History and adventure come together, hand in hand, as the perfect couple at the Raireshwar Trek. Situated near the Bhor Taluka, the Raireshwar trek is one of the most breathtaking and scenic hikes in the Western Ghats, during the monsoons and winters. The view from the peak consists of a panoramic sight of untouched nature and other magnificent forts like the Kenjalgad fort that encompass the hill.
The trek is best done with a group of people, where you can spend hours exploring the historical and ancient stone structures of the fort and the surrounding temples. Towering at a height of 4589 feet (1340 metres) above sea level, the Raireshwar Trek is an exhilarating trip, filled with the wonders of the local flora and fauna. But more importantly, the Raireshwar fort is actually considered one of the most historically relevant destinations in Maharashtra.
Know More About:
- A Quick Peek at the Raireshwar Trek
- Raireshwar Trek: A Monsoon Haven
- The Raireshwar Fort: A Historical Milestone
- The Best Time for the Raireshwar Trek
- Best Routes to the Raireshwar Trek Basecamp
- The Travel Guide to the Raireshwar Trek
- Trekking Essentials
- Camping Tips
- Summing Up
For any trekker planning a quick trip across Raireshwar, they can well be assured that they will be treated to a visual feast, with the exotic stone structures of the fort and the gushing waterfalls that accentuate the path.
A Quick Peek at the Raireshwar Trek
- Where it is Located: Bhor Taluka, Pune District.
- Number of Trekking Days: 1 Day (6 – 8 hours)
- Trekking Distance: 6 - 8 km
- Max Altitude: 4589 ft (1340 m)
- Trekking Grade: Easy - Moderate
- Livingit Rank: Beginner - Enthusiast
- Distance from Pune: 85 km
- Distance from Mumbai: 228 km
- Best Time to visit: July – October; November - February
- Basecamp: Korle Village
Raireshwar Trek: A Monsoon Haven
Located in between numerous other hills and forts, the Raireshwar fort is often considered a pinnacle in the history of the Maratha Empire. On the way, trekkers can enjoy the breathtaking view of the waterfalls dotting the trail and upon reaching the fort; you can get an extraordinary view of the backwaters and the Kamalgad and Kenjalgad forts. The Raireshwar fort also has a temple which has gained immense popularity amongst visitors.
The Raireshwar Fort: A Historical Milestone
The ancient stone structure of the Raireshwar temple was reconstructed in the 18th century and is believed to be where the revered Maratha ruler, Shivaji Maharaja, took his oath as the leader of the kingdom and in taking forward the mission of Hindavi Swarajya in 1645, at the age of 16. This was seen to be a monumental moment in the Maratha history and till today, the temple continues to hold a high status of historical relevance and tourism.
The Best Time for the Raireshwar Trek
The rains make the trail harder with the slippery, wet mud, but waterfalls, lush green surroundings and flower beds definitely make up for it. Although the lack of rain compromises the greenery, winter is also a good time to visit, if you want the trail to be less slippery.
Summers are usually hot in this region, so it is best to avoid this trek in those months unless you don’t mind the sweat or are used to the heat.
- Monsoon: 26 ° C to 32 ° C (day); 18 ° C to 23 ° C (night)
- Winter: 26 ° C to 32 ° C (day); 8 ° C to 18 ° C (night)
- Summer: 35 ° C to 40 ° C (day); 21 ° C to 26 ° C (night)
Best Routes to the Raireshwar Trek Basecamp
Raireshwar fort is about 90 km from Pune and roughly 233 km from Mumbai. You can get there directly via road.
You can take two routes to the get to the Raireshwar fort. If you happen to be travelling in a large vehicle (by bus or tempo traveller), the route through Wai is best recommended. While the route may be longer, it is ideal for bigger transports and it follows National Highway 4, from Pune through Khandala, Wai, Dhom and ends at the Raireshwar Fort.
The second route passes through Bhor, and it uses the same highway as the previous one. You would have to head towards Satara and Khed Shivapur to the reach the Bhor district. From Bhor, you would have to continue towards Korle village, which would act as the base camp for the trek. The distance from Pune to the Raireshwar fort, through this route, is 85 kilometres.
