Lonavala is scenic hill station in the Indian state of Maharashtra. It is located at a distance of 104 kms from Mumbai which is the capital of Maharashtra and 66 kms from Pune, which is another major city in Maharashtra. It is the most preferred destination of the people in and around Mumbai as a respite from the busy city routine. Located at an altitude of 625 m above mean sea level, Lonavala offers a number of sightseeing and many other destinations to captivate the tourists. Some of the highlights of Lonavala are: Tiger’s Leap, Duke’s Nose, Karigad Fort, Lohgad, Karla and Bhaja Caves.
Tiger’s Leap is a view point that offers a great view of the valley and its surroundings around Lonavala. Throwing stones into the gorge and listening to the echoes of the stone falling is another favourite activity among tourists. The name “Tiger’s Point” is so because when viewed from a particular location on this point, one gets a feeling of a tiger leaping across the gorge.
Duke’s Nose is a preferred scenic viewpoint in Lonavala as one can have a great view of the surrounding hills, valleys and forests. This cliff on which the viewpoint is perched resembles the nose of the Duke of Wellington, based on which the viewpoint has been named.
The Korigad Fort is located in the Amby Valley at an altitude of 450 m above mean sea level. One has to walk for a while through the hills and forests to reach the Fort after the Shahpur village.
Lohgad is another hill destination in Lonavala with immense natural beauty and worth every dime. One has lot to experience and visit in Lohgad like waterfalls, Caves, an ancient Fort etc.
Karla and Bhaja Caves
Located at around 8 kms from Lonavala are the Karla and Bhaja Caves which stands witness to the immense Buddhist influence in the region. These caves are rock-cut Buddhist temples located amidst lush green forest cover. The Karla caves dates back to 80 BC with an image of Lord Buddha, carved elephant head and an aisle consisting of 37 pillars. The Bhaja Caves dates back to 200 BC and is a complex of 18 caves and 14 stupas.
The lowest temperatures in winter hovers around 12°C and the maximum temperature during summer hovers at around 36°C. The best time to visit Lonavala is between October and May, after which the rain season starts.
How to Reach
The nearest airport to Lonavala is Pune at a distance of 66 kms with Mumbai as another option with good connectivity with cities all over the world. Lonavala has its own railhead, but for good connectivity Pune or Mumbai is the best option. By Road, Lonavala is very well connected with Pune and Mumbai, which are 66 and 104 kms away respectively.
Other Places of Interest
Some of the other places to visit in and around Lonavala are: Bhushi Dam, Valvan Dam, Kaivalyadhama Yoga Hospital, Ryewood Park, Khandala hill station located 5 kms from Lonavala.