Mumbai is known to hold the second-highest population among all the metropolitan cities in India. People living here are too busy the entire week, taking care of their professions. So, they need to relax on weekends with their families and friends. Luckily, there are quite a few interesting places near Mumbai where people love to spend their weekends. Some of these weekend gateways are marked with breathtaking scenic beauty while some offer scopes of experiencing thrills of adventure.
Lonavala is a beautiful hill station that is only 96 Km to the east of Mumbai. It is located in the Pune district, on the Mumbai-Pune expressway that connects these two cities. It is called the Jewel of Sahyadri, due to its picturesque beauty with waterfalls, lush greenery of valleys, and pristine lakes. It is also called the City of Caves because of having some exclusive caves on the mountain. This place was named after two Prakrit words ‘Leni’ and’ Avali’, meaning ‘caves’ and ‘series’.
Bhaja, Karla, and Bedsa caves amaze viewers with their ancient inscriptions and Buddhist motifs imprinted on rocks, as well as the rock-cut beams and other structures resembling Buddhist Chaityas. Tourists feel mesmerized while visiting Bhivpuri, Bhagirath, Kune, and Jummapatti waterfalls. They feel refreshed while visiting Lonavala Lake, Pawna Lake, and Aamby Valley at this hill station. People visit Lohagad, Visapur, Tikona, and Tungi forts very close to this hill station.
Khandala is another hill station that is located on the upper end of Bhor Ghat, a prime valley in the Western Ghats. This place is only 3 Km away from Lonavala and on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway. Duke’s Nose is a 2506 feet high cliff, which is named after the Duke of Wellington and tourists love trekking, rock climbing, and rappelling here. Amrutanjan Point and Tiger’s Leap are two excellent viewpoints on this hill from where tourists can see the entire place and neighborhoods.
There are also Khandala sunset point and Bhushi Lake, which are known for their serene environment and beautiful scenery. People also visit the Ancient Jail that was built in 1896 to keep the founders of St. Xavier’s College here in captivity.
Alibaug is a small coastal town on the outskirts of Mumbai, which is a beautiful place. Its name means ‘The Garden of Ali’, after an Israelite who settled here and planted fruit orchards. The clean beaches here shine with golden black sands along the blue waves of seawater. Alibaug Beach, Nagaon Beach, and Mandwa Beach are the most notable beaches in this town. People enjoy sunbath, swimming, and various water sports on these beaches.
Kolaba Fort, Brahma Kund, and some ancient temples are also included in the tour itinerary of this coastal town. Adventurous people can enjoy banana boating, parasailing, jet-skiing, and camping on the beaches. The pleasant weather throughout the year draws tourists here for spending their weekends.
Lavasa is a city in the Mulshi Valley surrounded by the hills of the Western Ghats, which is only 65 Km from Pune city. It was built over an area of 25000 acres so that people can enjoy the views of surrounding hills, lakes, rivers, and valleys of the Sahyadri range. Tourists also visit Devkund Waterfall, Tamhini Ghat, and Dasve Viewpoint to enjoy the picturesque landscape from these places.
Adventurous tourists can visit Vortex Splash Pad and Xthrill Adventure Academy, to be indulged in exciting activities. People also enjoy rappelling, biking, raft building, hiking, and camping amidst the wild nature while spending their weekends here. Since Lavasa is situated at an altitude of 3000 feet from sea level, it experiences pleasant weather at all seasons of the year.
Matheran is a pristine hill station located at a height of 800 meters above sea level on the Western Ghats. It is called the ‘cutest small hill station of India’ due to plenty of wonderful views of sunrise and sunset from various points here. There is hardly any vehicle polluting the air of this place, keeping it clean and healthy for visitors. People can take plenty of photos capturing the beauty of nature in this small hill station.
All these above-mentioned places are wonderful getaways to spend weekends peacefully near Mumbai. Thus, people from other parts of India also buy flight tickets to reach Mumbai or Pune, to visit these beautiful sites and enjoy their holidays.