|Shaniwar Wada||Located in Kasba Peth along the banks of the rivers Mula & Mutha|
|Vishrambaug Wada||Set up along the Thorale Bajirao Road|
|Shrimant Dagdusheth Halwai Ganpati||Situated close to the historical Shaniwar Wada|
|Aga Khan Palace||Positioned nearly 2 kilometers from the Bund Garden in Yerwada on the Pune-Nagar Road|
|Shinde Chhatri||Located in Wanowrie area|
|Sinhgad||Located approximately 30 kilometers to the southwest of Pune|
|Parvati Hill||Located at a distance of 1 kilometer from Swargate|
|Pataleshwar Cave Temple||Located on the Jungli Maharaj Road|
|Tulsi Baug||Located near the Laxmi Road Market of Pune|
|Saras Baug||Located approximately at a mile’s distance from the Swargate Bus Station|
|Osho Ashram||Located in Koregaon Park|
|Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum||Positioned in the Shukrawar Peth area of Pune near the Bajirao Road|
|Mahatma Phule Museum||Stationed along the Ghole Road|
|Tribal Museum||Situated off Koregaon Road to the east of Pune City|
|National War Museum||Located in the cantonment area close to the Pune Railway Station|
|P. L. Deshpande Garden||Located on the Sinhagad Road|
|Bund Garden||Located on the Airport road very close to the Camp area on the right bank of the Mula-Mutha Rivers|
|Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park||Nested in Katraj near Pune|
|Mayur Baug||Located approximately 50 kilometers from Pune on the Pune-Ahmednagar State Highway|
|Appu Ghar||Located in the Pradhikaran Sector of the Indira Gandhi Udyan in Nigdi|
|Visapur Fort||Located about 60 kilometers from Pune near the Visapur Village|
|Khadakwasla Dam||Located about 20 kilometers from the heart of the city|
|Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary||Located in the Ambegaon and Khed|
|Pashan Lake||Located about 12 kilometers from Pune|
|Mulshi Lake||Created on the Mulshi Dam|
|Raj Bhavan||Located in the Ganeshkhind area|
|St. Mary’s Church||Located on the Sholapur Road|
|Alandi||Positioned just 25 kilometers from Pune|
|Dehu||Located near Pune|
|Krishnai Water Park||Located at the base of the Sinhagad Hills near the Khadakwasla and Panchet Dams|
|Panshet Water Park||Located between Varasgaon Dam and Panshet Dam|
The erstwhile seat of the Peshwa administration in Pune and the very face of the Pune city, Shaniwar Wada is a palace fort located in Kasba Peth along the banks of the rivers Mula & Mutha. Peshwa Baji Rao I, the first Peshwa of Pune province laid the foundation of the Shaniwar Wada on Saturday, 10th January 1730. The construction of the Wada completed in the year 1732 and it served as the headquarters of the Pune Peshwas till 1818 AD when Pune surrendered to the British. Built in teakwood, stone and lime, the fort palace was erected at the expense of Rs 16,110, a very large amount at that time. Over the years many additions such as fortifications, bastions, gates, court halls, residential apartments, lakes, fountains etc. were made to the structure of the Wada. The Shaniwar Wada has five gates Dilli Darwaja, Mastani Darwaja, Khidki Darwaja, Ganesh Darwaja and Jambhul Darwaja or Narayan Darwaja.
The major palaces of the Wada include Thorlya Rayancha Diwankhana, Naachacha Diwankhana and Juna Arsa Mahal. One of the edifices in the Shaniwar Wada complex was built in seven stories and it is reported that the Kalasha (spire) of the Dnyaneshwar temple of Alandi could be perceived from its topmost terrace. The Hazari Karanje (fountain) of the Shaniwar Wada complex designed in the shape of 16 petal lotus was the most intricate and an extraordinary fountain of that era. Most of the Shaniwar Wada palace was burnt to ashes in the fire that broke out on 27th February, 1828 and could not be brought under control for seven days. Presently only some heavy granite walls, strong teak gateways and deep foundations have survived. The ruins of the Shaniwar Wada are now famed as a popular tourist site of Pune but regardless of its historical and cultural worth the Wada is not well maintained by the Government.
