Mumbai is situated in a very convenient geographic location, with the attractions of the coast and the cool air of the mountains all close by. There are many unique destinations that are a scenic drive away where one can unwind and refresh over a weekend or more. From trekking in Kolad to wine tasting in Nashik, a plethora of activities await the adventurous traveller. Here are some recommendations.
Daman and Diu
A 180-km drive away from Mumbai, the union territory of Daman and Diu is not spoken about much in the travelling circles. Yet this quaint region is a hidden treasure, home to a dramatic coastline and beautiful Portuguese-styled colonial architecture. Explore its old streets and enjoy evening strolls on the beach as the sun sets on the Arabian Sea. Some of the must-visit attractions here include the Diu Fort, the Nani Daman Fort, St. Paul’s Church and the Tower of Silence.
Eclipsed by clouds most times and surrounded by thick forests, Lonavala is a verdant haven for the weary city slicker. Waterfalls and lakes dot the landscape. Lonavala is a favoured destination for nature lovers and those who love to hike and trek. Lohagad Fort is one of the major landmarks here. This was a bastion of the great warrior Shivaji and it is believed that he kept his treasury here after recapturing it from the hands of the Mughals. One can enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding valleys from the fort.
Just a shade north of the megapolis, one will stumble across Palghar. But this is no nondescript town in the middle of nowhere. Palghar makes for a sweet cultural trip as it is home to the Warli indigenous community apart from many others. Palghar has many secluded beaches, which were once the domain of smugglers, but now attract scores of intrepid travellers looking for an offbeat destination.
The mother of all road trip destinations on the West Coast is Goa. From beaches to backwaters, old forts to fishing villages, this tiny state has mesmerized travellers for generations. One can explore its many attractions in a self drive Mumbai to Goa cab. Fort Aguada is one of the famous historical landmarks in Goa. It overlooks the Arabian Sea and is located close to the popular Candolim beach. The lighthouse here is one of the highlights along with the well-preserved walls and ramparts. Calangute and Baga are a good choice for those who are looking for party spots. Goa boasts some pristine scuba diving spots – Grand Island is one of the highly rated ones.
Road trips are best when on one’s own terms. Public transport and chauffeured services can take the sheen of the journey and rule out any spontaneous detours or stops. Getting a car on rent is a viable option nowadays with the emergence of platforms like Zoomcar. One can enjoy the trip in complete privacy and assurances like all-India permits and 24/7 on-road support result in a hassle-free experience.