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Old 5th July 2010, 13:01   #16
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[quote

Some irrelevant information
All the snaps are taken with my Samsung Galaxy Spica 3.2 MP mobile camera. I had to restrict the urge to shoot since I had very little control over what I could shoot. The urge to get a digital SLR is overwhelming.

Route information to follow.

-Biju[/quote]
Biju, beautiful pics. Proves the fact that the man behind the instrument is always more imp than the instrument itself. Thanks for sharing this wonderful place.
AP sir, a place in Pune you have not yet visited. Wow, that must be a first in this forum.
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Old 5th July 2010, 14:29   #17
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About our trip.
We have a wonderful group of friends that share the same company transport (bus). I was a part of this "famous and the only one of its kind" bus group for some time before I was thrown into other buses. Commuting by all the other buses turned out be a dull affair where you just mind your own business in the morning and in the evening.

And then I got lucky and was part of the original "friendship bus" once more. Now what is interesting about this bus is that, most of its occupants are fast asleep, half asleep and some even snoring in the mornings. As one of its members said, "it looks like in the morning, everyone was somehow dragged into the bus and deposited on its seats". So I generally occupy myself by reading books. The last book to be completed was "The Settlers", a book about the early day settlers and convicts in Australia.

Everything looks different in the evening. Everyone is happy to board the bus to get back home. There is a lot of chatter, laughter and fun. The early comers make seat reservations for their partners in card games and we play cards.

And then some good souls would get things like ice-cream, idli, batata wada and other eatables. Thank God "this" is not an everyday affair. It definitely would not do any good to my health.

In order to repent our indulgence and make atonement, people plan outings. This is not an easy thing to do. And the trip to Neelkanteshwar was one of such trips. We were a group of more than 30 people including children. So we abandoned the plans to take our cars and hired a bus. And boy we did have a wonderful time on Saturday, 03-Jul-2010.

Now the route.

As MX6 mentioned, it looks like there are 2-3 roads to reach the place. I saw some writings that described these roads.

I think the easiest way to get there is to go towards Splendor Country Resort and from Splendor Country resort, you need to travel further a distance of 11km. I am showing the map below.
Neelkanteshwar, Pune : A great one-day destination; mostly unexplored.-neelkanteshwar_route.jpg

To get to Splendor Country, you can take the NH4->Warje route or take the NH4->Sinhagad route and just before the Dam, turn right and then after crossing the dam turn left onto the road on the other side. After traveling further down from Splendor Country, you need to turn left, cross the river and then turn left again. After that you have to turn right further down the road towards the temple. Beyond this, it is a mostly mud road that takes you upto the base of the hill. There is plenty of parking space. Cars/bikes can go upto this place quite easily. The last stretch could become bad after rains.

The last 1.1 km has to be climbed up. There is a proper road going upto the temple. But it is very steep, in excess of 30-35 degress gradient. It would take approximately 30-45 minutes to get to the top. Even small children (3-4 years old), can climb up.

This whole place was developed by one Mr. Sarje Mama who resides at Donje village. He still comes to this place every Saturday according to the shop keeper at the top.

Facilities at the top
There is plenty of open space and covered sheds (in case of rain). There are probably more than a hundred sculptures scattered over there.

There is a small shop that provides tea, misal pav, biscuits, water etc. You will not get anything else. So carry your own food, water etc. You can cook your own food, if you carry all the stuff up including a portable gas stove.

I did not find any rest room. So everyone will have to use the bushes and the trees to relieve themselves. This was not an issue to anyone.

Fortunately the place looked very clean with no trash lying around. I hope it remains that way. If you go there, please help to keep the place clean.

If you need any more information, please feel free to ask me.

Hope you enjoyed the pictures.
-Biju

Some external links about this place.
Neelkantheshwar
Trek to NeelKantheshwar Tejaswini
Maverick's cockpit: Ride to Neelkanteshwar
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Old 5th July 2010, 14:36   #18
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Anything on a map grabs my attention. That's wonderful explanation biju. This weekend is on. I was wondering whether my father would be able to take those gradients up. But if I tell him it's a shiva temple, he'd probably make it. I shall go there with my SLR. It's been asking for some serious photography for some time. Guess I will ahve to leave early morning to get a feel of the misty ambience.
Your photos simply rock. you need to upgrade. Imagine the magic you can create with a proper camera!
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Old 5th July 2010, 14:52   #19
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Thank you everyone for your kind comments and appreciation. I had not seen any travelogue on this place on Team-Bhp. Hope many more of us would get to see this place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASHISHPALLOD View Post
This is the place where i have not gone till date.
I hope, you have visited this place by varasgaon dam route.
Post the pics of sculptures at that place.
Looking forward.
Ashish, you should make a visit to this place. I hope to see many of the places you and others have described in the various travelogues related to Maharashtra.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Do you mean, you need to trek up to the temple? If that is so, man you must have had a wonderful time!
Yes. It is not a trek actually. More of a walk. But the initial (500 m or so) part of the road is very steep. Definitely 4x4 worthy. But they do not allow vehicles there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by prateekm View Post
As soon as I saw the title, I remembered that I had heard about Neelkanteshwar somewhere. Later realised that we had a chapter on this in the State Board English Text Book (Balbharti).

Your teaser pics are great, waiting for the write-up. BTW, is it ahead of Khadakwasla Dam? (Trying to remember some things from the chapter taught 6-7 yrs back )
Yes, it is ahead of the Khadkwasla dam.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASHISHPALLOD View Post
wow,
the place is as expected.
are there any food stalls present.
please, give details of road condition, parking etc.
Ashish, I have given these details in my previous post. While we were there at least 10-12 bikes and 4-5 cars also came to the parking area. Roads are quite ok now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by himavanth_m View Post
Looks like an awsome place
Please share some info about the route details/distance etc
Please see my previous post.

