Pune is a city located in the state of Maharashtra, India. It is known for its rich cultural heritage, historical sites, and beautiful surroundings. The city has a rich history dating back to the 8th century and was once the center of the Maratha Empire. Today, Pune is a popular tourist destination and is known for its many educational institutions, including the University of Pune. Here are some popular places to visit near Pune
Pune is also known for its proximity to the hill stations of Lonavala and Khandala, which are popular tourist destinations. The city is also home to several temples, forts, and museums, such as the Shaniwar Wada, Pataleshwar Cave Temple, and Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum.
1. Shanivar Vada
Shanivar Vada is a weekly day of rest in India, typically observed on Saturdays. It is a common practice among Hindus, Jains, and Sikhs to abstain from work and engage in religious observances on this day. The word “Shanivar” means “Saturday” in Hindi, and “Vada” means “observing” or “keeping.” Many people will visit temples or take part in special prayers or rituals on Shanivar Vada.
Things to do
There are many things that one can do on Shanivar Vada, depending on personal preferences and religious beliefs. Some common activities include:
- Visiting temples or other places of worship to participate in religious ceremonies or to offer prayers.
- Reading religious texts or listening to religious discourse.
- Refraining from work or other activities that may be considered inappropriate on this day.
- Spending time with family and friends, and engaging in social activities.
- Performing charitable acts, such as donating to a charitable organization or helping someone in need.
- Observing fasts or special dietary restrictions.
- Meditating or engaging in other spiritual practices.
- Relaxing and taking a break from daily routines.
- Participating in traditional games, or watching cultural programs or performances.
- Some people may choose to do nothing at all, and simply spend the day in peace and quiet.
2. Aga Khan Palace
The Aga Khan Palace is a historic building located in Pune, India. It was built in 1892 by Sultan Muhammed Shah Aga Khan III, who was the spiritual leader of the Ismaili Muslims. The palace was donated to the Indian people by Aga Khan IV in 1969.
The palace has significant historical significance as it was the site of the internment of Mahatma Gandhi, his wife Kasturba Gandhi, and his secretary Mahadev Desai during the Quit India Movement in 1942. The palace also served as a center for the Indian freedom movement, and as a result, it was seized by the British Government during India’s struggle for independence.
The palace is a popular tourist destination and it is open to the public. Visitors can tour the palace and learn about its history, as well as view a number of artifacts and photographs related to the Indian freedom movement. The palace also houses a museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi and Kasturba Gandhi. It also has a beautiful garden and a nice place to spend some time.
It is also considered one of the famous tourist places in Pune and also a popular place for photography.
Things to do
There are several things to do at the Aga Khan Palace:
- Take a tour of the palace: Visitors can take a guided tour of the palace and learn about its history, architecture, and the role it played in the Indian freedom movement.
- Visit the Gandhi Museum: The palace has a museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi and Kasturba Gandhi, where visitors can view photographs and artifacts related to their lives and the Indian freedom movement.
- Explore the gardens: The palace has beautiful gardens and lawns, which are ideal for a leisurely stroll.
- Photography: The palace and its surrounding gardens are popular spots for photography, especially for those interested in architecture and history.
- Visit the Gandhi Memorial: The palace has a memorial for Mahatma Gandhi, Kasturba Gandhi, and Mahadev Desai, who were interned here during the Quit India Movement in 1942.
- Attend cultural events: The palace sometimes host cultural events such as music and dance performances, art exhibitions, and workshops.
- Shop for souvenirs: There is a souvenir shop at the palace, where visitors can purchase items such as books, postcards, and other memorabilia related to the Indian freedom movement and Gandhi.
- Enjoy a meal at the restaurant: The palace has a restaurant, where visitors can enjoy a meal while taking in the beautiful views of the palace and gardens.
The Osho Ashram, also known as the Osho International Meditation Resort, is a spiritual retreat center located in Pune, India. It was founded by the spiritual teacher and self-help guru Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, also known as Osho, in the 1970s. The ashram was a popular destination for people seeking spiritual growth and personal development through meditation and other practices.
