Maharashtra is one of the most industrialized states of India. Besides Mumbai, Pune, Nashik, Aurangabad and Nagpur complete the urban sprawl of the state. Marathi is the mother tongue of the people of the state, who are known as Marathis or Maharashtrians. English and Hindi are also widely spoken and understood.
Maharashtra is the most visited state by foreign tourists in India and 4th most visited state by domestic tourists in country in 2010. Recently, Aurangabad was declared as Tourism Capital of Maharashtra.
Cities of Maharashtra
The eastern equivalent of New York City and Los Angeles and the financial capital and entertainment (Bollywood) capital of the country is constantly abuzz with activities. It has a very active nightlife for those inclined towards urban modes of entertainment. Some places of interest to include on the must-watch list are: Haji Ali Dargah' situated about 500 yards from the shoreline in the middle of the Arabian Sea is the most visible and attractive in Mumbai, along with being a religious place it is a great attraction for tourists, millions of people of all religion visit the place daily. Gateway of India, The Bandra-Worli Sea Link, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, Chatrapati Shivaji Terminus, a humongous architectural stone structure built by the British more than 200 years ago, Girgaon chowpati (beach), Downtown Mumbai - reminiscent of the 19th century British architecture. Some pristine beaches can be found towards the south of Mumbai, for e.g. Madh island beach. Elephanta Caves, carved out of a giant stone on an island are a short ferry away into the Arabian sea. Ferries can be rented from The Gateway of India. There is no dearth of luxury hotels that dot the city near all important tourist places. The city has one of the most active public transport system rivaling the best in the world in terms of density and reach. Due to is cosmopolitan nature, Mumbai has proven a popular tourism destination for backpackers from around the world. A large English and Australian youth take a gap year to backpack around India, and often start in Mumbai.
Undoubtedly the cultural capital of the state of Maharashtra, is said to be the educational center of India. Pune has forts dating back to the seventeenth century such as Sinhagad,Purandar, Shaniwar Wada (a weekend residence of the Peshwas) and Lal Mahal (the red palace), residence of Chhatrapati Shivaji maharaj. Pune also has educational institutes of repute such as Fergusson College, a 200-year old college built by the British.
Pune has many beautiful temples which are visited by thousand of devotees. Amongst them are Parvati temples, Chaturshringi Temple, Pataleshwar and many temples of Lord Ganesh in the cross roads of the peths.
Lakshmi Road, the avenue for buying all things Maharashtrian. These are just some of the places that register high on the tourist's agenda.
This city lies in the central parts of Maharashtra and is one of the most popular cities that figure on the international tourist map. The city is situated in the beauty of nature. On the outskirts lie the caves of Ajanta and Ellora. Both are internationally renowned for their intricate carvings of Lord Buddha in stone. Ancient Buddhist life has been depicted in delicate stonework. Guided tours are readily available. Summers are not advisable for touring as temperatures can reach up to and above 44 degrees C during the day. There are other famous tourism places like Bibi Ka Maqbara(The Taj Mahal of deccan), Daulatabad Fort, Panchakki, Sunheri Mahal and a lot of more places. It is connected to whole India by air,road and railways. SO do come to Aurangabad, you will not get depressed.
Nanded is a place of religious importance for adherents of the Sikh faith; its best known landmark is the Hazur Sahib Nanded Gurdwara, a former Sikh palace. Nanded is also the holy place for Hindus as it has Renukadevi shaktipeetha temple at Mahur. Nanded has many Sufi shrines as well.
The winter capital of the state senate is a wonderful city. With a tradition of producing the best Oranges, this city would be a great place to visit during the winter. Summer along with Aurangabad, would not be a good time to visit with temperatures hovering in the low-to-mid 40s. Nagpur being in the heart of the country has a Zero Mile monument which is a milestone from which the distances of major cities were calculated. The city also has a beautiful stupa at Deekshabhoomi-the place where under the leadership of Dalit leader Dr B R Ambedkar thousands of dalits embraced Buddhism. Another important place to visit is Tekadi Ganesh mandir on Sitabuildi fort complex. The Orange city has other places of tourist importance such as Maharajbagh zoo, Futala lake chowpati, Raman science center, RSS headquarters and some premier research institutions such as NEERI, CICR, NBSSLUP.
This city is a holy pilgrim city. It is the place where Lord Rama spent 14 years of his exile. It is also a city of temples. It is known for its picturesque surrounding and a pleasant climate. It can be visited any time except in rainy season. Trimbakeshwar near Nashik is a jyotirling. Godavari river originates from here. In recent times, this city has developed a lot and is rapidly developing into a metro.The "Wine Capital of India", or the "Grape City", as it is popularly known in recent times, is located in the Western Ghats, on the western edge of the Deccan peninsula on the banks of the Godavari River. The city is known for its picturesque surroundings and pleasant climate. The Godavari River flows through Nashik from its source, which lies to the southwest of the city, in Trimbakeshwar. It is a rapidly developing city with a population close to 1.4 million
This city lies on western Maharashtra. City is well known for tourist places like Mahabaleshwar, Wai, Panchgani and rivers such as Koyna and Krishna. Mahabaleshwar and Panchgani are one of the famous tourist places of India. River Krishna rises at Mahabaleswar near the Jor village in the extreme north of Wai district. From here on it flows into Karnataka and joins the Bay of Bengal after traveling distance of 1400 km. Nowadays, the Kaas Flower Valley is also one of the most attracted tourist place of Satara.
Maharashtra offers the adventure lovers, over 45 adventures to choose from across its length and breadth. It has over 550 forts to visit including over 20 Sea Forts, 720 km of coastline, the incredible vistas of its western ghats that has superb wildlife and camping possibilities. From water to land to aero, there is a host of adventures to choose from
- Rock climbing
- Scuba diving
- Wildlife Safari
- Adventure activity groups in Maharashtra
- Nature tourism
- Maharashtra has tremendous potential for Nature Tourism. Many private and public organisations have begun unique and innovative nature tourism. Some of them are Eco-mantra, Nature Trails, Wild Escapes, Orchid Group etc.
- Hill stations
- Lonavla, Maharashtra
Maharashtra boasts of a large number of popular and revered religious venues that are heavily frequented by locals as well as out-of-state visitors. Shirdi, near Nashik is the location of the temple of Sai Baba - a hugely revered God-like priest, Tuljabhavani temple at Tuljapur, Gajanan Maharaj temple at Shegaon, Mahalakshmi temple in south Mumbai, Hajiali, a popular mosque in the seas near the Mahalakshmi temple, Mount Mary church in the suburb of Bandra, Sarasbaugh Ganpati Mandir, a temple in a pond near Parvati inPune, Dagdusheth Halwai Ganpati.Osho Asharam in the area of pune also one of the popular place which attracts number of devotiees.Takhat Sachkhand Shri Hazur Sahib, famous Gurdwar near Nanded, is also one of the tourist place in Maharashtra.
The countryside is equally engrossing. There is a lot to see and explore in the countryside. The famed Konkan region that lies between the west coast and along the foot of the Western ghats stretches from Maharastra down to Kerala. This part of the state is lush with greenery and tropical geography. It is the greenest part of the state. Dilapidated forts sitting atop the hills in the Western Ghats along the state coastline offer great climbs for the trek-oriented traveler along with a sense of history. Konkan Railways offer extensive train transport through this hilly terrain up to Goa and beyond.