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10 Best Places to Visit in Lonavala (2024)

Lonavala, a serene getaway from city life, is a top tourist spot in Maharashtra. Known as the ‘Jewel…
10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

Lonavala, a serene getaway from city life, is a top tourist spot in Maharashtra. Known as the ‘Jewel of Sahyadri’ and the ‘City of Caves,’ this hill station offers breathtaking views with lush green valleys, stunning waterfalls, tranquil lakes, and fascinating caves. Lonavala has many attractions, including historical sites, natural wonders, and religious spots that amaze you. Check out some must-visit places in Lonavala for your 2024 vacation, complete with location details, images, entry fees, and the best time to visit to create unforgettable memories.


1. Tiger’s Leap, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

Tiger’s Leap is a top tourist spot located 650 meters above sea level in a natural setting. It got its name because it looks like a tiger leaping into the valley. Adventure enthusiasts love to trek and hike here.

This lovely spot, with an echo point and a nearby stream, offers breathtaking views of the valley below, drawing many tourists. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy quality time with your loved ones here.

  • Location: Near I.N.S. Shivaji Base, Lonavala
  • Timings: 24X7

2. Bhaja Caves, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

Bhaja Caves is a stunning collection of caves carved out of rocks, recognized as a national monument. They’re considered among the oldest caves in India, dating back to the 2nd to 1st century BCE. These caves feature intricate Buddhist carvings from the early phase of Buddhism.

In addition to visiting the caves, which include prayer halls and living quarters, you can enjoy a swim in the nearby waterfall and explore the greenery around. To reach the caves from Bhaja Village, follow a zigzag path.

  • Location: Bhaja Village, Lonavala
  • Timings: 8 am to 6 pm

3. Karla Caves, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

Not far from Bhaja Caves is another popular tourist spot—Karla Caves, home to the largest and best-preserved Hinayana Buddhist prayer hall in India. These caves, associated with the Mahasamghika sect of Buddhism, are some of the oldest rock-cut caves in the country, with the oldest one dating back to the 1st century BCE.

At Karla Caves, you’ll be impressed by the beautiful motifs, sculptures, inscriptions, stupas, and pillars. There’s a 37-pillar hallway with beams over 2000 years old, some still intact. You’ll also see a temple at the entrance recently built using pillars from the Buddhist era.

  • Location: Karli, Lonavala
  • Timings: 9 am to 6 pm

4. Bhushi Dam, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

If you’re searching for nearby picnic spots for friends and family, check out Bhushi Dam, which creates Bhushi Lake. You can reach this dam on the Indrayani River using steps to sit, enjoy the sun, and admire the beautiful views.

Bhushi Dam gets very crowded on weekends, especially in the rainy season, making it hard to find a good spot to sit on the steps. Swimming is not allowed here because the water flow can be unpredictable.

  • Location: I.N.S. Shivaji Road, Lonavala
  • Timings: 9 am to 5 pm

5. Duke’s Nose, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

As a hill station, Lonavala has many great viewpoints. Duke’s Nose is one such spot, named after the Duke of Wellington because of its shape. It’s also known as Nagphani because it resembles a snake’s hood. At the top, there’s a Mahadev Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva.

In addition to delighting nature enthusiasts with its scenic beauty, this place, with its long trails and rocky formations, also draws adventure seekers interested in activities like trekking, rock climbing, rappelling, and hiking. It’s also a popular picnic spot for fun outings with friends and family.

  • Location: Via Main Bazar Road, Lonavala
  • Timings: 24X7

6. Tikona Fort, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

Tikona Fort, a famous historical site from the Maratha empire, gets its name from its triangular shape and sits at a height of 1066 meters above sea level. Once taken over by the Mughals, Shivaji Maharaj regained control in the 1670s, making it an important fort for the Marathas, also known as Vitandgad, until Sambhaji’s reign.

To enter the fort, you pass through a small cave leading to a guard tower and five caves. Inside, you’ll find a ruined temple and a large stone wheel. At the top, there are water tanks and a Buddhist cave.

  • Location: Near Kamshet, Lonavala
  • Timings: 8 am to 8 pm

7. Pawna Lake, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

Pawna Lake, surrounded by stunning scenery, is a popular spot for picnics and camping in Lonavala. This man-made lake, created by Pawna Dam, offers a serene retreat in nature’s embrace. The beautiful landscape, with views of Lohagad Fort, Tikona Fort, and Tunga Fort in the distance, provides a picturesque backdrop for memorable photos. Visitors can enjoy motor and row boating during picnics, adding to the place’s charm.

