The queen of hills Mahabaleshwar, has places around like gems studded in a crown. Tapola – a haven for watersports enthusiasts is at a distance of just 25 Kms from Mahabaleshwar and Pratapgad Fort the 17th century fort is under 30 kms Mahabaleshwar. The Old Mahabaleshwar which is about 20 Kms from the new Mahabaleshwar is after Venna Lake about 15 Kms off the main road to Mahabaleshwar.
Venna Lake is a major tourist attraction in Mahabaleshwar. nestled New Mahabaleshwar and Old Mahabaleshwar Venna Lake is about 2 Kms from the Mahabaleshwar market.
If the new Mahabaleshwar is the honeymoon paradise old Mahabaleshwar is acclaimed for the divinity it holds in the temple and river sources. It is in Old Mahabaleshwar sequestered in the mountains that five natural springs emanate that pour water into a tank shaped rock and is beleived to be the source of Krishna, Gayatri, Savitri, Gayatri and Koyna.
Mahabaleshwar is a popular holiday destination and honeymoon spot and is known for the honey and strawberries produced here. Venna Lake is one of the major tourist attractions of Mahabaleshwar; The Lake is surrounded by trees on all sides. Scores of magnificent scenic perennial springs, streams, and waterfalls of Mahabaleshwar plateau, with its year round superb climate makes it a attractive get away for a weekend.
There about 30 different view points strewn around Mahabaleshwar offering panoramic views of the valleys. Its prudent to choose a few of the view points rather than trying to visit all the points if you are on a short break.
Old Mahabaleshawar, Panchganga Temple, Aurthur’s seat, Window Point, Tiger Spring, Echo Point, Hunting Point, Castle Rock, Savitri Point, Monkey Point, Elphnistone is a popular tourist route in Mahabaleshwar which ‘can’ be done in a day.
How to Reach:
Mahabaleshwar is 120 Kms from Pune and 225 Kms from Mumbai. From Pune the route passes through Wai and Panchgani. Pratapgad is on the way between Mumbai to Mahabaleshwar and is worth stoping. The approach to Pratapgad is very steep and one needs to be careful while driving up.
Mumbai to Mahabaleshwar: From Mumbai you may chhose to travel via the NH17 or via Pune however the Pune route would be much longer. Enroute to Mahabaleshwar via Poladpur you will pass through Pratapgad which is a place worth stoping. Visit the fort before you continue to Mahabaleshwar. Best route from Mumbai to Mahabaleshwar: Panvel – Rohe – Mahad – Poladpur – Pratapgad – Mahabaleshwar. Best route from Pune to Mahabaleshwar: Pune – Surur – Wai – Panchgani – Mahabaleshwar
Visit Mapros on the way to Mahabaleshwar if you want to see strawberry farms up close and you could have some fresh pizza also here. Sandwiches at Mapros is also very famous. Mahabaleshwar is famous for the nuts, chikkies and strawberries. Strawberry and cream is a speciality of Mahabaleshwar and you could try it near thr Venna lake.
You could also visit the local fair along with it and try out horse riding around the lake.