Matheran is one of the very few places in the world that do not allow any vehicles at all, so the moment you step into this little town, you will be transported back to an idyllic old-world era of red-soiled roads, automobile-free pathways, and lush green hills all around.
There are altogether 28 points, two lakes, two parks, four major worship places and a race course to visit in Matheran. It takes about 2–3 days by foot for a complete tour of all the points. Important points are Alexander Pt., Rambag Pt, Little Chowk Pt, Big Chowk Pt, One Tree Hill Pt, Belvedere Pt, Olympia Race Course, Lords Pt, Charlotte Lake, Pisharnath Mahadev Mandir, Celia Pt (a water fall mouth), Echo Pt., Porcupine Pt (Sun Set Pt), Panorama Point (Sun Rise Pt), Khandala Pt, Madhavji Garden & Point, Matheran Railway Station, Louisa Point, Mayra Point, Pisarnath Temple, Matheran Shiv Mandir.View points like monkey and echo are famous for steep cliffs, deep ravines. One day trekking to vikatgad is an adventurous experience along the cliffs and deep ravines.
Some of the Interesting and unknown things about Matheran are:
1 Matheran is the smallest hill station in India, located on the Western Ghats range at an elevation of around 800 m above sea level. It is about 90 km from Mumbai, and 120 km from Pune. Matheran’s proximity to many metropolitan cities makes it a popular weekend getaway for urban residents.
2 Matheran, which means “forest on the forehead”, is an eco-sensitive region, declared by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India. It is Asia’s only automobile-free hill station.
3 There are around 38 designated look-out “points” (view points) in Matheran, including the Panorama Point that provides a 360-degree view of the surrounding area and also the Neral town. From this point, the view of sunset and sunrise is dramatic.
4 The Louisa Point offers crystal clear view of the Prabal Fort. The other points are the One Tree Hill Point, Heart Point, Monkey Point, Porcupine Point, Rambagh Point, and more.
5 To stay there, there are plenty of hotels. There are many Parsi bungalows. Beautiful old British-style architecture is preserved in Matheran. The roads are not metalled and are made of red laterite earth.
6 Matheran is the birthplace of famous freedom fighter Veer Bhai Kotwal. He was born on 1 December 1912 in a Barber family. The state government has built a monument in his memory.
7 The town also has a large monkey population, including bonnet macaques and Hanuman langurs. The nearby Lake Charlotte is the main source of Matheran’s drinking water. Inside the forest animals like leopard, barking deer, Malabar giant squirrel, fox, wild boar, mongoose are found.