Tourist Places to visit in Pune (2022)

  • Post last modified:19 March 2022
  • Reading time:19 mins read

Pune is a lovable city for various reasons. Dubbed the second major “IT hub of India” and the top “automobile manufacturer of India”, Pune has been often ranked as the most liveable city in India. Being a major city in the state of Maharashtra, Pune once served as the political hub of the Maratha Empire. Home to various historic and cultural monuments and structures, the city has witnessed the Mughal-Maratha Wars and the Anglo-Maratha Wars.

Pune is easily accessible from the other major cities in Maharashtra. Hence, tourists who seek to visit Mumbai also happen to include Pune in their itinerary. Pune experiences a delightful climate around the year and is most pleasant during the winter. Along with tourists, the city welcomes students and professionals from all parts of the country who migrate over here to pursue their careers.

Go through this article to find the best places to visit in Pune. Nicknamed the “Oxford of the East”, Pune has a lot to offer for all sorts of travellers.

10 Places to Visit in Pune

Shaniwar Wada

Withstanding the test of time, the majestic Shaniwar Wada stands as the most popular cultural and historical fortification in Pune. The seven-story rock and brick monument was the great seat of the Peshwas of the Maratha Empire. Peshwa Bajirao I, one of the fiercest warriors of the Maratha Empire, was the first resident of Shaniwar Wada.

The gigantic fort palace was built in 1732 and served as the centre of Indian politics in the 18th century due to the rise of the Maratha Empire. Shaniwar Wada survived a massive fire in which most of its interiors perished. Today, the preserved parts of the fortification serve as a tourist hotspot.

Shaniwar Wada’s major attractions include the five gates namely — Dilli Darwaza, Mastani Darwaja, Khidki Darwaja, Ganesh Darwaja and Jambhul Darwaja. Shaniwar Wada has to be included in your list of places to visit in Pune.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM

Major Attractions: Dilli Darwaza, Mastani Darwaja, Khidki Darwaja, Ganesh Darwaja and Jambhul Darwaja

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Aga Khan Palace

Built by Sultan Muhammed Shah Aga Khan III in 1892, the Aga Khan Palace was an act of charity by the Ismaili spiritual leader who wanted to help the poor who were hit by famine. Declared as the monument of national importance in 2003, the Aga Khan Palace once served as a prison for Mahatma Gandhi and his wife Kasturba Gandhi. The gigantic structure was a photographers’ haven for its natural lighting, unique structure and surrounding greenery.

However, as of now, photography is prohibited in the vicinity. Take a stroll around the palace to behold beautiful lawns and Italian arches. The magnificent building consists of five halls and a 2.5 metres long corridor. Covering an area of 19 acres, Aga Khan palace archives numerous photos that give glimpses from the life of Mahatma Gandhi and other Indian freedom fighters.

The Aga Khan Palace is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Pune.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM

Major Attractions: Lawns, Kasturba Gandhi Samadhi

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Learn more about Mahatma Gandhi, Kasturba Gandhi’s lives

Sinhagad Fort

Travel 35 kilometres southwest of Pune city to find yourself at the foot of the historic Sinhagad Fort. Studies show that the Sinhagad Fort is nearly 2000 years old. Perched on an isolated cliff of the Bhuleshwar range in the Sahyadri Mountains, Sinhagad Fort is also known as Kondhana. It was the venue for the historic battle of Sinhagad where Maratha general Tanaji Malusare died while trying to recapture the fort in 1670.

Sinhagad Fort is one of the most popular weekend destinations in Pune and is also a haven for trekkers. Atop the fort is a Kaundinya Eshwar temple with ancient carvings on it. A bus of Tanaji Malusare can be seen in the fort along with a kali temple and a hanuman statue. Sinhagad Fort also served as the summer retreat of Bal Gangadhar Tilak.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 5:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Major Attractions: Kali and Hanuman temples, Tanaji Malusare’s bust

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Photography, trekking

Dagdusheth Halwai Ganpati Temple

Dedicated to Elephant god Ganesha, the Dagadusheth Halwai Ganpati Temple welcomes thousands of pilgrims every year. The temple sees a massive influx of devotees and tourists during the ten-day Ganeshotsav festival. It is a popular destination for celebrities and renowned politicians of the state. The main Ganesh idol is insured for the sum of ₹10 million and is nearly 130 years old.

This temple is subject to deep history. A famous sweet maker called Shrimant Dagadusheth Halwai established the first Ganesh idol. The idols were replaced in the coming generation and it is at this location that Bal Gangadhar Tilak came up with the idea of Ganeshotsav. Dagadusheth Halwai Ganpati Temple is one of the most popular places to visit in Maharashtra.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 6:00 AM to 11:00 PM

Major Attractions: Ganesh idol, Ganeshotsav

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Worship

Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park

The Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park or the Katraj Zoo is a destination that can be included under the list of places to visit in Pune for families. The 130-acre zoo is divided into three parts and houses Katraj Lake. The zoological park has an animal orphanage, a snake park and the main zoo.

