One Day Adventure Trek Near Mumbai: Karnala, Panvel
A renowned fort city, Karnala is one of the most prominent getaways within a distance of 100 kilometers from Mumbai. The place is set in the Raigad district within the state of Maharashtra. It is located at an escalation of about 439 m above sea level and is surrounded by dense green forests and lofty mountain ranges on either side.
Karnala is known as a prevalent trek and picnic spot among travelers. Some of the famous spots to visit here are the Karnala Fort; which also has a jungle reserve around it, and is referred to as Karnala Bird Sanctuary as it pulls in a great number of birds in the winters, particularly early mornings and nights. It is here where you can enjoy birdwatching and detect some imperiled winged creatures. The all-encompassing perspectives from the highest point of the Karnala Fort will blow your mind, which is best explored by walking.
Attractive Tourist Spots and Activities at Karnala
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Karnala Fort is a significant fortress that gets its history from the Maratha rule. During the rule of the Tughlaqs, Karnala served as a capital to the Konkan districts, post which it was later taken over by Nizam Shah – the founder of Ahmednagar. Mahashivratri is considered as a fundamental celebration in Karnala. The fans revere the Shiva sanctuary at Ambernath, close to Karnala. To reach the top of the Fort, it takes a minimum of two hours.
The fort complex consists of two forts at different heights. Each fort has its own inscription. The gate at the lower fort has the inscription in the Marathi language whereas the gate at the upper fort has the inscription in the Persian language. The two languages have their own stories to reveal associated with the Fort.
In the middle of the way, while going towards the top of the fort, one can see a basalt pillar which is known as Pandu’s Pillar and is of 125 feet height. Though the pillar is in a ruined state these days, in ancient times, it was used as Watch Tower. One can view Prabalgad and Rajmachi forts in the northern direction from the top of the Fort. The view from the peak is just breathtaking.
The Bird Sanctuary
Established since 1968, The Bird Sanctuary at Karnala is a haven to over 222 species birds of which 161 are resident species, 46 are winter migrant species, 3 are breeding migrants, 7 species are passage migrants and 5 species are vagrants. Due to this, the bird sanctuary has attained popularity among bird-watchers and hikers. At its initial years, it was only covering 4.45 sq. km. area but in 2003, the area was extended to 12.11 sq.km.
The Best Time To Visit
The monsoons provide a fantastic and memorable glimpse into this natural beauty, while the winter season is a good time to catch a view of some migratory birds. During the monsoon, the weather is extremely pleasant. It gets very windy and misty at the peak and sometimes even the pinnacle is not visible. However, the gateway is ideal to be visited in any weather.
How To Reach Karnala
Karnala is just about 10 Kilometers from Panvel city and 52 Kilometers away from Mumbai and therefore it is considered as a perfect getaway to spend your vacation or take a quick weekend retreat. The place is very easily accessible by road, rail, and air, or you can simply drive down.
Stay and Food At Karnala
No trekking is easy. Keeping this in consideration, the forest department has constructed 5 resting places on the pathway for the trekkers. However, you can find some good hotels and AirBnBs near the fort and bird sanctuary at a very reasonable price. There are a lot of tiny stalls and makeshift shacks at the base and also along the trekking path from where you can grab a quick bite and move on.
Other nearby locations
You can trek up here and absorb the awesome view with Haji Malang toward the upper east, just before Prabalgad and Matheran; Bhimashankar toward the east; Rajmachi and Duke’s Nose toward the south; the Mahal Mira slope range toward the southwest and Mumbai toward the west. Shop for nature-based items like sandalwood cleanser or neem oil or pay obeisance at Shiva Temple close to Karnala.
Things To Carry
You are advised to carry water to keep you hydrated while trekking. For a comfortable trekking experience, you should wear appropriate trekking shoes or closed waterproof shoes to keep your feet dry and safe, especially during monsoon. You are advised to wear appropriate clothes like light cotton clothes or comfortable partially synthetic clothes that can dry off quickly if you happen to get wet. Moreover, you can keep an extra pair of clothes, an umbrella, a jacket and essential medicines with you. You can also carry a stick for climbing and descending. Last but not least, pack all your stuff in a waterproof bag to prevent it from getting wet.
To recap, in the event that you are looking for some peace away from the irritating discord of big city life, then Karnala is an untainted goal for you. Plan your excursion to Karnala with everything you know about the best activities in Karnala from us!