Vishrambaug Wada, a lofty mansion set up along the Thorale Bajirao Road in the heart of the Pune city furnished as the residential alcazar of the last Peshwa of Pune; Peshwa Bajirao II. Constructed in the year 1807 at the cost of Rs 2 lakhs, Vishrambaug Wada was occupied by Peshwa Bajirao II for 11 years until Pune was taken over by British. Many of the leading educational institutes of Pune including the Government Engineering College, Pune University, Deccan College, Agricultural University etc. breathed their first in the Vishrambaug Wada itself. Pune Municipal Corporation purchased the Wada from the British in the year 1930 for Rs 1 lakh and used the building as its headquarters till 1959. Till 2003 a number of PMC department offices operated from Vishrambaug Wada. Presently a post office is located on the ground floor of the Wada and some PMC offices as well as a small museum exhibiting Maratha artifacts established by Babasaheb Purandare function here. Vishrambaug Wada is particularly exalted for its magnificent entrance and ornately carved wooden balcony. The Wada will soon undergo the restoration work as a part of the ‘Heritage Corridor Plan’.
Shrimant Dagdusheth Halwai Ganpati
Shrimant Dagdusheth Halwai Ganpati Mandir situated close to the historical Shaniwar Wada of Pune is a widely recognized and highly venerated temple in the state of Maharashtra. Celebrated for its wealth and prosperity, this shrine dedicated to Lord Ganesh receives millions of devotees every year. This temple was established by Dagdusheth Halwai (a sweet maker) in the year 1893 in the memory of his departed son who had died in the plague of Pune. It was during this time when Bal Gangadhar Tilak introduced the public celebration of the Ganesh festival. The enticing idol of Lord Ganesh enshrined in this temple is 7.5 feet in height and 4 feet in width. It has solid gold ears and it is decorated with about 8 kilos of gold jewellery. The idol is insured for the sum of Rs 1 crore! Even though the statue of the deity is adorned with gold and studded with innumerable precious gems, the temple architecture is very small and simple. One can even get the darshana of the Lord Ganesh from the outside. The devotees of Lord Ganesh offer gold and a lot of money at the feet of the deity every once in a while and as a result the temple gets richer and richer. The Shrimant Dagdusheth Halwai Ganpati Trust happens to be amongst the richest temple trusts of the state. The trust undertakes social service activities such as an old age home, education to the destitute children, health clinics, ambulance service and many more from the money that it receives as donation and offerings.
Aga Khan Palace
Aga Khan Palace, one of the most prominent landmarks of the city Pune was constructed by Sultan Muhammed Shah, Aga Khan III in the year 1892 with an intention of helping the poor and destitute of Pune hit by famine. Acknowledged as one of the premium pieces of architectural exquisiteness in the western India, the Aga Khan Palace will immediately transport you to the ostentatious legacy of the Pune royalty. Positioned nearly 2 kilometers from the Bund Garden in Yerwada on the Pune-Nagar Road, the Aga Khan Palace festooned with Italian arches covers an all embracing area of about 19 acres. Encompassed by finely landscaped verdant gardens and lush green lawns this magnificent mansion houses a number of lavishly embellished suites, five immense halls and guest rooms.
The historical significance of the Aga Khan Palace lies in the fact that it was used as a prison to sentence Mahatma Gandhi, his wife Kasturba and his personal secretary Mahadev Bhai Desai from 9th August 1942 to 6th May 1944. Kasturba and Mahadev Bhai Desai passed away during this imprisonment. Two cenotaphs built consecrating the memories of both of them still exist in the Aga Khan Palace of Pune. Aga Khan IV donated the palace to the Indians in the year 1969 respecting its association with Mahatma Gandhi. Today a memorial dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi is built in the Aga Khan Palace where the ashes of the ‘Father of the Nation’ are conserved in an urn. Presently the palace serves as the headquarters of the Gandhi National Memorial Society.
