August 11, 2015

My TripAdvisor Review No.109: Shivneri Fort, Junnar, Maharashtra.

“Birthplace of Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Founder of the Maratha Empire.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 10 August 2015 NEW
This impressive fort is located in the Junnar district of Maharashtra, about 100 km north of Pune. It is situated on top of a 300 metre high hill which is clearly visible as you approach Junnar town. There is a 5 km motorable road that climbs steeply up to the Fort entrance from Junnar. After that you have to trudge up the stone staircase that takes you to the top. The ascending path to the top is defended by seven gates, the fifth one being armoured with anti-elephant spikes. There are more than about 400 steps to be climbed and it can take an able bodied fit person about 20 to 25 minutes to reach the top. The climb is not recommended for the aged or weak of heart.

For keen trekkers and hikers the fort, and the areas around it, is a wonderful and rugged destination for a day long trek. The steps take you past some beautifully landscaped gardens, and of course the view from the top is indeed breathtaking and sufficient reward for the trouble.

There are mud and rock walls all around the fort. Inside the fort the major buildings are the prayer hall, the tomb and a mosque. There are statues of Jijabai and young Shivaji in the temple inside. Shivaji is said to have been born at this site on 19 February 1630. The fort has several rock hewn cisterns and ponds which have water throughout the year. There are also some Buddhist caves in the hillside below which the fort stands, but this may not be easily accessible unless you are equipped with proper trekking gear.

Shivneri Fort is one of the iconic forts of Maharashtra. It is a must visit if you are anywhere near Junnar town. Entry to the fort is free and the timings are from 6 am to 5 pm.

The other nearby tourist spots is the Lenyadri Buddhist caves and Girijatmaj Ashtavinayak Ganesh Mandir, about 8 km away. Malshej Ghat, well known for its monsoon scenery is about 30 km further towards Kalyan. From Pune the route is via Bhosari, Chakan, Rajgurunagar and Narayangaon on the Pune Nashik highway (NH50). At Narayangaon you have to take a left turn after the ST bus stand to Junnar town.
Visited July 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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