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Around 100 km from Pune, Panchgani at a height of 1000 m, gets its name from the five hills on which it is built. Panchgani is another one of India's dreamy, quiet hill stations. It is located in the Western Ghats of Maharashtra, on Parasni ghat, just 20 odd kilometers from the very resort-ish Mahabaleshwar and set in an even more pretty location. Probably the best option would be to stay at Panchgani Club, which offers temporary membership.

The club authorities can be a bit sticky if you don't have the recommendation of a member; but it is worth a try. Regular buses connect Panchgani with Mahabaleshwar, Pune and Bombay including the MTDC luxury coaches.


This town is crammed with all kinds of lookout spots and lanes of silver oak to pursue nature rambles. The town -which was 'established' in the 1850s by John Chesson -is surrounded by the five hills from which it gets its name. It is at a lower elevation than Mahabaleshwar by just a few feet. The drive between the two towns is breathtaking. Famous for its flowers like Buttercups, pimpernel etc., during the months of August-September, sights on the hill slopes of this place are spell bounding.   During the monsoon Panchgani is deluged with some six meters of rain.

So fierce are the downpours that even buildings don special raincoats of kulum grass and the hill station all but closes down. Famous is this hill station for the best variety of boarding schools in the country.. Be it St.Peter's where the who's who of the film industry from Sanjay Dutt have studied or St. Joseph's where Kajol and Zeenat Aman have their Alma Mater. Even Sanjeevni is a great school started by Dr. Neelkanth Kalyani, which offers CBSE and SSC residential boards