Close to the megacities like Pune and Mumbai, Lonavla is situated in the Sahyadri range of Western Ghats and is one of the most visited hill stations in Maharashtra. With a plethora of waterfalls, pristine lakes and hills surrounding the place, Lonavala is a monsoon destination popular for camping, trekking and other fun activities.
If you are a nature enthusiast, then Lonavala is the place for you. It is surrounded by lush green forests, waterfalls and lakes. It is made up of two hill stations namely Lonavala and Khandala which is 634 metres above sea level. Some of the major attractions of Lonavala are Bushi Dam, Bhaja Caves, Rajmachi Fort, Karla Caves, Ryewood Lake and others. Lonavala is home to many famous treks like Andharban Trek that starts from Pimpri village and ends in Bhira village.
If you have a sweet tooth then you will definitely love Lonavala as it is also popular for producing a hard candy made up of jaggery and nuts called Chikki. Lonavala is a major halt on the railway line connecting Pune and Mumbai.
Between the months of December and February is the best time to visit Lonavala. During this time, the temperature remains pleasant and perfect for sightseeing.
During the monsoon season, the region receives heavy precipitation between June to September. If you are a rain child, then the monsoon is considered to be a great time to visit Lonavala as the heavy rainfall makes the surroundings extremely beautiful.
Initially, Lonavala was part of the Yadava Dynasty. Later on, the Mughal emperors understood the strategic importance of the area and they included the region into their territory. Lonavala has many forts that played an important role in the history of the Maratha Empire and that of the Peshwa Empire. After the downfall of the Mughals, in 1871, the Governor of Bombay Presidency, Lord Elphinstone discovered the Lonavala and Khandala hill stations.
Just 8 kilometres outside of Lonavala, Tiger’s Leap is a must-visit tourist location. The 650 metres tall cliff offers a comprehensive view of the Western Ghats and the hills. The most exciting spot at Tiger’s Leap is the echo point.
Located between the two hill stations, Khandala and Lonavala, there is a fort known as Rajmachi Fort, which is a famous spot overlooking the most breathtakingly beautiful views of the region.
A world-class amusement park by Adlabs, Imagicaa is a unique picnic spot with loads of entertainment options. Situated on Mumbai-Pune Expressway, Imagicaa is the latest attraction added to the list of Lonavala’s entertainment hubs.
Amby Valley is a unique place famous for its irreplaceable grandeur and plush signature features. Sahyadri peaks and the Koyarigarh Fort offer a mind-blowing view of the Aamby Valley.
Located on the outskirts of Lonavala, by the Indrayani River, Lonavala Lake fills up during the monsoons and dries up during winters. Here, activities like bird watching, swimming and angling are very popular.
One of the most famous tourist attractions in Lonavala, Karla Caves are ancient Buddhist rock-cut caves and one of the oldest cave shrines in India. These caves are home to one of the largest Chaityas or prayer halls with a stupa in India. Ekvira Temple built inside the caves is a sight to behold.
The Bushi Dam is again one of the most amazing travel getaways to visit in Maharashtra. A great number of people look forward to visiting this place over the weekends and enjoy the scenic vibe. The timings to visit this dam are from 9 AM - 5 PM.
Lonavla is about 100 kilometres from Mumbai airport and offers a lovely roundtrip in Maharashtra. As it lies on the connecting railway line of Mumbai and Pune, the train is a vital mode of transportation to reach Lonavala. There are a number of trains that stop at Lonavala. However, the best mode of transport to reach Lonavala is via road from Mumbai or Pune.
Lonavala doesn’t have a dedicated airport but one can easily deboard at the Pune International Airport, which is about 64 kilometres away from Lonavala. Visitors can spend a little extra and enjoy a seaplane ride from Pune or Mumbai.
Lonavala Railway Station is a major stop on Mumbai - Pune railway line. The local trains from Pune leave in an interval of 2 hours. And other trains that leave from Mumbai, Khopoli is the station to deboard at. From Khopoli, the remaining distance can be covered by local buses. From Pune, it takes around one hour to reach Lonavala.
Located on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, Lonavala is just 64 kilometres away from Pune and 96 kilometres from Mumbai. Lonavala is easily accessible from both cities.
Bring an umbrella and a raincoat with you because it rains pretty heavily in Lonavala. The right pair of shoes can help you walk on slippery trails and difficult terrains.