You can easily catch an ST Bus from Mumbai to Pune. However, from Pune, one would have to drive to Raireshwar fort, either through Bhor or Wai.
There are no direct ways to get to the fort base by rail or air, but both Pune and Mumbai are well connected by trains and flights.
The Travel Guide to the Raireshwar Trek
The trek begins from the Korle village, with a muddy but relatively easy terrain.
The path slowly graduates into a steady incline, where indigenous wildflowers can be spotted on both sides to the top. As the trail continues, the trail becomes muddier and more slippery, especially during the monsoon seasons. It’s best to traverse most of the journey with a trekking pole to reduce the risk of slipping along the incline. When you start getting closer to the fort, the trail becomes increasingly hard to follow due to the abundance of tall grass and flowers, spread densely across the path.
If you happen to lose track of the trail, you can just look for one of the electric poles scattered parallel to the main trail.
From Kenjalgad, trekkers would have to hike for another 7 kilometres to reach Raireshwar. On this section of the journey, one can view the spectacular backwaters of the Nira Deoghar Dam.
For the final portion of the trek, hikers would have climb across a stairway of 350 steps to reach the fort at the hilltop. Upon reaching the hilltop, trekkers can spend time exploring the ancient stone structure with the panoramic view of the wide open plateau filled with wild-flowers and the adjacent lake.
Highlights of the Raireshwar Trek
- The forts of Rohida, Rajgad, Torna, and Purandar are very close to Raireshwar, so if you have the time, you could visit these historic forts as well.
- Raireshwar is a religious hub with temples like the Balaji Temple, Jejuri Temple, and Sangameshwar Temple, all around it.
- On top of the fort, there is a lake called “Gomukh” that gives you a constant source of fresh water.
The Raireshwar trek is really easy, but you still need to be prepared for emergencies. Here’s a packing checklist including all the trekking essentials you’ll need for the Raireshwar Trek.
- A backpack or a rucksack that has a capacity around 40-60 litres and broad and sturdy shoulder straps, for better support
- Sturdy hiking shoes that have a good grip
- Trekking pole to reduce the risk of slipping along the incline
- Headlamp and LED flashlights with extra batteries (in the case of camping)
- Sleeping bags and dome tents (in the case of camping)
- Medical Kit
- A compass and a map of the area
- A raincoat in the case of rains or a waterproof jacket
- An extra pair of trekking pants, socks and clothes, in case the other gets wet or torn
- Sun caps
- Thermals (if needed)
- A waterproof cover for your backpack Sturdy trekking shoes
- Recyclable plastic covers/zip-locks
- Nutrition bars or packs of dry fruits
- Camera and extra pair of batteries
- Sunscreen to keep your skin protected from the harsh sun rays
- Chapstick and moisturiser
- Toilet paper and a few light towels
- Two 1 litre bottles
- Hand sanitizer
- Crocin for colds
- Crepe bandage and ointment in the case of any injuries
- A small roll of cotton and gauze
- Moov or Relispray for muscular pulls, aches and sprains
- Bug spray (e.g.; Odomos)
- Dettol antiseptic
- Combiflam as a painkiller
- For trekkers wishing to camp out overnight at the Raireshwar fort, it is best to bring your own equipment and check with the local guides and villagers before setting up camp
- You can ask the villager to assist you with obtaining firewood for the night
- In the winter season, always remember to carry plenty of insulation - blankets and sleeping material
- Avoid camping during the monsoon seasons
The Raireshwar Trek is simple yet thrilling, with a bounty of historical enchantment and natural beauty. In addition to the fort’s historical relevance in the state, the true exuberance of the hike lies in the sheer magnificence of the untouched nature blanketing the trail; from the vibrant wildflowers to the fast and sparkling waterfalls.
The Raireshwar Trek promises every trekker with an experience that is the ideal balance of tourism, history and adventure. The Raireshwar Fort is a place where one can listen to the epic stories of the Maratha ruler, Shivaji Maharaja and the fort itself, with the misty atmosphere and the luxuriant spread of greenery accompanying you across the spread of the trail.
It doesn’t demand much time or effort and it is the ultimate trek for any first timer who hopes to achieve a full package out of the trekking experience.