12 Jun 2015

Panoramic Pune

places to visit in Pune

I am an IT professional in Mumbai and life is pretty monotonous. To be honest, I have always wanted to live here but even Juhu Beach gets old after a while. Thus, every 6 months, my school friends and I, who live in Mumbai, plan a trip and this time it was Pune. A vibrant metropolis, Pune is the cultural capital of Maharashtra, set amidst picturesque locales. It is the second largest city in Maharashtra and is right on the bank of Mutha River. It is said to be the Queen of the Deccan and had been the residence of the legendary Raja Shivaji. It is also globally famous for the Osho International Meditation Resort.

Without getting a room at the hotel, we settled for a homestay. And I must say that this was the best thing that happened for this trip. After a 3 hour drive away from Mumbai, we were cordially received by our friendly host and the place was simply amazing.

The first place we visited in Pune was the Aga Khan Palace. It was constructed by Sultan Mohammad Shah in 1892 and is related to Indian Independence movement. Many important freedom fighters were imprisoned in this palace. During Quit India Movement of 1942, Mahatma Gandhi and his wife Kasturba Gandhi along with Mahadeobhai Desai were put under arrest in this palace.

After grabbing breakfast, we visited Bund Garden. Away from the hustle and bustle of the city, we enjoyed a boat ride in the backwaters developed by the bund. The bund garden is filled with beautiful flowers. This was followed by some fun activities at Appu Ghar and then Chaturshringi Temple. It is located on the slope of a hill and is a symbol of power and faith. We had to climb more than 100 steps to reach the shrine of Goddess Chaturshringi.

Our next stop was Darshan Museum. If you are in Pune, you shoudn’t miss visiting this place for anything. We were mesmerized by the 100 minute show that they offer free cost. It was an enriching experience. Being an IT professional, I was seriously impressed with the new-age technology that they used.

Pune is home to a number of monuments and gardens but we choose to go to the Panshet Water Park. It is located between Varasgaon Dam and Panshet Dam. We had great fun indulging ourselves in all those water sport activities. My personal favorite was the water scooters. We were pretty hungry from all the adrenaline rush and thrill and decided to call it a day. We enjoyed the most authentic Maharashtrian lunch at our homestay that was delicious, to say the least.

The next morning we visited the Pataleshwar Cave Temple. Bulit from basalt rock, the temple is dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva. We had some breakfast enroute to David Synagogue. The architectural style is spectacular with huge frontal pillars in Gothic style. A clock tower overlooks the whole city. It is one of the major attractions of Pune and is filled with tourists. Our last stop in the itinerary was Flying Safari. We friends love adventures and one of the main reasons why we chose Pune was because of Flying Safari. It is a major institute for providing paragliding training. Needless to say, each one of us tried paragliding and we were giddy with happiness.

Even on our way back to Mumbai, we had a smile plastered on our faces from the excitement that we had.



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