Shinde Chhatri, located in Wanowrie area of Pune is a commemorative plaque erected in the revered memory of Mahadji Shinde, the 18th century military leader who served under the Peshwas as the commander-in-chief of the Maratha army between 1760 and 1780. The Shinde Chhatri is a three storied grand edifice built at the site where the cremation of Mahadji Shinde took place on 12th February 1794. Originally a small temple dedicated to Lord Shiva was located at the spot which was founded by Mahadji Shinde Himself. In the year 1965 Madhavrao Scindia of Gwalior, one of the descendants of Mahadji Shinde constructed a Samadhi memorial outside the sanctum of the Shiva Temple. The Shinde Chhatri, a transcendental paradigm of ancient architectural ingenuity still retains its past glory and splendor. The imposing entrance gate of the monument built in iron has still maintained its glint and burnish.
Sinhgad, located approximately 30 kilometers to the southwest of Pune is one of the celebrated forts in the state of Maharashtra possessed by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Nestled atop a secluded precipice of the Bhuleswar range in the Sahyadri Mountain Ranges at the altitude of about 1312 meters above the sea level, Sinhgad Fort basks in the glory of its 2000 years of eventful history. It was captured by Muhammad bin Tughlaq in the year 1328 from the Koli tribal chief, Nag Naik. Formerly known by the name ‘Kondhana’, this ‘Killa’ was taken over by the Maratha army in the legendary battle of Sinhgad of 1670 AD. Shivaji Maharaj then renamed it as Sinhgad i.e. ‘the fort of Lion’ in the honor of Tanaji Malusare, the valiant military leader of Maratha army who gave up his life in the fierce battle of Sinhgad against the Mughals.
Sinhgad Fort strategically located in the line of Rajgad, Purandar Killa and Torna Killa has two gates – the Kalyan Darwaja and the Pune Darwaja. Today most of the Sinhgad is in ruins but even the remains of the fort reveal the might and massiveness of this enormous stronghold. A memorial of Tanaji Malusare and the tomb of King Rajaram are housed in the Sinhgad Fort today. The ancient military stables, the brewery, a temple dedicated to the Goddess Kali, a giant statue of Lord Hanuman, the historical gates, and watch towers are some of the major attractions of the fort today. The present day Sinhgad is a favorite weekend retreat of the Punekaras and the much sought after destination for trekkers and adventure seekers.
One of the most vivid and astounding observation points of Pune and a much loved recreational destination of the city Parvati Hill is a not to miss attraction of this ‘Queen of Deccan’. Parvati is predominantly renowned all over the place for its historical and religious significance and its enchanting natural pulchritude. This Hillock ascending up to 2,100 feet above the sea level is considered to be the second highest geographical point of Pune tableland. The crown of the Parvati Hills can be reached after climbing 103 steps from where an enthralling aerial view of the entire Pune city can be perceived. Parvati Hills is particularly reckoned for its assortment of temples dedicated to various Hindu deities including Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati, Lord Kartikeya, Lord Vishnu, Lord Vitthal, and Lord Ram and so on. The Devdeveshwar Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati was constructed in 1749 AD under the reign of Nanasaheb Peshwa. This temple dated back to the Peshwa rule is believed to be the oldest heritage structure of the city. The temples of the Parvati Hill can be visited from 5 in the morning till 8 in the evening. Other than the temples, the Parvati is also the domicile of a Peshwa Museum, the Samadhi of Nanasaheb Peshwa, the Sati Monument and the Vetal Chabutara. Nanasaheb Peshwa had spent the last days of his life at the Parvati. The Peshwa museum set up here houses some of the rare exhibits of Peshwa Era such as old manuscripts, rare coins, weapons and the portraits of the champions of the Peshwa dynasty. As per the legend, Bajirao Peshwa had watched the British being overpowered at the Battle of Kirkee.
