Lohagad fort trek is a must do fort near Lonavala region. The fort is blessed with a rich history and is a good spot to visit within 1 day from both Mumbai & Pune.
Best Time To Visit: June to March is the ideal time to do Lohagad trek. It becomes difficult to explore the fort during summer months due to increase in the heat.
Location Address: Lohagadwadi, 6 km from Malvali village on the Mumbai-Pune express highway, Maharashtra (India) – 410 406.
Lohagad Fort Information:
The fort of Lohagad (Loha=Iron, Gad=Fort; Lohagad=Iron Fort) lies amidst Sahyadri Mountain Range in the Maval region of Pune district, Maharashtra. It is close to the popular Lonavala Hill Station and Khandala Hill Station. The fort stands at a considerable elevation of 3412 feet above mean sea level. Lohagad trek along with along with Visapur trek is popular among adventure lovers. Visapur fort is known as a twin fort of Lohagad because both forts stand right next to each other. A village named Lohagad-Wadi is a base village to the fort.
It is a protected monument by Archaeology Survey of India. This fort is one of the must visits forts in Maharashtra. It splits the valleys of Pavna & Indrayani rivers. You can also visit Bhaje and Bedse Caves while visiting Lohagad fort. Bhaje village on the way to the fort has Buddhist caves whereas Bedse caves are in a triangular hill near the Visapur fort.
This fort offers an easy grade trek that is ideally suitable for beginners. About 3 km after leaving Malvali village, you will come across Gaimukh Khind where a road leads towards 2 different directions. The left route from Gaimukh Khind goes towards Visapur Fort whereas right turn goes towards Lohagadwadi. From there, good rock cut steps are there until top of the fort. Proper hiking skills are not necessary to do Lohagad trek. Total 4 gates allow you to enter the fort from a base village which is namely Ganesh Darwaja, Narayan Darwaja, Hanuman Darwaja and The Maha Darwaja.
It is among the popular trekking destinations in Maharashtra. You can see stunning views of the Pavna dam, Visapur Fort, and Maval region from the top of the fort. It offers easy trek, lush greenery, foggy weather and spectacular panoramic views in the monsoon season. Forts like Tikona & Tung are also visible from the top. The design of the fort is very interesting and strong.
Lohagad Fort History:
The fort was built during the Satavhana dynasty. This fort was under the rule of various dynasties including Satavahanas, Chalukyas, Rashtrakutas, Yadavas, Bahamanis, Nizamshahis, Mughals and Marathas. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj won this fort in 1648. For a short duration, Lohagad was a capital of Maratha Empire before Raigad Fort and Rajmachi Fort.
In 1665, fort fall in the hand of Mughals in the Treaty of Purandar. However, Shivaji Maharaj again won it in 1670. During Peshwa rules, Nana Phadnavis also stayed on this fort for some duration. Some cannons are still there on the fort.
©Unknown (Google Images)
What To See
- Fortifications: Even today, walls of the fort are strong in nature. You can easily notice impregnable construction while doing Lohagad trek.
- Big Entrance Gates: Doors of the fort are still in an intact condition. Carvings and metal projects on gates are worth watching.
- Mosque: There is a mosque at the center of the fort.
- Store Rooms: Khajindar Kothi & Laxmi Kothi are 2 Treasuries on the fort.
- Vinchukata (Vinchukada): It is the most popular attraction of the Lohagad fort. The west portion of the fort has an interesting structure like claws of Scorpion. In Marathi, Scorpion mean Vinchu and Claw mean Kata Hence this point is known as Vinchu-Kata.
- A Well: A huge well has been dug out on top of the fort. Stairs are there along walls of the well to go down in the well. According to historians, this well was built by Nana Phadnavis during Peshwa reign (18th Century).
- Shiva Temple
- A Lake
How To Reach Lohagad:
This fort lies close to the Mumbai-Pune highway as well as train route. So one can easily reach here by following means of transportation:
- By Road: The base village of the fort is just 6 km away from the Mumbai-Pune express highway. You need to take a turn towards Malavali village / Bhaja Caves. There is a good motorable road right until the Lohagadwadi. You can park your vehicles in the base village and start Lohagad trek. A patch of few twist & turns with a steep slope is present between Malavali & Lohagadwadi village. So if you are a new driver then it is advisable to park your vehicles near Malavali.
- By Railway: Malavali station on the Mumbai-Pune railway line is the nearest railhead to the Lohagad fort. People coming from Pune side can catch local trains and reach Malavali station directly. However, if you are coming from Mumbai side then you have to first get down at Lonavala station and further need to catch Lonavala-Pune local trains. Auto-rickshaws are available at the station to reach until Malavali village only. Trek route starts at the Malavali village.
- Lonavala Hill Station
- Khandala Hill Station
- Celebrity Wax Museum
- Rajmachi Fort
- Ulhas Valley Trek
- Andharban Trek
IMPORTANT TOURIST INFORMATION
Fort Elevation / Height: 3412 feet above MSL.
Timings: You can visit this fort between the duration of sunrise and sunset. The main gate of the fort gets closed by 6:30 pm every day.
Time Required: It takes just 30-40 minutes to reach the top from base village. 3 hours are sufficient to see the fort properly.
Entry Fee/Ticket: Authorities do not charge anything to see Lohagad fort.
Eating Stuff / Restaurants: There are few hotels at the base village, which serves delicious food. You can get simple food dishes like Zunka-Bhakri, Thecha, Kanda Bhaji, Maggie, Chicken and other simple items. It is advisable to carry sufficient water with you while climbing up on the fort.
Accommodation / Staying Options: As per authorities, visitors cannot stay on the fort. However, you can stay in the hotels available at a base village or by requesting local people.
Map To Reach:
Overall, Lohagad fort trek is a great option to explore the history of Maharashtra. It allows you experience soothing climate, lush greenery and wonderful panoramic views of surrounding mountain range.