An adventurous trek to the highest trekking point in Pune – Torna Fort, is a must on the list of all the adventure enthusiasts. The Western Ghats of Maharastra are home to many such forts that offer stunning trekking opportunities, but if you had to pick one, let it be the humongous Torna Fort.
About 2 hours from Pune, Torna Fort is situated at an elevation of 1,400 meters above sea level. The reason why it’s a special trek up this fort is because it can be done both during the day at night. At night though, it’s a special experience trekking up to the summit in moonlight, camping in a tent, and then waking up to breath-taking views of the surrounding landscape.
The 3-hour trek starts from Velhe Village, and can be divided into three parts: the initial climb up the hill, then traversing a plateau and finally entering the Torna fort via Bini Darwaja. The iconic fort is said to have been conquered by a young Shivaji in 1643 and then later captured by Aurangzeb.
Though it’s a year-round destination, for the best trekking experience, go during the monsoons. That’s when you’ll find the flowers in full bloom, gushing waterfalls, a bright green landscape and a misty landscape. Remember to explore the Mangai Devi Temple right at the top, as well as Budhla Machi and Zunjar Machi that afford magnificent views of the surrounds.
If you want to push your limits and explore further, you can look at exploring other forts beyond the boundaries of Torna Fort, such as the nearby hill forts of Raigad, Rajgad, Sinhagad and Purandar Fort.
The nearest airport from the fort is in Pune; about 60km away. You can take a cab from the airport to the fort, it takes about less than two hours to reach.