Fort is located 10 KM from Panvel City. Easily reachable by Car or Local Transport. Its lies now in Karnala Bird Sanctuary. We started our journey from Panvel Railway Station the trekking participants were advised to reach station by 8.00 am. After a brief introduction we headed to a local restaurant for breakfast. Normally outside Mumbai breakfast at hotels consist mainly of Poha, Misal, Vada, Sheera, Masala Tea. Breakfast was yummy and filling. We walked towards State Transport Bus Depot to catch a local bus till Karnala Bird Sanctuary Entrance.
Karnala Fort lies on NH 17 most buses from Panvel will drop you here sharing rickshaw are also available. We got a bus quickly and after a short journey we reached the Karnala Bird Sanctuary Gate. Entry fees are to be paid to enter Karnala Bird Sanctuary through which the route till Karnala Fort goes. You are not allowed to carry plastic articles and need to pay deposit for the same. Karnala Fort trek is very simple will take 1 hour or little more.
Karnala fort actually consists of two forts one at a higher level and other lower. At the centre of the higher level is a 125 feet high basalt pillar. It is also called Pandu's tower. This structure was used as watchtower when the fort was occupied however now it is in a ruined condition. The presence of bee hives also makes it difficult to climb and have resulted in at least one casualty in recent times. There is a water cistern which provides fresh water all year long. From the top the forts of Prabalgad and Rajmachi are clearly visible.
After an hour we reached the fort all trekkers started clicking pictures and exploring the fort. There are many beehives on the fort you should not disturb. After Lunch and many photographs, we decided to descend the fort we reached the base very quickly. Karnala Fort is also a popular picnic spot. Many good hotels and restaurants are available nearby.
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