The zoo is home to a large number of reptiles, mammals and birds. People visit the Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park to witness the white tiger and the Bengal tiger named Tanaji. The snake park is the major attraction at Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park and has over 22 species of snakes. The snake park organizes many snake festivals to get people acquainted with the snakes.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM

Major Attractions: 13-feet long King Cobra

Ideal duration to explore: 2-4 hours

Things to do: Photography, animal spotting

Pune Okayama Friendship Garden

Head to Pune-Okayama Friendship Garden to seek some tranquillity while in Pune. Inspired by the Kōraku-en Garden in Okayama that is over 300-year-old, it gained the name Pune-Okayama Friendship Garden. The garden is sprawled over 10 acres of land and has naturally flowing water from a canal. Taking a walk while enjoying the landscape over here must surely make it into your list of things to do in Pune.

Visit during weekdays to avoid crowds as the weekend is packed with families and picnickers. The Pune-Okayama Friendship Garden is also a popular school picnic destination. Do not miss out on climbing the bridge in the garden and take a good look at the colourful fishes beneath. The garden is located at Sinhagad road and is easily accessible.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 6:30 AM to 10:30 AM, Monday to Sunday from 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM

Major Attractions: Colourful fishes

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Early morning and evening walks

National War Memorial Southern Command

The National War Memorial Southern Command is a war museum in Pune that is dedicated to post-Independence war martyrs. The memorial was unveiled on 15th August 1998 and is the only war memorial in South Asia that has been erected by citizens’ contributions. Visitors keen about India’s war history visit this memorial. The museum is one of the top tourist spots in Pune.

The major attraction in National War Memorial Southern Command includes a MiG-23BN that was used in the Kargil War and the replica of the now decommissioned warship INS Trishul. The National War Memorial Southern Command stands as the memory of brave hearts who sacrificed their lives for the prolonged well-being of the country even after Independence.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 9:30 AM to 12:00 PM, Monday to Sunday from 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM

Major Attractions: MiG-23BN

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Learn about India post-Independence war

Kamala Nehru Park

Treat yourself to the pretty view of the vibrant flowers and freshly cut grass at Kamala Nehru Park. Located in Erandwane in Pune, Kamala Nehru Park is a perfect destination for early morning and evening walks. The garden is dotted with artistic sculptures that add to the aesthetics of the place. The 10-acre park houses a jogging track, kids’ playground, two lawns and a water fountain.

A 1960 Indian fighter-bomber aircraft is kept on display at one of the lawns. One can find many street food stalls right outside the park. Kamala Nehru Park is mostly visited by families. It is also an ideal destination for travellers seeking places to visit in Pune for couples.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 6:00 AM to 11:00 PM, Monday to Sunday from 4:00 PM to 8:30 PM

Major Attractions: 1960 Indian fighter-bomber aircraft

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Things to do: Photography, morning and evening walks, jogging

Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Mandai

Once known as Lord Reay’s Market, the Mahatma Phule Mandai is the biggest retail vegetable and fresh produce market in Pune. The grand market nestles in a majestic British colonial building in Shukrawar Peth. Located in the heart of the city, Mahatma Phule Mandai is often crowded and is one of the most famous places in Pune.

The building in which the market is located was constructed in 1886. Back then it housed a retail and wholesale market and the Municipal office. As of today, the Gothic structure is home to over 526 fruits and vegetable stalls. The market is crowded most of the time because the fresh produce is available at a lower cost than any other place in Pune. Mahatma Phule Mandai also has a Ganesh Mandal that is one of the oldest Mandals in Maharashtra.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM

Major Attractions: Gothic-styled arched building

Ideal duration to explore: 1 hour

Things to do: Shopping

Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum

Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum in Pune stands as the epitome of the father-son bond. Late Dr D.G. Kelkar dedicated his massive collection of rare Indian artefacts to the memory of his only son ‘Raja’. As of today, the three-storey building possesses about 22,000 artefacts out of which 2500 are on display. If you have a thing for arts then this museum must make it into your itinerary.

Dr D.G. Kelkar travelled across the country for over six decades and collected everything that fascinated him. A connoisseur for arts, Dr Kelkar made sure his collection could reach fellow art lovers. And thus, he donated the collection to the Government of India in 1975. Major attractions here include door frames, vessels, ornaments, arms and armours. Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum is a renowned tourist spot in Pune amidst arts students.

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday from 10:00 AM to 5:30 PM

Major Attractions: Door frames, vessels, ornaments, arms and armours

Ideal duration to explore: 1-2 hours

Pune is the kind of city that has an equal share of tranquillity and busy city life. Students and job-seekers choose this city as their second home for the same reason. Nestled close to the metropolitan city of Mumbai, Pune also acts as a weekend getaway for the metro dwellers.

Home to historic buildings and structures, Pune has its place deeply rooted in Indian and especially the Maratha history. In this article, the destinations mentioned under places to visit in Pune are certain to help you make the most of this city.

FAQ

What is famous in Pune?

Being the centre of the Maratha Empire, Pune is famous for historic monuments and structures. The city is also known for its welcoming climate.

Is Pune worth visiting?

With several historic buildings, museums, gardens and famous street-food stalls, Pune is ready to welcome tourists all around the year.

Is Pune a beautiful city?

Pune has been declared the most livable city in India. The city is home to multiple industrial setups and educational institutions and yet facilitates ease of living that is nothing but peaceful.

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