(Last Updated on : 01-04-2014)
Panchgani, located amidst five hills, is a picturesque hill station in the state of Maharashtra
. It is also one of the most favourable getaways for people living in Mumbai
to enjoy in the natural beauty. The place is completely refreshing and inviting and boasts of its scenic beauty and fresh air far from the pollution of metros. Flanked by craggy cliffs and table land, it has a height of 1334 meters, about 38 meters lower than Mahabaleshwar
History of Panchgani
The scenic beauty of the hill station of Panchgani was brought to light by the British, during the British rule in India
, in the form of a summer resort, and a superintendent by the name of John Chesson was given the charge of Panchgani hill station during the 1860s. He was credited to have planted several plant species from the western world in Panchgani, which also includes poinsettia and silver oak, which developed considerably from that time in Panchgani. The place was also developed by the British as a retirement place owing to its pleasant climate.
Geography of Panchgani
The hill station is having an average elevation of 1293 meters or 4242 feet. It is located in the middle of five hills in the Sahyadris mountain range
, and the Krishna River
flowing nearby. Panchgani is located at a distance of about two hundred and eighty five kilometres, hundred kilometres and eighteen kilometres respectively, from the city of Mumbai
. This area is known to have high seismic activity, having an epicenter close to Koynanagar where the hydroelectric power plant and the Koynanagar Dam have been constructed. The five hills which surround Panchgani are topped by a volcanic plateau, and it is the second highest plateau in Asia after the Tibetan plateau. These plateaus, also known as 'table land', are the components of the Deccan Plateau
and they were formed due to the pressure in between the earth plates.
Climate of Panchgani
The temperature at Panchgani hill is about 12 degree Celsius in the winter season, and at times it gets to a temperature of about 34 degree Celsius in the summer season. However, the humidity in this hill station is quite low.
Education in Panchgani
Some of the educational institutions in the Panchgani hill station area include several boarding schools which were constructed in the late 1800s. These schools draw students from the closely-located cities of Pune and Mumbai, and also abroad. Presently, there are more than 30 boarding schools in the area. Some of the other educational institutions in Panchgani include the Anjuman-E-Islam, Aram Vidyalaya, Anjuman-E-Islam, Billimoria High School, Cambridge High School, Bharati Vidyapeeth Academy, Marathavada Gurukul Hostel, Kimmins High School, Godevli Education Society, New Era High School , Silver Dale High School, Vidya Niketan High School, St. Josephs Convent, etc.
Tourism in Panchgani
The hill station of Panchgani in the state of Maharashtra is counted among the most beautiful and attractive tourist destinations in India. Its beauty is in itself a wonder, with the entire Panchgani surrounded by green trees and hills. Since five hills surround this place, it is known as Panchgani. On the way from Pune to Mahabaleshwar, Panchgani is a reputed hill station of Maharashtra. It puts on display some of the most bewitching views of the Krishna River
as well as the coastal plains. Far away from the noisy areas of Pune and Mumbai, the place offers an utter tranquil environment.
Some of the major attractions of Panchgani include the Sydney Point. It is located on a hillock which faces the Krishna Valley. One can have a beautiful sight of the Dhom Dam, Mandhardeo and Pandavgad. Another prominent attraction is the Parsi Point. The table land is a flat and large area of laterite rock and also the second longest mountain plateau in Asia. Some of the large and spacious caves like the Devil's Kitchen can be seen from here. There is a belief that the Pandavas
in the epic Mahabharata
spend some time at this place. Pandavgad Caves located close to Wai are believed to be constructed by them. Mapro Garden is located between Panchgani and Mahabaleshwar.
Visiting Information on Panchgani
Panchgani is the typical hill station which is also very convenient for those looking for a respite from the pollution of the metros. Starting from the month of September to the month of May is considered to be the most favourable time to visit the Panchgani hill station.
The popular railway station for visiting Panchgani is at Pune, which is located at a distance of about ninety eight kilometres from the hill station. However, the closest railway station to Panchgani is at Wathar. The hill station of Panchgani is conveniently connected by road with Pune and Mumbai. The closest airport to this hill station is situated at a distance of ninety eight kilometres at Pune. There are numerous accommodations available in the Panchgani hill station. Hotel maintained by the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation is among the several better options for accommodation at Panchgani. One of the major activities in the hill station is shopping, which includes several local products. The souvenirs and handicrafts are available from local shops. The things which can be bought include candies, fruit juices and mocktails, litchi crush or strawberry, jam and honey. Madhusagar Honey, Kholapuri Chappals, Channa and Malas Jam are among the essential buy from the shops.