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Sunday, October 11, 2020

Peb Fort and Kadyavarcha Ganpati | Everything You Need to Know


Peb fort and Kadyavarcha Ganpati

Peb Fort and Kadyavarcha Ganpati | Everything You Need to Know

About Peb fort and Kadyavarcha Ganpati

Peb fort also known as Vikatgad, is one of the fascinating place from Sahyadri hill range. It is fascinating because of the presence of Lord Ganesh idol on its route within Matheran hill range. This idol is known as Kadyavarcha Ganpati. Majestic lord Ganesh Idol carved in the stone, Kadyavarcha Ganpati is famous tourist attraction in the hill range of Matheran. The “Kada” is “Edge” in native language of Marathi. It is been carved in the edge of mountain therefore named “Kadyavarcha Ganpati”. Same route connects to stunning Peb fort. Height of the Peb fort is 2100 feet. Fort is located 20 km from Karjat, in Raigad district of Maharashtra. This mountain is one of the part of Matheran range (queen of hills). It is ideal weekend gateway for mountain lovers. A trek to Peb fort along with Kadyavarcha Ganpati is one of the best weekend attraction for tourist. Nowadays forest department and locals have started plantation and restoration work at fort.

How to Reach

Panvel and Karjat are nearest town to reach Peb fort and Kadyavarcha Ganpati. This destination can also be reach via road.

By Air

Nearest airport to reach here is Mumbai International airport. The distance from airport to Matheran is 45 km. One can take self-drive car or can also option for local transport to reach the base point of the fort.

By Train

The cheapest and most convenient way to reach the fort is Train. The nearest railway station to Vikatgad is Neral on central line of Mumbai. From Mumbai one can take local going towards Karjat and get down at Neral station. If you are coming from Pune side then catch local for Karjat station. From Mumbai and Pune train frequency to Karjat is less. Once you alight at station, walk 5 min and catch local taxis going towards Matheran, Peb fort stop is on the way. This stop is also known as Kadyavarcha Ganpati (share taxi may cost around 80-100 INR per person).

By Road

Matheran is 42 km from Mumbai and 80 km from Pune. While traveling from Mumbai via Mumbai-Pune old highway take left from Chowk stop towards Karjat. From Pune road is Pune- Kamshet- Khopoli- Karjat. In monsoon driving to Matheran is very scenic and beuatiful.

Peb fort is accessible by following ways.

Fanaswadi is the first base village to start the trek to Peb fort. I had done this trek before from this route. It was bit risky as the trail itself was too slippery and monsoon makes it more pathetic to climb.

Peb fort
Fanaswadi bike route to Peb fort

Another route was via Matheran. This is more of toy train track route with panoramic view of surrounding mountain. One who wants to explore Kadyavarcha Ganpati, it is best route to reach. 

My Trekking Experience

Coming to my corner of story this lockdown drained away my happiness for about 6 months. It was my first monsoon without trekking and the culprit was corona. One fine day I was just scrolling the news about travel in lockdown and one good news which come up. News was nonetheless than Matheran is now open for tourist. It was soothing news for me, I called up my partner and convinced her for trek. she got ready as she was eager like me and was waiting for opportunity. I started collecting more information about this place and coming Sunday we made plan to visit here as decided.  It was all started on bike and it took almost two and half hours to reach the base point of trek. One has to take left 500 m before Neral towards Matheran, the road passes through ghat area and trail is curvy with steep ascending to drive. One has to be extra careful while driving along with curvy path, one mistake and you are down. If you are well experience driver with ghat side driving then only drive otherwise you have option to park your vehicle at the base and travel through local vehicle on sharing basis.

Kadyavarcha Ganpati
Way to Matheran hill station by road

Matheran is a weekend gateway for people who stays close to Mumbai. While driving to Matheran alight at the stop of Kadyavarcha Ganpati on right side, park your vehicle properly and walk along with track route. There is no sufficient space for parking at this stop. People with four wheeler park vehicles at Matheran stop and then starts trek with another route. Monsoon here welcomes tourist with great view dipped in the fog. This is one of the easy route to trek. The drive through Matheran ghat is superb with water stream coming across the mountain. The walk through track is fascinating, the route is narrow with valley on right side. There are two waterfalls on route where one can get engaged in clicking photos. In monsoon toy train for Matheran remains close due to the risk of land slide.

Kadyavarcha Ganpati, Peb fort
Kadyavarcha Ganpati stop for Peb fort and Ganpati Idol

One has to walk 4 km along with the track. The trek is easy but you need well endurance level. After walking for 1 hour there is marking of Peb fort and Kadyavarcha Ganpati with the small entrance gate on right side. Though the gate is in ruined condition, it is attractive. This terrain of Matheran has its own splendor. Shimmering waterfalls, green mountains, muddy trail and hide n seek clouds are the peculiarity of this place. There is number denoted as 55 at bottom of the track side where you have to take right towards your destination Kadyavarcha Ganpati and Peb fort. This is one of the easy route due to its flat walking.