The ashram was a vibrant community of people from around the world who lived and studied together. It offered a wide range of programs and activities, including meditation, yoga, therapy, and personal growth workshops. Visitors could participate in the daily meditation sessions, attend lectures and workshops, and take part in the ashram’s creative and expressive therapies.
Unfortunately, Osho Ashram was closed by the Indian government in the 1980s and since then it is not operational. Visitors are not allowed to visit the ashram, as it is closed to the public. However, Osho’s teachings and meditations are still widely available through books, audio recordings, and online resources.
Some of Osho’s meditation techniques like “dynamic meditation” and “kundalini meditation” are still popular and being practiced around the world.
4. Sinhagad Fort
Sinhagad Fort, also known as Sinhgarh Fort, is a historical fort located in the Pune district of Maharashtra, India. The fort is situated on a hilltop at an altitude of 1300 meters and provides a panoramic view of the surrounding region. The fort has a long history, dating back to the 13th century.
The fort was built by the Rajput king Bhoja II of the Devagiri Yadav dynasty, and was later conquered by the Maratha king Shivaji in 1670. The fort has played an important role in the history of the Maratha Empire and has been the site of many battles.
Today, the fort is open to the public and is a popular tourist destination. Visitors can take a tour of the fort and explore its many historical structures, including the main gate, the watchtowers, and the ramparts. The main gate is also known as the “Kalyan Darwaja” and is an architectural masterpiece.
Visitors can also hike to the top of the fort and enjoy the beautiful views of the surrounding countryside. The fort is also a popular destination for rock climbing and trekking enthusiasts. There are few temples inside the fort dedicated to Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva.
Sinhagad Fort is also known for its delicious food especially the famous “Amti” and “Kanda bhaji” which is a must-try for visitors.
Things to do
There are several things to do at the Sinhagad Fort:
- Take a tour of the fort: Visitors can take a guided tour of the fort and learn about its history, architecture, and the role it played in the Maratha Empire.
- Explore the historical structures: The fort has many historical structures, including the main gate, the watchtowers, and the ramparts. Visitors can explore these structures and learn about their significance.
- Hike to the top of the fort: Visitors can hike to the top of the fort and enjoy the beautiful views of the surrounding countryside. The fort is also a popular destination for rock climbing and trekking enthusiasts.
- Visit the temples: There are few temples inside the fort dedicated to Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva. Visitors can visit these temples and learn about the religious significance of the fort.
- Photography: The fort and its surrounding views are popular spots for photography, especially for those interested in history and architecture.
- Enjoy the Local Food: Sinhagad Fort is also known for its delicious food especially the famous “Amti” and “Kanda bhaji” which is a must try for the visitors.
- Attend cultural events: The fort sometimes host cultural events such as music and dance performances, art exhibitions, and workshops.
- Shop for souvenirs: There is a souvenir shop at the fort, where visitors can purchase items such as books, postcards, and other memorabilia related to the fort and its history.
5. Bund Garden
The Bund Garden, also known as the Mahatma Gandhi Udyan, is a public garden located in Pune, India. The garden is situated along the banks of the Mula-Mutha River and is a popular spot for locals and visitors alike. The garden is named after the bund, which is a type of dam that was built along the river to control flooding.
The garden features a variety of flora and fauna, including a wide range of trees and plants, as well as a variety of bird species. Visitors can take a stroll along the garden’s well-maintained paths and enjoy the peaceful surroundings. The garden is also a popular spot for jogging, walking and yoga.
Things to do
There are several things to do at the Bund Garden:
- Take a stroll: Visitors can take a leisurely stroll along the garden’s well-maintained paths and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.
- Jogging and walking: The garden is a popular spot for jogging and walking.
- Yoga and meditation: Visitors can practice yoga and meditation in the garden.
- Boating: The garden features a boating area where visitors can rent boats and enjoy the scenery on the Mula-Mutha River.
