offbeat places in pune


Pune, often referred to as the “Oxford of the East” or the “Cultural Capital of Maharashtra,” is a city known for its rich history, vibrant culture, and educational institutions. Beyond its well-known landmarks and bustling streets lies a world of offbeat places waiting to be explored. If you’re looking to go beyond the touristy spots and uncover hidden gems, here’s a guide to some offbeat places in Pune that will surely pique your interest.

Historical and Cultural Gems

Shaniwar Wada: This historic fortress served as the seat of the Peshwa rulers in the 18th century. While it’s not entirely off the beaten path, many visitors miss its lesser-known corners and hidden stories. Explore its sprawling courtyards, intricate architecture, and don’t forget to ask locals about the haunted tales associated with the fort.

Sinhagad Fort: A trek to Sinhagad Fort offers not just panoramic views but also a chance to delve into its historical significance. This fort has witnessed numerous battles and is a favorite among trekkers for its rugged terrain and lush surroundings.

Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum: While Kelkar Museum is not entirely offbeat, its extensive collection of unique artifacts often goes unnoticed. Be sure to explore the lesser-visited sections, such as the musical instruments and traditional Indian utensils.

Natural Escapes

Mulshi Lake: Tucked away in the serene Sahyadri hills, Mulshi Lake is a tranquil escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. Enjoy the scenic beauty, go for a boat ride, or try your hand at water sports like kayaking and windsurfing.

Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary: Venture into the heart of the Western Ghats and explore the rich biodiversity of Bhimashankar. Trekking through this sanctuary provides an opportunity to spot various species of flora and fauna, including the Indian giant squirrel and the elusive Malabar giant pit viper.

Panshet Dam: Just a short drive from Pune, Panshet Dam is a perfect spot for a day picnic. Aside from offering breathtaking views, the dam also provides water sports activities like speed boating and jet skiing.

Quirky and Unusual Places

Shinde Chhatri: This memorial dedicated to the 18th-century military leader Mahadji Shinde showcases intricate architecture and historical significance. It’s a peaceful place to learn about the Maratha history away from the crowds.

Osho International Meditation Resort: Experience a unique form of relaxation at the Osho Ashram. Participate in meditation sessions, explore the lush surroundings, and attend evening events for a holistic spiritual experience.

Tribal Cultural Museum: Uncover the lesser-known cultures of India at the Tribal Cultural Museum. It houses a fascinating collection of artifacts and exhibits that shed light on the traditions and art forms of various indigenous tribes.

Culinary Delights

Vohuman Cafe: Step into the nostalgic world of an Irani café at Vohuman. Savor the iconic bun maska and Irani chai while soaking in the old-world charm of this eatery.

Vaishali: This South Indian restaurant is an institution in Pune. Beyond the famous filter coffee, explore lesser-known dishes like Rava Dosa and Mysore Masala Dosa.

Bedekar Misal: Start your day like a Punekar by indulging in a spicy Misal Pav at Bedekar. This local favorite comes with a variety of spice levels, so choose according to your taste.

Art and Creativity

Darpan Art Gallery: Discover contemporary art at Darpan Art Gallery, which often showcases works by emerging artists. Engage with the local art scene and attend art events and exhibitions.

Sudarshan Art Gallery: Witness the magic of sculpture at Sudarshan Art Gallery. Interact with artists and admire their intricate stone and metal works.

Lost The Plot: Enjoy open-air movie screenings and cultural events at Lost The Plot. This unique venue offers a relaxed atmosphere for cinephiles and art enthusiasts.

Adventure and Thrills

Nirvana Adventures – Kamshet: For adrenaline junkies, Kamshet is a short drive from Pune and offers paragliding and other adventure sports. You can even take up paragliding courses here.

Diamond Water Park: If you’re traveling with family, Diamond Water Park is a fun-filled destination with exciting slides and attractions for all ages.

Lohagad-Pavna Trek: For a dose of history and adventure, trek to Lohagad and Pavna forts. The scenic route and ancient forts make for a memorable hiking experience.

Local Experiences

Phule Market: Dive into the local culture by visiting Phule Market. Sample street food, shop for fresh produce, and soak in the lively atmosphere.

Tambat Ali: Stroll through Tambat Ali, the coppersmiths’ alley, to witness traditional craftsmanship. You can even purchase unique copperware as souvenirs.

Tulshi Baug: If you have a penchant for antiques and jewelry, Tulshi Baug is the place to be. Explore the bustling bazaar and hunt for hidden treasures while bargaining with local shopkeepers.

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