Maharashtra - Background
Maharashtra is a land whose sheer size and diversity is stunning. Mountains stretch out into the mists as far as the eye can see. Her innumerous forts that stand proud and strong. Her scores of temples, sculpted into and out of basalt rock. Her diverse and colourful cultures, woven into one gigantic quilt. Her festivals that galvanise the sleepy thousands into fervent motion. And her miles of silver, white beaches, stretched taut and inviting over the entire coast.
Maharsahtra is gifted with vast landmass and diverse physical features by the nature. It is the place of shrines and beaches. This land of great Marathas has lots of things to see. Maharashtra's diverse and colorful cultures, woven into one gigantic quilt. Her festivals that galvanise the sleepy thousands into fervent motion. And her miles of silver, white beaches, stretched taut and inviting over the entire coast. Welcome aboard a travel package that gives you a glimpse into this vibrant and beautiful land.
Even though the legend of Shivaji---and the fervour of the Ganpati revelry override most things, the spirit of Maharashtra is cosmopolitan, forward-thinking, tolerant and vibrant. While 80 per cent of Maharashtrians follow Hinduism, the state has a treasure trove of heritage sites that bespeak its multi-hued heritage---including those from its Jain, Buddhist, Muslim and Christian cultures.
So be it the Ashtavinayak yatra in the Konkan belt—dedicated to eight beautiful facets of Lord Ganesha----or the Ajanta and Ellora caves near Auranagabad from the pre-Christian Buddhist Era, the Mother Mary Church at Mahim, or the Haji Ali mosque of Mumbai---there’s enough to keep connoisseurs of temples, forts, old monuments and art---gainfully preoccupied. Forts have played a vital role in the history of the state, given the rocky terrain of the Sahyadris and the need for strongholds against invading armies.
Self-contained units with an economy and socio-political fabric all their own, the forts of Maharashtra built mainly around the time of Chhatrapati Shivaji. Each fort marks a military triumph, and each tells a story of strategy, warfare, intrigue and planning—something of interest to all students of political science, defence strategies and management. All of them reconstruct the tale of an enterprising leader in the Deccan arena, who with fortitude, popular support and vision went onto become one of the tallest kings of Indian history. Interwoven in folklore, along with the valour of Shivaji---the forts are a subject in their own self.
There are nearly 350 forts in Maharashtra, so it is said that forts are the glory of Maharashtra. Most of these forts are associated with the great Maratha ruler, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. It is believed that he developed as many as thirteen forts.
Vijaydurg fort is regarded to be the best sea fort developed by Shivaji. Every fort has temple inside that was a powerful inspiration to the Maratha fighters. 510 km away from Mumbai is the famous Sindhudurg and Vijaydurg forts. This twin fort was constructed with the special guidelines from Shivaji. This fort is famous for its serene environmental beauty and its historic importance.
Shivner fort is the fort where Shivaji was born. This fort is nearly about 120 km from Pune. Pratapgad fort reminds the fiery battle fought between Shivaji and Afzal Khan. The 300-year old fine architectural fort of Murud - Janjira fort, Lohagad and Visapur Forts, Harishchandragad Fort, Arnala Fort and Ajinkyatara Fort are ideal for trekking. Adventure lovers must visit these forts.
As the state of Maharashtra is the Home of Sahydri Mountains, the state has many appealing hill stations. The Britishers founded most of these hill stations during their colonial era to beat the scorching heat. But the beauty and the charming glory are still alive in these hill stations. The Western Ghats, which form a part of the Sahydri range, has also lots of beautiful hill stations.
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