Saturday, July 30, 2016

Matheran - Weekend Getaway Near Mumbai

Matheran is a beautiful hill station just a few hours away from Mumbai. This red mud hill station is the only non-automobile hill station in India, thus be prepared to walk and ride a horse.

We decided to go there for a two day trip. Matheran is best for even a one day trip or if you are into trekking this place is good for that too.

You can board a Karjat bound train from Mumbai and get down at Neral. You can either board a mini toy train from Neral to go to Matheran, the train drops you off in the heart of Matheran. Or you can take a sharing cab which drops you off at Dasturi. You have to walk from Dasturi or opt for a horse ride. If you are driving then you can park your car at Dasturi and then walk from there. The toy train doesn't work in monsoon.

We caught the afternoon train and reached Neral around 5.15pm. We took the share cab to go to Dasturi. I had heard a lot that the cab drivers are rash drivers, I was completely sure that I would panic the moment he speeds but luckily our cabbie was nice and drove safely. They charge Rs. 70 per person. After the 20 minutes cab ride we were at Dasturi and the first thing I saw were monkeys!

If you are going to Matheran be ready to face monkeys everywhere! I repeat, everywhere! Make sure you don't tease them nor do you carry any eatables, they are going to snatch it from you.

We decided to go for a night trek (well, kind of) so we walked from Dasturi to  Matheran along the train tracks. If you are feeling adventurous and want to do something like this then please make sure you are wearing good shoes and carrying a torch or some source of light. It is pitch dark there and at times you would pass some locals going up and down the hill but other than that, nothing. Also make sure that you are prepared to deal with monkeys, if you come across any. Although they are not around at night especially during monsoon. We did manage to go half way before I started freaking out and made my way back to the hotel.

We did come across this beautiful sight on our way, and had I not been freaking out I think I would have enjoyed the sight better.

The next day we again made our way to the town and explored the place. Matheran has a number of ‘points’ sunset, sunrise, suicide, khandala etc. but the issue during monsoon is that it is always covered with fog so unless you are lucky and you manage to reach the point during the brief period when the fog is clearing you won't be able see much other than plain white blanket. Don't get me wrong, that is beautiful as well. It was raining the whole time we were there and it was just perfect!

Lake, fog, rain and me 😎 Walked almost for 20mins from the town market to this lake. The way to go to this place is narrow, covered with trees walk way. It almost feels like you are in a jungle ( technically you are! But in a civilised jungle) the walk is beautiful in monsoon. I initially did get a little skeptical about going as it was all Misty and seemed deserted but later that added to the fun. More on the this place on my blog soon. The Link is in the bio. Or you can visit #Blogger #Bblogger #Travel #Youtuber #Matheran #Neral #Maharashtra #MaharashtraTourism #travelblogger #Weekend #Hillstation #Raigad #Monkey #Indianyoutuber #Mumbai #Girl #Femaletraveller #travelblog #travelblog #trip #holiday #travelling #tourism #instatraveling #Clouds #Valley #Trek #trekking #Monsoon #charlottelake
A photo posted by Pooja Mahimkar (@poojamahimkar) on

We made our way to Charlotte lake. Reaching this place is also bit of a walk, make sure you keep asking for directions on your way as it is very easy to miss the little right turn that leads to the lake. Once you take the right turn, you enter this narrow walkway which surrounded by trees. Again, it was just beautiful in the monsoon. The walk was covered with fog and mist, we occasionally met other people who were visiting the lake but other than those handful few it was just us walking into this civilised jungle. Of Course the monkeys kept us company.

The lake is beautiful, it kinda reminded me of the Lake from Harry Potter movies.

We ate some maggi and tea at the lake and then headed back. I was too tired to walk down to Dasturi again so we decided to opt for the horse ride. I was again too terrified that I absolutely forgot to take any pictures while I was holding on the horse for my dear life.

We took a cab ride back and then then train to Mumbai and we were home!

Matheran really is beautiful and perfect for a weekend away. I wonder how awesome it would be in Winter.