Pataleshwar Cave Temple
Pataleshwar Cave Temple located on the Jungli Maharaj Road of Pune is a rock-cut cave temple carved out in the 8th century AD during the Rashtrakuta Dominance. Chiseled out of a single basalt rock, this shrine dedicated to the God of destruction; Lord Shiva bears a lot of resemblance with the rock cut cave temples of Ellora. The sanctum of this cave temple where the Shiva Lingam is enshrined is a small room built in the shape of a cube having 3 to 4 metes of length on each side. The frontage of the cave is ornamented with a peculiar Nandi Mandapa circular in its contour wherein a huge umbrella shaped canopy stands supported by the colossal square columns. A brass bell is hanged outside the basalt entryway of the temple. The main Mandapa of the Shiva Temple is decorated with the intricately carved sculptures of Ram, Sita, Lakshman and multiple other Hindu Gods and Goddesses. Due to some unknown architectural fault or political short comes the construction of the temple was left incomplete. Even though, this temple of Lord Shiva is held in high reverence by the devotees. Adjacent to the temple is located a museum that has found an entry into the Guinness Book of World Records for a grain of rice that has around 5,000 characters inscribed on it.
Tulsi Baug located near the Laxmi Road Market of Pune is a popular shopping area of the city where both the Punekaras as well as the tourists enjoy the delight of ‘shop till you drop’! Thriving with the people all the time Tulsi Baug is acclaimed as ‘women's grand shopping precinct’ where ladies can buy almost everything. Tulsi Baug is famous for traditional Maharashtrian cooking wares, household things, metal ware, gift items, shops selling women's articles, jewellery, cosmetics fashionable and trendy stuff, fresh vegetables, fruits, Pooja articles, and many more.
Saras Baug, located approximately at a mile’s distance from the Swargate Bus Station is one of the most prominent tourists’ attractions and the major landmark of Pune city. This 25 acres complex of Saras Baug constructed by Nanasaheb Peshwa and formerly used as the residential base as well as the center for military strategy discussions by the head of the Maratha confederacy in the 18th & 19th century is today distinguished for its eye-catching temple dedicated to Lord Ganesh. Also popularly known as Talyatla Ganpati (the Ganesh in the lake), the construction of this temple commenced in 1750 AD under the command of the Sawai Madhavrao Peshwa and Mahadji Shinde and it attained completion in the year 1784. A beautiful lake teeming with tiny colorful fish is located just at the entrance of the temple from where a flight of marble stairs lead you to the Sabha Mandap of the Saras Baug Ganapati Mandir. Over the years, the temple underwent several renovations and restorations. And a noteworthy fact is that in the year 1842 the British East India Company had revamped the Ganesh Temple of Saras Baug. In 1969 a large-scale renewal was executed under the leadership of Mahadev Kumthekar and Anandrao Mane when a zoo named ‘Peshwe Park’ in the honor of the Peshwas of Pune was added to the Saras Baug Complex. Recently in the year 1995 a small museum displaying a few hundred distinct idols of Lord Ganesh was also added. The spectacular locale of the Saras Baug titivated with the verdant lawns and graceful fountains today serves as a cherished hangout place for the weekend picnics and a walking and jogging track for the early morning exercises.
Osho Ashram, located in Koregaon Park of Pune is a chief attraction for the followers of Bhagwan Osho Rajneesh, his ideologies and his teaching. Sprawling over and extensive land of about 32 acres the Osho Ashram is a famous junction of Yoga and Meditation. Osho Nadabrahma Meditation, Osho Kundalini Meditation, Osho Nataraj Mediation and Osho Dynamic Meditation are some of the meditation and spiritual enriching programs taught here. Maroon robes are worn during the day while white robes are used for the evening mediations in Osho Ashram. The Osho Teerth, popularly known as the ‘Nulla Park’ is a renowned garden of the Osho Ashram founded by Shunyo Foundation in a well-designed Japanese Zen garden style. Spread across the wide-ranging area of 5 hectares this park is equipped with swimming pool, bejeweled wooden pathways, rock gardens, brilliant artificial waterfalls and many other attractions. The Osho Ashram remains open all days all round the year. Even though the Ashram does not provide any lodging accommodation, many hotels stationed nearby cater the services here. The reception of the Ashram is open from 9:00 am to 3.30 pm from where you can obtain information about the different kinds of meditations and other programs available in the Ashram.
Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum
Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum positioned in the Shukrawar Peth area of Pune near the Bajirao Road is a widely reckoned gallery praised for its extravagant collection of antiques. The three storied building of the museum reflects the Rajasthani order of architecture. Established by Dr Dinkar G. Kelkar in the year 1920 consecrating the memory of his only son Raja who had departed to the heavenly abode, the museum was handed over to the Department of Archaeology of the Government of Maharashtra in 1962 AD. The Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum of Pune is particularly deemed for its wide array of the sculptures dating back to the 14th century AD. Apart from that, the museum houses numberless ornaments made of silver, gold and ivory, musical instruments, vessels, armaments, Indian decorative objects from everyday life, other artistic things dating back to 18th and 19th centuries, door frames, 17th century paintings, traditional Indian lamps, carvings, 2,000 year old pottery, Lord Ganesh motifs painted or carved on the seeds and so on and so forth. By the year 1960, the museum contained around 15,000 objects and toady the museum holds over 20,000 objects out of which only 2,500 are on display in its 36 sections. The Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum is an eloquent testimony of the dexterity of the artisans of the bygone era. An attention-grabbing section of the museum is the Mastani Mahal where a miniature of the palace of Mastani is created.
Mahatma Phule Museum
Mahatma Phule Museum stationed along the Ghole Road of Pune was established in the year 1890. Formerly known as the ‘Lord Ray Museum’, this repository is famous for displaying a wide range of agricultural objects, industrial products, handicraft items, armory, articles related to natural history, geology, forestry, textiles, stone carvings, brassware, marble statues, and oil paintings and so on. One of the unique features of the Mahatma Phule Museum is that it also houses the body models of various animals from elephants to seal fish. A noteworthy endowment of the Mahatma Phule Museum is its well maintained library exalted for its rare collection of books on art, culture and ways of life. Frequently organized film shows and seminars beckon the intellectuals of the state to the Mahatma Phule Museum. The museum can be visited from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm every day of the week except for Wednesday.
Tribal Museum of Pune situated off Koregaon Road to the east of Pune City Station is dedicated to the tribal communities of the state of Maharashtra. This unique museum exhibits interesting artifacts revealing the life style, customs and culture of the tribal communities belonging to the Sahyadri and Gondhwa regions of Maharashtra. They include various images of tribal deities, traditional musical instruments, handicrafts, wash paintings, artifacts, jewellery items, textile, utensils, weapons used by tribal, and many other articles related to the tribal life and culture. Apart from the tribes of Sahyadri and Gondhwa regions, the life styles of other tribes namely Marai, Danteswari, Wagdheo, Bahiram etc are also exhibited in this museum. The Tribal Museum of Pune was established with an objective of preserving the unique aspects of the tribal culture from different regions of Maharashtra for the reference of future generations. The museum is open from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm every day except for Sundays and public holidays. The entry to the museum is free of cost.
National War Museum
The National War Museum of Pune located in the cantonment area close to the Pune Railway Station is established as a result of the endeavors of the Express Citizens' Forum of Pune. The proposal for the National War Memorial was originally put forward in the year 1996. The citizens of Pune set up a War Memorial Fund in which everybody starting from the common citizens to the big corporates contributed. The Foundation of the museum was laid in November 1997 and the construction work reached completion in the year 1998 when the museum was inaugurated in the month of October. The National War Museum of Pune was built as a mark of honor to the valiant soldiers who laid down their lives fighting for the mother India. The most noted attraction of the museum is a 25-foot stone pillar erected as a tribute to the martyrs of India. The museum displays weapons, army machinery and various vehicles used at the time of war. This museum remains open from 9 in the morning to 6 in the evening.
