This is the very heart of Maratha country -- Raigad, the capital of Shivaji's kingdom. Strategically perched atop a wedge-shaped block of hill, split off from the Western Ghats and inaccessible from three sides. Stories of incredible valour and heroic deeds are etched on every pebble at Raigad.
It was here that Shivaji built his capital city in the 14th century, and here that he crowned himself Chhatrapati. For six years up to his death, Raigad remained the capital of the Marathas with its broad gates and magnificent monuments. There was only one pathway leading to the top, and prizes were offered to those who scaled the fort through unconventional methods. Though parts of Raigad are in ruins, yet they inspire an aura of grandeur.
Shivaji's impregnable capital, the place where he was crowed and where he died. Besides the fort, you'll find his samadhi and the remains of his palace.
For its immence beauty, Raigad remains a hiker's paradice.The formidable Pratapgad fort with its equestrian statue of shivaji is an interesting excursion.
You can also visit Gangasagar Lake or worship at the nearby Jagadishwar Temple or pay your respects to the great Maratha warrior at his Samadhi.
There are many interesting routes to Raigad, varying from the relatively easy to the challenging. The path starts from Pachad, 24 kms from Mahad, a shallow sea port on the banks of the Savitri River. Raigad can also be an adventure-filled day excursion from the hill station of Mahabaleshwar or from Pune.
Places to see near by
Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum is in Pune, Maharashtra. The museum has nearly around 20,000 collections of objects paintings, handicrafts, armour-suits, musical instruments and many other objects of art and artifacts collected from all over the world. The building has been designed in a Rajasthani-style, but the galleries give a clear depiction of the life and culture of the Marathas.
Dinkar Kelkar spent almost 60 years traveling and purchasing objects from the remote areas and towns of India. Dividing into 36 sections, the collections are confined mostly to everyday life like pots, lamps, containers, nutcrackers, pen stands. 'Mastani Mahal' is regarded to be the masterpiece to this museum, which was erected here in its original form.
The wood carvings include carved wooden doors and windows from Rajasthan, Gujarat, Karnataka and Kerala. The metal objects include locks, ink pots, ritual bowls and nutcrackers. There are also an assortment of oil lamns in and copper. Another collection is of the paintings from addition is the section on women, which depicts their important role in Indian society.
Articles belonging to Mughal and Maratha periods that date back to 17th century are displayed at Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum. Musical instruments, metalwork, exquisite chitrakathi
Paintings and a unique lock collection are the other attractions of the museum.
Air : Nearest airport is Pune 126 kms.
Rail : Nearest railhead is Pune.
Road : Mumbai-Raigad 210 kms. via Mahad. Pune-Raigad 126 kms. Mahad-Raigad 27 kms. State Transport buses ply from Mumbai, Kolhapur and Pune to Ratnagiri and also from Ratnagiri to Pawas via Bhatye.