Top 26 Awesome Monsoon Treks Around Mumbai
Mumbai is located near the Western Ghats of India, which are a long chain of mountains stretching all the way from Gujarat to Kerala. Quite a huge portion of these Ghats lies in Maharashtra and many hills are at a driving distance from Mumbai. These hills are extremely beautiful throughout the year and their beauty only gets amplified during the monsoon season. Many of these hills are not very steep and are thus very good places to trek on; forts and temples are made on the top of many of them as well.
Gotta Trek ‘em All!
With so many peaks around the city, it is only natural that thousands of thrill-seekers come to Maharashtra to experience the adventure of trekking. Many of us are familiar with some of the famous trekking spots around the city, but many places are still not well known and are waiting to be discovered by trekkers.
To help you find all these places, we have done the research and compiled a list of the best monsoon treks around Mumbai. Why monsoon, you may ask? Well, because all these places are at their best during this time!
1. Kalsubai Peak – Highest peak in Sahyadris
Kalsubai peak is situated at an elevation of 5400 feet and is nicknamed the ‘Everest of Maharashtra’. It is one of the most popular trekking spots and is visited throughout the year by avid trekkers and devotees of the Kalsubai temple. The trek route here was well designated and was a mix of easy and treacherous rocky regions that overlook the valley.
Thankfully though, the government has made iron ladders along the vertical slopes to assist trekkers reach the summit safely; this made our trek a lot easier. Being the highest peak of the state, we could literally see landscape unfolding in front of us from the top.
2. Korigad Fort Trek – The Bastion of Maharashtra
Korigad Fort is located about 20km from Lonavala and lies 929m above sea level. There are two routes for trekking to the top here- Peth Shahpur and Ambavne. The Peth Shahpur route is the shorter and easier route to reach the top and that is the one we used for trekking.
The trek has about 500 steps; the route starts from Bhairavnath Temple and we took about 45 minutes to reach the top. The view from the fort is amazing and we were awed by how strategic this location was, and hence the reason why Shivaji Maharaj incorporated it into his kingdom.
3. Lohagad Trek – The Iron Fort of Maharashtra
Lohagad Fort is located in Lonavala and is one of the best forts to visit in the state all-round the year. The trek took us about an hour and it was a very easy as well; stone staircases are there to lead you to the fort and this made our ascent very easy.
We started off early in the day and would recommend you to do the same to minimize fatigue. This grand fort still has its walls intact and is a treat to visit, especially during the monsoon.
4. Tikona Trek – The Pyramid of Maharashtra
This beautiful trek to Tikona Fort is a physically challenging one, but well worth the view one gets at the end. We took about 1 hour for the ascent and about half an hour for the descent. The initial leg of the ascent is a tiring one because it is a natural mountain route, later it becomes slightly easy but the last leg of the ascent is a rocky terrain and slightly difficult to undertake.
The top gave us panoramic views of the lake, mountains, and valley that lie around it. This trek isn’t recommended for elderly people, but it great for thrill seekers! Thanks to less commercialization, this place isn’t even crowded, which is another plus point.
5. Rajmachi Trek – The Twin Forts of Maharashtra
This trek is located near Lonavala as well and starts from a village called Jambhli Fata. The two forts here are named- Shrivardhan and Manaranjan. We trekked for about 1-2 hours to reach the base village which is Udhewadi; from here, the trek to each fort took about 45 minutes.
The total time duration for the complete trek was about 4 hours and we did it during the morning hours to get the best views and save our energy, and this is the time we would recommend as well. The view from both the forts is amazing, and camping at the base village for the night was the icing on the cake.
6. Harishchandragad Trek – The Trekkers’ Paradise of Maharashtra
Harishchandragad trek is a trek to reach the Harishchandragad fort which is located at the top of the mountain. The place itself isn’t very easily accessible and required some driving to reach the base. There are different routes to reach the summit, ranging from easy ones to difficult ones; we chose the easy one but the trek was quite long so it is recommended that you carry your supplies accordingly.
On reaching the summit, we found that the area was so huge that it took us almost the complete day to cover. We camped here overnight and saw the beautiful Konkan Kada in the morning and this was one spellbinding view.
7. Ratangad Trek – The Jewel of Maharashtra
The trek to Ratangad Fort is beautiful and it can be visited all-round the year, but monsoon unleashes its beauty like no other season. The trek took us about 2.5 hours and it was pretty easy as well. There is a huge cave right below the peak where we chose to camp overnight and just enjoy the environment.
The Amruteshwar temple in the base village is one place that we visited after returning from the trek and would recommend it for the beautiful carvings there.
