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Harihar Fort Trek

Things You Need to Know Before Going on Harihar Fort Trek

by Geetika Gautam

Harihar fort is a very popular tourist destination in Godavari district of the state. To know more about the fort and to find details of its location read on the article. Harihar Fort Trek, in the Nashik district of Maharashtra is believed to be the site where this fort is situated. Originally built by Shivaji’s father, Shahaji, and also has three bastions that are shaped like lotus flowers. The road to Harihar Fort passes through some typical Indian villages which offer wonderful opportunities for exploring rural life.

What to Watch out for in Harihar Fort Trek?

The Harihar Fort trek is situated in the southern end of the Nashik district, Maharashtra. The fort has been built on a hillock called Khadki which is surrounded by other hills and valleys. There are many forts around this fort, like Adi Kanga Fort and Junegaon Fort. Khadki is a small fort and is just 8 kms from Harihar Fort. The fort climbing from here gives the visitors a panoramic view of the surrounding places. 

Khadki is also known as Khadi Kothi and has been held by the Marathas, Ahirs, and Bawars intermittently over several centuries. The fort was built by Ahirs during their rule in Kunjali Maratha Fort which was located near present day Umbergaon village. The rule of this fort was later taken over by Bahadur Koli who ruled for a short period. The rule of this fort was later taken over by Adilshah of Bijapur who later won against Afzal Khan in the battle of Ghodegaon.

Since then, the fort has been under the control of the Bijapur Fort. The control of Harihar Fort was with Shivaji Maharaj and it served as a storage facility for food grains and arms during his time.

Harihar Fort Trek

Information About The Trail

Harihar fort trek can be divided into 2 sections based on the difficulty level. 

  1. Nirgudpada village to the plateau: 1 hour 15 minutes
  2. Plateau to the top through iconic steps: 1 hour 30 minutes

You can also reach the plateau from Harshewadi village. The ideal time to do the Harihar Fort Trek is from June to February. For detailed trail information, go through the explanation given below. 

How Long Does It Take To Climb Harihar Fort?

The Harihar Fort is a geographic point located at the westernmost extremity of the Sahyadri Plateau which is a part of the Western Ghats in Nashik district. The fort stands at an altitude of 2,632 meters from the mean sea level (MSL). It was originally built by king Shivaji to protect his Kingdom from Mughals but it was only restored and renovated by Chatrapati Shivaji for his Purandar fort. It is a protected monument and the only fort of this magnitude in Maharashtra, which has not been modified or renovated after Indian Independence. The Harihar fort also holds a place in the history of Nashik and has been the site of many historic events that occurred throughout the history of Nashik.

The fort was built by Shivaji’s father Sambhaji in 1660 A.D.  There are two base villages of the fort, Harshewadi and Nirgudpada. It is situated at a height of 2,200 feet (680 meters) above the sea level.

Harihar fort was primarily built to stop Moghul Emperor Aurangzeb from coming to Nashik district. The temple of Goddess Bhavani atop Harihar fort is said to have been built by Baaleshvarji Malhara in 1660A. D. and is dedicated to Goddess Bhavani. Every year, a fair is held in the month of December when lakhs of devotees pay homage to the goddess.

About Harihar Fort

The fort itself is built on a hill called Harishankar or Harishanker or Hari Shanka, which is situated in the Shevgaon taluka in Nashik district of Maharashtra state in India. The fort has a triangular shape with steep slopes on all three sides. From the north side, it is 1553 feet (468 meters) above the sea level. From the south it is 1483 feet (455 meters) while from the east it is 1635 feet (500 meters). The fort also has a deep valley on all the three sides.

There are seven gates to enter into this fort. There are several buildings within its boundaries. Among the notable ones are the Baheshwar Temple, Shivaji’s ashram and an old building known as Gangadhar tower.

According to local legend, Harihar was built by Raja Baheshwar on the orders of his wife Parvatibai and her father, Ambareshwar. The fort came into the possession of Maratha king Shivaji after Baheshwar died in 1643 A.D. He renamed it Harishankar or Harihar. You can see fortresses in Nashik like Durg bhandar, Utwad stronghold,  Bhaskargad or Basgad, Brahmagiri slope, Anjaneri fortification, and other eminent spots from here.

How to Reach Harihar Fort? 

Wondering how to reach the fort? We have the information you need.

By Road: The base village of Harihar is Sonori near Meherdekhi, at a distance of 16 km from Nashik. From there you can walk up to the fort which will take around an hour and a half. Alternatively, you can opt for a truck or bus ride to the top, which takes around fifteen minutes in total. By Bus: The nearest bus stop is the Sonori bus stand. From the main station, take any road (not Harihar Rd) towards Sonori village.

Things to Carry For The Trek:

  • Some readymade food items like cakes, fruits, chocolates, biscuits, etc
  • Water is essential
  • A good pair of trekking shoes
  • Carry extra pair of clothes, socks 
  • Cap, Camera as Optional
  • 1 packet of energised drinks like electrol, glucon D etc.
  • Carry a backpack to put all the above things to be carried.

Final Words:

If you’re looking for an exciting adventure, there’s no better place than Harihar Fort in Maharashtra. It’s therefore, the perfect spot to enjoy Mother Nature at her best. The fort is also open for trekking and hiking, with a variety of routes to choose from depending on your skill level. The views of the surrounding area are breathtaking, so be sure to pack your camera!

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