A student’s life is indeed a world of happiness, energy, confusion and despair. Where you are full of energy to conquer the world, you lack the most important thing – money. We are always on a strict budget and no matter how fascinated everyone is with Goa or Ooty, let’s face it, you can’t travel there with a dirt cheap budget! What if I told you I know of a place that is cheaper and more accessible than travelling around Mumbai for a day?

Now, those who have been reading my blogs for a while now surely knows how lazy a person I am. But this is one place that is so easily accessible from Mumbai that I woke up at 6 in the morning, all ready and energized! It took me roughly 3 hours of easy smooth transition from a hot and sweaty Mumbai to the pleasant and pollution free Matheran. We took a local to Dadar, then from there another local bound to Khopoli. We got down at Neral, had breakfast and then took a taxi to Matheran entry point, popularly known as Dasturi Naka. The best part is we (4 of us) reached Matheran in less than 500 Rs! Isn’t this cheaper than travelling around Mumbai? 😀

Once there, one has an option of taking a horse, a hand driven rickshaw or a walk till the market. We chose to walk. It was tiring, but worthwhile. It didn’t take us long to find a cute, cozy room overlooking the woods. We stayed at Hotel Wood Side that charges INR 1500 per head a day, inclusive of food. For me, there is nothing more soothing than knowing that I don’t have to walk a mile to get food! After a homely lunch and quick nap, we headed out for some sight-seeing.

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After a seemingly long walk through dense forests, we reached Charlotte Lake. Lush green forest with a never ending lake on one side, and a steep breathtaking cliff on the other, this place was a surprise package! We then headed to Echo Point which is a km away. Tired and hungry, we headed back to our hotel and called it a day.

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Matheran is the smallest and the only automobile free hill station in the world. Our second day was spent mostly playing badminton and table tennis in the hotel, a quick visit to sunset point in the evening followed by a look in the market. On our way back to Mumbai, we took the toy train. One can miss anything while in Matheran but not the adrenaline pumping toy train ride.

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We headed to Matheran as it was my birthday last weekend. Having spent almost all my birthdays sweating it out as a party freak, I wanted this one to be special. A quiet, silent and fresh start to a new year in my life.

Love N Luck