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Pune - Deccan Queen OR Queen of Deccan

STATE - MAHARASHATRA
   
DISTANCE - 163 KM From Mumbai, 202 KM From Nashik, 142 KM From Thane

 
CONNECTION
 
By Air : Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Calcutta, Madras, Bangalore and Ahmedabad are connected by air to Pune. Mumbai is the nearest International Airport to Pune.

By Rail : Pune is linked with Mumbai, Nasik, Aurangabad, Chennai, Delhi and other major cities of India.

By Road : The excellent road network connects Pune with most of the important cities in Maharashtra and India. The Mumbai-Pune Express Highway offers a safe and fast access between Mumbai and Pune.
 
ABOUT PUNE
 
Pune is one of the cultural cities of the state of Maharashtra that wears a rich historical legacy characterised with the glorious period of Marathas. The city of Pune is situated near the western coast of India, about 115 miles south-east of Mumbai (Bombay). It is one of the many cities situated on the Deccan plateau, which forms the triangular portion of India. 'Punaka' is the name by which Pune was known in the ancient times. Pune is the seat of North Indian Classical music and it continues to be one of the eminent centers of education in India. Being the cultural hub of western India Pune attracts tourists throughout the year from all around.
 
PLACES OF INTERESTS IN PUNE
 
Bhaja Caves : Bhaja Caves are one of the popular Buddhist caves in India, which are situated in the Aurangabad District of Maharashtra. The caves, lying 60 km from Pune city, are believed to date back to as far back as the 2nd century, when the Theravadin phase of Buddhism was still in its earliest stages.

Janjira Fort : Janjira Fort is situated in the Murud town of Maharashtra. Infact, the Island Fort serves as one of the major attractions of the town. Murud served as the erstwhile capital of the Siddi rulers of Janjira in the earlier times. Today, Janjira is counted amongst the few sea forts of India and lies 2 km inside the town.

Karla Caves : Karla Caves are situated in the Aurangabad District of Maharashtra, quite near to the Bhaja Caves. They fall on the Pune-Mumbai Road and are approximately 40 km from the heart of Pune. The caves were carved somewhere around the 2nd century BC, the time when Buddhist was at its peak in India.

Malshej Ghat : Malshej Ghat is one of the most popular weekend getaways, situated amidst the Sahyadri Hills of India. Since it falls on the outskirts of the Pune city, it is visited by the locals of the city as well as the tourists who come here for spending their holidays.

Murud Janjira Beach : Murud Janjira Beach, being located around 190 km from the Pune city of India, forms one of its most popular attractions. The beach is situated near the Janjira Fort, an impregnable fortress that refused to surrender before the enemy forces for as many as 350 years.

Raigad Fort : Raigad Fort is a magnificent hill fortress, situated in the Raigad district of Maharashtra. It lies approximately 125 km away from Pune and serves as one of the major excursion of the city. The fort once served as the capital of Chhatrapati Shivaji, the Great Maratha king, in the 1674.
Shivneri Fort : Shivneri Fort is one of the most magnificent as well as historically rich forts of India. It is situated at a distance of approximately 90 km from the Pune city of Maharashtra. The fort dates back to the time period when Shivaji was not even born yet. Shivneri Fort was built under the aegis of Sahaji.

Sinhagad Fort : Adding to the attraction of the Pune city is the Sinhagad Fort, which lies in the vicinity of the city. The fort stands perched on a hill, at an altitude of approximately 700 m above the landscape that surrounds it. The height at which the fort stands has resulted in its being very popular.
 
RELIGIOUS PLACES IN PUNE
 
Kasba Ganpati : Kasba Ganpati is the GRAM DAIVAT of Pune. Kasba Peth is near Lal Mahal & the Kasba Ganpati is the Ganpati of First Honor in Pune. So it has the First previlage in the Ganesh Utsav procession. Shivaji Maharaja's mother Jijabai had put up the statue of Ganesh. On her behalf Dadoji Kondadev had put on a tent in front of the statue of Ganesh.Recently Jija mata Garden has been made next to it, and the statue of Jija mata has also been set there.

Bhimashankar Temple : Bhimashankar Temple is situated in Maharashtra and claims the distinction of being one of the twelve Jyotirlingas in India. Lying at a distance of approximately 128 km from the Pune city, this temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva, one of the Hindu Trinity of Gods.

Parvati : This is one of the most famous landmarks of Pune. Though the hill is in the Southern half of the city, it is visible from almost every part of Pune. There are 108 steps that lead to the temple dedicated to Parvati and Devadeshwar. There are also temples dedicated to Vishnu, Ganesh and Kartikeya. Climbing to the top of the hill can be rewarding as one can enjoy an excellent paranomic view of Pune.

Pataleshwar Temple : It has temple dedicated to lord Shiva which is supposedly the shrine. The Nandi and the pillars are carved from one single rock. Located in a part of Pune known as Shivajinagar, this Shiva Temple was made in the 8th century. Cut from one rock, this temple is reminiscent of the Kailasa temple at Ellora. It has a Shiva Shrine as well as one in honour of his bull Nandi.

