiger’s Leap, Lion Point, Wax Museum etc.
Things to do in Khandala: Khandala, offers a wide variety of things to do. The shutter-bugs can indulge in the photo sessions here, as the place offers wonderful scenic beauty. The other activities which the tourists can enjoy here are trekking, hiking, or caving as the natural beauty of Khandala can be best explored on foot. Apart from that the sight seeing destinations offers an added attraction of the place. Don’t forget to taste the famous sweet Chikki made of jaggery, peanuts and sesame seeds.
Best time to visit Khandala: You can come here any time of the year, especially in winter, from October to April that is considered the best time to visit Khandala.
How to go ?
Khandala does not have any airport so one has to fly to either Mumbai or to Pune. The nearest international airport is Mumbai (110 km) and domestic airport is Pune (66km). From either of the city airports you would have to take a taxi or bus to Khandala.
You can avail trains either from Mumbai Central Station or from Pune Junction. These two rail junctions are connected with all major rail stations in India. All the trains available from here halt at Khandala before travelling onto to Lonavala.
Khandala is well connected with Mumbai and Pune by road and the bus service for Pune (travel time 2½ hours) via Lonavala is good. It takes about four hours to reach Mumbai from Khandala.
Where to stay ?
Khandala being a very popular tourist destination is dotted with a no. of hotels. Some options are:
Velvett Country: +91- 0777 403 9670, 403 9671 Website: www.velvettcountry.com
Krushnai Resort: +91-098 90 270427
Zara’s Resort: +91-02114-269163, 64 Website: www.zarasresort.com
Hotel Rama Residency: +91-67089277,9769994449 Website: www.ramaresidency.com
Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.