Once upon a time Maharashtra was ruled by the Marathas and subsequently captured and lost to other Royals, to protect their land they built massive forts as a form of defense. As a result, from an eagle eye-view you can see the various hills and mountain tops swarmed with forts which almost look like tiny houses built upon mountain tops.
Its fascinating to think of them as pieces of the past that were a part of great glory, however now they remain confined to being tourist attractions, their royalness has completely faded away inhabited by tourists and other local wanderers.
Prabalmachi is one such place. A tiny village located almost halfway up the mountain. This gives it a plateau or ledge-like look, hence the name Machi in Marathi. Also known as Fireflies Trek, trekkers and tourists come here and camp for a night so they can cherish the sight of numerous fireflies glittering in the night. Standing 2300ft tall Prabalmachi acts as the base village for other renowned treks like Prabalgad and Kalavantin Durg Trek.
How to Reach?
From Mumbai, Its advisable to take a train till panvel and take an ST Bus from the station. Which will leave you at the base village, Thakurwadi.
From Pune, You can alight a train from Pune Junction and get down at Panvel Station this will be a 3 hours journey. Panvel bus stand by walk is about 15 minutes away from the station and buses that take you to Thakurwadi are easily available
Things to Carry
Its essential to keep yourself well prepared before going for a trek, so see to it you carry all the essentials-
Change of Clothes
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit most treks that are located in the Western Ghats is the monsoon season- June to September as its the time nature exists in full bloom and you can enjoy the lush greenery that surrounds these places along with feeling one with nature. The rain also makes the atmosphere cool and easier for trekkers to continue the trail without getting tired easily. However, the rain leaves the soil slippery making it dangerous and more prone to falls and accidents. If you are a beginner its advisable to not trek at this point of the year since only an Advanced Trekker will know how to traverse through slippery ground. The fog and mist also ends up covering the entire view which prevents you from enjoying the mesmerizing panorama of mountains and naturesque landscspes.
Winter- This is a relatively safe time to step out for treks as the monsoon leaves the atmosphere chilly and cool making it a convenient climb and easy trek.
Summer- Not the best time unless you are trekking early in the morning, as the scorching heat makes it difficult and tiring.
Level of Difficulty-
This is a great trek to start on your trekking with as a Beginner. As it familiarizes you with all the essentials of trekking, so you can decide if this sport’s for you.
Reasons to trek-
Birds Eye View of Kalavantin Durg, Prabhalgad and other parts of the Matheran Range
Easy for Beginner
Lesser Known so Lesser Crowd
Intresting Geographical Structure
Get to interact with friendly locals
Places to Visit-
Kalavantin Durg- One of the most difficult treks in the Sahyadri Range.
Karnala Fort- The Karnala Bird Sanctuary hosts a wide variety of Birds and other flora and fauna.
Sightseeing- Trekking is not just a great physical activity but also allows you to enjoy and cherish the bounty and beauty of nature. The trek allows you to enjoy beautiful sights of tall trees, evergreen landscapes, picturesque flowers , birds and butterflies.
Camping- A great place for Camping. Usually a base village for camping before trekking for Kalavantin or Prabalgadh.
Picnic- A great place to enjoy a day out with family and friends.
Photography– Scenic Views that are worth being photographed along with fantastic locations for perfect photoshoots.
– This Structure is about 2300 ft tall
– It takes about 120 mins to finish the climb
– This is a great start for beginner trekkers
– It’s a part of the great Sahyadri Range, also known as Western Ghats that host a wide range of mountains.