With Unlock 2.0, restriction on the movement of people is being lifted, and you may be itching to go on that long-overdue holiday. Those looking for weekend getaways near Pune have numerous options, but so do thousands of other people in the city. We suggest you ditch the touristy places and pick the ones that are relatively lesser known, for social-distancing reasons. So, here are some of the less-crowded destinations around Pune, which are perfect for a post-lockdown trip.

Less-Crowded Places near Pune:

1. Kasarsai Dam

 

Kasarsai Dam is one of the best places to visit near Pune in one day, owing to the numerous activities it offers. Not only can you sit on the shores of the backwaters and admire the greenery all around, but you can also see migratory birds, especially in winters. Moreover, the reservoir doubles up as a watersports spot, so you are in for a real treat.

  • Distance from Pune: 25 km
  • Driving Time: 1 hour
  • Things to Do: Relaxing, photography, swimming, camping, speed boating, banana boating, kayaking
  • Best Time to Visit: October to February

2. Tamhini Ghat

One of the best places to visit near Pune in monsoon, Tamhini Ghat will definitely become a favourite. The winding hill roads with lush vegetation on both sides, cool weather and clouds that are often in your face make it a great destination for a road trip from the city. The highlight of the sojourn would be the numerous seasonal waterfalls cascading from the hills right on to the road!

  • Distance from Pune: 55 km
  • Driving Time: 2 hours
  • Things to Do: Visit to Mulshi Dam, bike rides, nature walks, camping, birdwatching
  • Best Time to Visit: July to March

3. Morachi Chincholi

Another great place for a one-day trip from Pune, Morachi Chincholi is known (albeit to few people) for its peacock sanctuary. This eco-village, in the middle of nowhere, is also home to robins, babblers, parakeets and woodpeckers. All these birds live here almost undisturbed by people, which is why you will be able to see them easily in the open.

  • Distance from Pune: 55 km
  • Driving Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Things to Do: Nature walks, birdwatching, relaxing
  • Best Time to Visit: October to February

4. Mayureshwar Wildlife Sanctuary

An incredible one-day picnic spot near Pune, Mayureshwar is one of the few protected territories in India where you can take your own vehicle! The wildlife sanctuary is home to numerous species of animals, the most prominent among which are the Indian wolf, golden jackal, striped hyena, chinkara and fox. Plus, it is a great place for birdwatchers too, with over 230 kinds of winged creatures, both resident and migratory, recorded here. You can also include Ujani Dam in your trip, to see painted storks, flamingos, demoiselle cranes and bar-headed geese.

  • Distance from Pune: 65 km
  • Driving Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Things to Do: Wildlife safari, nature walks, birdwatching, photography
  • Best Time to Visit: October to February
  • Timings: 7:00 am to 7:00 pm
  • Entry Fee: ₹50

5. Nighoj Potholes

This place is not only unknown but also unique. Here, you will see loads of different shapes carved into basalt rocks by the Kukadi River that look like potholes. In the summer, when there is less water in the river, the network of potholes is easily visible. It is even possible to sit on these features, as well as walk on them to reach the lowest place where the water is still flowing.

  • Distance from Pune: 70 km
  • Driving Time: 2 hours
  • Things to Do: Picnic, photography, river dips, relaxing
  • Best Time to Visit: March to June

6. Devkund Waterfall

Situated amidst the Western Ghats, near Bhira Dam, Devkund Waterfall is a great place to chill, relax and have fun. For a memorable experience, remember to combine your trip with a trek to the waterfall, which will treat you to the sight of numerous streams. The water drops from a height of around 80 feet into the pool, where you can go for a little dip to cool off.

  • Distance from Pune: 100 km
  • Driving Time: 3 hours
  • Things to Do: Hiking, swimming, camping, photography
  • Best Time to Visit: October to February

Check out our blog on the other amazing waterfalls near Pune

7. Naneghat

A mountain pass in the Western Ghats, Naneghat is one of the best trekking destinations near Pune. Visit the place during monsoon to be bewitched by cool weather, low-lying clouds and greenery. Plus, there are few caves here, which have wall inscriptions in the Brahmi script, said to be from 2nd century BC.

