Pune-Queen of Deccan

Published: 21st July 2011
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Pune also known as Poona is the second largest in the state of Maharashtra and eighth largest metropolis in India. Pune is the cultural capital of Maharashtra and is a serene destination rich in culture and has an ostentatious past. Pune is also called Punya-Nagari which means city of virtue and this city holds a legacy of traditions, culture and etiquettes.

Pune is far famed for the oldest Film and Television Institute of India and Symbiosis Institute of Media and Communication.

History: The history of Pune revolves around the history of Shivaji, Peshwa and Maratha rule, which originated in the 6th century. Pune was a part of Yadava Empire of Deogiri and later ruled by Nizanshahi Sultans followed by Mughal rule.

During the Maratha and Peshwa rule, there were many rulers at different time intervals:

In 1625: Rango Bapuji Dhadphale was appointed the administrator of Pune and he contributed to the development of the town and taking care of the construction of Kasba, Somwar, Ravivar and Shaniwar Peths and Lal Mahal was constructed in 1640.

From 1630 to 1647: Dadoji Kondev was given the responsibility for administering the development of the town and later in 1649, once Shivaji was crowned as Chhatrapati, he was an active contributor in the development of Guruwar, Somwar and Mangalwar peths. Shukrawar, Raviwar, Shaniwar, Bhavani, and Ghorpade Peths were constructed before the rise of Peshwa.

1703: Aurangzeb constructed Budhwar Peth.

1720: Chattrapati Shahuji was ruling and in 1730 palace of Shaniwarwada was constructed.

1761: Peshwas saw their downfall after losing in Third Battle of Panipat.

1802: Yashwantrao Holkar captured Pune from Peshwas and the Second Anglo-Maratha War of 1803-05 was triggered.

1817: Anglo-Maratha War

1858: Pune Municipality was established

Topography and Weather: Located 560 m above the sea level, Pune is a on a high altitude and hence the weather is quite favorable. Vetal Hill is the tallest hill and which is 800 m above sea level. Central Pune has Mula and Mutha rivers flowing and the other rivers flowing in the outskirts which add on to beauty are the Pavana and Indrayani. The weather of Pune is tropical wet and dry climate. The summer ranges from March to May; monsoon starts from June and lasts till October and July experiencing the highest amount of rainfall. The winters range from November to January and the cold chill in November is referred to as Rosy Cold.

Culture: Pune known as the cultural state of Maharashtra has legendary culture and Marathi is the language spoken predominantly. Pune has a diversified culture having the traditional Maharashtrian as well as the modern lifestyle. Ganesha festival is celebrated with great pomp and show and Chaturshringi goddess is worshipped very religiously by natives. On the spirituality front, Osho is a well known spiritual teacher and has served in Pune teaching in 1970s and 1980s. The Ashram is known for spiritual mediation and the most clichéd sex related features. Among the lip smacking delicacies are the Vada pav, Bhelpuri, Misal and Kutchi Dabeli, bhakri-pitla, and mastani milk shake. Other mouth watering grubs are bedekar misal, chitale bhakarwadi, jeevalakha samosa.

Places to explore in Pune:

  • Panshet Dam

  • Bhatgar Dam

  • Pimpri Chinchwad

  • Raigad

  • Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum

  • Tribal Museum

  • Mahatma Phule Museum

  • National War Museum

  • Shaniwar Wada

  • Vishrambaug Wada

  • Saras Baug

  • Aga Khan Palace

  • Parvati Hill temples

  • Katraj

  • Chatushrungi Mata Temple

  • Pataleshwar Caves

  • Bund Garden

  • Sinhagad and Khadakwasala

  • Bhimshankar Wildlife Sanctuary

How to Reach Pune:

Air: Pune International airport is located 10 kms north east of Pune. It a very well established and well developed airport connecting two international destinations out of Pune, which are to Frankfurt and Dubai by Private Air (operating for Lufthansa) and Air India Express. The connecting modes of transport to the airport are prepaid taxicab and auto rickshaws. There are coach services as well as private car rental services to various key locations in Pune.

Rail: The rail networks are very well connected with other rail junctions in India. Trains like Shatabdi Express, Deccan Queen, and Indrayani Express function to and fro between Mumbai and Pune.

Bus: Pune is also connected by two National Highways, NH50 and NH4. The bus routes are well networked with other cities and states in India. Fleet of private luxury deluxe buses as well as state owned buses function very effectively. Pune is connected with Mumbai with the three-lane NH 4 highway. State-run as well as private buses operate on a frequent basis between Mumbai and Pune.

In the age of internet, booking of ticket is easy and hassle free. Online travel agencies are always updated with the price and availability list of different fleet. Bus booking, Air ticket booking is very convenient online. Online bus booking is less time consuming and a great energy saving process.

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