17 Things To Know Before Travelling to Maharashtra, India
1. Destination Overview of Maharashtra:
Maharashtra is located on the western coast of India and is the second most populous state in the country. It is known for its rich culture and heritage, and is famed for its picturesque hills, mesmerizing beaches, and pilgrimage sites. It is home to the iconic monuments of the Ajanta and Ellora caves, the grand Gateway of India, and the iconic Marine Drive.
2. Top Activities to do in Maharashtra:
• Explore the Ajanta and Ellora Caves – Explore the world-famous Ajanta and Ellora Caves, which are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
• Visit the Gateway of India – Visit the iconic Gateway of India that was built to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary in 1911.
• Explore the Marine Drive – Enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Arabian Sea at the Marine Drive.
• Visit the Elephanta Caves – Visit the Elephanta Caves, another UNESCO World Heritage Site, located on an island in Mumbai.
• Go on a Shopping Spree – Head out to the bustling markets of Maharashtra and shop till you drop.
• Visit the Ellora Festival – Participate in the annual Ellora Festival held in the month of December.
• Experience the Beaches – Enjoy the stunning beaches of Maharashtra like Juhu Beach, Chowpatty beach and Aksa beach.
• Explore the Hill Stations – Go on a trek to the hill stations of Maharashtra like Lonavala, Mahabaleshwar, and Matheran.
• Try Street Food – Sample the delicious street food of Maharashtra, including vada pav, misal pav, and sabudana khichdi.
3. Best Places To Stay in Maharashtra:
• Luxury Places: The Taj Mahal Palace, The Oberoi, The Leela
• Mid Range: The Residency, The Orchid, The Fern, The Lalit
• Budget Friendly: Treebo, Hotel Highway, Hotel City Palace
4. How to Travel to Maharashtra?
The best way to travel to Maharashtra is by air. Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport is the primary airport in the state, with direct flights to all major cities in India and abroad. The nearest railway station is Mumbai Central, which is connected to all major cities in India. You can also take buses and taxis to reach your destination.
5. Must Try Local Food and Drink in Maharashtra:
• Vada Pav – A popular street food in Maharashtra, vada pav is a potato-based delicacy served with chutney.
• Pav Bhaji – Another popular street food in Maharashtra, pav bhaji is a spicy mix of vegetables served with pav.
• Poha – A popular breakfast dish, poha is a flattened rice-based dish served with peanuts and other spices.
• Solkadhi – A drink made from Kokum and Coconut milk, solkadhi is served as an accompaniment to seafood.
• Modak – An iconic Maharashtrian dish, modak is a steamed dumpling made with coconut and jaggery.
• Alphonso Mango – A seasonal fruit, Alphonso mangoes are known for their sweet taste and velvety texture.
6. Best Places to Eat in Maharashtra:
• The Table: This upscale restaurant in Mumbai offers an amazing selection of global cuisine.
• The Bombay Canteen: This popular restaurant in Mumbai serves a variety of Indian and international dishes.
• The Masala Library: This luxurious restaurant in Mumbai is known for its innovative takes on Indian cuisine.
• The Bombay Vintage: This popular restaurant in Bandra serves a variety of Indian and international dishes.
• The Koli Kitchen: This restaurant in Pune is known for its delicious seafood dishes.
7. Weather and Climate:
Maharashtra experiences hot, humid summers and mild, dry winters. The best time to visit Maharashtra is from October to March, when the weather is pleasant and the temperatures are mild. Avoid travelling to Maharashtra during the monsoon months from June to September, as it can be very wet and humid.
8. Local Customs and Etiquette in Maharashtra:
It is customary to remove your shoes before entering a temple or someone’s home. It is considered rude to wear revealing clothing in public. Avoid touching anyone’s head, as this is considered disrespectful. It is also important to respect the local customs and traditions.
9. Popular Scams in Maharashtra:
Be aware of taxi drivers offering to take you to a shop or restaurant with inflated prices. Do not accept any food or drink from strangers as it may be laced with drugs. Be aware of pickpockets in crowded areas. Do not exchange money with anyone other than an authorized money-changer.
10. Suggested Trip Duration:
A minimum of 5 to 7 days is recommended for a first-time traveller to Maharashtra.
11. Total Estimated Budget Per Person:
Stay: INR 3,000 to INR 10,000 per night
Food: INR 500 to INR 1,500 per day
Activities: INR 500 to INR 2,000 per day
Tickets: INR 200 to INR 500 per attraction
12. NearBy Cities:
• Mumbai: 84 km
• Pune: 247 km
• Nashik: 168 km
• Aurangabad: 327 km
• Kolhapur: 397 km
13. Local Language and Communication in Maharashtra:
The official language of Maharashtra is Marathi. English is also widely spoken. Some common phrases in Marathi are “Namaskar” (Hello), “Shukriya” (Thank You), and “Kem Chhe?” (How Are You?).
14. Accepted Currency and Money:
The official currency of Maharashtra is the Indian Rupee (INR). Credit cards, debit cards and cash are widely accepted. Tipping is not traditionally practiced in Maharashtra, though it is becoming more common in restaurants and hotels.
15. Health and Medical Information:
It is recommended to get vaccinated against common diseases such as typhoid and hepatitis A and B. Be sure to drink only bottled or boiled water. In case of an emergency, there are several hospitals and medical centers in Maharashtra.
16. Packing Tips for Maharashtra:
Pack light and comfortable clothing, as temperatures can be quite hot in Maharashtra. Be sure to pack sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat for protection from the sun. Also, pack comfortable walking shoes for all the sightseeing.
17. To Sum Up:
Maharashtra is a beautiful destination in India, perfect for sightseeing, shopping, and experiencing the local culture. From the Ajanta and Ellora Caves to the beaches of Mumbai and Pune, Maharashtra offers something for everyone.