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Mahabaleshwar Sightseeing

Mahabaleshwar is known for its "points", from which a person can stand and enjoy the entire scenery. There are around 30 valley view points spread around the hill stations , these are excellent areas for leisurely walks and to enjoy the breathtaking natural beauty. The following are a must:

 

Elephant’s Head Point
Lingmala, Chinaman
Dhobi Waterfalls
Baghdad Point
Wilson Point (Sunrise Point)
Bombay Point (Sunset Point)
Venna Lake
Tapola - Shivsagar Lake
Connaught Peak
Marjorie Point
Castle Rock
Arthur's Seat
Needle Hole Point
3 Monkey Point
Babington Point
Northcote Point
Tiger's Spring
Strawberry Gardens
Falkland Point
Carnac Point
Fitzgerald Point
Mahabaleshwar Museum
Gaolani Point
Lodwick Point & Boars Head
The Lamington Plateau
Panchgani
Helen's Point
Rosamond Rock
Polo Ground
Bee Keeping Centre
Pratap Gadh Fort
Kamalgad Fort
Table Land
Sydney Point
Serbaug, Panchgani
Parsi Point
Devil's Kitchen
Mapro Gardens
Dhoom Dam
Hunter Point
Panchaganga Mandir
Shri Shankar Mandir
Shri Krishnabai Mandir
Brahmarishi Caves
Mahabaleswar Temple
Lord Karthikeya Temple, Panchgani
Rajapuri Caves
Catholic Church

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Mahabaleshwar Festivals and Culture.....

Mahabaleshwar Festivals and Culture

 

This nature's blessing is the source to five rivers namely, Krishna,Venna,Koyna and Gayatri adding to its spectacular ambiance. The place has a vibrant history of rule, with King Singhan of Deogiri being the first one to come and set up a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva which is now revered as the famous Mahabaleshwar Temple and a tank at the source of River Krishna. Do not miss the visit to this ancient temple.

The vivid history of Mahabaleshwar in itself defines the vibrant culture and heritage of the place. You will be delighted to discover a fine mix of the rich ancient Maharashtrian culture and modern sophistication. Marathi is the most commonly spoken language with Hindi and English being the other main languages. Ganesh Chaturthi is the main festival in Maharashtrian culture and is celebrated with much pomp and grandeur. The people here are rooted to the customs and traditions and have their unique way of celebrating with their invigorating folk dance and music.

 

Mahabaleshwar Festivals

Almost all the festivals celebrated by Hindu, Christian and Muslims are celebrated by people here with lots of enthusiasm. Some of the main festivals are: Gudhi Padava, Ganesh Chaturthi, Holi, Diwali, Christmas, etc.

 

Ganesh Chaturthi : The most important and popular festival of Maharashtra, Ganesh Chaturthi is celebrated in the month of August - September. This festival marks the birth anniversary of Ganesha, the Hindu god of wisdom. Idols of Ganesha are installed and detailed arrangements are made for lighting and decoration. The festival is held for 7-10 days. The idols of Ganesha are immersed in the ocean or rivers, where thousands of processions meet. The immersion of idols is accompanied by drumbeats, devotional songs and dancing. This marks the end of the festival.

 

Thaipooyam Festival : The Lord Karthikeya temple is located at Rajapuri Caves in Panchgani. The temple is dedicated to Lord Karthikeya (Lord Muruga, Son of Lord Shiva). The temple premise is a calm and cool place and is best suited for people looking for serene environment for relaxation and meditation. The spiritual atmosphere adds impetus to relaxing moments. Rajapuri caves got the religious importance due to this famous temple. Thaipooyam festival during January-February month is celebrated here with lots of enthusiasm. Thousands of devotees visit this temple during this period.

 

Gudhi Padava : Maharashtran New Year's Day is celebrated on the first day of the Hindu month Chaitra ( March-April). This festival is known as the Gudhi Padava in Maharshtra. This day marks the start of the Hindu solar year.

 

 

 

Mahabaleshwar Culture

Maharashtrian culture, with all its colorful customs, rituals and traditions. The song, music and dance that accompany almost every festive occasion add joy and excitement to the lives of the people from every walk of life.

 

 
 

Mahabaleshwar Religious Places

Panchaganga Mandir : As per the hindu mythology five holy rivers krishna, venna, koyna, Savitri & gayatri show their token appearance here in five springs flowing closely. They are seen flowing in five stone conduits & joining in one horizontal half channel leading to the Goumukhi cowface spout. Though the Gaomukh it falls in the cistern below. On the northen side there is a similar conduit through which the holy 'ganga' appears every twelve years. From the conduit on the southern side flows the holy saraswati when the following astrological times come together, namely, Bhadrapad month, shasthi (6th day) ,Tuesday sun in hasta nakshatra, Rohini nakshatra in predominance & Vyatipat. This miraculous yoga (coincidence) is known as the "Kapila Shasthi Yoga", which is believed to be very auspicious occassion as per the Hindu faith.