- Children’s playground: The garden has a children’s playground where kids can play and have fun.
- Food court: The garden has a food court where visitors can enjoy a variety of refreshments and snacks.
- Gandhi National Memorial: The Bund Garden is home to the Gandhi National Memorial, which is a small museum dedicated to the life and teachings of Mahatma Gandhi. Visitors can learn about the history and legacy of Mahatma Gandhi.
6. Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park
This is likewise an exceptionally astonishing spot in Pune. Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park is separated into 3 sections including a snake stop, a creature halfway house, and a zoo. This zoo additionally incorporates Katraj Lake which offers you a picture-idealized area and you can likewise appreciate vessel riding here. You can see loads of creatures like sloth bears, white tigers, Deer, tigers, elephants, and considerably more.
Here are some things to do at the Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park:
- Wildlife safari: Visitors can take a wildlife safari through the zoo and see a variety of animals such as lions, tigers, leopards, bears, deer, and many more.
- Watch animal shows: The zoo has regular animal shows that showcase the skills and abilities of different animals.
- Visit the reptile house: The zoo has a reptile house that houses a variety of snakes, lizards, crocodiles and other reptiles.
- Explore the aviary: The zoo has an aviary that houses a variety of birds from around the world. Visitors can see exotic birds such as parrots, macaws, and hornbills.
- Children’s park: The zoo has a children’s park where kids can play and have fun.
- Photography: The zoo is a popular spot for photography, visitors can take pictures of different animals and birds.
7. National Defence Academy
Are you a movie freak? If you are then do you remember a movie, ” Major Saab”? This movie that starred Amitabh Bachchan and Ajay Devgn was shot on the campus of this Academy.
The NDA is one of the finest military colleges of not just India but the whole world and has produced some of the best leaders of our defense forces. Please do not consider the NDA as just one of the places to visit in Pune, but if you really want to see this place, then prior permission is necessary.
Khadakwasla is a town and a hill station located in the Pune district of Maharashtra, India. The town is situated on the banks of the Khadakwasla Dam and is known for its picturesque scenery and pleasant climate.
Some popular things to do in Khadakwasla are:
- Enjoy the scenery: Khadakwasla is known for its beautiful scenery, visitors can enjoy the view of the Khadakwasla Dam and the surrounding hills.
- Visit the Khadakwasla Dam: Visitors can visit the Khadakwasla Dam, which is a popular spot for photography and picnics.
- Boating: Visitors can take a boat ride on the Khadakwasla Dam to enjoy the scenic views.
- Trekking: Khadakwasla is a popular spot for trekking, visitors can explore the surrounding hills and enjoy the scenic views.
- Fishing: Visitors can go fishing on the dam, and the area is known for its good catches of fish.
- Visit Sinhagad Fort: Sinhagad Fort is a historical fort located nearby Khadakwasla, visitors can visit the fort and learn about its history.
9. Malshej Ghats
Malshej Ghat is a mountain pass located in the Western Ghats range in Maharashtra, India. The pass is known for its scenic beauty and is a popular spot for trekking, hiking, and sightseeing.
Here are some popular things to do in Malshej Ghat:
- Trekking: Malshej Ghat is a popular spot for trekking, visitors can explore the surrounding hills and enjoy the scenic views.
- Hiking: Visitors can go for a hike in the nearby hills and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
- Sightseeing: Visitors can take a tour of the area and see the nearby waterfalls, temples, and other points of interest.
- Bird Watching: Malshej Ghat is home to a variety of bird species, visitors can go bird watching and spot different species of birds.
- Visit the Harishchandragad Fort: Harishchandragad Fort is a historical fort located nearby Malshej Ghat, visitors can visit the fort and learn about its history.
- Visit the Malshej Falls: Visitors can take a trip to the Malshej falls and enjoy the beautiful waterfall and natural surroundings.
- Visit the Shivneri Fort: The Shivneri Fort is a historical fort located nearby Malshej Ghat, visitors can visit the fort and learn about its history.
