Thursday, April 29, 2010

Postcards from Panchgani

I just came back from a much-needed break in Panchgani. This is one of my favourite places on earth. I go here and forget all my worries. Poona comes close, but the weather in Panchgani and the pure air is unmatched. The twin hill stations of Panchgani and Mahableshwar are one of the most important and popular hill gateways in Maharashtra. I have been going there for the past about 18 years and I can never get tired of it. Unfortunately, there is so much of construction happening that it's not funny. Panchgani was definitely much more beautiful in its ancient days that present times. But atleast it creates employment opportunities for the locals, so there's some comfort. Plus, the thriving jam factories of Mapro and Mala in these twin hill stations, bodes well for the localites.

Summers have become very hot here now, though. Till you are in the foothills of Panchgani- in a small called Wai- the heat is unbearable. It's as bad- or maybe even worse- than Mumbai. Only when you start climbing the ghats of Panchgani- the last of a total of four ghats on the way from Mumbai to Panchgani (Khandala, Poona, Khambatki and Wai ghats)- do you feel relief. But then, there are power cuts. On an average, we faced power cuts of about three to five hours daily. This is a shame. These are the most popular tourist destinations in Maharashtra, yet in this day and age, we face such stringent power cuts. Hotels have generators and inverters; they take pains to keep their guests happy and so the guests are taken care of. But what about the locals. Not everyone can afford generators or inverters. The entire central market place gets plunged into darkness after sunset sometimes, even during peak tourist season. Add to that an acute water shortage and you feel sorry for the locals who are left at the mercy of the crumbled infrastructure.

Still, all woes are forgotten because the place itself is so beautiful, that you somehow don't seem to mind all this. It's a charming little hill station and a must for those who love walking, cycling or even just relaxing. If you sit on the verandah and watch the scenery, mountains or valley, hours will pass by and you won't know. Panchgani and Mahableshwar are two places that I will continue to visit for years and years to come.

2 comments:

  1. We have a travel website which is a Maharashtra travel Guide in which we have a page for Panchgani with lot of information regarding the place. We also have information regarding Panchgani Hotels for which we provide direct link to the hotel websites


    We also have a page for blogs on Panchgani. Do let us know if you would like to

    feature your blog
    in the Panchgani Blogs page in puneritraveller.com.

    Please write to puneritraveller at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete

  2. I love the pics buddy!! It looks beautiful. Nice post! See here : http://bit.ly/2mvpmJj

    ReplyDelete

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