The most sought after holy destinations in Maharashtra are Mumbai, Nashik, Aurangabad, Shirdi and Bhimashankar which one must visit on Maharashtra tour packages. With this vacation, relish paying a visit to Trimbakeshwar where you can worship Lord Shiva in the form of Jyotirlingas, a sacred land of Shirdi and then a drive to Shani Shingnapur. Not only this, you will get to explore many religious centers like Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga and Bhimashankar shrine. For superb experiences amid nature’s best, this tour will leave you wanting to return soon for more.
Upon arrival at Mumbai International airport meet with our representative & transfer to the hotel. Overnight stay at hotel.
Morning at 08.45 hrs transfer from the Hotel to Gateway of India to take the catamaran for Elephanta Caves with an accompanied English Speaking Guide. Boat leaves at 09.00 hrs (No car as Hotel is walking distance from Gateway of India). Enjoy a one-hour boat ride across Mumbai Harbour brings you to the lovely, green Elephanta Island. Here you visit some of the huge and intricately carved Cave Temples dating back to the 7th century and dedicated to the Sun God - Shiva. Large panels depict episodes in his life. The central sculpture represents Shiva's three aspects as creator, preserver and destroyer. Return back to the pier at 13.00 hrs.
Afternoon city sightseeing tour. Overnight stay at hotel.
Morning after breakfast drive to Trimbakeshwar. Trimbakeshwar is a highly religious center of Hindus having one of the 12 Jyotirlingas of Shiva. The Jyotirlinga of Trimbakeshwar is having its three faces representing Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu and Lord Mahesha. Due to excessive use of water, the lingam has started to erode. It is said that this erosion symbolizes the eroding nature of human society. The Lingas are covered by a jeweled crown which is placed over the Gold Mask of Tridev (Brahma Vishnu Mahesh). The crown is said to be from the age of Pandavas which is consists of diamonds, emeralds, and many other precious stones.
According to Shiv Mahapuran, once Brahma (the God of creation) and Vishnu (the God of saving) had an argument in terms of supremacy of creation. To test both of them, Shiva pierced the three worlds to a huge endless pillar of light - the jyotirlinga. Vishnu and Brahma set their ways to downwards and upwards respectively to find the end of the light in either directions. Brahma lied that he found out the end, while Vishnu conceded his defeat. Shiva appeared as a second pillar of light and cursed Brahma that he would have no place in ceremonies while Vishnu would be worshipped till the end of eternity. The jyotirlinga is the supreme part-less reality, out of which Shiva partly appears. The jyotirlinga shrines, thus are places where Shiva appeared as a fiery column of light.
After visit drive to Nashik upon arrival visit Panchavati. River Godavari flows through Nashik and its Northern part is called as Panchavati. It is mentioned in the Ramayana that lord Shri Ram and Sita along with Laxman stayed at Panchavati for some time during their Vanvas (exile). Due to this Panchavati has gained holy importance. There are five Banyan (Vat) trees and hence the area is called Panchavati. Nearby is Sita Gufa (cave) where Sita is said to have stayed for some time.
In the evening transfer to the hotel. overnight stay at hotel.
Morning after breakfast visit Shirdi. Upon arrival check into the hotel. In the afternoon visit Sai Baba Ashram & Sakuri Kanyakumari Ashram. Overnight stay in hotel.
Shirdi is a well-known religious town dedicated to the saint who preached the theory of one god and wished for amicable relations between all religious groups. Shirdi is dedicated to Sai Baba. The Samadhi Mandir, Guru Sthan and Khandoba are among the holy temple to be visited during a visit to Sai Baba.
Sakuri Kanyakumari Ashram - located within 3 km from Shirdi, is a calm and quiet disciplined place. Saint Upasani Maharaj and Sati Godavari Mata is from the same time of Shree Saibaba.
Morning after breakfast drive to Ajanta via Aurangabad to have full day excursion to Ajanta Caves – they are cut from the volcanic lavas of the Deccan trap in a steep crescent – shaped hillside in a forested ravine of the sahyadri hills, These caves are older than those at Ellora consisting of 24 monasteries and temples hewn out of solid rack. The wall paintings and frescoes of these caves are a wealth of colors, Proceed to Civic – cum – Cultural Complex, a gallery of local art and crafts and shopping complex. (Ajanta caves are closed on Monday).
Later in the afternoon return to Aurangabad for night stay.
Morning after breakfast an excursion to Ellora caves, Grishneshwar Jyotirlingam & Renuka Mata temple.
Ellora Caves: The caves are over 2000 years old and consist of temples and monasteries hewn from rocks by Buddhist, Hindu and Jains monks and craftsmen, (Ellora caves are closed on Tuesday).
Grishneshwar Jyotirlinga: temple enshrines one of the most revered 12 Jyotirlingas in India. This lingam is also known as Kusum Eswarar, Grishneshwar and Ghushmeshwar, apart from Grishneshwar. The temple was re-constructed in the 18th century by Ahilyabai Holkar. The temple is constructed in red volcanic rocks and the appealing appearance of the temple is eye catching. The temple has a 5 tier Shikara, which is very attractive. Shikara is crowned with images of Bull and Monkeys.
After visit drive to Ahmadnagar. En-route we will visit Shani Shinganapur - The temple of God Shani is about 75 km from Shirdi. Here the houses of people who stay in the village are without doors and windows! It is said/believed that a person, who steals anything, gets blind at the same day as a punishment by God Shani. Plenty of people visit this place while they visit Shirdi. Hotel Saikrupa can arrange transport service for our customers for a half-day tour to this temple. Please inquire at the reception counter.
Further continue drive to Ahmednagar. Upon arrival check into the hotel. Overnight stay at hotel.
Morning after breakfast drive to Lenyadri to visit Girijatmaja's Idol.
Lenyadri is the only place among Ashtavinayaka places, which is situated on mountain & in the vicinity of the buddhist caves.
Girijatmaja's idol faces east. Parvati consecrated Ganesh idol in the cave wherein she had performed penances. Out of 18 Buddhist caves on mountain, Girijatmaj Vinayak's temple is in the eight caves. These caves are also called as Ganesh Caves. The temple is reached after climbing 307 steps. The entire temple is carved out of single stone & is facing south. In front of main Mandir, there is huge Sabhamandap (Hall) which is nearly 53 feet long & 51 feet broad & to your surprise there is not a single pillar in this Sabhamandap. It has 18 small apartments for meditation. Shree Girijatmaja's idol is placed in the middle apartment.
Further we will drive to Bhimashankar. Upon arrival check into the hotel. Overnight stay at hotel.
After breakfast temple visit & local sightseeing of Bhimashankar.
Bhimashankar temple is an exquisitely carved Nagra style 18th century Jyotirlinga temple erected over a self emanated Shivalinga. The Bhimashankar temple is said to have been built by Nana Phadnavis- a diplomat of the Peshwas. A well trodden trail begins right behind the temple that leads deep into the forest to Gupt bheema. It is also the origin of the river Bhima. A waterfall gushes over a stone lingam to mark the exact spot of gupt Bhima.
Later in the afternoon drive to Mumbai via Lonavala. Upon arrival check into the hotel. overnight stay at hotel.
Morning after breakfast transfer to the airport to board the flight for onward destination.