P. L. Deshpande Garden
P. L. Deshpande Garden, also known as the ‘Pune-Okayama Friendship Garden’ located on the Sinhagad Road of Pune is a beautiful Japanese Garden fashioned after the Korakuen Garden in Okayama of Japan. This park of Pune happens to be the biggest garden laid in Japanese style outside Japan in Asia. The beautiful and well maintained P. L. Deshpande Garden sprawling over the total area of 10 acres is an enchanting retreat in the cradle of charming nature away from the hustle bustle of the city life. This Japanese Garden is named after P. L. Deshpande; the prolific Marathi writer, orator, humorist, actor, music composer, singer and harmonium player of Maharashtra lovingly known as Pu.La.
Bund Garden located on the Airport road very close to the Camp area on the right bank of the Mula-Mutha Rivers is set up adjacent the small dam built across the two rivers. This dam was built by Sir Jamshedji Jeejeebhoy with an objective of providing water to the poor in summer. The Bund Garden was also laid down by him alongside the dam. The garden derives its name from the Marathi word bund meaning, ‘a dam’. As a bridge built in the vicinity of the park reaches across the river to the Gandhi National Memorial (Aga Khan Palace), the garden has been renamed as the Mahatma Gandhi Udyan. The chief attractions of the Bund Garden include the evening boat rides, horse riding and the magic shows organized here. This garden also serves as a retreat to the migratory birds alighting here during winter. Punekaras throng the garden in the morning and utilize the well-designed jogging track here. The Bhel Puri and Pani Puri walas standing near the garden add to the attractions of this place.
Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park
Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park, also abbreviated as the Rajiv Gandhi Zoo is nested in Katraj near Pune. Open to the public since 1999, this park is administered by the Pune Municipal Corporation. The zoo covering the far reaching area of 165 acres is divided into three sections; an animal orphanage, a snake park, and a zoo. This park provides a secured shelter to various species of mammals, reptiles and birds. The zoo has become a rescue center of the wild animals and it has been running Animal Adoption Scheme since October 2010. The pristine Katraj Lake spread over the area of 42 acres is also situated within the periphery of the Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park.
Mayur Baug, located approximately 50 kilometers from Pune on the Pune-Ahmednagar State Highway is the sanctuary of peacocks; the national bird of India. This reserved area is rich with the dense woods of tamarind trees. Today Mayur Baug houses about 2500 peacocks.
Appu Ghar, fashioned after the Appu Ghar of Delhi is called ‘the mini Disney Land’ of Pune. This amusement park located in the Pradhikaran Sector of the Indira Gandhi Udyan in Nigdi is an apt synonym used for unlimited fun and merriment. This amusement park is named after Appu, the elephant that was used as the mascot for the Asian Games of the year 1982 hosted in New Delhi. The Appu Ghar of Pune attracts both kids and adults. A number of entertaining rides, merry-go-rounds, gigantic roller coasters, huge spinners, and many others summon both the Punekaras as well as the tourists. An artificial hill specially built for the children to play and a beautiful lake add to the fun quotient of the park. The Appu Ghar is open from 12:00 to 20:00 everyday.
Visapur Fort, located about 60 kilometers from Pune near the Visapur Village is a part of the Lohagad-Visapur fortification. Perched at the altitude of 1,084 meters above the sea level, the Visapur fort is built on the same plateau as its twin fort Lohagad. Constructed by the first Peshwa ruler Peshwa Balaji Vishwanath, this fort was built between 1713 and 1720 AD. The premises of the fort house a number of caves, water reservoirs, a well, old houses, a decorated arch etc. Two roofless edifices surrounded by veranda walls are also located within the fort complex. The Peshwa's Palace now in ruins is also seen here. The patron deity of the Visapur Fort is Lord Hanuman due to which several temples dedicated to Lord Hanuman and a huge carving depicting the ‘Pavanputra’ can be found inside the fort. Over the sanctuaries, the Visapur Fort was possessed by the kings of various dynasties namely Satavahana, Chalukya, Rashtrakuta, Yadava, Bahamani, Nizam, Mughal and Marathas.
