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Old 16th May 2010, 10:13   #106
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@mx6,

Though very nice pics, i sadly post that you never reached to kaas lake.
From the pics and write up, i must say that you had posted the pics of lake formed due to backwaters of kanher dam built on venna river which is near satara on medha road.

For kaas lake, you do not need to reach valley downward, the lake is small and is located on plateau itself.
And yes, it is not easy to locate unless you know the place.
You may pass along the bank of kaas lake but you will not come to know that there is a lake.
It is hidden diamond.

I propose, we will have a meet at kaas lake during sept.
it will be fun at kaas, bamnoli, boat ride to a temple and typical village food.

@vrprabhu,
you never posted the pic of kaas lake. correct me.
if you have the same, please post the pic.

Last edited by ASHISHPALLOD : 16th May 2010 at 10:31.
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Old 16th May 2010, 10:49   #107
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ASHISHPALLOD View Post
And yes, it is not easy to locate unless you know the place.
You may pass along the bank of kaas lake but you will not come to know that there is a lake.
It is hidden diamond.
That is why we need experts like you to help us!
I'm game for the sept meet in Kaas with Thosegar and Bamnoli as add-ons. Lead the way AP!
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Old 16th May 2010, 11:13   #108
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Originally Posted by smartcat View Post
All this time, I was wondering when I subscribed to a thread called "Magnificent Maharashtra". OK, now I know

Other than Khandala & Lonavla, I thought there is nothing much to see in Maharashtra - this state never registers as a "touristy" state. But now, I will be watching this thread closely. So what can we expect here?

Beaches? Forts? Hill stations? Treks?
Maharastra is the crown of India, but very understated. It has some of the mind blowing destinations

You can find everything in Maharastra, there are caves (Ajanta, Ellora. etc), cave temples (Marleshwar...), waterfalls (Bhandardhara...), pilgrimage destinations (Pandharpur, Nasik, Kolhapur....), Forts which also act as trekking destinations (dozens of them), beaches (whole coastal area is full of beaches from Mumbai down till Vengurla), Modern cities (NaviMumbai, Lavasa...), Places of Historical imporatance (Mumbai, Pune, Aurangabad...)

the list is endless.

Most important thing in Maharastra is the people are very progressive, culturally adaptive, flexible. The only state in India where still Theater is very active is maharastra, still people pay to watch the drama. Maharastra is also a land of festivals, the sprits are mind blowing.
Food is also very authentic, one can find traditional to modern everything in Maharastra.

Industry is also very vast in Mahastratra from the first Industrial area in India (MIDC Pune) to the first SEZ (SEEPZ) to the first Industry hub etc. This itself is a attration on it's own.

Maharastra is an example of thinking and being BIG but being HUMBLE.

very apt title for a travelogue which explores Maharastra.

Last edited by StarVegabond : 16th May 2010 at 11:14.
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Old 16th May 2010, 11:25   #109
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Originally Posted by StarVegabond View Post

You can find everything in Maharastra, there are caves (Ajanta, Ellora. etc), cave temples (Marleshwar...), waterfalls (Bhandardhara...), pilgrimage destinations (Pandharpur, Nasik, Kolhapur....), Forts which also act as trekking destinations (dozens of them), beaches (whole coastal area is full of beaches from Mumbai down till Vengurla), Modern cities (NaviMumbai, Lavasa...), Places of Historical imporatance (Mumbai, Pune, Aurangabad...)
to add to the list,

maharashtra has hill stations[mahableshwar, panchgani, amboli, matheran, chikhaldara, toranmal...find this place..., mhaismal], forest area like tadoba, chandoli, koyna and vast forest in vidarbh, huge dams like koyna, ujani, jayakwadi etc, 60% of the forts in the world are located in maharashtra, more than 50% of the dams in india are located in maharashtra, almost all the social reforms in india originated from maharashtra.

ok, no more gk.

thanks star for your kind words for lovely maharashtra.

mx6, looking forward for further addition of your mahatrips.
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Old 16th May 2010, 11:53   #110
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Kaas almost looks like an ideal setting for a Lord of the rings movie! Mountain, water, grasslands, forests, valleys and what not! Need to go there for sure!