Another famous destination near Pune city is the town of Lonavala which will not fail to allure you with the breathtaking views on offer. There are multiple camping and trekking options available here with an enchantress in the form ‘Of Pawana Lake’ and the ‘Rock Face Camps standing strong. Various other elements like the flora and fauna add to the grandeur of this place. Curating your adventure instincts are the activities of rappelling and flying fox along with varying levels of challenging treks. The beautiful weather of this place makes it a one-stop destination for all your travel cravings.
Honestly, I did not want to put up this place here on this list. One of the most important places to visit in Pune, Lonavala is known for not just its lake but other features as well.
- Enjoy the scenery: Lonavala is known for its beautiful scenery, visitors can enjoy the view of the surrounding hills and valleys.
- Visit the Lonavala Lake: Visitors can visit the Lonavala Lake, which is a popular spot for photography and picnics.
- Visit the Lonavala Chikki Center: Visitors can visit the Lonavala Chikki Center and try different varieties of traditional sweet made from jaggery and groundnuts.
- Visit the Karla Caves: Karla Caves are an ancient Buddhist rock-cut temple complex located nearby Lonavala, visitors can visit the caves and learn about its history and architecture.
- Visit the Bhaja Caves: Bhaja Caves are a group of 22 rock-cut caves located nearby Lonavala, visitors can visit the caves and learn about its history and architecture.
- Visit the Lonavala Wax Museum: Visitors can visit the Lonavala Wax Museum, which features wax figures of famous historical figures and celebrities.
- Trekking: Lonavala is a popular spot for trekking, visitors can explore the surrounding hills and enjoy the scenic views.
Skillfully planned and perfectly implemented, Lavasa is a wonderful example of an architectural marvel. Being a city amidst the western mountain ranges and 57 km away from Pune, it provides a great view for sightseeing. The surrounding lakes make for an admirable location for exciting water sports. Engross yourselves in trekking and mountain climbing over the lush green hills and witness the surrounding scenic beauty at the same time. Tourists who is visiting this city can enjoy numerous activities like boating, playing volleyball, and jet skiing. Apart from this, you can also explore the cultural heritage of the nearby areas in this city. You should definitely plan your next weekend trip to Lavasa.
Here are some popular things to do in Lavasa:
- Enjoy the Scenic Beauty: Lavasa is known for its picturesque surroundings, visitors can enjoy the view of the surrounding hills and valleys.
- Visit the Temghar Dam: Visitors can visit the Temghar Dam, which is a popular spot for photography and picnics.
- Visit the Warasgaon Dam: Visitors can visit the Warasgaon Dam, which is a popular spot for photography and picnics.
- Visit the Venna Lake: Visitors can visit the Venna Lake, which is a popular spot for boating, fishing and Photography.
- Visit the Waterfall Point: Visitors can visit the Waterfall Point, which is a popular spot for photography and picnics.
Being one of the main paragliding spots in the region, Kamshet is a treat for camping and adventure lovers. It is just about 52 km from Pune and a decent place to camp. There are many other sites of attraction that will leave you spellbound. Indulge in the magnificence of Kamshet on your next trip to have loads of fun!
Here are some popular things to do in Kamshet:
- Enjoy the scenic beauty: Kamshet is known for its picturesque surroundings, visitors can enjoy the view of the surrounding hills and valleys.
- Paragliding: Kamshet is a popular spot for paragliding and hang gliding, visitors can experience the thrill of flying over the scenic landscape.
- Visit the Kondeshwar Temple: Visitors can visit the Kondeshwar Temple, which is a popular spot for photography and picnics.
- Visit the Uksan Dam: Visitors can visit the Uksan Dam, which is a popular spot for photography and picnics.
- Visit the Kondeshwar Temple: Visitors can visit the Kondeshwar Temple, which is a popular spot for photography and picnics.
