|Destination: Mhaismal near Aurangabad
|Destination Type: Cities
Mhaismal is the kind of place where nature comes extremely close to mythology and creates an ambience that is unique and special in all respects. Moreover, the fact that this place has come to be termed as a ‘botanical workshop’ guarantees that you will find here an exciting range of flora, opening up a wonderland of sorts. Most tourists head for this destination during the monsoon when the landscape turns a bright green.
Mhaismal is a part of the extreme eastern limits of the Sahyadari ranges with its unique mountain topography. The plateau of the hill-station is spread out evenly on protruding landforms in various directions. The tarmac streaks the plateau in almost two equal halves and runs all throughout to the extreme dead-end north. About 37 kilometers from the urban centre of Aurangabad and 12 kilometers from the eternal town of Khuldabad is this temperate place of sheer indulgence - an engagement with nature. Records tell us that the temperature has rarely exceeded the 32 degree Celsius mark while the lowest averages to about 7 degree Celsius, making it a year-round destination. However, the real charm of this quaint little place is its monsoon mood.
Picturesque spaces, verdant valleys, serene atmosphere and sylvan surroundings are the intangible attributes that make Mhaismal one of the most visited hilly terrains of this part of Maharashtra. It’s no wonder then that it is colloquially known as the ‘Mahableshwar of Marathwada’. Marathwada is the provincial division of Maharashtra comprising eight districts, with Aurangabad as its capital. Mhaismal is also a testimony to the remnants of an ancient temple dedicated to Shiva.
When it comes to landscape views of breathtaking proportions, Mhaismal should rank among the best in the state. The main view point overlooks a horizon of over 30 kilometers with neatly laid farms, hamlets and forest patches at regular intervals. This is managed through the efforts of a joint forest management committee. The forest department of Maharashtra has had Mhaismal on its map as an ecotourism destination for long, and has put here on show their best model of the region. As such, scenic sights all around make for a major tourist attraction of this hill-station. Do not miss, in particular, the ones near the gigantic TV tower, offering you a panoramic view of a sub-plateau level dotted with intermittent lakes and ponds.
Distance from Mumbai: 360 kms
By Air: The nearest airport is at Aurangabad.
By Rail: The nearest railway station is at Aurangabad.
By Road: Mhaismal is located at a distance of 37 Kms from Aurangabad, 262 Kms from Pune, 587 kms each from Nagpur and Hyderabad, 362kms from Solapur. Mhaismal is situated at an altitude of 1,067 meters. Ellora Caves, Grishneshwar Temple and Devgiri Fort are on the way while reaching Mhaismal.
Explore Ellora Caves
Ellora is an archaeological site, 29 kilometers northwest of the city of Aurangabad. It is also known as Elapura and is well known for its monumental caves that represent the epitome of Indian rock-cut architecture. The 34 caves are actually structures excavated out of the vertical face of the hills of Charanandri. These Buddhist, Hindu and Jain rock-cut temples and ‘viharas’ were created between the 5th and 10th century. The 12 Buddhist, 17 Hindu and five Jain caves, built in proximity, demonstrate the religious harmony prevalent during this period of Indian history.
Seek Out the Warriors
From Mhaismal it is easy to go to Daulatabad, a 14th century fort city, about 16 kilometers northwest of Aurangabad. The place was once known as Devagiri when it was an important uplands city along caravan routes as also the capital of the Yadava dynasty. In1327, it famously became the capital of the Tughlaq dynasty, under Muhammad bin Tughluq, who also changed its name, and forcibly moved the entire population of Delhi here, for two years, before it was abandoned due to lack of water.