Khadakwasla Dam located about 20 kilometers from the heart of the city serves as one of the major sources of water to Pune civic. Originally constructed as a masonry gravity dam across the river Mutha in the year 1879, Khadakwasla Dam was the first reservoir of its kind in the world. In the year 1961, the Khadakwasla Dam had to be blown, as the Panshet Dam overflowed. This resulted into the devastating floods in Pune. The twin dams of Panshet and Varasgaon and the Sinhagad Fort are positioned just few kilometers from the Khadakwasla Dam. The height of the dam is 31.79 meters while the length is 1939 meters. The dam bears the capacity of 374 Million Cubic Meters. Today, the National Defense Academy, the Central Water & Power Research Station, a Dental Centre and a Veterinary Hospital are established in the vicinity of the Khadakwasla Dam. Myriads of tourists throng the site of the dam on weekends and particularly during the rainy season.
Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary
Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary established in the year 1984 covers the 9 tribal villages of Ambegaon and Khed Talukas in the Pune District. Perched at the elevation ranging from 2100 feet to 3800 feet, this wildlife sanctuary also serves as the originating point of two major tributaries of the river Krishna namely Bhim and Ghod. Primarily formed to protect and conserve the Indian Giant Squirrel, this sanctuary is spread over an all encompassing area of about 131 square kilometers of the Sahyadri Mountain Ranges in Western Ghats. Apart from the Giant Squirrel, the sanctuary also provides a safe home to various other species of birds and animals including Leopards, Wild boar, Sambar, Barking deer, Hyena, Black Eagle, Grey Jungle Fowl, Malabar Whistling Thrush, Malabar Grey Hornbill, Quaker Babbler, Green Pigeon and many others. As the vegetation of this terrain has been preserved as sacred groves over the centuries, the bio-diversity of this area has been maintained for generations. These sacrosanct groves operate as genetic material pools of this area, from where seeds get dispersed and spread. In the sacred groves of a tribal village named Ahupe, a Khombhal - Xantolis Tomentosa was found to be about 800 - 1000 years old.
Pashan Lake, located about 12 kilometers from Pune is a man-made reservoir built by creating a dam over a small brook named Ram Nadi which later meets the river Mula. This lake having the total catchments area of about 40 sq km serves as the source of water for the people of the old Pashan Village. The chief attraction of the Pashan Lake is the migratory birds that pay a visit to this place particularly in winter. The birds spotted here include grey heron, white and red lapwing, purple moorhen, little egret, cattle egret, coot, jungle babbler, white breasted kingfisher, woodpecker, Mahratta, cotton teal etc. Pashan Lake is indeed a heaven for the bird watchers. Alongside the Pashan Lake, PMC has constructed a 300 meters long promenade known as ‘the nature trail’. To protect the lake as well as the birds that come here, a bamboo plantation and wall have been laid alongside the lake. Tourists also enjoy boating in the serene waters of the Pashan Lake.
Mulshi Lake created on the catchments area of the Mulshi Dam in the midst of cool dense forest is a popular picnic spot near Pune. Nestled in the vicinity of the hilly terrains of the Sahyadri Ranges and surrounded by the verdant woods of sag, oak, teak and mango, this lake is a favorite spot for bird watching and water sports. The ancient forts Dhangad & Koraigadh located in the proximity with the lake multiply the allure of the locale.
Raj Bhavan of Pune located in the Ganeshkhind area furnished as the monsoon retreat of the Governor of Bombay during the British Raj in India. Built in the year 1866 this impressive architecture was designed by James Trubshawe.
David Sassoon served as the treasurer of Baghdad from 1817 to 1829 and then he became the leader of the Jewish community in Bombay after Baghdadi Jews emigrated there. David Sassoon constructed the Ohel David Synagogue in the year 1861. Today managed by Sir Jacob Sassoon Charity Trust, David Synagogue presents a fine paradigm of Victorian style of architectural. The prominent features of this supreme edifice of yesteryears are the huge pillars erected in Gothic style and a massive clock tower that overlooks the entire Pune City. An elegant prayer hall with a beautiful balcony exclusively built for the ladies is situated at the top of the David Synagogue.
