A famous pilgrimage site on top of the ghats. It is one of the Jyotirlings of Shiva
and has a beautiful temple with a huge bell, a relic of the Portuguese times. Nag Phani,
the highest point, is nearby and commands and excellent view. It is thickly forested
and has many approaches. Buses ply directly from Pune and Bombay to the temple.
However for the hikers to enjoy the ruggedness, the best approaches are by climbing
up the ghat. It is a steep and long climb. From Karjat take a bus to Khandas at the
base via Kashele(14km). Or reach Khandas by a bus from Neral(19km). After a flat walk
of 2km, a track climbs up steeply along a small spur to the first plateau on which
Padar killa is situated. It is called as Ganesh Khind. A long traverse on the north(left)
takes one to village Koli(3km). Ahead, a rather steep and long climb leads to the thick
forest above. Traverse north in the forest to reach the temple(6km). Another route which
is far steeper and shorter is to climb straight up to the upper plateau. A fascinating
route through rock-cliffs leads up to it. It is called as Shidi ghat. At two places
wooden ladders help to overcome the cliffs. The route joins the original traverse route
at Koli village.
Another approach is from Kalyan to Mhasa(via Murbad), and then via villages Ambetembe
and Agashi, across the river Baliware, Chinchwad and Bombad to reach the base by bus(22km).
A steep climb leads up the ghats and to the temple. From the ghats, the temple can be
approached by a flat walk of 16km from Wandre in the south or 18km from Ahupe via
Ghonemal in the north. Many such combinations are possible. There are dharamshalas
and other place it one wants to stay at the temple.
Height : 1005m
Ideal for : Experienced
Ideal Time : All round the year
Water Supply : Decent
Cave : Can accomodate 25 people
P.S. If you would like to share your pictures please email them to me and I will upload them on my website.