8. Peb Vikatgad Trek – The Meditation Caverns of Maharashtra
The top of the mountain has a temple of Swami Samartha and has his ‘padukas’. The view from here is stunning and all one can see is clouds and fog. This is a long trek and it took us nearly 3 hours to reach the top; we came across high tension cables, a cave and ruins of a fort in the ascending journey. The trek is an easy one as far as you know the route, so if you do stray off the path, ensure that you do get back on route.
9. Rajgad Fort Trek – The King of Forts of Maharashtra
The trek to Rajgad Fort is not an easy one and requires good fitness. Half of the trek is easy with steps but the other half was a treacherous incline that required tremendous effort. The view from the top was spellbinding one and thankfully the place wasn’t much crowded as well.
We later found that there was another route through Pali Darvaja that easier; we had taken the Chor Darvaja route. The fort gives out royal vibes and we saw some historical evidence of the 17th century here.
10. Raigad Fort Trek – The Pride of Maharashtra
Raigad Fort is an easy trek and now they even have a ropeway service here to make things simpler. We decided to trek and it took us nearly 1.5 hours for the entire ascent and descent. The fort is huge and walking around the complete fort took us nearly 12 hours, so plan your day accordingly.
We visited a temple inside the fort that was an architectural masterpiece. There is an MTDC resort right outside the fort and staying overnight there is a good idea. This huge fort will give you a peek into the history of Shivaji Maharaj.
11. Bhimashankar Trek
Bhimashankar is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva and is located near Karjat. The trek begins from village Khandas and there are two major routes- Ganesh Ghat and Shidi. We chose the Ganesh Ghat route which is easier but longer.
The complete trek took us nearly five hours; the temple is commercialized and one can even reach it by road nowadays but the trek is definitely a lot more fun than road. The Shirdi route is shorter but is extremely steep at many points, making it a difficult trek.
12. Sinhagad Fort Trek
Sinhagad fort is among the best forts to visit in Maharashtra and is especially beautiful during monsoons when you can find small waterfalls all around you. The trek starts from Atekar Vasti and is an easy one; we took about 1.5 hours to reach the summit. The route becomes muddy and slippery during the monsoon but the beauty of the valley makes up for this.
The trek is totally worth the beauty of this fort and if one is lazy enough not to trek all the way up, there is a road for cars as well.
13. Shivneri Fort Trek
This is an easy trek and it takes hardly 45 minutes to complete the ascent. There are two routes- the Main gate and another rocky route that can be found after a while of trekking on the normal path. We took the simple route from the main gate and reached the fort with hardly any effort thanks to the renovated stairs that made the climb easier.
Do try the cucumbers from the stalls that you can find on the way, they are refreshing! The fort has Jijabai’s memorial, many ponds and the actual place where Shivaji Maharaj was born. The ‘Kadelot’ view-point definitely scary though, and we came to know that this is where traitors were punished and pushed to death.
14. Prabalgad Fort
The trek to Prabalgad Fort is an easy one and can be undertaken by nearly anyone. We took about an hour to reach the top from the base point, that is Prabalmachi. Although the trek did become slightly difficult midway, it was still manageable. We reached the top to find that there was no ‘fort’ here, but just a plateau. It’s got a great view of the Kalavantin pinnacle from here though!
15. Garbett Point
Garbett Point is located near Matheran and gives a beautiful view of the plateau below. During monsoon, the lush greenery around is a sight worth seeing, and there are many waterfalls nearby which add to the natural beauty. The trek to Garbett point starts from Matheran Railway Station and is 5km long. It took us quite some time to reach here and we even had to cross a fast-moving stream here, which was a great experience.
16. Karnala Bird Sanctuary/ Karnala Fort
Karnala Bird Sanctuary is a heaven for all bird lovers. With more than 200 species of birds nesting here, this is a beautiful trek during all seasons, especially the monsoon. We found the trek very easy and recommend it for all beginners. There is a small rocky region in the trail that looked to be slightly challenging but wasn’t really difficult.
The fort is now in ruins, but the view one can get from here during the rains is simply marvelous. The total trek took us about 2.5 hours and we could complete it comfortably in this time frame.
Irshalgad is a sister trek of Prabalgad and the trail seems to be hardly used, and hence gave us a feeling of visiting an ancient civilization. The trek took us just over 2 hours and was so easy that it can even be done by children. The views of Matheran and Prabalgad that one gets from here are stunning; this is definitely one of the most beautiful treks near Karjat. During monsoon, the clouds hovering over the landscape spreading into the infinity is a heavenly sight.
18. Vasota Fort
Vasota Fort is a part of Koyna Wildlife Sanctuary and prior permission from forest department is necessary to enter this region. The journey started with a boat ride of about 1.5 hours which gave us beautiful views of the landscape. The basecamp is Bamnoli and from here, we filled our bottles from the streams and then started the trek to New Vasota Fort, as the trek to the old fort is a treacherous one and has been shut off.