Sitting firmly at the foothills of the Sahyadri Ranges is Khandala. Yeah, it is the same place from the famed dialogue ‘Aati kya Khandala?’ With its lush green environment and enchanting valleys, Khandala is one place to look out for your next trip. The natural beauty of this place is enticing during the monsoons which makes it a charming getaway. Karla Hills and Duke’s Nose point located here are the perfect places for rock climbing. Don’t forget the witness the misty waterfalls and the gracious lakes around the area which is a perfect place to lay back and relax.
Here are some popular things to do in Khandala:
- Enjoy the scenic beauty: Khandala is known for its picturesque surroundings, visitors can enjoy the view of the surrounding hills and valleys.
- Visit the Duke’s Nose: Visitors can visit the Duke’s Nose, which is a popular spot for rock climbing, hiking and photography.
- Visit the Karla Caves: Visitors can visit the Karla Caves, which is a popular spot for rock climbing, hiking and photography.
- Visit the Kune Waterfall: Visitors can visit the Kune Waterfall, which is a popular spot for photography and picnics.
- Visit the Rajmachi Fort: Visitors can visit the Rajmachi Fort, which is a popular spot for hiking, rock climbing and photography.
Located 84 km from Pune en route Mahabaleshwar is the quiet hill station of Panchgani. The name of this place has been given after the five hills that surround the Krishna Valley. On either side of the valley lie the Krishna River and the coastal plains, the view of which is astoundingly breathtaking. With many popular sightseeing spots located here like ‘Sydney Point’, and ‘And Table Land’ among many others, you are sure to have a great time in Panchgani.
Not so far from Panchgani is the plateau land of Mahabaleshwar known for its world-famous strawberries. Gorge upon these tasty red berries as you move onto the winding roads offering eye-catching views and a photogenic landscape. The highest peak at this place, known as the ‘Sunrise Point’ offers a splendid view of the sunrise and the sunset. During monsoons, you will see several waterfalls coming alive which add to the splendor of this place. Moreover, there are sprawling markets that have delicious strawberry products on sale to tickle your taste buds. You can enjoy boating in the pristine waters of Venna Lake as well.
Matheran has always been a popular camping destination for the people living in Pune. Even though the distance of Matheran is 102 km from Pune, you can bring automobiles only to the outskirts. If you love adventure and thrills, this place is a perfect getaway for some adrenaline rush. Camping in the dense green forests is filled with a number of intriguing challenges but every experience is rewarding in itself. Horse riding is something that people from every age group like and can be seen in Matheran. Charlotte Lake is another spot at Matheran that provides you with exciting camping opportunities amongst the underlying freshwater and magnificent nature trails.
Camping in Kashid is an amazing thing to do and it will be a unique experience for sure. This beach town is graced by the generous waters of the Arabian Sea. Kashid beach presents you with a marvelous combination of nature, wildlife, and water sports. During the daytime, you can enjoy various aqua activities along with some beach volleyball. Don’t forget to try your hands at fishing with the locals. As the night sets in, catch up with your bonfire beneath the moonlit sky and the glittering stars. Wrap it up with some star gazing and then doze off with the roar of the sea in the background.
The pretty little coastal town of Alibaug is enriched with magnificent sandy beaches and clear waters providing a breath of fresh air at the same time. Folks from Pune can easily reach Alibaug after a 131 km long travel by road. Apart from its sprawling beaches, Alibaug also houses temples that are intricately built and history-bound. A stroll across the coconut grooves lined along the beach will infuse solidarity into your senses. The serenity of the calm weather and beautiful beaches will make your time worthwhile in Alibaug. So what are you waiting for? Get going!
19. Murud Janjira
A stretch of glittering white sand, the Murud beach is free from the tourist rush. Seeing the setting sun above the horizon is a delightful sight. Murud-Janjira is the local name for the fort situated on an island just off the coastal village of Murud. The Fort is situated on an oval-shaped rock off the Arabian Sea coast 160 km away from Pune city. This is the only fort that Shivaji Maharaj could not capture despite several attempts. You should certainly visit this place for its historic value and adorable beaches.