Kadyavarcha Ganpati, Peb fort
Matheran Toy train route of trekking to Peb fort and Kadyavarcha Ganpati

Kadyavarcha Ganpati, Peb fort
Matheran Panorama point while trekking through rail track

One can take break and get engaged clicking panoramic view of Matheran. Treks continuous with little descending. Steep descending through shrubs will take you towards your destination. Be careful here while descending, the trail is narrow and bit risky too. Moving further there is diversion with narrow trail denoting left towards Ganesh Idol (Kadyavarcha Ganpati) and right for Peb fort. The distance towards Ganesh idol (Kadyavarcha Ganpati) is hardly 10 min walk. Statue of Lord Ganesh is carved on the edge of mountain along with small temple. One can spend few minutes here with Ganpati Bappa and then further short trek towards Peb fort. The route continues with narrow trail with shrubs on both side. Ascending through muddy trail will take you to the entrance of the fort. From Ganesh Idol the ideal distance towards summit point is one hour.

Kadyavarcha Ganpati, Peb fort
Direction towards Kadyavarcha Ganpati and Peb fort

There are two gates on the entrance of the fort. This gates are ruined in past time, only some part has remain. Moving ahead one has to cross iron ladder path. Be careful while crossing ladder, one person at a time is thumb rule. There are water cisterns and ruins of the building on the fort. The top of the fort is narrow and small temple at summit which is built recently. Lord Datta’s Paduka idol is constructed at the center. There is lone bastion in the southern region of the fort. From top panoramic view of Matheran range looks so mesmerizing. Best of the view comes after hardest climb, this is so true. The trek is so easy and beginners are always welcome. At some part extra care needs to be taken with proper precaution.

Kadyavarcha Ganpati
Glimpse of Kadyavarcha Ganpati from rail track

Kadyavarcha Ganpati
Kadyavarcha Ganpati- Matheran

Kadyavarcha Ganpati, Peb fort
Peb fort summit

Best Time to Visit Peb Fort and Kadyavarcha Ganpati

Any season is preferable to visit this charming place as this is a hill side terrain.

During monsoon the surrounding area of the fort is filled with lush greeneries along with glisten waterfalls. Routes are dipped in the fog. If one doesn’t mind to be wet throughout the day then monsoon is ideal season to be here. At some point route may be slippery, extra care needs to be taken while trekking in monsoon. If you are visiting here in this season then better to take toy train route due to better connectivity and less risk.

Winter here makes pleasant climate for trekking lovers. This is best time to visit for camping. As this is a hill station, temperature here ranges in between 15 to 20 degree. One can pitch own tent at summit point of Peb fort.

Summer is not convinced for trekkers due to its humid temperature. You can hardly see any tourist coming for trekking at Peb fort. 

Other Attractions to Visit near Peb Fort

Kadyavarcha Ganpati- Lord Ganesh Idol carved on the edges of mountain and it is biggest Ganesh Idol in the world. If one is traveling Matheran through toy train then glimpse of Lord Ganesh can be seen on right side through train.

Louisa point- Louisa point offers a picturesque view of the historic Vishalgad and Prabalgad fort. Sunset and sunrise are astonishing from this point. The distance from Peb fort is hardly 5 km.

One tree hill point- This is another winsome point for trekking lover. The valley of Matheran is surrounded to this point. One can also reach here directly from base point.

Toy Train-Yes, toy train that connects Matheran from Neral. It covers total distance of 20 km from base to top. It offers panoramic views of Matheran mountain.  

Stay and Food option

Being a fort area there is no hotels or resorts near to it. One can easily travel further 5 km and reach Matheran for stay. Hotels and resorts available in reasonable cost. There is some space at the summit point of Peb fort where one can pitch own tent and stay. Temple at summit can offer stay for 3 to 4 person.

One has to carry own food while trekking. Hotels are available at Matheran. There are variety of food dishes from North to South that offers delicious taste. If you are trekking from Fanaswadi village then request any villagers to cook some food. They may take some nominal charges for extra delicious food. 

Things to Remember While Visiting Peb Fort and Kadyavarcha Ganpati

  • There are no stalls on route so better to carry your food and some extra water.
  • Be careful of snakes while trekking, I had seen it near to track.
  • Roads to Matheran is so dangerous to drive being curvy road.
  • There is no entry fees or any other charges for Kadyavarcha Ganpati by this route.
  • Leave early and finish both the trek.
  • Peb fort through Matheran is one of the easy option for trek.
  • Do not litter the area around fort.


1 comment:

  1. Very good post. Highly informative for trekkers. Keep up the good work.

    ReplyDelete