Harihar fort trek near Nashik is a popular trekking destination amidst Sahyadri Mountain Ranges. It is a one day trek from Nashik, Mumbai and Pune!
Location: Nirgudwadi, 45 km from Nashik Towards Trimbak, Maharashtra (India)
Best Time To Visit: July To March is the best time to do Harihar fort trek. You can enjoy an amazing weather and great panoramic views in the monsoon season. The temperature goes high in the summer months during which roaming become difficult.
Harihar Fort Information
The harihargad fort is a hill fort in the Triambak mountain range near Nashik. This fort is at an elevation of 1120 meter (3675 feets) above MSL to the north of Igatpuri. The fort is constructed on a triangular shaped rock and has a steep trekking route. It’s thrilling trek routes calls thousands of trekkers every year. Nirgudwadi (also known as – Takehars) is the base village for Harihar fort trek which is 22 km away from the Trimbakeshwar. It is one of the popular tourist spots near Nashik.
The fort has a tapering plateau with a highland in the middle. This fort is also popular by few other names such as Harishgad or Harshgad or Harihargad. To be specific, this fort lies Upper Vaitarana mountain range. Vaitarna is the main river that fulfills the requirement of water in this region. This river is even one of the main sources for water for Mumbai city. Location of the fort makes it one of the must visit forts in Maharashtra.
Harihar Fort Trek Routes
There is a proper walking train from Nirgudwadi to the base of the fort. You can ask local people for the exact path and they will guide you properly. You need to do a hike of 4 km from the base village to the base. The fort lies on a triangular mountain patch with all 3 sides vertical. Harihar fort trek can be done on only one side through a 200 feet high rock-cut staircase. These rock cut steps have inclined at an angle of 80° which makes a very adventurous & exciting climb. However, the steps have groves to get a proper grip while walking on it.
Ascending and descending on this mountain patch gives an electrifying experience. There are two flights (sets) of steps consisting total 117 steps. After crossing the first flight of steps there is the main gate (Darwaja) of the fort. You can see an expansive view of the mountain range & valley on the left side of this gate. Then after the first flight of steps, the path becomes narrow while leading towards the 2nd flight. Then there are 2 more gates to the fort. It is one of the must do treks near Mumbai & Nashik cities. Harihar fort trek can be easily done within one day from both of these cities. This is one of the thrilling trekking spots in Maharashtra.
This fort had vital importance in ancient times because there the route of Maharashtra to Gujarat used to intersect in this mountain range. Fort was built to keep watch on that trade route to Gujrat. Shahaji Maharaj (Father of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj) gave Harihargad, Trimbakgad, Tringalwadi and few other forts to Mughals in 1636. This was under the rule of the Ahmednagar Sultans.
Harihar fort along with 17 other forts was surrendered to the British on the fall of Trimbak in 1818. Captain Briggs gave the visit to this fort in 1818 and he has left behind a description of the fort. Captain Briggs said that the Harihar fort trek is so difficult that only 5 men could hold it against any odds. He also observed a well-built bomb-proof for powder.
What To See
- Palace: A small palace having 2 rooms is there on the fort. If you are planning to stay at the fort, then these rooms can accommodate about 20 people.
- A lake: Just after reaching on a fort plateau you will come across a small lake. Most of the time the water inside the lake remains safe to drink.
- Temple: Temple of Lord Shiva & Lord Hanuman is also there on the fort. It lies on a plateau near to the lake.
- Water Tanks: While going towards the temple, there are 5 consecutive water tanks. Out of them, 1 tank has drinkable water.
- Flag Pole: There is a flag pole fixed on the highest point of Harihar fort trek. Many people carry the orange flag as well as Indian flag to give tribute.
- Wild Flowers: The soil of fort gives birth to beautiful species of wild flowers in the rainy reason. (Note: You have to be careful while passing through the shrubs as different types of snakes & scorpions live in the shrubs)
- Wildlife: While doing Harihar fort trek, you can see nests of Eagle on the vertical walls of the mountain. The view of eagle circling right next to you is thrilling. Also, be alert about Monkeys and snakes.
- Trimbakeshwar Temple: You can’t really see the Trimbakeshwar temple but the mountain behind which temple lies can be seen from the end of the plateau.
- Basgad Fort: The fort peak of Basgad is visible from the west side of this fort.
- Brahmagiri Mountain Range: You can see the mountain range of Brahmagiri Parvat on the east side of the fort.
- Anjaneri Fort: The southern tip of Anjaneri mountain is visible next to the Trimbakgad range.
- Kalsubai Peak & Other Peaks: In clear weather, you can also spot the peaks of Kalsubai Mountain, Ranjangiri Fort, Awandh-Patta range in the South East direction along with Saatmala & Shelbari peaks in North direction.
IMPORTANT TOURIST INFORMATION
Trek Difficulty: This trek comes under the medium to difficult category and not recommended for beginners and for persons having the fear of height. However, any rock climbing equipment is not required for Harihar fort trek.
How To Reach
It is 22 km away from Trimbakeshwar and 45 km away from the Nashik. Reach Igatpuri town on NH-3 (Mumbai- Aagra) Highway. After Igatpuri take an ST bus or private vehicle to Trimbakeshwar via Khodala.
- By Road: You can reach here via taking a bus to Trimbakeshwar from anywhere in the Maharashtra and alight at Nirgudpada. There is a left turn 4 km before Trimbakeshwar that goes towards Khodala. Nirgudpada is the base village for Harihar fort trek. It is at a distance of 45 km from the Nashik.
- Nearest Rail Station: Nashik road railway station is the nearest railhead to the fort. You can catch private vehicles outside the station to reach the base village.
- Nearest Airport: If we see distance wise then Ozar airport near Nashik is the nearest air station to the fort. However, there are fewer number flights to this airport. Mumbai airport (210 km away) is the most convenient airport.
Time Required: It takes 1.5-2 hours to reach to the base of the fort of the Nirgudwadi. From there more 1 hour to reach the top of the fort. Overall, it takes 3 hours are good enough to do Harihar fort trek (one side).
Eating Stuff / Restaurants Nearby: There are no restaurants or hotels in the village. So carry your own food and plenty of water with you.
Staying Options / Accommodation: You can either stay in Nashik or Trimbakeshwar. There are plenty of hotels & guest houses in both places. Hikers generally prefer to stay in Trimbakeshwar, as there are multiple trekking spots near it.
Map To Reach:
Harihar fort trek is certainly a must do trek in Nashik region. The thrilling patch of rock cut steps raises your adrelline lever like never before!!