We love our weekends especially the long ones and taking a quick trip to make it even better needn’t be that pricey or tough to plan. There are many places that are easily accessible from Mumbai and they include a variety of landscapes and activities too! Check out the list below to make your weekend getaway planning a little bit easier, after all you have 10 places to choose from!
MATHERAN – ASIA’S ONLY AUTOMOBILE FREE HILL STATION
Matheran is famous for being the smallest hill station in India and for the fact that no vehicles running on fuel are allowed inside the town in order to maintain the pollution free environment. It is in fact Asia’s only automobile free hill station. That should be reason enough to visit!
Where to eat: Konan Katta for Konkani food, and Ketkar’s Restaurant for Maharashtrian snacks.
Where to stay: Verandah In The Forest
What to do: Horseback riding around town and you can also take the famous toy train ride here.
LONAVLA – CAMPING BY PAVNA DAM
Lonavla is a small hill station just an hour’s distance from Mumbai. Famous for its chikkis and sunsets, one can camp by Pavana lake which is exquisite around the monsoons. For the ones looking for something more upscale, The Machan is a pretty good option.
What to do: Visit the famous chikki stores in Lonavla and try out the various types of fudges and chikkis available there. A visit to Tiger Point to watch the sunrise is a must.
PANCHGANI & MAHABALESHWAR – CHARMING HILL STATIONS
The twin hill stations of Panchgani and Mahabaleshwar are fairly popular with people living in Mumbai and Pune and are frequented on the weekends as they serve as an ideal getaway.
Where to go: Tableland, Elephant Head Point, Mapro Garden, Mahabaleshwar Market.
What to eat: Strawberry and Cream, Pizzas and sandwiches at Mapro Garden, burgers at Lucky Bakery, Ice Cream at Hill Top Ice Creams.
Where to eat: Mahabaleshwar Market and Mapro Garden in Mahabaleshwar, Lucky Bakery, Hill Top Ice Creams, Akbarally’s Parathas and Purohit’s in Panchgani.
Where to stay: Hotel Ravine in Panchgani
NASHIK – WINE VALLEY OF INDIA
India’s famous wine trail- Nashik houses some of the biggest names in Indian Wines today – from Sula to Soma, they all have vineyards at Nashik.
What to do: Visit the Sula Vineyards and get a complete wine tour with the tasting, the stomping and the works.
Where to eat: At The Tasting Room, Sula Vineyards
What to try: Wines. Duh!
Where to stay: The Sula Vineyards have a resort on the grounds as well, while it may be a bit expensive it will definitely add to the experience of living in a vineyard. Another fantastic alternative is Soma Vine Village resort.
AURANGABAD, AJANTA & ELLORA CAVES – REVISITING HISTOR
Situated a distance of 100 kms from each other, The Ajanta and Ellora caves are famous world heritage sites housing many rock edicts, wall paintings and sculptures. The world famous Bodhisattva painting can be seen at one these caves. Ajanta and Ellora can be easily reached from Aurangabad, Ellora being a 40 minute drive and Ajanta a 2 and half hour drive.
What to do: A walk around the caves, taking in their rich history
What to eat: Aurangabadi cuisine is a mix of Hyderabadi and Mughlai cuisines. Non vegetarian food is a must. Must have foods include – Naan Qaila, Meat cooked in fresh spices and herbs and mouth watering kebabs.
TADOBA – AN ADVENTURE WITH THE BIG CATS
Close to Nagpur lies the oldest and the largest tiger reserve of Maharashtra- Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve. Tadoba has the highest number of tigers in the country, so your chance of a friendly encounter just got doubled! Take a train or fly to Nagpur and Tadoba is an easy 3 hour drive from there.
What to do: Take an open jeep safari and if you are lucky you may just spot the beautiful big cats!
Where to stay: Svasara Resort
LONAR – CRATER LAKE!
Situated in the Buldhana district, Lonar Lake is a saline soda lake which was created as a result of a meteorite impact thousands of years ago. The lake is lined with many ancient hindu temples. The lake is also rich in flora and fauna.
What to do: Visit the many ancient temples for that Indiana Jones kind of a feeling and camp out by the lake.
Where to stay: MTDC
KOLHAPUR- OF CHAPPALS & MUTTON CURRY
As the title suggests Kolhapur is widely famous for its spicy cuisine and robust hand crafted leather sandals or more popularly known as Kolhapuri Chappal.
What to do: Visit the Kolhapuri Chappal market, Shahu Maharaj Palace and Rankala Lake
What to eat: Mutton Lonche, Mutton Sukkha Fry, Mutton Thali and Aamras at Hotel Padma
TARKARLI – TURQUOISE BEACHES & MALVANI CUISINE
You don’t have to travel to far to enjoy pristine white sand beaches, scuba diving in waters rich in fauna and dolphin watching, head to Tarkarli in Maharashtra which has all of this and more in abundance. A must is the famous Malvani cuisine.
What to do: Scuba Diving, Dolphin Watching, Bonfire at the beach
What to eat: Explore the plethora of dishes that the Malvani cuisine has to offer. Eating out at shacks and restaurants to having authentic home cooked meals at a local home-stay can be enjoyed here.
MURUD – JANJIRA
Sitting at a distance of 165 kms from Mumbai, Janjira is one of the strongest marine forts of India. The fort which is built in the middle of the sea houses a sweet water tank in centre! The fort can only be reached by a ferry ride from Murud
What to do: Take a sailboat ride to the Janira Fort and explore.
What to eat: Try some sea food at one of the many restaurants in the town of Murud