Gurudwara ( Ganesh Peth ) : This Gurudwara is in Ganesh Peth. Sikhs come to this place in large numbers. It is about 2 kms away from Pune Station. The gurudwara is open to all people irrespective of their religion but your shoes must be removed and heads should be covered. The prayers in the Gurudwara start in the early hours of morning.
The birth anniversaries of the first guru, Guru Nanakdevji and tenth guru, Guru Govindsinghji are celebrated as festivals with great enthusiasm.

Derasar ( Guruwar Peth ) : This place is just 2 Kms away from Swargate. It is a prayer place for the Jains. Jains gather here with scared feelings. The carving of the place is worth watching.

Omkareshwar Temple : Situated in Shaniwar Peth it is famous for its stone structure & it held on even in the floods of Panshet in 1962. Amruteshwar and Omkareshwar Shivalayas. The Omkareshwar temple which is about 250 years old has even survived in the 1962 floods which came in pune.
 
WHEN TO GO PUNE
 
The best time to visit Pune is during the period of October to March.
 
WEATHER FORECAST
 
Summers here begin from early March to July. Though not as hot as Northern parts of India, the daytimes are very sunny with dry heat. The temperature ranges from 38°C to 20°C. In Monsoons Being on the leeward side of the ghats, Pune has a good three months of rains from July-August to October. Temperatures range from 18-19 degrees to 30 degrees. Winter start from November to January, Pune has its winter season. Though light woollens are fine during the day, early mornings, evenings and night times require more clothing as it’s chilly.
 
EVENTS AND FESTIVALS IN PUNE
 
Republic Day : This joyous occasion recognising the anniversary of the adoption of the Constitution of India in 1950 is celebrated all around India. The whole country celebrates with parades and folk-dancing.

Guru Ravi Dass Birthday : Sikhs all over India celebrate the birthday of the founder of the Sikh religion with religious readings and acts of devotion.

Festival of Colours : This massive festival is one of the most wonderful in India and is celebrated everywhere. It lasts 2 days in Pune, and on the second day locals pour cold coloured water on everyone around them. Additionally, there’s lots of drinking, eating and having a good time.

Dr B.R. Ambedkar's Birthday : This pioneer in the movement for equality between classes in India, Ambedkar is remembered as a great lawyer and a liberator of the Dalits – the Untouchables of India’s caste system.

Buddha Purnima : This day is a celebration of the birth, enlightenment and death of the Buddha. Celebrations take place on the full moon in May. In Pune, this is a time to put on your best clothes and spend time with family and friends eating and praying.

Janmashtami Festival : On this day Pune celebrates Lord Krishna's birthday at midnight in the temples of Krishna throughout India with the re-enacted of his birth. The main place of celebration is in Mathura, where he was born; however, you’ll find Krishna temples in Pune hosting their own parties.

Ganapati (Ganesha) Festival : This is the communal celebration of the festival of Lord Ganesha that takes place in August or September. Neighbourhoods in Pune set up idols of Lord Ganesha, nestled in mythological settings, with lights and music. The festival lasts 10 days and ends with a bang – a carnival through the streets carrying the idols to be immersed in the river.

Pune Festival : This happens at the end of the Ganapati Festival - the start of the month-long Pune Festival hosted by the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation. Activities range from displays and competitions of traditional sports, to auto rallies, film and drama shows, musical performances and classical dance displays.

Dussehra Festival : This festival celebrates the triumph of good over evil and lasts for 10 days, honouring Lord Rama and his victory over the demon Ravana, as well as the goddess Durga and her destruction of the demon Mahishasura (depending on where you are).

Gandhi Jayant : Held annually on the 2nd of October, this day is the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. Prayers are held at the Gandhi Samadhi at Rajghat, Delhi and celebrations are held all over the country to commemorate this great leader.

Diwali Festival : This is one of the biggest festivals in India. The name comes from deepawali, which means ‘row of lights’, and dates back from people illuminating their homes with oil lamps to welcome Lord Rama back from his 14 years of exile in the forest. Today, it is a ‘new year’ type celebration for business owners, and candles are lit and firecrackers set off. It’s a time to eat sweets, wear new clothes and play games of chance.

Children's Day : This festival takes place on the same day as the birth anniversary of Jawaharlal Nehru. If you’re travelling with kids, they will take great delight in this day, when all children celebrate with a day of games and play. There are cultural programmes and fun events scheduled in Pune and other cities.

Sawaai Gandharva Music Festival : It is a celebration of Hindustani and Carnatic classical music. Famous artists from around India come to perform here throughout the 3-day festival, which is a highlight of Pune’s social calendar.
 
FOOD AND RESTURANTS IN PUNE
 
The local cuisines of Pune retain the typical taste of coconut and garlic. At the same time, a large amount of green chilies are used, making the dishes quite spicy. The main course in the traditional food of Poona comprises of a number of food items made up of jowar and bajra. If you are planning to visit the city, do not forget to taste the sweet specialties of the city, especially chewda, bhakerwadi and pedas.

 

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