Quote:
Originally Posted by crossroads View Post
The 4th one is Lord Dattatreya.
Thank you. If I had a good camera, I would have taken pictures of all the sculptures.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MX6 View Post
Anything on a map grabs my attention. That's wonderful explanation biju. This weekend is on. I was wondering whether my father would be able to take those gradients up. But if I tell him it's a shiva temple, he'd probably make it. I shall go there with my SLR. It's been asking for some serious photography for some time. Guess I will ahve to leave early morning to get a feel of the misty ambience.
Your photos simply rock. you need to upgrade. Imagine the magic you can create with a proper camera!
We had one elderly person in our group (the father of a colleague). He was the first to reach the top. Unless there is some issue with joints (knees especially), even elderly people will be able to do it quite easily with a few stops in between. A trekking shoes (with good grip) will be a big help.

When we reached the place in the morning, it was all misty and the wind was blowing strong. By afternoon, the mist cleared up and we could see the valley, rivers, mountains etc.

-Biju
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Old 5th July 2010, 17:35   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nutty Nair View Post
Biju, beautiful pics. Proves the fact that the man behind the instrument is always more imp than the instrument itself. Thanks for sharing this wonderful place.
Thank you Ranjith. I am still learning the ropes of photography. Hope to get into the digital bandwagon soon with a proper camera.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MX6 View Post
Guess I will ahve to leave early morning to get a feel of the misty ambience.
We had left at around 7:30 a.m. from Pune (JM Road). Leaving early is a very good idea. And we left Neelkanteshwar at 4:00 p.m. from the temple and at 5:00 p.m. from the parking ground. Take raincoats, umbrellas and jackets/windcheater. It can get a little bit chilly for some folks at the top.

-Biju

Last edited by pjbiju : 5th July 2010 at 17:40.
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Old 5th July 2010, 19:42   #21
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Hi Biju

I lived in pune for 11 years, but never knew there is a place like this.

Wonderful photographs, thanks for sharing.
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Old 7th July 2010, 09:31   #22
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Hi Star,

You can always make a dash to this place when you are in Pune. I have been in Pune for more than 10 years now, but have never been to Sinhagad (ashamed to say that). I hope to go there this year.

-Biju
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Old 7th July 2010, 10:03   #23
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@ biju

Pardon my ignorance but where exactly is this Splendor Country resort? (coz you have shown route starting from it)
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Old 7th July 2010, 14:11   #24
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Default Route to Splendor Country

Quote:
Originally Posted by ulhas.ahirrao View Post
@ biju

Pardon my ignorance but where exactly is this Splendor Country resort? (coz you have shown route starting from it)
Neelkanteshwar, Pune : A great one-day destination; mostly unexplored.-r_sc.png
The above image shows how to get onto the road that takes you to Splendor Country.
  1. Take NH4->Warje->Khadakwasla road (This is the road which is on the right hand side of the Khadakwasla reservoir when you come towards it from Pune). This road goes towards Splendor Country.
  2. 2. Take NH4->Sinhagad road. Just before the Khadakwasla dam, take a right and cross the dam to join the road on the other side of the dam and then turn left on that road. Follow that road (as described in point no. 1) to get to Splendor Country.
The road through Warje can get very busy in the evenings on weekends and you may get stuck in a traffic jam. So route no. 2 is better.
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Old 7th July 2010, 15:24   #25
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The map actually shows a road going over the khadakwasla lake, in a portion mentioned towards splendor country!
I'd also suggest the sinhagad route. One also gets to drive over the khadakwasla dam this way!
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Old 7th July 2010, 15:38   #26
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What a great place it is. I will be planning a weekend trip soon.
How are the road conditions in monsoons?
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Old 7th July 2010, 16:43   #27
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will be good till khadakwasla dam. After that patchy during rains, last bit is all village roads. Final stretch is 30 min walk on legs. I'm doing it this weekend.
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Old 7th July 2010, 17:35   #28
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I am also planning to be there sometime next week
I want to know is there any road from varsagon to lavasa ?
Google map did show a road but i want to confirm whether any such road exist and is it motorable in monsoon , so that after visiting Neelkantheshwar temple we can enter to lavasa from varasgaon side and exit at pirangute road I saw a road in google map but did not find any person who has followed it so if anybody confirm it then i can plan a loop as pune-singhgad-varsagoan-Neelkantheshwar-varsagaon-lavasa-pirangut-chandani chowk-pune
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Old 7th July 2010, 18:15   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandeep joshi View Post
Google map did show a road but i want to confirm whether any such road exist and is it motorable in monsoon , so that after visiting Neelkantheshwar temple we can enter to lavasa from varasgaon side and exit at pirangute road I saw a road in google map but did not find any person who has followed it so if anybody confirm it then i can plan a loop as pune-singhgad-varsagoan-Neelkantheshwar-varsagaon-lavasa-pirangut-chandani chowk-pune
same case with me.

There is a road shown in maps for varasgaon to lavasa.

I am doubtful that such road exist.

If that road exist, then surely, political heavyweights who are interested in lavasa project could have easily develop this road but that did not happen.

If such road exist, then there was no need of current longer and tougher road to lavasa.

Last edited by ASHISHPALLOD : 7th July 2010 at 18:18.
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Old 7th July 2010, 20:43   #30
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A path "rather than a road" exists. This road was used in the show "Flight of the Hawkz" on NatGeo with 4WDs.
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