Lonavala is a lovely hill station at an altitude of 622 metres, located in the beautiful Sahyadri mountain range. It is between Pune and Mumbai, 64 Kms. from Pune and 96 Kms. from Mumbai. I have passed through the beautiful Lonavala and Khandala Ghats a number of times while traveling by train to Mumbai and back. In either direction of the train journey; by Mumbai Express or Hyderabad Express the train passes through Lonavala and Khandala during daytime. This enables me to see and enjoy the beautiful landscape of these places and the train journey on the Ghats, overlooking hills and valleys. The rainy season adds more splendor to these places; with lush greenery everywhere and countless small and large waterfalls and ponds.
It was after several years of watching these areas from train journeys that I could ultimately visit Lonavala and spend few memorable days there. The stay was very comfortable and the weather very pleasant. Some very interesting places we visited there are Lonavala lake, Tungarli lake and dam, Valvan dam, Bushy dam, Rajmachi point, Shooting point, Lion’s point, Ryewood park, Shivaji Udyan, Tiger’s leap, INS Shivaji area, Aamby valley, Duke’s nose, Khandala and the Pune-Mumbai Expressway. We were staying very close to the Lonavala lake so we enjoyed our walks along the lake on all days of our stay. As for shopping we bought Lonavala’s most popular Chikki which is available in large variety, for our relatives and friends back home. Chikki is a ready-to-eat Indian sweet; similar to Praline, made from Jaggery or Sugar syrup which is allowed to caramelize over a variety of nuts like groundnuts, cashews and almonds. The above photographs are from our vacation at Lonavala.