Mumbai (known as 'Bombay') gets its name from the local deity Mumba Devi. The Portuguese named it Bom Baim, the Good Bay. Bombay was once a cluster of seven islands called Heptanasia by Plotemy in AD 150. Mumbai is cosmopolitan city which is a home to people of all Indian creeds and cultures.
Altitude: Sea level, Climate: (deg C)-summer- Max 33.3, Min 22.7; Winter- Max 29.5, Min- 19.4, Rainfall: 212 cms (June to September)
Places of Interest
Elephanta Caves: The Elephanta Caves are a wonderful tourist attraction in the neighborhood of Mumbai. The Elephanta Island is located 10 km away from the Gateway of India at Mumbai. Rock cut temples dating back to the 5th century are found here.
Kanheri Caves: Kanheri Caves are rock cut caves situated in middle of lush green forest of Borivali National Park in the heart of Mumbai. This place is a nice weekend getaway where we can immerse ourselves in the heart of the nature.
Borivali Bird Sanctuary: Located in Borivali, east of the district Thane, at distance of 40 km north from Mumbai, this park plays a host to various wildlife species like the antelope, mouse deer, panther and wild bear. The park is a delight for the lovers of avifauna. There are over 251 species of birds inhabiting this national park, comprising of both water and land birds.
Lonovala:Lonovala the “Jewel of the Sahyadris”is the most lovely hill stations of Maharashtra where the nature can be experienced at its full splendor. It is located in the Pune district of Maharashtra. Its fine hills, verdant greenery, creamy waterfalls, valleys and cool winds is ideal for spending some peaceful moments away from the rush of city life.
Khandala: Khandala located at an altitude of 625m is a pleasant little hill station on the western Sahyadri Mountains. This place is a perfect getaway for the city dwellers. The tranquil environment helps one to recoil
Matheran: is a hill station situated 100km away from Mumbai, at an elevation of around 2,625 ft. Matheran plainly means ‘jungle on top’. It is a unique hill station. This is the place truly loved by all - Picnic Lovers, Trekkers and jungle lovers.
Kharjat: Kharjat is an attractive tourist spot situated in the backdrop of Bhor Ghat. It comes within the Mumbai, pune, and nashik triangle. This place is a famous destination for adventurous tourists for trekking. The serenity and composure of this rustic village is amazing. The river Ulhas originates in Kharjat. The river offers many water sports activity in Kharjat. Ancient historical Kondana caves and wonderful Ulhas valley are two important tourist destinations near Kharjat.
Mahabaleshwar, the most popular hill station in Maharashtra is not far away from Pune, located at an altitude of 1372 meters. A number of vantage points, excellent views, pretty waterfalls and a lake with boating and fishing facilities are some of its major attractions.
Places of Interest:
Elphistone Point, Venna Lake, Dhobi Falls, waterfalls like Chinaman’s fall and Babington Point, Bombay Point, Panchganga Temple and Kate’s Point are good places to visit.
Reach There -
By Air: Nearest airport is Pune- 120kms.
By Rail: Nearest railhead is Pune- 247kms.
By Road: Bombay- 290kms, Pune-247kms.
Panchgani hill station is situated 16 kms from the Mahabaleshwar hill station. This hill station is often believed to be the sibling of Mahabaleshwar. Though it does not rival Mahabaleshwar hill station in its popularity, Panchgani is equally enchanting……
Ajanta and Ellora Caves
The ‘Ajanta caves’, lying deep within the Sahyadri hills, cut into the curved mountain side above the Waghora river was discovered only in the 19th century .It was a group of British officers who discovered these ancient works of art. They depict the story of Buddhism, across the period from 200 BC to 650 AD. The 29 caves were built as secluded retreats of the Buddhist monks, who taught and performed rituals in the Chaityas and Viharas.
The carvings on the walls of the caves were made using simple tools like hammer and chisel.
Reaching There - By Air: The nearest airport Aurangabad is -30 kms from Ajanta
By Rail: The nearest railhead is Jalgaon- 60 kms and Aurangabad– 106kms.
By Road: Aurangabad- 106kms, Ellora- 70kms, and Jalgaon- 60kms.
