Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Wai - Panchgani - And umm,. Mahabaleshwar

This is a 3N-2D trip I enjoyed doing random things, seeing random places.

We left Friday night (27 Sept) to Wai, a picturesque village at ~85kms from Pune, with expectations to sleep in the temple because I had never done it before. We reached the Ganapati mandir at around 11 00 p.m. The route to Wai from Pune is supposed to be beautiful, but alas we traveled during the dark.

Now, what happened in Wai, was some experience to me. At almost 11 p.m. we found a place in front of small shops, where there were 2 others sleeping on our either sides. My sleeping bag and the blanket saved me from the cold. I had to keep contact with the bags to ensure safety. There was a dog that slept at like 5 ft away, I'm kindah scared of dogs, by the way. Woke multiple times in between just to find the other 2 strangers snoring peacefully.

It was a beautiful morning, we went to a hotel nearby and asked for the washroom, to find that none of the hotels have one. You need to go to the ST stand (bus stand) or the paid public toilet. The latter wasn't as bad as I had expected it to be, with a few duties pending we left for sight seeing. Post the well-known Ganapti mandir, we explored Wai a bit.

Click on the pictures to enlarge. 

Where the TVs are, is where I slept.
I woke up to this.
At the temple adjacent to the Ganapati Mandir.
At the temple adjacent to the Ganapati Mandir.

Then we roamed a bit over the Wai taluka, clicked a few random pictures. Rested under a banyan tree chatting. 

Then with no plan whatsoever we left to Panchgani. It's a 100 kms from Pune. There are sign boards to assist you, else you just have to ask. Crossing all that beautiful ghat region, we reached Panchgani, inquired for places to stay. We din't want to spend much, after all we were wanderers, so we took the old house for 800 INR/day. Checked in threw the baggage, had lunch and left to explore Panchgani. 

Where we stayed at Panchgani - Purohit's Home stay.
There was no heavy rain, slight drizzles, the weather was moderately cold for a hill station. It was dreamy at Panchgani. We missed the Parsi point and the caves at Panchgani. Enjoyed all the other places like Harrison's Folly, Table Land,. etc.

Without a reason we decided to take the room for Sunday night too, and leave to office straight from here.

View on the way from Wai to Panchgani.
Photos from various points at Panchgani. Click to enlarge. 

Harrison's Folly. 
Camel ride @ Harrison's Folly
Flowers At Table Land
Many,. many flowers.

There were horse rides to take you around. Waste of money, time and loss of experience of walking.
Breathtaking views all around!
That's me trying a macro.
Saturday went to Wai and Panchgani. The Sunday was supposed to be dedicated to Mahabaleshwar. Ended up waking late and rushed to Mahabaleshwar. Lunched at the 'great' Mapro, no seriously they were awesome. Kudos to Mr.Kishore Vora, Founder, Mapro. Wonderful people and wonderful service, not to forget the super awesome food you get there. No one would regret spending the extra for such good food.

We had Golden corn + cheese pizza (I love both, just too much!) and a strawberry and chocolate shake.

The sandwiches section. OMG Cheese!
That's my pizza yay!
And that's how it's baked. A brick furnace?! 
I love Cheese! And Corn! And Pizzas! And Chocolate!
Post such good lunch, we roamed a bit around the place where Mapro was located. Mahabaleshwar was waiting for us, we ignored.

It was then, when it started raining heavily, and we got wet regardless of the jacket we wore. It was like multi-directional rainfall. Trying to get used to that, we moved on, to Mahabaleshwar (Phew, big name!)

We then went to Lingmala falls and the few points that were close to it; King's chair and the swayambu Ganesh temple. Photos below,

Click to enlarge. 
Wet roads, are sexy.
Lingamala Falls
Where does all this water go, we wondered. 
We then ascended and descended the stairs to exit the falls, when there was a small route leading eastwards. No one went there, why not take that road, see where it goes, right? Yes.. We took that route that led us to some kind of duplicate paradise where the water was flowing to it's heart's content and we were enjoying crossing small streams of water.

Then we rode to Mahabaleshwar at almost 7 or 8 p.m. Just to see the market and the bus stand, and returned back to Panchgani, where we enjoyed driving through the shitty and the dark roads on our way back.

I shivered all the way back, and at Panchgani too where not even 3 blankets were enough to keep me warm. 

It was an enjoyable trip to Wai and Panchgani. Not fair to include Mahabaleshwar, I know. Leads me to wonder how I heard people say Mahabaleshwar was a one/two day trip, not much to see,. I find 3 days not enough! 

Ending this trip's post with a fun click, at the small bridge at Lingmala falls. 



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