The Best Weekend Getaways From Mumbai
Matheran | © Omkar A Kamale / WikiCommons
No matter how much you love the “City of Dreams,” you’re completely justified in seeking a break from its madness every now and then. Luckily, Mumbai is well connected and within hours of some of the country’s most beautiful beach towns, hill stations, and picturesque villages. Here is our list of the seven best weekend getaways for Mumbaikars.
A couple of hours outside Mumbai via train or road, Lonavla is one of the finest options if you are seeking lush greenery and fresh air. The area offers a variety of adventurous and scenic treks, including the popular hike to the 2,700-foot-high (823 meters) Rajmachi Point. Lohagad Fort, once a strategic stronghold of Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, and Karla Caves, built by Buddhist monks around the 3rd century BCE are nearby points of interest for history lovers.
Lonavla, Maharashtra, India
With no motorized vehicles in sight, this no-pollution hill town just a couple of hours outside Mumbai offers a uniquely refreshing break from the city’s chaos. With abundant wildlife, dense green forests and a famous “toy train” as the prime mode of transport, Matheran is almost other-worldly and guaranteed to charm any visitor.
For a rich dose of history, there are few better places to visit near Mumbai than the historic city of Aurangabad. Home to the famous Bibi Ka Maqbara, a 17th-century structure modeled on the Taj Mahal in Agra, and the nearest city to the heritage sites of Ajanta and Ellora Caves, Aurangabad is an exceptional candidate to visit during your getaway. Other notable attractions around the city include the 12th-century Daulatabad Fort and the tomb of the last Mughal emperor, Aurangzeb.
Aurangabad, Maharashtra, India
One of Maharashtra’s finest paragliding spots, Kamshet is the ideal option for anyone looking for a dose of adventure over the weekend. Along with a variety of paragliding schools and packages, the area offers a host of historic sites—including the Bhaja Caves, built around 200 BCE—that will excite any visitor.
Kamshet, Maharashtra, India
Accessible from Mumbai via ferry and road, the beach town of Alibag is one of the most popular getaways with Mumbaikars. With a range of beaches that vary from isolated to crowded, local markets and historic spots—including the stunning Kolaba Fort—this sunny, breezy small town has something to offer everyone.
Alibag, Maharashtra, India
This small village in Raigad district is best known for being home to the majestic Murud-Janjira Fort, dating to the 17th century. Situated on an island amidst the waters of the Arabian Sea and off the coast of Murud, the still-intact fort is considered to be among the strongest of its kind in India. Along with this picturesque fort, this quaint town is also a must-visit for its peaceful, pristine beach and outstanding seafood.
Murud Janjira Fort | Vikas Rana / Flickr
This tranquil and lush green hillside town is barely two hours from Mumbai and easily accessible via road and rail. Besides stunning views of the surrounding Sahyadri Mountain Range and plenty of treks to satiate your need for adventure, Igatpuri also offers spiritual attractions such as the Dhamma Giri Meditation Centre and the historic Ghatandevi Temple.
Igatpuri, Maharashtra, India