If you are looking for a weekend gateway from Pune or Mumbai, then what can be a great pick? Well, there are a few places in Maharashtra which can be traveled in a half days or a couple of days and are worth visiting. Out of them, Lavasa Hill City- The “Mini Italy of India” can be a perfect pick for nature lovers, especially in the rainy season.
The weather in Maharashtra is pleasing in the monsoon season because of its mountain ranges. The lush green mountains and sceneries at the backdrop will leave you in awe. What I personally enjoyed while traveling to Lavasa was its picturesque route more than the city.
Lavasa city, situated approximately 60 km from Pune can be covered in just a day if someone doesn’t want to stay there.
My Pune to Lavasa Hill City Journey
I started my journey from Hinjewadi and took the Pirangut route, the route was easy to navigate thereafter. Initially, the roads were in a poor condition, but after crossing approx 10 km from the Hinjewadi town, the roads were excellent for a great road trip.
If you are planning your trip to Lavasa, I would suggest, go on your own or rent a vehicle or avail some cab facility instead of relying on public transport options. As the public transport options to reach Lavasa are not so easy to get from any location in Pune or Mumbai and are not so very frequent and time-taking as well.
Although there are no direct/indirect buses from Pune to Lavasa, trust me I searched for hours to check out public transportation options, but even MSRTC government buses also don’t ply nearby to Lavasa.
If you are going by your own vehicle, I would recommend going with the tank filled up. As you may not find many petrol pumps or people to help on the way.
But the parking charges in the city are high and to be specific:
- Four Wheeler: 500 Rupees
- Two Wheeler: 200 Rupees
- Cycle: No Entry/Parking Fees
While traveling in the monsoon, you may also experience foggy conditions on the way. On top of it, there are eateries to enjoy tea, some local food on the way. Just sit down near the dam and munch on some roasted sweet corn in the monsoon season.
While going to Lavasa, Temghar dam is about 15-20 km before the city. The sound of the water there can soothe your mind. Also, there are a few eateries on either side, so one can stop there to eat, relax, and enjoy the views of the dam.
With many hairpin turns and steep roads, it is a bit difficult to drive there, but the road conditions are pretty good towards the city side. At the end of the road, the way gets steeper and steeper. And you get to know the city is not so far away.
And yaayy! After 2.5 hours drive from Pune, the Lavasa city finally welcomed me!
Even after entering the gates, the city’s main attractions were a bit far away. One still needs to cover 2-3 km. But yet again, it is all the more fun because of the ghat section and lush greenery.
Lavasa Hill City
Lavasa city is a private property, designed in an Italian style and hence also called the “Mini Italy of Italy”.
Even in the lap of Sahyadri, the city offered an urban life. The colorful views of the buildings, luxury hotels, eateries, banks, theme parks, and whatnot. There are a lot of cafes to just sit and relax and enjoy the view.
There’s also a “Lavasa Express” train that takes passengers for local sightseeing, also one can hire a bicycle to roll on around the city. But I preferred to stroll around in the city.
Lavasa Lake added more charm to the city. It encompasses hills, colorful buildings, and resorts on either side. One can click a lot of photos with picturesque views at every corner of the city.
Because of the location of this place, one can also find opportunities and enjoy some adventurous activities, water sports like Jet Ski scooter, Bumper boats, trekking, rappelling, and other adventure sports in the city.
There you can see lots of eateries and cafes option in the city with different cuisine options such as Italian, Lebanese, South East Asian, North Indian, etc.
Some of the popular ones are:
- Granma’s Homemade Patisserie
- The All American Diner
- Zodiac Restaurant
- Revival Restaurant
- Chor Bizzare
Then there’s also Baskin Robbins, Cafe Coffee Day, Subway, Natural Ice Cream, etc.
I found a place to eat a bit far away from the Lavasa city on my way and this turned out to be the place with the best views. (I don’t remember the name of the place 🙁 ).
Staying in Lavasa can be on the costlier side, as most of the hotels, resorts, cottages cost around 4k+ rupees for a day.
Some of the good ones are:
Getting an Apartment for a day to stay can be a cheaper option when compared to hotels/resorts there. One can try out looking for options on booking.com
Lavasa to Pune
As the day went by, the evening got colder and mistier, covered by clouds giving a spectacular view. It is better to leave before it gets dark if you have no plans to stay back. On the way, there aren’t street lights at a few patches and can be risky at times because of the downhill.
The drive back from Lavasa to Pune was coupled with scenic beauty in the hazy evening with green fields on sides along with waterfalls, Dasave Lake at Lavasa, and then the Temghar backwaters giving glorious views.
Temghar being a massive dam accompanied me for a long time and gave spectacular views of the dam and backwaters throughout. The alluring panoramic views around the dam were a treat to the eyes!
The city offered a unique experience with its colorful architecture and lakeside and a lakeside promenade. To be true, I personally wasn’t really rejuvenated enough with the city but the best part of the trip was the journey to it!
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