The Most Scenic Route: Harishchandragad Trek and Camping
Harishchandragad is one of the best high forts near Mumbai, Maharashtra. Strong fortifications of this fort have multiple entry routes such as the Junnar gate route, Sadhale 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 Shaiva, Shakta or Naath. Later the fort was under the control of Moguls. The Marathas captured it in 1747. Main attractions on Fort: Sapta Tirta Pushkarini, Kedareshwar Cave, Konkan Kada (Konkan cliff), Taramati peak, Temple of Harishchandreshwar.
Harishchandragad Event Details
- Difficulty Level: Medium
- Endurance Level: Medium
- Trek route: Paachnai
- Height of fort: 4650 ft. approx
- Region: Igatpuri
- Total time required for climbing: 2-2.5 hours uphill climb one way from Pachnai village.
- Cost: Rs. 1999/- per person
Harishchandragad Trek and Camping Event Itinerary
Day 1 – Saturaday
Catch CSMT – Kasara fast local
- 06:55 am - CSMT
- 07:02 am - Byculla
- 07:08 am - Dadar
- 07:15 am - Kurla
- 07:34 am - Thane
- 07:49 am - Dombivli
- 07:57 am - Kalyan
- 09:14 am - Kasara
- 04:10 am - Board Latur express from Pune
- 06:42 am - Reach Kalyan
- From Kalyan board above local train till Kasara
09:15 am - Meeting at Kasara Railway Station.
09:30 am - Move towards the base village in by private local vehicle.
Breakfast on the way.
02:00 pm - Reach at base village and have a lunch.
03:30 pm - Start ascending.
05:30 pm - Reach on top.
Enjoy sunset at Kokankada.
09:00 pm - Dinner.
Day 2 – Sunday
04:30 am - Wake up and freshen up.
05:00 am - Start trek towards Taramati Shikhar (depends on whether).
07:00 am - Start descending from Taramati Shikhar.
08:00 am - Back to the Kokankada.
08:30 am - Breakfast.
09:00 am - Start descending.
On the way visit Harishchandreshwar temple, Kedareshwar temple, Pushkarani, Caves.
12:30 pm - Reach at base village.
01:00 pm - Lunch.
02:00 pm - Start return journey to Kasara.
06:00 pm - Reach at Kasara station and disperse.
- People may board same train from their respective stations of convenience.
- Missing the train is missing Harishchandragad Camping, no refund will be provided.
- Trekking shoes: Participant wearing Sandals / Running Shoes / Repaired shoes will be returned from Kasara/Paachnai without refund, Trekking shoes are a must.
- Torch with extra batteries - Compulsory per person
What is included in the tour
- Day 1 - 1 veg Lunch, 1 evening tea, 1 veg dinner
- Day 2 - 1 breakfast, 1 veg lunch
- Travel by private non-Ac vehicle
- Tent stay on multi sharing basis
- Treks and Trails expertise charges
What is NOT included in the tour
- Travel till pickup point and back
- Breakfast on day 1
- Mineral water/lime water/ purchased for personal consumption
- All kinds of Extra Meals / soft drinks ordered
- Any kind of personal expenses
- Any kind of cost which is not mentioned in the cost includes above
- All expenses incurred due to unforeseen and unavoidable circumstances like roadblocks, bad weather.
- Any medical / Emergency evacuations if required
- Face mask
- Hand sanitizer
- 2/3 liters of water
- Good Torch must with extra batteries
- Sleeping material (Sleeping bag or 2 bedsheets)
- Trekking Shoes provide more grip and comfort on the trek
- A haversack (No jholas or side bags)
- Extra pair of clothes, napkin.
- Winter jacket, cap, muffler.
- Some Dry fruits / Dry Snacks / Energy Bars
- Glucon D / ORS / Tang / Gatorade sachets
- Sun Cap and Sunscreen
- Personal First aid and Personal Medicine
- Identity Proof
- Please wear Full sleeves and Full Track Pant this will protect from Summer Sun / Thorns / Insects / Prickles
Covid Safety Guidelines
- Before planning for any adventure activity, please improve your minimum physical fitness. Most of us have been at home for a lockdown period.
