Located about 25 km southwest of the city, this hill fortress was once known as Kondhana. Strategically situated at the centre of other forts like Purandhar, Torna and Raighad, Sinhagad, which translates to the “Lion Fort”, was a military outpost of the Marathas, and speaks of the valour of the Maratha Empire. According to folklore, the fort was built about 2,000 years ago. Sinhagad is also a popular choice among tourists who like a good but easy trek, and the lush greenery around is soothing to the senses, especially during monsoons. On a good day, the climb could take about 45 min, and about 35 minutes through the descent. Situated about 1,300 m above mean sea level, the fort can be accessed by road too. So those keen on merely taking in the green vistas around them can ditch the walk and drive up the hill. Some of the places worth visiting in the fort include cenotaphs of Tanaji Malusare, the general of Emperor Shivaji, and Rajaram, the emperor’s younger brother. The premises also house military stables and a temple of Goddess Kali.
Rising to about 2,100 feet above sea level, here’s a huge hillock that offers one of the best views of the Pune city. The hillock is, however, not merely famous for the beautiful panoramic scenery of the city it offers. It houses one of the most famous and oldest heritage structures dating back to around the 17th century, during the Peshwa Dynasty—the Parvati Temple, which is situated right on top of the hillock. The temple is apparently the highest point in the city. Parvati Hill also holds several other temples including those of Lord Vitthal and Goddess Rukmini, Lord Ganesha, Lord Devdeveshwar, and Lord Vishnu. Built as a private shrine by the Peshwa ruler Balaji Baji Rao Peshwa, today, the temple has thousands of tourists climbing up the 103 steps leading to the temple to offer their prayers to the goddess. Interestingly, the staircase is an example of the finest stone work, made to withstand any weather. Also, the steps are built without much gradient so that even the elderly can access them easily. The temple is open on all days between 05.00 a.m. and 08.00 p.m., although Parvati Hill is open between 08.00 a.m. and 5.00 p.m. There is also the Peshwa Museum on the hillock for those keen on learning a little more about the Peshwas’ history and lifestyle.
Aga Khan Palace:
Grand and serene, the Aga Khan Palace is a mighty structure situated in a 19-acre, wooded area. Erected by Sultan Muhammad Shah Aga Khan III in 1892, the architecture of this large palace, with five halls and verandas, takes inspiration from both Islamic elements as well as the Italian motifs, with many arches inside. Located near the Mula River, the palace has a historical significance in that this was where Gandhiji, his wife Kasturba and his secretary Mahadevbhai were jailed for two years since the launch of the Quit India Movement in 1942. In fact, both Kasturba Gandhi and Mahadevbhai died here. One of the gardens in the palace has their shrines containing their ashes. In 1969, the palace was donated to India by Aga Khan IV, dedicated to the teachings and philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi. Then, in 2003, the Archaeological Survey of India declared the palace as a monument of national importance. People can visit the palace any day between 09.00 a.m. and 05.30 p.m.
The National Defence Academy:
If patriotism runs through your veins, this is a place you cannot afford to miss. Located in Khadakwasla, the prestigious National Defence Academy, popularly known as the NDA, is the joint services academy of the country’s armed forces. The premier institution is where cadets from the three defence forces of the nation—Army, Navy and the Air Force—get trained into becoming officers and gentlemen, before being commissioned into the respective forces. The bounteous academy spreads over 7,000 acres of land, strategically chosen to be on a lake shore with a proximity to hilly terrains and the Arabian Sea. The foundation stone for the academy was laid in 1949 by the then prime minister of the nation, Jawaharlal Nehru, and was formally commissioned and inaugurated in 1954 and 1955 respectively. Visits are restricted to Sundays between 10.00 a.m. and 12.30 p.m., and only by prior permission (to be obtained at least two days in advance). But once inside the campus, it is difficult to miss the palpable energies of the cadets ringing through the basalt and granite structure of the academy. While you are here, check out the dining hall, which looks like a tinier, woodier version of the one seen in the Harry Potter movies. Don’t miss out on the famous cream-filled doughnuts sold within the campus.
The Bund Garden is placed in the city of Pune and is assume as one of the most appealing and well-maintained gardens in the city. Also known as Mahatma Gandhi Udhyan, it is a popular among joggers and people who enjoy spending time outdoors in the sun. The locals here prefer the garden as their go-to place when looking for some quiet and calm, and Bund Garden appeals a lot of guests during the morning and evening hours. Another appeal here is the Fitzgerald Bridge, which garners as many visitors as the Bund Garden itself. The garden is an appealing place for the elderly and kids and is a popular picnic spot for families and youngsters as well.
A place known for its serenity and surreal ways to meditate away from the hustle and bustle of city lives, Osho Ashram is popularly known as Osho Meditation Resort. Located in pune, the unique blend of meditation and the Greek concept of resort stay make this experience a truly memorable one. The Ashram is a gentle area which delivers you to your own centers of peace, meditation oneness. The ideologies of Osho also can be launch here. The Ashram is a wonderful area to hunt for the significance we tend to look for in our everyday lives. Initiated in 1974, Osho Ashram observer a colossal number of guests throughout the year, especially the foreigners. Excited people can choose from the Osho guesthouse or the Osho living in the program, according to their inclination.
Saras Garden is placed in the background of Parvati Hills. Designed by Nanasaheb Peshwa, the garden has reservoirs and lavish green lawns. The garden also contains Ganesh Murthi Museum, enclosing large number of Ganesh statues. In early morning as well as evening, joggers and walkers frequent the garden. Soon after completion of Shree Devdeveshwar Temple on Parvati Hill in the 18th century, Nanasaheb Peshwa decided to beautify the environs of the hill. Owing to this, he constructed a lake at the foothills of Parvati Hill. In the centre of the lake was established an island of about 25,000 sq ft area. Later, on the island, a beautiful garden was created. Sawai Madhavrao Peshwa built a temple dedicated to Shree Siddhivinayak Gajanan in 1784.
Dehu Gatha temple is one of the largest temples and is placed nearby Pune. At the access of the temple lies the icon of Sant Tukaram Maharaj. What attracts people the most are the carvings of all Gathas of Sant Tukaram on the walls of the temple which are very easy to read. It is said that one must read at least 3 Gathas on appointment the temple. The temple is placed on Indrayani River's bank. Also, there is an area on the river where these Gathas floats which should not be missed out. Dehu is a spiritual place wherein Saint Tukaram was born. It is a place of the pilgrims. The place is a powerhouse for the followers of Saint Tukaram. A garden has also been dedicated to Tukaram's wife, and rock has been built to commemorate his 13 days fast.