16 must visit events this 2016 Leap year.
Sandhan Valley trek:
Valley of Suspense for some or valley of Shadows for some. Starting at Samrad village ending in Dehne village. One of the best treks in the Sahyadri ranges. For veterans in trekking it’s a one day event. Experience boulders of all sizes and shapes. To enter the sacred Sandhan valley washing your feet is necessary :) If you could tip toe and walk over water without getting your shoes wet. Behold, the adventure has just began. Next is level up. Walking thru 3 feet of water. The best is this trek includes 3 inbuilt adventures. First a 40 ft rappelling patch. Then a wriggle like a snake ready to shred its skin to rock climb-down 5 step. Once this is done take some rest - have you lunch here. As sometimes there is small trickle of fresh water available to refill your water bottles. Next is a climb down to 35 ft. Just may sure the belay is secured. This trek ends besides a huge pond. Take a holy dip here. Walk form her to Dehne village is 3 hours.
Velas Turtle festival 2016:
TreksandTrails, India sincerely appreciates the great efforts been undertaken by local NGO - Sahyadri Nisarg Mitra, as they have borne fruit since 2002, each year all the nests on the western coast at Velas, Murud, Harnai, Dapoli and other sites are carefully protected and conserved to ensure both natural and human threats are reduced. All the eggs laid on the beach are collected and placed in a common hatchery which is barricaded from all sides and is guarded throughout the day. Average eggs laid by a female turtle is 100. The incubation time required for these eggs is between 50 – 55 days.
Once the emerging of the hatchling begins, their moments creates small depression in the sand, these mark increase as the days go by. Thus experts can then determine the activity in the nest. One the hatchling emergence from the nest, it’s very important to release it into the sea. Hence each morning at 07:00 and evening at 17:30 - 18:00 the baskets covering the lid are open to check if any turtles have hatched, if they have they are counted and carefully laid in another basket and taken closer to the sea. They are then gently placed on the sand and they slowly make their way to the water. Their first baby steps are not only endearing to watch but also important if it is a female, as she records in her memory the site of her birth only to return here after 10 - 15 years to lay her eggs.
Kala Ghoda festival:
The Kala Ghoda Arts Festival this year will open doors from Saturday 6th February to Wednesday 17th February 2016 (Extended by three days at Cross maidan for Make in India Festival). With a kaleidoscope of music, dance, theatre, literature, food, street stalls, cinema, workshops, visual arts, urban design and architecture and heritage walks in store, this 12-day extravaganza promises a cultural palate like never before witnessed! The Kala Ghoda Arts Festival is a community celebration of the arts within one of the most beautiful and historic precincts of Mumbai, The Kala Ghoda Art District. It is open to all, free of charge. *** Source: kalaghodaassociation.com
One of the best high forts near Mumbai, Maharashtra. Strong fortifications of this fort has multiple entry routes such as Junnar gate route, Sadhle ghat, Nalichi wat and Indore waat. The carvings on the temples of Nageshwar (in Khireshwar village), in the Harishchandreshwar temple and in the cave of Kedareshwar indicate that the fort belongs to the medieval period, since it is related to Shiva, Shakta or Naath. Later the fort was under the control of Moguls. The Marathas captured it in 1747. Main attractions on Fort: Saptatirtha Pushkarni, Kedareshwar Cave, Konkan kada (Konkan cliff), Taramati peak, temple of Harishchandreshwar.
Burhanpur: Dakhan ka Darwaja – Historical city
A small town on the north western banks of Tapti River in Madhya Pradesh. Approx. 20 km from Maharashtra border. An ancient place Brighnapur and capital of Khandesh for about 200 yrs. The province of the Khandesh spread in area now known as Maharashtra, Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh. Also second Mughal capitol Burhanpur, having 5 exclusive historical monuments of the world. One where Begum MUMTAZ breathed her last and construction of TAJ was started, the only MOSQUE of the world having Sanskrit, Arabic and Urdu script in it, the only Granth Sahib of the world signed by 10th Guru Govind Singh in golden ink, Dawodi Bohra community’s famous DARGAH-E-HAKIMI, Worlds unique water system Khundi Bhandara working against gravitational law since 1615, biggest live fort of India and numbers of other monuments. Burhanpur is just 595 km from Mumbai. Situated on central railway an overnight 9 hrs journey. Its major railway station and connected by superfast trains with every corner of India. Burhanpur is a district town of Madhya Pradesh situated in south west part, between Bhusawal Jn. and Khandwa Jn., Ajanta caves are 110 Km, Omkareshwar Jyotirling 110 km, Seemadoh wild life sanctuary is 130 km, Chikhaldara hill station 160 km, Gajananbaba Shegaon 125 km, Pal botanical garden 40 km etc. Nearest airports are Indore 180 km, Aurangabad 210 km.
