Saturday, July 29, 2017

La Wah! Sa

Monsoon trip is a must every year!!!
Since years I had longed to visit Lavasa. It is nearby(2 hours) Pune but takes around 6 hours from Mumbai. For mumbaikars it might get hectic to visit Lavasa in a day without a stay in Pune or Lavasa. We had our friend in Pune, Karve Rd where we decided to spend a day before.
We had booked our hotel, Mercure Lavasa in the month of June for a stay in July(We found that the rates of the hotels decreased in July) through MakeMyTrip. We had hired a car for our three day trip Mumbai-Pune-Lavasa-Pune-Mumbai for 10k.(Contact me to enquire).
We left for Pune around 8.00AM on Friday. I was picked up from Thane and my friend from Powai. The route is via Bangalore-Mumbai Highway. The toll to enter Pune was 230 one way near Khopoli.
Pohe sambar
Misal Pav
Places to visit in Pune:
(Rs. 20 parking charges)@ Dagadusheth Halwai Ganpati Temple, Chitale Bandhu Mithaiwala(Buy Bhakarwadi. This shop at Deccan Gymkhana is open in the afternoon too), Kaka Halwai(Buy Mango mava katli, lasun chatni(garlic chutney), shengdana chatni(peanut chutney), papad), Tulshibaug(flea market where you will get a variety of bindis, hair clips, home appliances, etc.), Saras baug(garden). Saras baug is just an ordinary baug(garden) with a Lord Ganesh temple. All shops close between 1.00pm to 4.00pm. Dagadusheth, Chitale Bandhu, Kaka Halwai and Tulshibaug are all 1KM away from each other. There are many restaurants nearby temple. So after darshan we had our lunch. In the evening we stayed at friend's place.

Trekking places: Amby Valley, Malshej Ghat, Devkund Waterfall and Pawna lake

Snacks/Breakfast: Misal Pav, Sambar Pohe
Puneri Patya
Next morning we left for Lavasa at 8.00AM. On the way you could see waterfalls, dams, lush greenery and cultivated fields. It is a single road/ghat leading to Lavasa which is very clean. The sharp turns in the Ghats were fun. Lot of bikers come here for road trips. We could see Mulshi dam and Temghar Dam. Road takes you towards Temghar Dam after descending the Mutha Ghat. It was windy and raining heavily. At some places we could see nothing but fog.
Entry fee for Lavasa is 500 with parking and other discounts for 4 wheeler and ₹300 for two wheeler. Lavasa is a private, planned city being built near Pune. It is stylistically based on the Italian town Portofino, with a street and several buildings bearing the name of that town. Varasgaon Dam is a part of the other two dams in the vicinity. The other two are Khadalwasala and Panshet. Lavasa is still under construction. It is controversial for many reasons such as Environmental damage, hill cutting, Use of water resources which belongs to Pune city, Land acquisition issue etc.

Mumbai - Pune - Chadani Chowk – Paud Road – Pirangut – Take left at Ghotawade Phata – Temghar Lavasa Road – Temghar Dam – Lavasa Ghat road – Lavasa entrance Gate – Lavasa city.
Car Petrol: INR 1500/- 

We reached Mercure Lavasa by 11.00AM. We were lucky to get early check-in as rooms were available. Our hotel was 1KM away from promenade. We could hear the Temghar dam water flow from our room. 
Mercure Lavasa: Extra bed for 1750 including breakfast for the third person. No accomodation for driver. 

Suggestions & Facts:
  • Carry Windcheaters instead of umbrellas as the place is very windy
  • Foods are less spicy as they are prepared in European style.
  • Visit Lavasa in June or early monsoons to enjoy the place. During heavy rains you cannot fully enjoy the place as it becomes very windy and chill. 
  • We found that the rates of the hotels decreased in July. Check with MMT for prices.
 Things to do in Lavasa:
  • Karvi Spa, Dasvino Town
  • Segway(closed in monsoons)
  • Scenic place for photography
  • Minibus/Toy train (wheel vehicle converted in toy train)  to take city ride
  • Walk around promenade and enjoy the scenic view of Dasave Lake
  • Visit Convention Center
  • Rent a Tandem Bicycle and ride around promenade
  • There are some watersports activities in Dasave dam from morning till 5 pm(closed in monsoons)
  • There are lots of restaurants available such as The All American Diner(Liked Penne Pesto), Zodiac restaurant (4-star), 24 hrs. Coffee shop, Granma's Homemade Patisserie(Ice creams. It is fun to have ice creams in rains), Tabakh (Lebanese), Oriental Octopus (South East Asian), Past Times English pub, Chor Bizarre (North Indian cuisine) , Sub-way, Pizzawala(It is OKAY!), Brewberry's - Coffee bar and fast food outlet, Natural Ice cream etc.

Tandem bicycle for ₹200 for half an hour


It was a refreshing weekend. Thank you for reading! DO visit the place.