There are many attractions in Mahabaleshwar, and if you are a foodie and shopaholic like me here are few of suggestions and recommendations based on my experience.
1) Visit to a strawberry farm-
I believe a trip to Mahabaleshwar is incomplete without a visit to any strawberry farm. It is the most enticing experience one can have in this berry heaven. Picking fresh strawberries from the farm is an experience which one has to feel it. My daughters had a wonderful time doing this activity and as our friends had a farm of their own we were blessed to squeeze on fresh and juicy strawberries from the farm right out door for all the 3 days.
This is the man made lake and the most popular tourist attraction in Mahabaleshwar. It is surrounded by lush greenery and it is very serene. It is a very popular spot for all the honeymooners and equally loved by families. They offer row and peddle boats for rides. It gets too crowded at the peak hours. So to avoid the rush I would suggest that you reach there as early by 4 p.m to enjoy the ride before the mad crowd sets in. There are also many activities like horse riding and fun fair games just near the lake side to keep you busy.
When it comes to food this place is a paradise. You get fresh produces here from the farm like sweet corns, strawberries, mulberries, baby carrots and baby radishes. Restaurants like Bagicha and Hirkani are very famous among the tourists and also celebrities. There are plenty of small stalls and joints just opposite the lake side that serves you fast food and very famous strawberry with cream.
3)Anarkali- best strawberry with cream!!
I have eaten at almost all the joints and well known restaurants at Mahalabeshwar and so I can vouch on the fact that Anarkali serves the best Strawberry with cream, strawberry mehendi, fresh ice strawberry ice cream, corn pattice and corn frankie. Trust me the taste and flavor it has is unbeatable and I would say even better then Bagicha. So don’t forget to eat at Anarkali and relish these delicacies.
My travel is incomplete with the local food and collecting local souvenirs. I love to SHOP till I drop and I mean it. Venturing out the local markets at all the tourist destinations is something that I never fail to do. I always want to carry home something which that place has to offer for my family and friends.
The market is in the heart of the town and its a car free zone. you have to walk it up the interiors to explore and shop. This market has lots to offer and most of the stuffs are local. It is very well know for its Kolhapuri shoes and sandals. You will surely freak out at the sight of it. They have such lovely colors and patterns that you would wanna pick all of them. They also have a lot of wooden carved stuffs and many other knick-knacks. You can see them in the pictures. There are many other food products like Jams, jellies, syrups, chanas with different flavors, handmade crochets stuffs, wooden antiquesi, and not to forget the berries.
Well there are many points and scenic places that are worth seeing in Mahabaleshwar, but this time my trip was restricted to farm, market, lake and eating joints. I will update on the other aspects when I visit this place again in summer holidays.
Well while returning back home to Mumbai we took a small stop at Wai village to get some fresh and homemade stuffs like papads, masalas. I have had the best sugar cane juice here and you should also take a halt here on your way back. Our trip and this post ends with a sweet note. Hope this gives a fair idea of what to do, eat and shop.
Well I love to go to this place in all the seasons as it has many things to offer. I am sure you may also plan a trip sooner or later.