Mumbai, the financial capital of India, is one of the busiest cities you can ever live in. The hustle and bustle can get to you sometimes, and the best way to unwind is to get out of the city. Luckily, there are many options, none of which include the usual Alibag or Lonavala. So here are some unique ideas for weekend getaways from Mumbai.
This sleepy town in Gujarat is generally not what comes to mind when planning a road trip from Mumbai. However, it is definitely an interesting option to consider, especially for foodies. This is because Udvada is not only home to India’s most sacred Fire Temple, making it culturally significant for Zoroastrians around the world, but it also has some of the most authentic and delicious Parsi food available in the country. To know how to do a food pilgrimage in Udvada, click here.
How to get there? Udvada is about 3 hours away from Mumbai by car. You can either drive down yourself or book a car with driver via Ola Outstation or Savaari. If you like, you can also take a train from Mumbai to Vapi, an industrial town less than 30 minutes away from Udvada.
Where to stay? Since Udvada is a very small town, it doesn’t have many options for accommodation. If you’d like to stay the night, the nearby towns of Vapi and Daman have dozens of good hotels.
The coastal town of Dahanu, located in the Palghar district of Maharashtra, has been well known in the past for its Parsi ancestry and chikoo plantations. However, it is also perfect for a quiet weekend getaway, with secluded beaches and fresh seafood. The drive to and around Dahanu is quite picturesque too. To know more about what to do in Dahanu, click here.
How to get there? Dahanu is about 3 hours away from Mumbai by car.
Where to stay? If you’d like to stay overnight at Dahanu, the Sea Crest Resort is located right in the heart of the town. However, if you’re looking for something more offbeat, you can consider staying at the following places at the outskirts of Dahanu: Arwa Farms, Nest Farm Stay, Save Farm or Cob 5.
Further up north from Dahanu lies another small Maharashtrian town called Bordi, which, like Dahanu, has been known for its chikoo plantations. Today, this town is famous for Fruzzante, the world’s first chikoo wine. Fruzzante is prepared from the chikoos grown nearby, and manufactured at a factory in Bordi itself. In addition, Bordi is also home to the indigenous Warli tribe of Maharashtra, famous for the tribal art form of Warli. To know more about Bordi, click here.
How to get there? Bordi is about 3-4 hours away from Mumbai by car.
Where to stay? If you’d like to stay overnight at Bordi, the Hill Zill Winery Resort is located right in the heart of the town, which is also where Fruzzante is manufactured. However, if you’re looking for something more offbeat, you can consider staying at the following places at the outskirts of Bordi: Nest Farm Stay, Save Farm or Cob 5
Tip: You can combine a getaway to Dahanu and Bordi, and stay at either Nest Farm Stay, Save Farm or Cob 5, which are between the 2 towns.
About 250 kms from Mumbai lies Chiplun, a beautiful Konkan town overlooking the Vashishti river, that often doesn’t get the credit it deserves. It is smack in the middle of the Western Ghats (which is particularly spectacular during the monsoons), has delicious Malvani food and is a birdwatcher’s paradise. The Guhagar beach is also close by, which is a perfect spot to spend a quiet evening watching the sun go down into the Arabian Sea.
How to get there? Chiplun is about 6 hours away from Mumbai by car. You can also take a train or bus from Mumbai to Chiplun – it is a popular pitstop on the way to Goa.
Where to stay? Hands down, the Riverview Resort is the best resort in the area (it is an ex-Taj property). The location is awesome (overlooking the river), and the rooms and food are quite nice too. If you’re looking for something closer to nature, the Dongarmatha Eco Resort is a pretty good option.
The Nashik district is home to more than 30+ wineries, some of which are located in Igatpuri, a small hill station less than 3 hours away from Mumbai. So while everyone flocks to Sula, why not try out some wines made in Igatpuri such as those by Vallone Vineyards or Grover Zampa!