Almost the entire trek was through the jungle and one must be aware of wild animals and leeches here. After the fort, we went to Nageshwar cave from where we could see the entire forest, including the point where the boat drops people.
19. Chandan- Vandan Forts
The twin forts Chandan and Vandan offer panoramic views of the hills and villages surrounding it. The trek starts from Bavdhan village and is very easy, with some gradual ascents. We could see ancient temples, lakes, a mosque and also waterfalls flowing down the walls of the fort as we had gone in monsoon season. Do not miss the huge ‘Paachvad’ banyan tree here.
20. Brahmagiri Hill
Brahmagiri Hill is located near Nashik and is a must visit place for trek lovers. It is very close to Trimbakeshwar and also to Gangadwar, which is the origin of Godavari River. Steps have been made here for hiking but they were quite steep and looked scary from the distance, but weren’t so in reality.
We visited during the monsoon and the steps did get slippery then, but the view from the top is heavenly and gave us a feel of touching the clouds! The total trek took us about 3-4 hours.
21. Tringalwadi Fort
Tringalwadi Fort is an easy trek that can be taken by beginners as well and the fort is very beautiful. The trek is a risky one during the monsoon; it took us about an hour to reach the summit and we could see the mountain ranges of Western Ghats from here. We could even see remnants of secret doorways of the fort during our descent. There is a cave at the top where one can camp for the night.
22. Harihar Fort
Harihar Fort lies in the Trimbakeshwar range and is an adventurous trekking site. The last few hundred feet here are really scary and have stairs inclined at a nearly vertical angle. This is the place to head to if you are a thrill seeker. We wouldn’t recommend going here in the rainy season as the steps become slippery and increase the risk.
Totally, it took us nearly 2.5 hours to reach the top of the fort and from here we could see Basgad Fort, Utwad and Brahmagiri mountains. The descent here was equally thrilling and we had adrenaline gushing through our veins all the time.
23. Pratapgarh Fort
The trek to Pratapgarh Fort is a short one and took us only about 15 minutes to reach from the parking plot. This is the fort where Afzal Khan was killed and it showcases the grandeur of Maratha Empire. The trek is quite easy, there are about 500 steps which have to be climbed to reach the fort, making this one of the easiest trekking sites. The view from the top during the monsoon is worth experiencing.
24. Visapur Fort
Visapur is a beautiful fort ignored by people for the more famous Lohagad Fort. But this is a relatively simple trek, which when undertaken in monsoon is a fun-filled one as well. We had to navigate through rocky and bushy terrain and were required to climb through gushing waterfalls, which was an amazing experience in itself!
The view of the surroundings from the top was great and we could see some nearby forts as well. The route is quite confusing and so it is better to take a local guide, but the best part is that there is no crowd here, so you can enjoy the trek to the fullest.
25. Tung Fort
The trek to Tung Fort is short, but requires some trekking experience as well. We started off early in the morning as the whole route gets exposed to sunlight. The terrain had a lot of loose stones and mud that made the whole trek quite difficult as well as risky.
The complete journey took us nearly 2.5 hours and the entire climb was quite steep so it required us to take breaks near water tanks of the fort. From the top, we could see Pavana Lake and various forts including Lohagad, Tikona, and Visapur.
26. Duke’s Nose/Nagphani
The rock looks like the nose of Duke of Wellington, and this is the reason for its name. We went off the main Khandala road to reach the base and from here we walked up the trail. Majority of the trek was easy, but the last bit was steep and it took some effort to reach the top. The view from the top is absolutely stunning and is well worth the effort.
There is a Shiva temple at the top of the hill as well. During monsoon, one can see streaks of water falling off various hills as well.
We hope that this serves as the most comprehensive guide to trekking destinations across Maharashtra and that after reading it, you’ve already started adding many of these places into your wish-lists. Whether you’re an avid trekker or not, most of these places are definitely bound to make you a trekking lover. The thrill of starting off at the base and reaching the summit after putting efforts is truly amazing and gives you a feeling of accomplishment like no other.
If you have trekked to any of the above places, do let us know about your experience in the comments below.
Image Sources: 1. Adventures 365, 2. Blog Pune 99, 3. Make My Trip, 4. In Search Outdoors, 5. Plus Valley Adventure, 6. Blog Pune 99, 7. Weekend Thrill, 8. All Events, 9. It’s My Travelogue, 10. Holidify, 11. Holidify, 12. Forts and Treks Blog Spot, 13. Trip Advisor, 14. Travel Trikon, 15. Weekend Thrill, 16. Mouth Shut, 17. Nomadosauras, 18. Adventures 365, 19. Trawell, 20. Trip Advisor, 21. Around the Globe Holidays, 22. Adventures 365, 23. Historical Time of India Blogspot, 24. Trek Book, 25. Tes at Home, 26. Trip Advisor