Rann of Kutch is a large area of salt marshes located in mostly in Gujarat (Kutch district), India and the southern tip of Sindh, Pakistan. It is divided into two main parts; Great Rann of Kutch and Little Rann of Kutch. The Rann of Kutch is located in the Thar Desert bio-geographic area in the Indian state of Gujarat with some parts in Pakistani province of Sindh. It is a seasonally marshy region, the word Rann meaning "salt marsh", alternating with medaks, and elevated pieces of land where vegetation grows. Kutch is the name of the district in Gujarat where this region is situated. The marsh covers a huge area of around 10,000 square miles and is positioned between the Gulf of Kutch and the mouth of the Indus River in southern Pakistan. To the northeast corner of the Rann of Kutch lies the Luni River, originating in Rajasthan. *** source - Wikipedia
Tadoba Tiger Reserve: TATR
The state of Maharashtra is a biological hotspot - rich and awesome. Trekking or visit to one of the state tiger reserves, there is something for everyone. We set of to explore Tadoba Andhari Tiger reserve this June. Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve boost of the highest density of tiger population in India. Close to 65 tigers for 620 sq. km. Our trip was a great delight with many other animals that we sighted like the Peacock, India roller, bulbul, White eye Buzzard, Paradise flycatcher (male and female), India Spita, Crow pheasant, India Bison, Spotted dears, four Antler deer’s, marsh land crocodiles, Sambar, wild boar, Monitor lizard, Woodpeckers, Indian Muntjac (baking deer), Jungle hen, Serpent Eagle, Crow butterfly, Langurs, birds like the Seven sisters, Magpie Robin, Green beater are a few name that I could remember that were shared by the local guide on the open jeep safari that we had. Tadoba Andhari is located along the hills of Chimur, Kolsa, Navegoan and Mouharli. Tadoba was declared a tiger reserve in 1955 and later Andhari was joined in 1986.
An archaeological site at Khadirbet in Bhachau Taluka of Kutch District, in the state of Gujarat in western India, which has taken its name from a modern village 1 km (0.62 mi) south of it. This village is 165 km from Radhanpur. Also known locally as Kotada timba, the site contains ruins of an ancient Indus Valley Civilization/Harappan city. It is one of the five largest Harappan sites and most prominent archaeological sites in India belonging to the Indus Valley Civilization. It is also considered as having been the grandest of cities of its time. It is located on Khadir Bet Island in the Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary in the Great Rann of Kutch. The area of the full site is more than 100 ha (250 acres). The site was occupied from c.2650 BCE, declining slowly after about 2100 BCE. It was briefly abandoned then reoccupied until c.1450 BCE. The site was discovered in 1967-8 by J. P. Joshi ex. D.G. of A.S.I. and is the fifth largest of eight major Harappan sites. It has been under excavation since 1990 by the Archaeological Survey of India, which opines that "Dholavira has indeed added new dimensions to personality of Indus Valley Civilisation." The other major Harappan sites discovered so far are: Harappa, Mohenjo-daro, Ganeriwala, Rakhigarhi, Kalibangan, Rupnagar and Lothal. *** Source Wikipedia
Bhimashankar - land of the flying squirrels: Shekru
Lord Shiva Temple: Bhimashankar Temple is located in the village of Bhorgiri 50 km North West of Khed, near Pune. There is a beautiful temple of Lord Shiva which is one of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India. It is a modest yet graceful temple and it dates back to mid 18th century. The shikhara of the temple was built by Nana Phadnavis. This temple is closely associated with the legend of Shivaraj Khade slaying the demon Tripurasura associated with the invincible flying citadels Tripuras. Shiva is said to have taken abode in the Bhima form, upon the request of the Gods, on the crest of the Sahyadri hills, and the sweat that poured forth from his body after the battle is said to have formed the Bhimarathi River. Bhimashankar is also the source of the Bhima River, which flows south east and merges with the Krishna River near Raichur. Trek to Bhimashankar can be easliy done as its near Mumbai. A big size bell in Hemadpanthi structure, built by Nana Phadanavis is also a feature of Bhimashankar. Hanuman Lake, Gupt Bhimashankar, Sakshi Vinayak, Origin of River Bhima, Nag Phani from where one can see the view of the Peth fort and Padhar, Bombay Point, and lot more. Bhimashankar is conserved forest area and wildlife sanctuary where a variety of birds, animals, flowers, plants can be seen. A rare "Shekru" can be found in deep woods. Bhimashankar is worth visited for jungle lovers and trekkers as well as for pilgrims.
French colonial settlement in India until 1954, is now a Union Territory town bounded by the south eastern Tamil Nadu state. Its French legacy is preserved in its French Quarter, with tree-lined streets, mustard-coloured colonial villas and chic boutiques. A seaside promenade runs along the Bay of Bengal and passes several statues, including a 4m-high Gandhi Memorial.