Quote:
Originally Posted by vrprabhu View Post
Can you please enlighten me on "Kumara Parvatha".....
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Originally Posted by MX6 View Post
KP is the ultimate challenge for trekkers in Karnataka. Check on the log by smartcat where there's a lot of pics on KP. Also Addyhemmige came with his version too (though I didn't like the photo of the leeches on his leg). There's also a brave girl who did KP!
Prabhu MX already answerd about the KP question. I have heard so much about Ratangad and Monsoons and I have seen some amazing snaps about some treks in Monsoon. Would love to see more.
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Old 16th May 2010, 13:06   #111
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@ampere. Good to see another Tolkien fan!

Here's a special for AP!

Elephanta islands are a group of islands near Mumbai. The caves are in an island that's 10 kilometers from Gateway of India and can be reached by a ferry, that leaves frequently.
It's an ideal day trip. The trip has every thing a mumbaikar can ask for. A romantic cruise over the waters which slap against the boat sides mellifluously as the boat tosses over gently. If you pay 5 rs extra per person, you can climb to the top. Tourists are urged strongly not to throw anything from the boat in the waters and surprisingly, most oblige and use the trashcans in the boats instead, After a nice soothing boat ride, one gets off on the island and a toy train greets them. The kids are thrilled. Getting away from the mad rush of Mumbai is the best anyone can as for.
The view of Gateway of India and the Taj hotel is majestic as one sails off from the pier. Not many realise the Mumbai is actually a group of 7 islands off the Indian mainland!

Taj Hotel. Can't imagine that this was a cynosure of all eyes during a violent terror attack.
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The Gateway of India was built to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to Bombay in December 1911.
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As one sails off towards the elepahnta, one gets to see at a distance naval ships sometimes. Further there were other ships moored there.
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Reaching the elephanta jetty, There's a bit of walk involved to the caves. There's also a toy train that takes one to the base of the steps from where we need to climb up.
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Thankfully for us, beyond a distance, there were covered canopies to protect us from the blazing heat of summer.
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The steps are dotted with shops that sell artefacts that are off collector's interest. Monkeys normally steal some of these, and they specificaly target food items. Photo, showing art on leaf below.
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Elephanta caves are I guess 7 in number and the main one's are caves 1, 2 and 3. They are Hindu cave temples, which was stumbled upon by Portuguese. The soldiers used to take pot-shots at those statues, using them as target practice and ended destroying loads of it. When Mumbai was handed as Dowry to the british, this non-descripit island was handed over too. Thankfully, the British didn't go around defacing like the portuguese.
Entrance of cave 1. During the monsoons, it's believed that there's a curtain of water falling over the entrance making it look heavenly. But sadly, boats don't operate during heavy rains.
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Entrance of cave 2.
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Entrance of cave 3.
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Us in cave 1. Look at the intricately carved pillars behind. These caves are dated between 5th and 8th century AD.
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Last edited by MX6 : 16th May 2010 at 13:07.
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Old 16th May 2010, 13:14   #112
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ASHISHPALLOD View Post

thanks star for your kind words for lovely maharashtra.
Hi Ashish Bhau, Tumhi ma laa, lazau naka. I am just being proud of my motherland just like you.

Maha Rastra = Great State, another great thing done by the founding leaders, they have chosen a very apt name.
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Old 16th May 2010, 13:35   #113
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That way Starvegabond, every place in India has a claim to glory! The great temples of TN, the backwaters of Kerala, The diversity of Karnataka, the Palaces of Rajasthan, the mighty Himalayas etc. One can go on naming for each and every state.
Humara Bharat Mahaan! India is truly great. Unfortunately, tourism is a very neglected sector here in India still. T-BHP that way is spreading a lot of good news about travel in India! We now have travelogues of even the northeast, showing it in full glory. Imagine an India where accessibility, accomodation and facilities are top class!
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Old 16th May 2010, 14:39   #114
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I have never seen to Gharapuri caves[ Elephanta caves].
Thanks for pics.

Had anyone done torna fort trek?

@mx6,

I think you had been to torna. One of your pic has background of rajgad fort.
It means the pic is taken at torna fort.
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Old 16th May 2010, 16:03   #115
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That makes the elephanta snaps more special AP saab. These are specially for you.
I've not been to Torna. That's what I target in the monsoons. I'm not sure which pic shows background of rajgad fort. I've not taken photos of rajgad fort.

