Saturday, October 22, 2011
Shivneri is the birth place of Shivaji, the great Maratha warrior king.
It is located in Pune district, near Junnar on the outskirts of Pune city. It is located at a distance of around 125 km from Pune.
|Shivneri fort from a distance|
I boarded the Indrani Express at Dadar at and Nimish joined me at Thane 15 minutes later. We bought a local ticket to Pune, boarded the unreserved compartment and made ourselves comfortable on the footboard near the door.
|Temple, from where the road to Shiveri starts|
|View from Darwaja|
|View from the top|
After inquiring with the bus conductor we boarded the bus. The distance from the depot to Junnar depot was roughly around 125 km. When he heard this, Nimish began to have second thoughts about the trip. I convinced him to go along, even though it would take us 2 hours to reach Junnar.
|Ganesh Darwaja with the emblem of lion|
Very soon we reached the fort. The view from up here was amazing. We could see hill ranges and waterbeds in the distance, besides villages and square shaped farms in shades of green and brown, and the fortification of the fort on top.
|Rooms atop the fort|
There were a few water tanks on the fort, but they were dirty. Of course, that didn’t stop the frogs from breeding in there.
|birth place of Shivaji|
|structure atop the fort|
A stairway takes one up to the first storey. The ground floor is locked but the doors still offer a glimpse of a statue of Shivaji and the cradle in which he used to sleep. The doors of this structure have been treated with a coat of varnish, giving them a very new appearance and taking away their charm. They should have been left the way they were.
Kamani Tank and Ganga Jamuna Tank are waterbeds carved out in the rocks. There are pillars in the tanks. The water has turned green over the years, and is obviously unfit for drinking.
There are a few structures on the fort. One of these houses the bronze statues of Shivaji and Jijabai. It also contains a painting showing Shivaji sitting on a throne, while holding court.
Two tombs are situated atop the fort but there is no mention of whose they are.
After exploring the fort for around two hours, we decided to head back home.
At we had reached the bus stop. Getting a vehicle to take us to Junnar was quite a task. With no buses in sight, we decided to board a tum tum to Junnar.
Even the tum tums were packed with people, with people shooting out from all the exit points. Luckily we got one and reached Junnar. From there, we boarded a bus to Bangar Phata. It took us 30 minutes to reach there.
|Door to Shivaji birthplace|
By now, I was exhausted. I had no energy to do anything. So I sat there eating a few bananas, while Nimish tried hard to get us a ride to Kalyan. All this while ST buses, transport vehicles and dumper trucks, all packed, whizzed by.
Finally after 45 minutes, we finally got an air-conditioned ride to Kalyan in a Mahindra Xylo for just Rs 100 per head. Now that is a steal! At , we were at Kalyan station from where we boarded a train to Andheri.
|Painting of Shivaji in his Darbar|
One lesson learned from this trip was that it is better to carry food and water, as there are no hotels around the fort.
Finally we got home tired and exhausted, but still raring to go on the next trip.