As the state of Maharashtra is the Home of Sahydri Mountains, the state has many appealing hill stations. Hill stations of Maharashtra not only attract the foreign tourists but also Indian domestic tourists, which are exhausted with the fast urban life.  Surrounded by the high peaks covered with full greenery, always make me feel as I am in the lap of Mother Nature. There is a mind soothing peace all around in hill stations. Also here, worth mentioning the nature of the people of hill stations who despite of living a hard life always maintain an innocent smile on their face.  It is said that each hill station of Maharashtra has unique characteristic and its closeness to a city makes it very popular.

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Here are top Hill Stations of Maharashtra

Amboli

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Amboli is a hill station engulfed in peace and tranquility. Situated at an altitude of 690 m, Amboli lies in the Sindhudurg district of Maharashtra. Amboli is the last hill resort before the coastal plains begin in the southern ranges of the Sahyadri Hills. The hilltop Amboli gives a fine bird’s-eye view of the Konkan coast. On one side of Amboli lies the Konkan coast, the other three flanked by handsome looking valleys. Hiranyakeshi Temple, Nagarta falls, Hiranya Keshi, Mahadev Gad and Narayangad are the important places to visit in this hill station.

Bhandardara

Bhandardara is blessed with three things – rejuvenating climate, charming mountains and explicit quietness. Located at a distance of just 70km from Nashik, Bhandardara is a small and quiet hill station popular for its magnificent picnic spots. It’s also quite near to Mumbai. The literal meaning of Bhandardara is valley of treasures. Here the elements of nature are in perfect harmony – From the highest mountain peak in Maharashtra, to one of the largest lakes and oldest dams in the country, completing its journey as the mother of all monsoon destinations with its cascading waterfalls, this locale has it all..  It also has a trekking destination – Mount Kalusubai. Bhandardara is most suited to visit after the monsoon season as its beauty emerges only after the rains.

Chikhaldara hills

Situated at an altitude of 1,118 m , Chikhaldara is the only hill resort in the Vidarbha region, and has the added distinction of being the only coffee-growing area in Maharashtra. Chikhaldara is full of deep valleys, and these valleys are full of velvet mist and majestic trees. The history of Chikhaldara Hills goes back to the pages of Mahabharata. It is believed that Bheema killed Keechaka here and threw him down the valley. Being the only coffee growing area in Maharashtra, Chikhaldara Hills is also famous for its Melghat Tiger Project too.

Lonawala & Khandala

Lonavala or Lonavla and the adjacent Khandala are beautiful, charming and twin hill stations, 622 m. above sea level and 5 Kms a part from each other are situated in the Sahyadri ranges. Lonavala and Khandala have magnificent waterfalls that give a heart catching view during monsoon. Tourists can plan their trip together with Karla, Bhaja, and Bedsa caves, which are very near from Lonavala. Now-a-days, Tiger Point, in Lonawala has become second home for mumbaikars.

Mahabaleshwar

Mahabaleshwar is also known as the Queen of all Hill Stations. At 1,372 meters above sea level, around Lake Venna, is the highest hill station in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra. Mahabaleshwar is one of the most spectacular and the largest of Maharashtra hill-stations. Far way from the madding crowds the hill resort makes an excellent holiday destination. The natural beauty of Mahabaleshwar attracts nature lovers, film directors, holidaymakers, peace seekers and adventurers alike. The heat and the dust of the plains give way to the cool breezes and the gorgeous greens of Mahabaleshwar.

Matheran

The closest hill station to Mumbai, Matheran was discovered in 1850 by the British during their occupation of India and subsequently developed into a popular summer retreat. At height of 800 meters above sea level, this serene place provides a cooling escape from searing temperatures. However, the most unique thing about it and what makes it so special, is that all vehicles are banned there — even bicycles. It’s a soothing place to relax away from any noise and pollution.

Panhala

Panhala is associated with the rich and glorious history of the Marathas. The Panhala hill station is situated at an altitude of 977 m. The place houses famous Panhala fort which has great acquaintance with Maratha Empire.  Panhala is a hill station where the beauty gets new magnification. With fascinating landscapes Panhala is a perfect vent to reach out of the routine congestion, to an escape into the lap of greenery and freshness. This sparsely populated and peaceful hill station, with a kind of “back-to-nature” environment overwhelms your senses.

-Tanvi Shah

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