Ellora Caves
The Ellora caves, 34 in number, are carved into the sides of a basaltic hill during the 350 AD to 700 AD period. They are 30 in number. The finest specimens of cave - temple architecture, they house delicately ornamented interiors and intricate fascias. These carved structures represent the three faiths of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. The 12 caves are devoted to the Buddhists, the 17 in the centre dedicated to Hinduism, and the 5 caves to the north are devoted to the Jains.
Reach There-
By Air: The nearest airport Aurangabad is -30 kms from Ellora
By Rail: The nearest railhead is Aurangabad- 30 kms from Ellora
By Road: Aurangabad- 30kms, Ajanta-76kms
Nashik: Nashik is one of the most important cities of Maharashtra. Nashik, in Maharashtra, is situated at a distance of 200 km from Mumbai and Pune. The unique persona of Nashik is due to its historical, mythological, cultural and social importance. The river Godavari flows through the city. Nashik is considered as one of the holiest places for Hindus all over the World.
Panchavati: is scattered with many temples like Kalaram Madir, Goraram Mandir, and Sita Gupha. Legend has it that it was here Lord Rama, Sita and Laxmana stayed during their exile. Panchavati is said to be the cleanest area of Nasik. There are five trees marked, one of which is an Asoka tree. There is a cave called Sita Gupha where Sita, Ram and Lakshman prayed here to Lord Shiva. The ancient Shivalinga still exists in a small temple in this cave.
Triambakeshwar:Shri Trimbakeshwar Temple is situated at a distance of about 30-km from Nasik near the mountain named Brahmagiri from which the river Godavari flows.
Trimbakeshwar Temple is famous as it is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga shrines of Shiva and as the source of the river Godavari.
Godavari River:As Ganga is known as Bhagirathi, one of the most important rivers in North India. Godavari is known as Gautami Ganga, the most holy river of South India.
The River Godavari is the second largest river in India. The Godavari originates near Triambak in the Nasik district of Maharashtra, and flows through the states of Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Orissa and Andhra Pradesh. Although its point of origin is just 80 kms away from the Arabian Sea, it journeys 1,465 kms to merge into the Bay of Bengal.
Some of its tributaries include Bindusara, Indravati, Manjira, and Sarbari.
Shirdi (Shirdi Sai Baba) : The Shirdi Saibaba Temple, located at Shirdi, Maharashtra, India attracts millions of devotees of all religions, castes and creed who come to worship to Shri Sai Baba. The temple is a beautiful shrine that was built over the Samadhi of Shri Sai Baba. Many visit Shirdi Sai Baba temple and thousands of people go on pilgrims to Shirdi every week. Shirdi, once a sleepy village town, is today perhaps India’s most urban and developed pilgrimage centre.
Shani Signapur: Welcome to this ‘village with no doors’ as the guardian deity Lord Shani (the embodiment of the planet Saturn), is always there to protect them. Shani-Shinganapur lies 6 kilometers off Ghodegaon- a significant market place along Ahmednagar-Aurangabad road. A unique aspect of this place is that it is one of the rarest temples devoted to the Lord Shani in the world and there are no structures that house the Shanidev temple. There is only a simple platform on which stands the Swayambhu idol, in black stone.
Kolhapur:Kolhapur is nuzzled in the serene lap of the Sahyadri mountain ranges, it is situated on the edge of the river Panchganga, it is surrounded by rivers from all directions with Krishna Ganiki to the east, Shiva and Mayuri to the west, Veda and Yaksha to the south and to the north, Krishna and Warana, this part of place has a overabundance of captivating temples.
Phandarpur: Pandharpur is located on the banks of the Bhimā River, which is alternatively known as Chandrabhāgā because it’s shaped like a half-moon. It is named after a merchant, Pandarika who got self-realization here. The deity worshipped in the Pandharpur temple is Vitthal (lord Krishna). It is one of the most prominent pilgrimage sites in Maharashtra.
Astha Vinayak Dharshan: The Astha Vinak temples of Maharashtra are famous through out the world. There are eight temples devoted to Ganesha, in Maharashtra related to various episodes from the puranas and other legends - and these deities are collectively known as Astha Vinayak. if you first visit Moreshwar of Moregaon then visit Siddhatek, Pali, Mahad, Theur, Lenyandri, Ozar, Ranjangaon and then again Moregaon which will end your Ashtavinayak Yatra.