Kharghar Hills – Navi-Mumbai’s Very Own Lonavala!

Attributes: Weekend Getaway, Around the City

Wintery mornings, foggy skies and a warm overcoat. Sounds perfect, doesn’t it? There are times when one really craves that feeling, that windy atmosphere, that view of the valley. At such times, Mumbaikars resort to Lonavala. Well, Mumbaikars resort to Lonavala for every damn thing. Birthdays, Celebrations, Failures, Successes, everything. Navi Mumbai, simply translating to New Mumbai refers to the part of Mumbai, which has been developed later in stages and now is day-by-day matching the pace of the Mumbai City itself. This Navi-Mumbai has the infamous Vashi, Kharghar, CBD Belapur, Airoli etc. 

On the service road from Kharghar to Belapur, lies Kharghar Hills. Though, relatively small and not much known to people, the place to much surprise is an amazing destination for a mini getaway. It is a perfect spot for those looking for a hill station vibe with not much to travel. The place has nothing. No vendors, no stalls. It has not yet become that big of a spot. And that in fact, makes it more beautiful. Few people, less litter, less pollution. It begins with a narrow road at the bottom that is surrounded by the mountain and trees and leads to the top of the mountain. It is like a trail which is narrow and curvy. On the top, there are few rocks, flowers, and bushes. 

The main trivia of the place is that cars and vehicles are not allowed to be taken upstairs except for Sundays. One has to park cars below, and then begin that mini trek or rather simply adventure, enjoy the scenic beauty. One of the advantages of this is when you are on the top, it's only cool breeze and sun peeking from the clouds. No pollution, no honking.  From the top, the whole of Kharghar, some parts of Belapur and Kamothe are visible and the whole city seems minuscule even after having the tallest residential towers and complexes. It is that peace of mind that leaves you bewildered and the picturesque image that settles in your mind. 

Few things to keep in mind while planning a visit or picnic to Kharghar hills are –
-    If the day you are visiting is not a Sunday, then be ready for a little climb.
-    Avoid such places during the rainy seasons. During the onset of monsoons, it’s still fine.
-    The place can be only visited early morning. 

There is a watchman and a boom barrier at the beginning of the trek. It is closed during monsoons and rest of the day except for mornings.

After this mini little adventure, you leave around 8.30 am when you feel you have spent enough time looking around and now that the sun is shining bright, you would be greeted with the aroma of dosas, vada pav, and chai! By 8.30 AM, many stalls and breakfast joints are open and thus that delicious breakfast brings an end to your perfect morning. 

So, tell us, haven't you marked a visit to this beautiful hills already on your bucket list?

Author and Picture Credit: Riya Fulwani

Tags: kharghar hills

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