Most Beautiful Fort In Maharashtra
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Basic Info: Ratangad is probably the best scenic fort in Maharashtra. Its located near Bhandardara dam. So enroute you can visit the Dam too.This fort is around 2000 years old and holds great historical importance.
This fort will give you breath taking views as good as what you would get in the Grand Canyons of USA.
Route: We would recommend that you go via private vehicles as the local transport is not that good. Travellers from Pune need to head towards Shendi Village and then from Shendi you can ask the locals for the route to Ratanwadi which is the base village.
The road from Shendi to Ratanwadi is mind blowing. You will get to see untouched nature. During our last visit in the monsoon season, we saw waterfalls, lush green forest enroute.
Please note that you wont find many travellers in this area, so ensure that your group size is large. There are many leopards in this area, so do not get out of the car between the Shendi to Ratanwadi Section.
Travellers from Mumbai or Pune can halt at the resorts in Bhandardara as trekking after driving for such long distances is not advisable.
Best season to visit: Ideally winter is the best season to plan for a visit to Ratangad. But monsoon season has its own advantages.
If you are planning for an overnight stay, I would recommend that you go in winters. The weather is just PERFECT during this time.
What to see at Ratangad: Below are the points of attraction at Ratangad.
Camping info: There is not much open space on the fort to setup a camp site. However, there is an area infront of a cave which is ideal to setup a camp.
The overhanging cover of the cave will also provide natural shelter from rain. The cave is not in a good condition and cannot be used as a shelter.
Take plenty of insulating material if you are visiting in the winter season. It gets extremely cold and you will not be able to sleep if you do not have something to keep you warm.
Beware of Monkeys that gather at one of the bastions on the fort. They are extremely aggressive, so please try to stick with your group.
One of our group members tried confronting one of the monkeys and we were stranded on a bastion for around 30 mins.