While the monsoon season is ideal for visiting due to the breathtaking sights, you can also come here during winter to enjoy lakeside barbecues.

  • Location: Pawna Dam, Lonavala
  • Timings: 24X7

8. Lohagad Fort, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

Another impressive architectural wonder from the Marathas is Lohagad Fort, also known as the Iron Fort, which is a must-visit when you’re in Lonavala. This hill fort earned its name because of its strategic location at 1050 meters above sea level, making it seem indestructible. Over the centuries, it has seen the rise and fall of many dynasties, including the Nizams, Marathas, and Mughals.

Lohagad Fort is popular among history enthusiasts, nature lovers, and adventure seekers due to the trekking required. You can see Vinchu Kata, a series of hills resembling Capricorn from the fort.

  • Location: Lohagad Wadi, Lonavala
  • Timings: 9 am to 6 pm

9. Ryewood Park, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

Ryewood Park, with its beautiful lawns, gardens, and a kids’ area, is the ideal spot for picnics in Lonavala. Located near the Lonavala market, it was originally a botanical garden but has been transformed into a park through renovations.

The 25-acre park has various trees, plants, and flower beds. There’s also a Shiva Temple where you can meditate. Plus, the children’s park with swings keeps the little ones entertained. Pack your picnic basket and head to this park for a fun time with family and friends.

  • Location: Siddharth Nagar, Lonavala
  • Timings: 8 am to 7 pm

10. Valvan Dam, Lonavala

10 Best Places To Visit In Lonavala (2024)

Valvan Dam is a top choice for those seeking a break from city life. Located at approximately 26.4 meters and over 1356 meters at the base of the Sahyadri Mountains, this gravity dam supplies water to Tata Power’s Khopoli Power Station.

This picturesque area, surrounded by greenery and tranquility, spans the Kundali River. The dam creates the artificial Valvan Lake, accompanied by a lovely garden nearby. This combination of a dam, lake, and lakeside garden makes it an ideal spot for a family outing in Lonavala.

  • Location: Near Khopoli Power Plant, Lonavala
  • Timings: 24X7

Conclusion

These top 10 places to visit in Lonavala offer diverse experiences, from natural beauty to historical wonders. Whether you’re a nature lover, history buff, or adventure seeker, Lonavala has something for everyone. Plan your trip to explore these fascinating destinations and create unforgettable memories in this charming hill station.


FAQs

Q1: What are the must-visit places in Lonavala?

Ans: The must-visit places in Lonavala include Tiger’s Leap, Bhaja Caves, Rajmachi Fort, Karla Caves, Lonavala Lake, Kune Waterfalls, Duke’s Nose, Lohagad Fort, Bushi Dam, and Wax Museum.

Q2: How many days are sufficient to explore Lonavala?

Ans: To explore Lonavala thoroughly, you typically need around 2 to 3 days. This allows enough time to visit all the major attractions leisurely.

Q3: What is the best time to visit Lonavala?

Ans: The best time to visit Lonavala is during the monsoon season, from June to September, when the lush greenery peaks and the waterfalls fully flow. However, if you prefer pleasant weather, October to February is ideal.

Q4: Are there any adventure activities available in Lonavala?

Ans: Yes, Lonavala offers various adventure activities such as trekking, camping, rappelling, rock climbing, and paragliding, especially around the scenic hills and forts.

Q5: Is it safe to visit Lonavala for solo travelers?

Ans: Lonavala is generally safe for solo travelers, but taking necessary precautions is always advisable, especially when exploring remote areas or trekking alone.

Q6: Are there any budget-friendly accommodations available in Lonavala?

Ans: Yes, Lonavala has a range of budget-friendly accommodations, including guesthouses, hostels, and budget hotels. These offer comfortable stays at affordable prices.

Ans: Some popular local dishes to try in Lonavala include vada pav, bhel puri, pav bhaji, misal pav, and chikki (a sweet made from jaggery and nuts), which are available at local eateries and street stalls.

Q8: How far is Lonavala from Mumbai and Pune?

Ans: Lonavala is approximately 80 kilometers from Mumbai and around 65 kilometers from Pune, making it easily accessible by road or train.

Q9: Are there any famous festivals celebrated in Lonavala?

Ans: Yes, Lonavala enthusiastically celebrates festivals like Ganesh Chaturthi, Diwali, and Holi. During these times, the town comes alive with colorful decorations and cultural events.

Q10: Can I visit Lonavala for a day trip?

Ans: You can visit Lonavala for a day trip, especially if you’re short on time. However, to fully enjoy the attractions and experience the serene beauty of the place, planning a longer stay is recommended.


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