Mahabaleshwar Travel Blog– Living in a city like Mumbai often gets overwhelming and such are the times when you really crave that quick getaway, far from the hustle and bustle, into the mountains- to refresh and unwind.

Though a city of dreams, the crowd and the fast-moving life of Mumbai can sometimes get to you. Going on a weekend trip to a refreshing and calm place often comes to the rescue. One such perfect weekend getaway destination is Mahabaleshwar, about 260 km south of Mumbai.

MY EXPERIENCE

After an extremely hectic few months at work, I planned a weekend trip to Mahabaleshwar with my friends, in June, just the beginning of the monsoon, which makes the place a heaven on Earth. We traveled from Mumbai by road and had hired a car for the 6 of us, costing us INR 12,000/- to and fro + toll charges. It was a 5 and a half hours long ride to our accommodation ‘Hotel Mahabaleshwar Fragrance‘.

Although a budget hotel, at INR 1,850/- per night, the rooms here were very satisfactory and the view (at the backside) of the hotel was beautiful. The most important thing for us, however, was that all of us were together after a long time and the place just felt perfect.

View from our room

SIGHTSEEING

The first day, after reaching our hotel, we left for Venna lake which was 25 minutes away from the hotel. An open land, it felt extremely relaxing being there amidst the cool breeze and little droplets of rain hitting the face. You can spend time here boating, riding horses, or clicking pictures. Unfortunately, due to the ongoing maintenance work, boating was shut temporarily.

After spending an hour there, we moved towards the main market and walked the streets before stopping by a restaurant to pack away dinner. The night was spent enjoying good food, drinks, and some music.

Venna Lake

ARTHUR SEAT POINT

We started the second day with delicious pakodas and chai near Venna Lake and trust me, nothing is better than that on a cool and breezy morning. With satisfied tummies, we then moved on towards ‘Arthur Seat’ point. While it was 20 minutes away from Venna Lake, there was a lot of traffic on the road leading to the entry of the point. However, on reaching there, we were extremely happy with the serene view.

Arthur Seat point is a collection of 6 points including Arthur’s Seat Point, Echo Point, Hunter Point, Tiger Spring Point, Window Point, and Malcolm Point. Right from the entrance to the last point, the entire route was extremely picturesque with tall trees and greenery all around.

MAPRO GARDEN

Our next destination was the Mapro garden. Mahabaleshwar is famous for Strawberries and when you are here, you can NOT miss visiting Mapro Garden. A lovely place to hang out with the entire family, you can also enjoy some delicious strawberry cream, ice creams, amazing sandwiches, and Pizza at the Mapro Garden cafe. My most favorite part here is the shopping area – the one-stop for tempting syrups, crushes, and Mazana chocolates.

A few years back, Mapro Gardens had a huge functioning farm, which visitors could take a tour around. However, during my last visit, this was shut and so was the Mapro chocolate factory, which used to be one of the most exciting parts here.

ONE HAPPY EVENING

On exiting Mapro Garden, we entered the Funtown Amusement park right across the road. This was totally unplanned. As we stepped foot inside, we all turned into a bunch of over-excited kids and had a lot of fun Go-Karting and on the Flying Fox ride (rope crossing), where we were right amidst the clouds.

Go-Karting

Flying Fox

Our day ended as we sat right behind our hotel, watching the clouds so low and passing by really fast with the wind. Everything felt fresh and calm at that point of time.

View at the back side of the hotel

THE END

It was the last day of a rather refreshing trip. We had a light breakfast at the hotel, packed our bags, and checked out, heading back home. However, our last stop before leaving Mahabaleshwar was the Tableland. This place is usually breezy and cool but that day, the temperature rose a little. Nevertheless, we made some Monkey friends, went inside the cave, clicked pictures, and left for our return journey to Mumbai.

Monkey friend

A statue of Lord Shiva, inside the cave

SUMMARY

Mahabaleshwar is one of the best weekend getaway options for people living in a busy city like Mumbai/ Pune. It is a great place to relax and unwind from the hectic and fast-paced life. An ideal trip to Mahabaleshwar should be 3 days long, to enjoy this beautiful place completely.

  1. Stay– There are some great budget-friendly stay options in Mahabaleshwar. If you are going with friends and plan to stay outdoors most of the time, do not spend too much on luxury accommodation. The climate in Mahabaleshwar is pretty much enough to make you feel happy anywhere you decide to stay.
  2. Best Time to Visit– The ideal time to plan a trip to Mahabaleshwar is June to September, during the monsoon. However, the place might be a little too crowded with tourists during monsoons, especially on weekends.
  3. Food– When visiting a hill station, the best food to have is some pakodas and hot refreshing chai, which you get at tourist attractions like tableland, Venna Lake, etc. Sandwiches and Pizza at Mapro Gardens, though a little expensive, but are a must-try.
  4. Shopping– Central market area is the place if you want to get touristy vibes as you can get some decent bags and home decor items, if you are good at bargaining. Apart from that, do not miss shopping for syrups and chocolates from Mapro Garden.
  5. Travel– If you are travelling from Mumbai, a road trip is an ideal option as the view on the way is amazing and makes the journey even more worthwhile. Make sure you leave early morning around 6, to make it to Mahabaleshwar on time, without much traffic and with most of the day left to enjoy there. There are food courts on the way, where you can stop for a quick bite/ tea/ coffee.

I hope my experience helps you in planning your weekend trip to Mahabaleshwar. You can write to me for any additional travel queries and tips. Also, I recommend you reading out our excellent blog on kaas valley of flowers which is a few hours away from Mahabaleshwar and is a must-visit place in Maharashtra.

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