- Please convey your real medical conditions to Treks and Trails India while enrolling for the event.
- Kindly wear three-layered masks, N95. Carry an extra disposable mask with you. Please ensure all participants, leaders, staff, and general persons wear masks before interacting with them.
- Carry with your hand wash, sanitizer bottle, and clean your hands before touching food and objects.
- Cover-up wear full sleeves shirts and full pants, hiking shoes, caps, and face bandana over your mask. Covering up will help reduce exposure to the Covid19 virus.
- Bring your food and water with necessary cutlery like utility mug, fork, and spoon. Your mug can be used for cooking, eating, and drinking water. Carry your reusable water bottles; please don’t share with others.
- Cooperate for temperature checks, questions reading any symptoms, and oxygen level checks; these are done to help you limit the spread of the virus. All these checks will be conducted multiple times during the activities.
- Kindly do not register for the event or travel if you have come in contact with someone who has Covid19 in the last 14 days.
- If you have any symptoms like fever, dry cough, weakness, body aches, etc., at the time of screening. You won't be able to participate in the event. You will have to be evacuated on the medical condition and should report to the nearest healthcare center.
- Maintain a distance of six feet or more while sleeping at night. Incase distance is not possible, try sleeping in a criss-cross manner to avoid face proximity.
- Please bring your garbage back to the city and dispose of it in your bin.
- Consuming any alcohol, cigarettes, pan masala, tobacco, drugs should be avoided; they induce a lot of spitting, urinating, and passive smoke, which can be harmful for the general population.
- Avoid touching new surfaces and touching your mask and face continuously.
- If your adventure destination is overcrowded, be prepared to change your location or wait for the crowd to reduce.
- If any participant, trek leader test positive after returning from the event within 14 days of the Activity. They should maintain transparency and inform Treks and Trails India. It will help all others isolate themselves and get tested. Participants and Treks and Trails will cooperate to help manage the situation.
- Carry your own personal gear.
- Keep the conversation with unknown people to a minimum and maintain a distance of more than 6 feet while talking.
- Avoid speaking with the general population and maintain distance to keep yourself safe in these difficult times.
- Participant need to install the Arogya Setu app
- 75% refund if notified via phone conversation 8 or more days prior to the event date.
- 50 % refund if notified via phone conversation 4 to 7 days prior to the event date.
- No refund if the cancellation requested is less than 3 days prior to the event date
- No show No Refund.
- Event Tickets cannot be transferred to another date against cancellation.
- Event Tickets cannot be transferred to another person against cancellation.
- If Trek gets canceled we will refund "Trek Amount" only.
- If the event is canceled due to any natural calamity, political unrest or other such reasons beyond our control the same cancellation policy will apply.
Treks and Trails Event Rules
- Kindly carry one Identity proof, at least for the trek with your address.
- We all are going for an adventurous and exciting trekking expedition; please Do Not misinterpret it as a PICNIC or LEISURE TOUR.
- The leader's decision will be final, and all the members should abide by it.
- We do not destroy or dirty the archaeological, historical monuments, natural habitat on the trek.
- Swimming is not allowed in the lake or water tank on the forts. Locals use that water for drinking.
- Putting your feet in water tanks or on the canon is not allowed on our treks.
- Any addiction is strictly prohibited, e.g. drinking, smoking, chewing tobacco anyone caught doing it will have to exit the trek without a refund and travel back on own expense.
- People caught smoking or drinking alcohol will be asked to exit the event on an immediate basis.
- Please do not carry or wear any valuables, ornaments, jewellery, etc. If carried, then we Do Not take any liability for the same.
- Rock Climbing, Rappelling, Trekking, or any adventure activity is potentially risky. For all these events, you are at your own risk. Organizers are not responsible for any accident or compensation in whatsoever manner.
- We should strictly follow the code of conduct to avoid troubling our fellow trekkers or other people from our group or outside.
- Listening to music on earphones or Bluetooth speakers is not allowed while trekking.
