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Matheran is a small hill station in the Raigad district of Maharashtra, India. It is situated on the Western Ghats at a height of 2,625 ft. above sea level and is one of the smallest hill stations in the country. The word Matheran translates to ‘forest on the forehead‘.
Matheran’s proximity to major cities makes it a perfect weekend getaway spot. It is also the only hill station devoid of automobiles in the whole of Asia, making it one of the few relatively pollution free locales in the world.
There are no 4-Star hotels in Matheran, but other places of accommodation are readily available throughout the year and provide similar levels of comfort. All these hotels are located right at the city center and at an approximate distance of 7.8 km from the Neral station.
3-Star Hotels In Matheran:
Westend Hotel: The Westend Hotel is known for its British style architecture, it has a total of 21 cottages and bungalows with basic in-room amenities such as air conditioning and attached bathrooms with 24-hour hot/cold water supply including a swimming pool and space center. The staff can arrange for additional activities like table tennis, badminton, horse riding, campfires and jungle treks. The hotel also arranges a poolside buffet for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Hotel Usha Ascot: This hotel provides facilities like laundry, currency exchange, doctor-on-call and 24-hour room service. The cottages are equipped with cable/satellite TV, telephone and attached bathroom with 24-hour hot/cold water supply. A small balcony-like area is also attached to each cottage. The in-house restaurant serves pure vegetarian food, while other facilities include a swimming pool with bar and a health club with jacuzzi, steam and sauna room.
Hotel Kumar Plaza: In-room amenities at this hotel include central air conditioning, cable/satellite TV, direct-dial telephone, iron and ironing board and attached bathrooms with 24-hour hot/cold water supply. It also has an in-house swimming pool with a kids section for recreational activities and a conference hall for business purposes.
Regal Hotel: Spread across 4 acres of land. The cottages and rooms here are categorized as Non-AC Deluxe Cottage, AC Super Deluxe Room, Centrally Air-Conditioned Deluxe Suite, Centrally Air-Conditioned Regal Suite, Air-conditioned Suite and Air-Conditioned Regal Cottage. It has an in-house restaurant and an ultra-modern conference hall that is suitable for meetings, conferences, and other business purposes.
Adamo-The Resort: This is a 3-star property with 42 rooms that lies 2700 ft. above sea level. The staff can arrange for yoga, meditation, and pranayama sessions. It has 42 rooms that are beautifully decorated and equipped with the latest amenities such as air-conditioner, cable/satellite TV, direct-dial telephone and attached bathroom with 24-hour water supply. The multi-cuisine restaurant - ‘Aroma’ serves the most authentic local cuisine. Points of interest in its vicinity include - Panorama Point, Echo Point, King George Point, Louisa Point, Charlotte Lake, Porcupine Point, Paymaster Park, Panthers Caves and Hart Point.
Hotel Paramount: This hotel provides amenities such as internet access, swimming pool, newspaper delivery, room service, front desk, and laundry. It also has an in-house multi-cuisine restaurant.
One can also indulge in some sumptuous food at popular eateries around Matheran such as Dadas Grill, Thakre Hotel, the Kokan Katta, Ketkars Restaurant, Shabbir Bhai Biryaniwala, Puja Pavbhaji and Aarjvi snack corner.
Most of the attractions are in close proximity to the city center.
Alexander Point (1.4 km): A paradise for nature lovers, this site offers amazing views of the Palasdari Lake, Rambaug Point, Garbut Point, Chowk Point, Borgaon Village and the Ulhas River.
Charlotte Lake (1.7 km): Also named the Sharlott Lake, it is situated near echo point and is the main source of drinking water in the region. It is a paradise for bird watchers.
Porcupine Point (62.6 km): Also known as the Sunset point, this place has a majestic view of the Prabalgad fort.
One Tree Hill Point (2.3 km): Most popular site in Matheran, it is named after one single Jambhul tree resting on the top
Peb Fort (62.4 km): Also known as Vikatgad, it is a historic fort which is 2100 ft. above sea level.
Panorama Point (1.4 km): It offers a majestic view of the Western Ghats.
Little Chowk Point (3 km): Situated towards the southern tip of Matheran - this place offers beautiful views of the Sahyadri Ranges, Karnala Fort, and Panvel town.
Garbut point (0 km): This is a beautiful plateau which serves as a viewpoint to many waterfalls on the neighboring mountains and is the perfect spot for trekkers.
The Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai is the nearest airport from Matheran. From here, Matheran is about a distance of 87.7 km via the Bengaluru-Mumbai highway. Travelers can board flights to Mumbai from anywhere in India and then travel to Matheran by road or railways. Pune Airport is at a distance of 131.2 km from Matheran and can be accessed via the Mumbai Pune NH and Karjat.
Matheran is connected by rail from Mumbai as well as Pune to the Neral Station which is located at the bottom of the hill. From Neral, a small toy train or narrow gauge takes passengers to Matheran which is about 20 km away. The journey offers some amazing views as you cross three small stations- Jumma Patti, Water Pipe and Aman Lodge.
From Mumbai the Deccan Express and the Koyna Express make a stop at Neral Junction. Alternatively, one can also board the Neral-Matheran mountain train from Pune to Neral which is about 120 km.
Matheran is an offbeat holiday destination for nature lovers and if planning a trip to Maharashtra, Matheran should definitely be on the list!