The drive to Igatpuri is especially beautiful during the monsoons, replete with waterfalls. It is also a popular trekking destination in Maharashtra.
How to get there? Igatpuri is about 3 hours away from Mumbai by car. Goes without saying, but please don’t drink and drive. If you like, you can also take a train to Mumbai to Igatpuri.
Where to stay? If you’d like to stay at a vineyard, then you can opt for Vallone, which provides accommodation as well. Else, there are numerous resorts, villas and B&Bs in the area for you to choose such as the Savana Lake Resort and JenJon Vaitarna Resort.
Not to be confused with Murud village in the Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra, Murud (in the Raigad district) is a port town along the Arabian Sea, which has one claim to fame – the Murud Janjira Fort. It is one of the oldest forts of Maharashtra, but what makes it unique is its location in the middle of the sea! Yes, the only way to reach this fort is by boat. Do be careful though – don’t go on an overcrowded boat and/or in the rainy season.
Note: There is another sea fort nearby called Padmadurg Fort, which is also accessible only by boat. It has a great view of the Murud Janjira fort, but is not very well maintained, so visit at your own risk.
How to get there? Murud is about 4 hours away from Mumbai by car. If you like, you can also take a train to the closest station at Roha and then take a taxi from there.
A scenic village in Western Ghats, Bhandardara is truly a hidden gem of Maharashtra. You can visit any time of the year, and be astounded by its sheer beauty. In summers, there are thousands of fireflies lighting up the night. In the monsoons, there are layers of green, waterfalls and reverse waterfalls (yes, the pressure is so high that it sometimes results in the water flying upwards). In the winters, there is a raw surreal beauty, perfect for lakeside camping.
How to get there? Bhandardara is about 4 hours away from Mumbai by car. If you like, you can also take a train to the closest station at Igatpuri and then take a taxi from there.
For those who love Alibag but hate the crowds, Revdanda is a great alternative. It has quieter, cleaner beaches with some water sports, lip smacking food and a fort ruin to explore. What’s there not to like?
There is also a skeleton of a 40+ foot blue whale at the Blue Whale Eco Tourism Centre in Revdanda. It is what is left of the whale that washed up ashore at the beach in 2015 and died.
How to get there? Revdanda is about 3-4 hours away from Mumbai by car. You can also take a ferry till Alibag, and then take a bus or tuk tuk.
9. Malshej Ghat
A personal favourite, I believe Malshej Ghat is one of those places that can never be described in words. But if there is someplace near Mumbai that is raw, beautiful and non touristy, it is this. In the monsoons, it is covered in multiple layers of greens and innumerable waterfalls. And that’s what Malshej is known for. But it is in winters that it really shines. Literally, under a blanket of thousands of stars. The best way to explore is to drive around the ghats and find your own spot.
How to get there? Malshej Ghat is about 3-4 hours away from Mumbai by car.
Where to stay? There are only 2 places to stay at Malshej Ghat. One is the MTDC Resort, which is basic but overlooks the valley. It gets booked out months in advance, so you either need to plan early or try your luck upon arrival. Else, there is Saj by the Lake, a extremely beautiful resort, but do note that it’s restaurant only serves vegetarian food.
Across Maharashtra, Satara is known for two things: its historical significance as a capital of the Maratha kingdom, and its local sweet, the kandi pedha. But Satara is also the gateway to some of the most beautiful spots in Maharashtra! The city is surrounded by some of the largest windmill farms of India and is a short drive away from the Kaas Plateau, Maharashtra’s own version of the Valley of Flowers. Thoseghar Falls, one of Maharashtra’s highest waterfalls is also nearby, which looks absolutely stunning during the monsoons!
How to get there? Satara is about 5 hours away from Mumbai by car. You can also travel by train or bus, but you will have to arrange for transportation from Satara in order to go to Kaas or Thoseghar.
Have you been to any of these getaways from Mumbai? Tell me in the comments below!