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Lonavala also spelt as Lonavla is a scenically blessed hill station of Pune in Maharashtra. Lonavala is located at a distance of 83km from Mumbai and 64km from Pune. Endowed with dense emerald green forest there are many waterfalls, natural lake in Lonavala which adds a magical charm to the destination. The pictorial location with its surreal beauty has captivated the mind of many travelers. There is another hill station at a distance of 6km from Lonavala called Khandala. Together make the most scenic twin hill station of West India. The name Lonavala was derived from the Sanskrit word Lonavli which refers to many caves like Bhaja Caves, Bedsa Caves, and Karla Caves.
Perched at an altitude of 624mt, Lonavala was once the part of Yadava Dynasty and Mughal Empire. The verdant forest of Lonavala houses many ancient forts dating back to those regal eras. Lonavala sightseeing is incomplete if visitors miss out dwelling in the ruins of those historic forts. Apart from ancient forts there are many other sightseeing places in Lonavala, the tiger point of Lonavala being one of them.
Tiger point also known as Tiger’s Leap is a one of the favored places to visit in Lonavala. It is a cliff-top where visitors can catch the panoramic vista of emeralds green forest and meandering river stream of Lonvala from Tiger Point. Tiger Point is located at distance of 12km from Lonavala Railway Station. On the way to Tiger Point there is a waterfall which is fed by the monsoon rain.
Bhushi Dam also spelt as Bushi is a major tourist attraction of Lonavala. It is a favored picnic spot. The best time to visit Bhushi Dam is during monsoon season when the water level rises and overflows to create a stairway of cool water.
Located 3km from Lonvala is a one of the oldest cave of India called Bhaja Cave. The Bhaja Cave of Lonavala date backs to 160 B.C. and believed to have existed from the times of Hinayana phase of Buddhism. The finely sculpted statues of Lords Buddha in Bhaja Cave showcase a magnificent rock-cut architecture of all time. There is also a spectacular waterfall near the cave where visitors can refresh themselves with a dip.
Perched at an altitude of 687mt is the Bhairi Cave of Kamshet. The rock terrain makes the hill top of Bhairi Cave an ideal place for rock-climbing and trekking. There are many rumors about the Bhairi Cave. According to hearsays animal sacrifice is still in practice in Bhairi Cave and there are few utensils inside the cave. It is said if someone tries to steal those utensils they are gravely punished by Goddess Bhairi.
Karla Cave is the oldest and largest cave temple in India. Also spelt as Karle Cave or Karla Cells, the Karla Caves are the complex of ancient Indian Buddhist rock-cut cave shrines developed over the period of 3 centuries. Karla caves are located at a distance of 68km from Pune. The main cave features a large, intricately carved chaitya, or prayer hall, dating back to the 1st century BC.
Koregad Fort is a hill fort situated near Amby Valley. Koregad Fort is located at a distance of 20km from Lonavala. It is believed to have been built more than 15th centuries ago. The moss covered walls of the Koregad Fort houses a sacred temple dedicated to Goddess Koraidevi. This ancient fort is also a favored trekking spot for the tourist visiting Lonavala. Koregad Fort can be visited throughout the year.
Perched at an altitude of 1033mt is another ancient fort of Lonavala called Lohagad Fort. It is located at a distance of 20km from Lonavala. Used extensively by many great rulers, Lohagad Fort was an important hill fort. Connected by the Mumbai-Pune Highway Lohagad Fort is also reckoned for being a popular trekking destination. The word Lohagad stands for Iron Fort.
Sited amidst the lush forest, Lonavala Lake is a famous picnic spot for the people of Mumbai and Pune. The serene lake is located at a distance of 1.6km from Lonavala. Overlooking the daunting hills Lonavala Lake has captivated the minds of many nature lovers. Lonavala Lake can be visited throughout the year but monsoon season is the best time to witness it in its prime state.
Lonavala Lake Every season has its own beauty to relish in Lonavala from the valley sprawled with exotic flowers to luxuriant emerald forest visitors can visit Lonavala throughout the year. But October to May is considered the best time to witness the impeccable beauty of Lonavala.