Lonavala: Exploring the jewel of Sahyadri Mountains

The vibrant geography of India makes it a perfect holiday destination to explore the nature and seek solace as well as the thrill of adventure sports. Nature has bestowed India with multi-colored facets of beauty. One such charming land is the state of Maharashtra which gives it’s travelers an opportunity to explore hill stations, beaches, forts, shrines, caves, sanctuaries, archaeological sites, food, music, Bollywood and much more.

So today let us explore the mystic hill station – Lonavala. The place is the perfect weekend picnic spot for the locals who come here to rejoice the mélange of winsome scenic beauty, lush velvet meadows, pleasant weather and unbound beauty of nature.


History of Lonavala

Lonavala and the surrounding area had found itself as an important Buddhist center in 2nd century BC. Tourists are lured here to explore the rich Buddhist architecture in the rock-cut cave temples of Bhaja and Karla.

The area was ruled by Chattrapati Shivaji, the founder of the first Maratha Empire. After that, it came under the Peshwa rulers, who founded the second Maratha Empire. After the defeat of Peshwa dynasty by British, the area came under them. It was during the colonial era in 1871that Lord Elphinstone established the twin hill station of Khandala and Lonavala.

Geography of Lonavala

The paradise for every visitor is sandwiched between the Sylvan hills of the Western Ghats and is also known as Jewel of Sahyadri Mountains. Perched at an altitude of 625 meters above sea level, Lonavala is just 95 km away from Mumbai in the southwest direction.


Best time to visit Lonavala

The mesmerizing and pleasing weather of Lonavala is the prime attraction for tourists. The months of April to June are warm and pleasant while the winters i.e. from November to February are cool. Lonavala experiences heavy southwestern monsoon rains between June and September.

The best time to visit here is from October to May. Though it rains heavily between the months of June and September, the newly sprouted lush greenery of the place lures travelers to explore this appealing and beguiling naturalistic environment.

How to reach Lonavala?

The place is a tourist hotspot and is easily accessible for tourists to explore.

  • By air – Lonavala being a small hill station doesn’t have an airport of its own. The nearest airport is in Pune which is about 64 km away.
  • By rail- Lonavala has the gift of rail travel. Being en route to Mumbai and Pune, thus, all the express trains plying between Mumbai and Pune stop here.
  • By road – Most of the travelers visiting Lonavala are locals looking for some quality time away from the hustle of daily life. Thus the road network is efficiently developed in Lonavala.

Places to visit in Lonavala

Apart from being an enchanting hill station, the place has numerous cascading falls and pristine lakes which add to its scenic charm.

1) Karla Caves –

Experience the rich cultural heritage of Lonavala which has its lineage since ancient times. The Karla caves are just 11km away from Lonavala and are the symbolic representation of Buddhist architecture. The rock-cut Buddhist temples are excavated 100m on a high spur of hills in the northern flank of the Indrayani Valley. The caves were dug out long back from 2nd century BC to 2nd century AD and in 5th century AD to 10th century AD.

2) Rajmachi point-

This amazing bounty of nature is just 6km away from Lonavala. The place has derived its name from Rajmachi Fort of Maratha worrier king Chattrapati Shivaji is situated just opposite to this point. The place is famous for its enthralling view of surrounding valley and waterfalls. The nearby Monkey point, Sunset Point, Lions Point are the spectacular attractions.

3) Pawna Lake –

The place is located just 15 km from Lonavala and this artificial lake is formed by the water of Pawna Dam. One can enjoy motor boating and quiet ambiance of this charming place.

4) Duke’s Nose –

This is the top destination for trekking here. Situated just 10 km from Lonavala, the place has got its name after its resemblance to the nose of Duke of Wellington. The cliff of the mountain is pointed like a snakes hood, thus, it is also called Nahphanj. Tourist come here to enjoy hiking, trekking, rock climbing and sight-seeing from this wonderful vantage point.

Lonavala has so much to offer for the tourists. Only a few destinations have been listed here, there is much more to offer from the hot masala chai with spicy Vada Pav to the celebrity wax museum, the place is truly incredible!!