Must visit in Pondicherry, Beaches, the sunrise, awesome local cuisine, Its Churches, French war memorial, SCUBA Diving
Also International Yoga Festival happen every year from 04 to 07 Jan make sure you join.
Lonavala Bhimashankar trek:
Lobhi trek - for those who came in late (Phatam comics). The range trek from Lonavala to Bhimashankar is and will always be the best wilderness trek in the Sahyadri range. Lonavala to Bhimashankar is known to be one of the ancient trek routes in the Sahyadri ranges. This old route shall put your endurance level to test. This a life changing experience, and worth every effort that you put in every stride. Hills and downhill, plateaus and long vast plateaus, dense forest of Karvi plants, ever changing route, breathe taking beauty. One of the most amazing trekking experiences we must say. This route passes through deep wild rain-forest, head-high bushes, lost-and-found trails, small rivulets, remote tribal villages, old ancient temples, green meadows, hidden waterfalls and a plateau of flowers, ancient route markings exploring the best features including routes and beauty of the Sahyadri range on this trek. The best time is definitely during the monsoon season with the rain showers or a little after the monsoon around October to Dec. Trek distance in total is 75 km. this is considered to be a favourite trek amongst the regular trekkers and nature lovers. There are not hotels on the way. So be prepared to experience the local life with techha with your dinner or milk and rice for afternoon lunch.
Lonar Lake is a saline soda lake located at Lonar in Buldhana district, Maharashtra, India, which was created by a meteor impact during the Pleistocene Epoch and it is the only hyper velocity impact crater in basaltic rock anywhere on earth. This lake, which lies in a basalt impact structure, is both saline and alkaline in nature. Geologists, ecologists, archaeologists, naturalists and astronomers have published studies of various aspects of the ecosystem in and around the lake. This lake has a mean diameter of 1.2 kilometres (3,900 ft) and is about 137 metres (449 ft) below the crater rim. The meteor crater rim is about 1.8 kilometres (5,900 ft) in diameter. The circular depression bears a saline water lake in its central portion. The crater's age is usually estimated to be 52,000 ± 6,000 years (Pleistocene), although a study published in 2010 gives an age of 570,000 ± 47,000 years. The Smithsonian Institution, the United States Geological Survey, Geological Society of India, the University of Sagar and the Physical Research Laboratory have conducted extensive studies of the site. Biological nitrogen fixation was discovered in this lake in 2007. **** Source Wikipedia
The nearest railhead is Kalyan in Thane District near Mumbai. From Kalyan railway station, one can take state buses that commute frequently between Kalyan and Ahmednagar. State bus station is right next to the railway station. Any Ahmednagar bound bus will stop at Malshej ghat. It will approximately take 1.5 hrs by bus from Kalyan. Malshej ghat is a mountain pass in the Western ghats range in the Pune district of Maharashtra, India. The site is home to hundreds of different kinds of flora and fauna especially the avian population such as quails, rails, crakes, flamingos and cuckoos. Malshej ghat, with average height of 700 mts is situated in Pune district near the borders of Thane and Ahmednagar districts. It is at a distance of 130 km north of Pune and 154 km from Mumbai towards northeast. Best time to visit is during the monsoons. However, care must be taken as this area is known for landslides during monsoons. An excellent location for one day outing near Mumbai. Scenic view of lush green mountain valley is the USP for Malshej ghat. MTDC has a resort here too. Other interesting spots are Harishchandragad, Pimpalgaon Joga Dam, Malshej falls, and Shivneri fort.
Paragliding - Kamshet
Tandem Paragliding at Kamshet Join us to experience the Thrill. Let’s fly like a bird with TreksandTrails paragliding at Kamshet. Enjoy Amazing Tandem Paragliding ride which will be an experience worth a thousand moments. And if you want get more adventures ask for a somersault to your pilot. Get a bird’s eye view of Lonavala city and nearby mountain ranges. You will be assisted by a team of professional experts conducting Tandem Paragliding Kamshet near Pune. Tandem paragliding can be enjoyed by any person from the age 12 years onward.
Kalsubai is the highest peak of the Sahyadri, the Everest of Maharashtra. At the summit is a small temple of Kalsubai. This being the highest peak, it commands a beautiful view. To the north of the mountain range forts such as Ramsej, Harihargad, Brahmagiri, Anjaneri, Ghargad, Bahula, Tringalwadi, Kavnai can be seen. To the east one can spot Aundha, Vishramgad, Bitangad, to the west Alang, Madangad, Kulang, Ratangad (south west) and to the south Pabhargad, Ghanchakkar, Harishchandragad can be seen.
Was used as a watch tower and is located right next to Prabhalgad fort on the old Mumbai-Pune route. The beauty of this trek is the amazing rock cut steps that zig-zag their way up the mountain to take you to the top of the fort. One can get a panoramic view from the top, not to mention the thrill of an exposed climb via the stairs.