Igatpuri is a town and a Hill Station municipal council in Nashik District in the Indian state of Maharashtra. It is located in the Western Ghats. Igatpuri railway station lies in Nashik District between Mumbai and Nashik Road on the Central Railway. Igatpuri is known for Vipassana International Academy, where ancient technique of meditation is taught called Vipassana. Trains on this route usually change locomotives on this stop and also change the guards and drivers. The place is one of the best places to visit in Maharastra in monsoon. It is a hill station on busy Mumbai-Agra NH-3 only 45 km from Nasik and 130 km from Mumbai.
Igatpuri is a major railway station with all trains stopping for 20 minutes as there is a change of locomotive engine owing to the electric current (AC/DC) running the engine. There is a major presence of the Indian Railways within this small town.
This is the station from where 25 KV AC traction on OHE begins for CR trains starting from Mumbai CST.
The station is famous for its scenic surroundings, wada pao and idlis sold by vendors to commuters traveling in the train. The exit of Igatpuri railway station signals the proximity of Mumbai on down route.
Holy Family Convent High School is the oldest English medium school run in the town. Other English school "Wonderland High School & Jr College". There's an Arts, commerce & Science College.
Igatpuri is surrounded by the highest peaks in Sahyaadri i.e. Western Ghats, most of them are forts built in Satavahana dynasty. It's heavenly for trekkers and hikers, Most Indian (Hindi) movie outdoor scenes specially songs are shot in Igatpuri region. Igatpuri is a place of significance in terms of Vipassana meditation. The International Centre for Vipassana meditation called Dhammagiri, supposedly the largest Vipassana Center, is located here. This region consists of those mountains which are accessed by trains going from Mumbai CST to Kasara and Igatpuri. Local trains only go up to Kasara, and don't climb the Thal Ghat from Kasara to Igatpuri. Hence to go to Igatpuri, one has to either take a long distance train or reach Kasara by a suburban train and then take a bus uphill.
Tourism is the most significant segment of the Igatpuri's economy. Following are the places most visited by tourists:
Bhatsa River Valley: The Bhatsa River valley is situated at the end of the Thal Ghat, just before entering Igatpuri from Mumbai. The valley lies in the basin of the majestic Bhatsa River. The valley is a picturesque spot with lush vegetation and majestic rocks formed by the river that runs through it.
Arthur Lake: A few km from Igatpuri, lies a huge and placid Arthur Lake, set like a huge jewel amidst the dense greenery. The lake is formed by the waters of the Pravara River in the Bhandardara region.
Kalsubai Peak: About 35 km from Igatpuri is the highest peak in the sahyadri ranges.
Amruteshwar Temple: Built in 11th century AD, it is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Constructed in a distinct Hemadpanti style, the temple is surrounded by lush green fields and Mount Kalsubai the highest mountain in Maharashtra. From here a further excursion leads to the Ratangad Fort. One can access this temple by road or an 8 km boat ride on Arthur Lake.
Dhamma Giri Meditation Centre: Founded by S.N.Goenka, Dhammagiri is a meditation centre offers courses in Vipasana (insight meditation) a technique taught by the Buddha in India, 2,500 years ago. The large Golden Pagoda, the central theme of Dhammagiri serves as a landmark for Igatpuri. The centre attracts a lots of people from various parts of India as well as abroad. More on Dhammagiri , visit at www.giri.dhamma.org
Ghatandevi Temple: Just ahead of Igatpuri, after crossing the Camel Valley, comes across a small road, which leads to the Ghatandevi temple. According to the locals belief, Ghatandevi is the Protector of Ghats. The mountains of Durrar Utvad, Trimak and Harihar forms a spectacular backdrop. Behind the temple lies the Tringalwadi Fort.
Tringalwadi Fort: It is situated at an altitude of 3,000 feet above the sea level. Since it is located very high, the fort offers picturesque scenery of the whole locality, especially Kulang and Kalsubai mountain ranges. The fort attracts trekkers also. The top of the fort is shaped like a Turban. A temple dedicated to lord Hanuman is nearby. An architectural marvel, the fort can be accessed through a narrow pathway, down to the Tringalwadi Lake. Just a few km away from Tringalwadi Lake is Talegaon Lake formed by the small Talegaon Dam.
Camel Valley: A few metres away from Bhatsa river Valley, on the right is the camel valley. On the other side of the valley is a waterfall formed by the rain waters and one have to walk over and look down to find a slop that falls over 1, 000 ft. The waterfall is the chief attraction of this place.
The Five Waterfalls:
A little further from Ghatandevi, the rough road leading to the railway line begins. Across the railway line, while climbing down, falling one below the other, are five waterfalls that form which are main attraction for tourists in Igatpuri.
The best place in town to buy a soda, ice cream, pasta, chips, Heinz Ketchup, Maggi Noodles, 50/50 Biscuits and more. You also get a friendly smile, a welcome and a space to sit from the heat in summer and the deluge of rain in Monsoon. Remember to say hi to Baba Ji too (he'll probably be the one serving behind the counter!).