- Bluetooth speaker not allowed inside the homestay or camping tents.
- Drinking/smoking,/eating is not allowed inside the tents.
- If you damage the tent, break the tent poles, you will have to pay us for the whole new tent on MRP.
- If you are late for the bus pickup and are not reachable on the phone during your bus pickup, the trek leader will leave without you, and we will provide no refund.
- Please check things to carry and wear trekking shoes on our treks.
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Q1: Is there permission required to complete this Trek?
A1: NO, there's no permission required. You can plan it with treks and trails as solo or through a group. The fort is located inside Kalsubai Harishchandragad wildlife sanctuary; sometimes, the local forest office imposes entry fees and timings.
Q2: Can one camp on Harishchandragad Fort?
A1: Yes, absolutely, camping is allowed there; be mindful that it can be crowded as many trekkers are camping there. Harishchandragad night stay should be inside tents as there are many snakes, scorpions on the plateau. Harishchandragad camping contact number is 8828004949. Harishchandragad stay options include Dhabas, Mudhouse, Tents, Caves; these options are available for trekkers.
Q3: Are there enough eating outlets and facilities for drinking water on the way to the Trek?
A3: The Answer is Yes. There are ample options of restaurants and small eating joints at the base. Moreover, throughout the Trek, you will have small outlets selling snacks and Tea/Coffee, and even mineral water. If you are comfortable, you may also fill up your bottles from the stream water that flows along your way. So be assured that food and water won't be an issue at all.
Q4: Can everyone do Harishchandragad Trek?
A4: Yes, that's the best part of this Trek. If you are a beginner, take the route through Pachnai Village. If you are a moderate level trekker and have done a few treks, take the Khireshwar route. If you are a Pro Trekker, take the Belpada Village route. Hence it's open to every kind of trekker and provides equal scenic views whichever route you choose.
Q5: Is there any recommended time to start the Harishchandragad Trek?
A5: It completely depends upon how you plan your Trek. If you are someone who wishes to camp overnight and completes the Trek in 2 days, then reach the base village early in the morning and make sure you reach the top before Sunset to soak into the beauty of the surrounding. Pitch a tent for the night and lay under the stars to experience their beauty. Start the descend the next day post breakfast, halting and exploring the route with ease.
If you wish to complete the Trek in a day, then reach the base village before Sunset a day before and start trekking so that you can reach the top by afternoon next day and can start the descent the same day so that you reach back base village by late evening and home by late night.
Here are a few Emergency Contact Numbers:
Hospitals: The nearest hospital is Prathamika Arogya Kendra Madh.
Police Station: Located 20 km away from the starting point, the Junnar Police Station is considered the nearest one.
ERSS: For any other emergency, the toll-free Pan India Emergency Response Support System – 112
The ATMs and the Mobile Network:
ATMs: From Kalyan, Murbad is the place to find the ATMs, precautionary carry around INR 1500-2000 in Cash. From Pune, the Bank of Maharashtra is the nearest ATM on the way.
Mobile Network is good all along the highway. The only issue you may face is at the base village. Once you reach the top of Harishchandragad and the Taramati Peak, you will receive a good mobile signal.
Recommendation for Places after completing the Harishchandragad Trek:
The Pimpalgaon Joga Dam: Built on the Pushpavato River, it provides water to the Junnar, Alephata, Narayangaon, and Otur.
It's a great place to pitch a tent for an overnight experience.
The Naneghat Reverse Waterfall: The strong winds blow away the water in the opposite direction. It appears as if the waterfall is happening in the reverse direction, denying the gravitational force.
The Amrutheshwara Temple: Built by King Jhanj, this Shiva Temple is 1200 years old. Carved out of red and black stones, it has an auspicious significance among the villagers. Due to its sheer beautiful surroundings, the area around the temple is also known as the Kashmir of Maharashtra.
Other Forts around the Harishchandragad Fort: Jivdhan, Bhairavgad, Sindola, and Hadsar Fort. Each has its historical significance and a story to it. If you have ample time, you may choose to stay back in some hotel and explore these before heading back home.