Shri Shankar Mandir : The Mahalinga of the lord Shiva is of Rudraksha shape & believed to be 'self-bodied' (swayambhoo) It is called Trigunatmaka meaning Brahma-Visnhu-Mahesh are on it for ever. On the head of the mahalinga you see the marks of the five holy rivers (Panchaganga) & their waters never loose their level. Mother Jeejabai was weighed by gold by Raje Shivaji in this temple & then the gold was distributed in charity. This Mahalinga is considered to be superior to the twelve jyotirlingas.

Shri Krishnabai Mandir : This is also an old temple. The carving in the stones of the columns & the ceiling is attractive. You can also see the grand view of krishna valley from the temple.

 

Brahmarishi Caves : On the road to Arthur’s Seat, after Marjorie Point you should reach these caves in stone after a short while.

 

Mahabaleswar Temple: The Mahabaleshwar Temple has Lord Shiva as its presiding deity. The temple is encircled with a 5 ft high stone wall. The Mahabaleshwar hills were named after Lord Mahabali which means great strength.

 

Lord Karthikeya Temple, Panchgani: The Lord Karthikeya temple is located at Rajapuri Caves in Panchgani. The temple is dedicated to Lord Karthikeya (Lord Muruga, Son of Lord Shiva). The temple premise is a calm and cool place and is best suited for people looking for serene environment for relaxation and meditation. The spiritual atmosphere adds impetus to relaxing moments. Rajapuri caves got the religious importance due to this famous temple. Thaipooyam festival during January-February month is celebrated here with lots of enthusiasm. Thousands of devotees visit this temple during this period.

Rajapuri Caves: Rajpuri Caves hold religions significance, owing to the belief that these were used for penance and religious rituals by Lord Kartikeya. Surrounded by many water kunds (ponds), these ancient caves are also believed to have sheltered the Pandavas during their exile. Owing to the belief that the holy Ganges also flows into these kunds, devotees have a bath in these water bodies to cure all kinds of diseases and evils. Most popular attraction of the caves is a temple of ‘Lord Kartikeya, son of Lord Shiva.

Catholic Church: Visit the Roman Catholic Holy Cross Church, one of the souvenirs of the prosperous yore of Mahabaleshwar. The church is almost in rumbles but the stained glass windows are beautiful. A Hindu family looks after the deserted church.

 

 
 

Mahabaleshwar Monuments :


Pratapgad Fort: Pratapgadh is truly a place to visit and remember the heroic deeds of Shivaji Maharaj. As Pratapgadh is very close to Mahabaleshwar, it is always crowded. The 45 minutes journey is wonderful. Pratapgad Fort which is 24 kms, away is a place worth visiting. It was built by Shivaji in 1656. The height of the fort is almost 3500 feet. It was built to control the rebellious Satraps of the surrounding Javali Basin. Legend has it that Shivaji was blessed with a shining sword at the temple of Goddess Bhawani here. It was the site of the famous battle between the Maratha chieftain Chhatrapati Shivaji and Afzal Khan, the commander of the Bijapur Sultanate.

 

 

Kamalgad Fort : The square hill fort of Kamalgad in mahabaleshwar covers a flat area of 3-4 acres. The fort is surrounded by steep rock and can only be reached by perilously scaling this rock. Although it’s believed that The Kamalgadh fort was build during the Marathas as the other forts in the area were administered by a mokasadar from Bijapur. Early documents written now are in defunct Modi script of the Marathi language refers to the fort as ‘Kattalgad’. A detailed study of these documents is underway. In April 1818, Kamalgad surrendered after resistance to a British detachment commanded by a Major Thatcher. Under the British, it was used to execute prisoners of war.

 

 
 

Strawberry Festival

 

Held in the month of March/April (during the Easter weekend), the Mapro Strawberry Festival at Mapro Garden, has become a much awaited annual event. Started four years ago, when strawberry production far exceeded market demand, Mapro conceptualised this unique four-day festival dedicated to promoting strawberries, encouraging overall fruit consumption and boosting tourism in Mahableshwar and Panchgani. The Festival is supported by the All India Strawberry Growers Association (AISGA), to promote strawberry cultivation in the country.

The Festival has grown in size over the years with a turnout of thousands of enthusiasts. Through the Festival, tourists get to experience Mapro’s array of products and state-of-the-art technology. The Festival showcases raw strawberries and innovative strawberry-based products such as strawberry pizza, strawberry bhel, chocolate dipped strawberries and strawberry sandwiches among others.

The four-day event also includes free strawberry farm visits, Mapro Food Park visits, and other cultural and entertainment activities. Over 250 farmers from nearby villages participate in the festival, opening their farms to tourists, and Mapro garden offers strawberries that you can eat to your heart’s content, completely free!

 

 

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