Matheran

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Matheran is an undulating hilltop cloaked in shady trees, that sprawls languidly at an altitude of 800 m. The journey involves an adventurous two-hour ascent in a toy train, with food and drink vendors and monkeys jumping on and off as the valley glides by sedately. Alternately, a tough 11 km hike through thick and shady forests or a winding car drive can get you there as well. Temperatures vary from 16 C in winter to 32 C in summer, with an annual rainfall of 524 cms. October to May is the best time to visit.

Mumbai, 100 kms away is the nearest airport. Neral station, 21 kms away is where you can catch the toy train. Mumbai by road is about 108 kms from Matheran via Karjat and Neral. Pune is 120 kms away. All cars and buses stop at Dasturi just outside, from which you can walk, take a horse or a hand-pulled rickshaw into the town. State Transport buses ply regularly from Mumbai and Pune.

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