Cave 1 is the grandest. A hall opens out with pillars all around. There's a huge Shiva, in the form of a Linga right in the middle. Imposing figures of Dwarapalakas guard the small sanctum of the Shiva Linga. The enormity of the cave and the sculptures and the pillars can be judged by the fact that they tower over my wife!
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Who pulls maximum crowd in Mumbai? Is it Amitabh? No. Is it Tendulkar? No again. He's the darling of every household here. He comes in all sizes. He's our great Ganesha who finds his place on the cave walls!
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If Ganesha is around can his brother be far behind? Incidentally, there are very few places in Maharashtra where you find his brother Subramanya or Karthikeya or Muruga (as he's known down south). And I find him with his staff (vel) in Elephanta!
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Carving amazing pillars which are perfect cylindrical is not an easy task especially when it's a temple that's carved out of a cave. No one moved these stones from outside. Add to it that this dates almost 1500 years back! Another view of the great pillars.
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The shiva linga is huge too. Again, it's carved out of the cave it self. None of these you see were separately carved and brought from outside. It's all carved off the same rock hill!
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I've captured many of the sculptures in my camera! Shiva in his various glorious forms. But the central to all this is the huge sculpture showing the 3 of the 5 faces Shiva (Ishana, Tatpurusha, Aghora, Vamadeva and Sadjyojata). The three faces are literally imposing and are supposed to depict the creation, protection and destruction of the trimurti's brahma, vishnu and shiva within shiva himself. We are literally dwarfed in front of him.
The Trimurti sculpture, with the Gateway of India in the background, has been adopted as the logo of the Maharashtra Tourism Department
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Another photo showing the craft items that can be purchased in Elephanta!
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The next post will have various sculptures of Shiva explaining his form. Since it will take time for me to type out the details, Let me post a couple of other photos which I took on the way back to Gateway of India.
The skyline of Mumbai on the way back.
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Up next. Shiva in his various forms and some interesting things at the island!

Here's a dampener though. Special Permission from Archaelogical Survey of India needed for use of Tripod within the caves. So all the pics taken were hand-held in very dark conditions. But watch this space for some very great photos of sculptures.
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Old 16th May 2010, 16:37   #116
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Looks like a tiny version of Ellora caves, but equally crowded!

Is the first Mumbai skyline picture modified? The sun & skyscape doesn't look red/orange.
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Old 16th May 2010, 16:42   #117
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@Smartcat. The first one is with UV filter and a CPL filter on the lens.
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Old 16th May 2010, 16:45   #118
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Quote:
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I've not been to Torna. That's what I target in the monsoons. I'm not sure which pic shows background of rajgad fort. I've not taken photos of rajgad fort.
please ref the red circle pic.
the hill background is rajgad fort.
such type of pic of rajgad can be taken only from torna fort or may be sinhgad fort.
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Old 16th May 2010, 17:39   #119
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That place you've circled is one of the hillocks that we climbed up from near the narayanpur (tirupati temple). Basically, we drove from the temple towards sasvad, took a diversion and climbed this hill. The view from the hill was amazing with hills all around. That place lands in between nasrapur and sasvad. There as also a temple of Kaal Bhairav (a lone temple with a very big trishul). And we could see hills 360 degrees around!
Don't think Rajgad is visible from that much of a distance AP saab.

Point A in the map below is location of Narayanpur temple. The black circle approximately shows the point I'm standing at. Probably the fort which you think you spot could be Purandar Quilla. But then AP saab knows best. So is Raigad visible form this much of a distance? I'm standing on the black circle on the map.
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Last edited by MX6 : 16th May 2010 at 17:47.
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Old 16th May 2010, 17:48   #120
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Don't think Rajgad is visible from that much of a distance AP saab.
it is indeed rajgad.
rajgad is visible from the spot you mentioned.
you can easily spot the rajgad while driving from pune to satara on nh4. just keep eye on right side hillock after nasarapur.
if sky is clear, you can have good view of torna.

anyway, do not try torna fort in monsoon. its risky.
in any case, do not stay at torna
.
[ be aware that some people believe that a ghost is present at torna fort. there are some incidents happened which one must take seriously]
[ i do not believe the ghost story but there is no need to be adventurous].

Last edited by ASHISHPALLOD : 16th May 2010 at 18:00.
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