St. Mary’s Church
St. Mary’s Church located on the Sholapur Road of Pune is the oldest Anglican Church of the city. Consecrated by Bishop Reginald Heber in the year 1825, this Christian place of worship was built for the British officers, soldiers and their families dwelling in Pune. Revealing the classic gothic style of architecture, St. Mary’s Church also displays a fine blend of British and Indian architectonic orders. The mortal remains of the erstwhile Governor of Mumbai and also a renowned composer of religious lyrics, Sir Robert Grant are placed in the premises of this church. The pipe organs used in the church at the time of the prayer service are about 130 years old. Till 1982, the church was festooned with an imposing spire but later it was replaced with a shorter concrete minaret. Beautiful stained glasses fabricated in London have been fitted at the altar and near the baptistery in the memory of Lieutenant Trotter. Moreover, the church also houses some rare regimental flags. A memorial has been erected inside the church in the memory of Colonel William Morris; one of the survivors of the Battle of Balaclava. Accredited as the Mother Church of Deccan, this garrison church is acclaimed for housing several plaques of British soldiers who gallantly fought in various wars. The mortal remains of the Chief Justice of Bombay Supreme Court; Sir Edward West are also enshrined in this church.
Alandi, positioned just 25 kilometers from Pune is a famous pilgrim destination of the state of Maharashtra. Much venerated amongst the Varkari Sampraday, this town is the very vicinity where the great Saint Dnyaneshwar left this mortal world for the heavenly journey ahead. After translating the Bhagvad Gita into Marathi for the easy understanding of the common public, Saint Dnyaneshwar embraced Samadhi at Alandi. The Samadhi Sthan of Saint Dnyaneshwar is situated just opposite the temple of Lord Siddheshwar. Today a temple has been erected at the site of the Samadhi. On every Kartika Ekadashi day a big festival is held at Alandi. Thousands of devotees and varkaris arriving from different parts of Maharashtra pay homage at the feet of Saint Dnyaneshwar on this day.
Dehu is the very locus where one of the great Saints of Maharashtra Sant Tukaram lived and preached people about religious and philosophical matters. Sant Tukaram worshiped Lord Vitthal and it is said that he went to ‘Vaikuntha’ i.e. the heavenly abode of Lord Vishnu along with his mortal body. Sant Tukaram is particularly venerated by the people of Varkari sect in Maharashtra. One of the major attractions of Dehu is the ‘Palakhi’ festival celebrated in the month of ‘Ashadh’. The temple of Sant Tukaram is built in Dehu village on the banks of the river Indrayani where a big statue of the Saint is placed in sitting position. Tukaram Maharaj is holding a Tambura in one of his hand in this statue. 4,000 ‘Abhangs’ composed by Sant Tukaram have been pasted on the walls of the temple.
Krishnai Water Park
Krishnai Water Park located at the base of the Sinhagad Hills near the Khadakwasla and Panchet Dams in Pune is a very famous amusement park extremely popular amongst the Punekaras as a weekend recreational retreat. This theme park, a base of several exciting rides including multi-lane slides, cyclone, wave pool, baby pool with titanic, lazy river, dip in pool, octopus, pendulum, tunnel, dry landing, rocking rain dance and many more equally allure both children as well as adults. Spread over the total area of about 10 acres, Krishnai Water Park also offers other attractions such as net cricket, bull ride, Tom and Jerry, two big dinosaurs, artificial bridges, video games, magic shows, puppet shows, and so on. The timings of the Krishnai Water Park are 10:00 am to 6:00 pm on week days and 10:00 am to 7:00 pm on weekends.
Panshet Water Park
Located against the scenic backdrop of the infinite natural pulchritude in the middle of the two major dams of Pune; Varasgaon Dam and Panshet Dam, The Panshet Water Park happens to be one of the most sought after recreational destinations in Pune. Apart from the usual water rides, the Panshet Water Park offers you an incredible opportunity to enjoy some of the adventurous water sports including swimming, kayaking, water scooters, rides on speed boats, wind surfing, etc. This is the perfect get away for the entire family to forget the tensions of everyday life and enjoy in the proximity with the Mother Nature. Sinhagad Fort, Raigad Fort and Khadakwasla Dam are some of the nearby attractions from the Panshet Water Park.