  • Distance from Pune: 120 km
  • Driving Time: 3 hours
  • Things to Do: Trekking, camping, relaxing, photography
  • Best Time to Visit: July to February

8. Kaas Plateau

Many of you must have heard about the Valley of Flowers, but how many of you know about the Plateau of Flowers? Yes, the Kaas Plateau is known as the Plateau of Flowers due to the bloom of more than 850 types of wildflowers, which bathes it in varying hues during the rains. This is one of the best places to visit near Pune for couples, if your idea of a romantic getaway includes vivid vistas and calmness.

  • Distance from Pune: 130 km
  • Driving Time: 3 hours
  • Places to See: Kumundini Lake, Plateau of Flowers, Vajrai Waterfall, Ghatai Devrai
  • Best Time to Visit: July to October

9. Harihareshwar

Living inland, you must long for a beach vacation. One of the prettiest less-crowded destinations near Pune, Harihareshwar is the place to be if you are looking for some ‘me’ time. Apart from the usual beach fun, but without a lot of people, you can traverse a narrow downhill pathway between two hills, which leads to a rocky shore. In addition, there are several watersports available for adventurous souls.

  • Distance from Pune: 170 km
  • Driving Time: 5 hours
  • Things to Do: Beach fun, paragliding, watersports, hiking, relaxing
  • Best Time to Visit: October to February

10. Sandhan Valley

If you are looking for places to visit near Pune in two days, which offers you tranquillity as well as adventure, then make for Sandhan Valley. Its nickname, ‘Valley of the Shadows’ gives you a sense of the adventure you can expect here, but the real experience is much better. It is primarily a trekking destination, where the narrow trail goes between two mountains. Along the hiking trail are cliffs, drops and rivers, all of which need to be crossed.

  • Distance from Pune: 195 km
  • Driving Time: 5 hours 15 minutes
  • Things to Do: Trekking, rappelling, river crossing, camping
  • Best Time to Visit: September to February

11. Ladghar Beach

Known to a handful of people, Ladghar Beach lies near the small town of Dapoli. Though the beach is less known, it does not lack in facilities, including those for watersports as well as dining. There are several stalls near the shore, which cook up freshly caught seafood in typical Konkan Coast style. You can simply relax on the red sand or indulge in some watersports to spice up your life.

  • Distance from Pune: 200 km
  • Driving Time: 5 hours 30 minutes
  • Things to Do: Relaxing, trying local seafood, parasailing, water scooter riding, banana boat riding, motorboat riding
  • Best Time to Visit: October to February

12. Panhala

One of the many unknown places near Pune, Panhala is a small town settled on a flat hill, almost at the edge of the Western Ghats. Though its biggest highlight is Panhala Fort, from where Shivaji made a famous escape, the town has a lot more for nature lovers. Not being visited by many people gives it the serenity that would make you want to visit it again. Plus, the views of the hills all around make it a feast for the eyes.

  • Distance from Pune: 235 km
  • Driving Time: 4 hours 15 minutes
  • Things to Do: Sightseeing, relaxing, hiking
  • Best Time to Visit: October to February

13. Amba Ghat

It is surprising that Amba Ghat is included in the list of lesser-known places near Pune, considering its breathtaking natural beauty. During the monsoon, this mountain pass comes alive with a carpet of fresh green grass and sound of waterfalls gushing just about everywhere you look. Additionally, the area features endemic wildlife, including the massive Indian bison (gaur) as well as the majestic tiger, so bring along your camera and binoculars.

  • Distance from Pune: 255 km
  • Driving Time: 5 hours
  • Things to Do: Bike rides, photography, frolicking under waterfalls, hiking, wildlife spotting, paragliding
  • Best Time to Visit: July to February

14. Jawhar

Planning a holiday with people who like different things? Then, Jawhar is a great place, as it has something for all kinds of travellers, including history and culture enthusiasts, adventurers and nature lovers. While its Warli culture will keep culture aficionados engaged, the green Western Ghats will draw nature lovers toward themselves. Apart from just exciting the visual senses, the hills also give you the perfect opportunity to indulge in nature exploration.

  • Distance from Pune: 285 km
  • Driving Time: 5 hours 20 minutes
  • Things to Do: Indulging in Warli culture, trekking, frolicking under waterfalls
  • Best Time to Visit: July to February

Apart from these, other offbeat holiday destinations around Pune are Amboli (75 km), Thoseghar Falls (130 km), Tapola (145 km), Purushwadi (165 km), Bhandardara (170 km) and Hedvi (240 km).

You can read about several of them in our lesser-known destinations near Mumbai blog.

Off you go now.

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