Sandhan Valley is one of the most interesting physical features found in India. This deep canyon located in the heart of the Sahyadri Mountains and is considered to be one of the most dangerous and challenging trek routes. This valley is also called the valley of shadows as the sunlight does not reach the floor of the valley. The Sandhan Valley is located near Bhandardara near Igatpuri. Once you go on the Sandhan Valley trek you will realize that this is not just a trek but a complete package of rappelling, rock climbing, enjoying bonfires, and camping under the starry sky. The Sandhan Valley is located between three forts – Alang, Madan, and Kulang. The three forts together are called the AMK forts.
Basic Details About Sandhan Valley Trek
Location: Samrad village in Ahmednagar district, Maharashtra
Altitude: 2 km long for 200 feet deep
Distance of Sandhan Valley trek: 12 km
Trek time: Approx. 5 hours
Difficulty of Sandhan Valley trek: Moderate to difficult
Estimated budget: Approx. INR 20,000
Note: The budget estimate is inclusive of things like transport, food, and accommodation. If you buy an all-inclusive package from a travel operator, it may cost you INR 3000-4000 less.
Why Indulge In The Sandhan Valley Trek
One of the best experiences here is getting to see the clear sky and if you are lucky enough then the shooting stars as well. The camping grounds are splendid. There is an aperture created by 15 feet wide and 200 feet long wall from where you get the best view of the sky. The steam through which the trekking begins flows into a large pond, but don’t drink from it. The stream provides clean water for drinking purposes.
The unique features of the trip bring in people from all over the country for an unforgettable experience. Given our hectic schedule in our busy city life, this little run with nature is always an amazing experience. This is one trek where you get to enjoy canyoning, trekking, rock climbing, rappelling, sliding, descending, wading through water, and camping all at once.
Best Time For Sandhan Valley Trek
There is no limitation to when you plan on this trek. You can do this at any time of the year. It is, however, preferable that you do not do it in the summers. As the temperatures soar, you will not be able to enjoy the trek very well. Most of your energy will be swapped by enduring the heat. It is advisable to plan the trek in winter, autumn or even in the monsoons.
How To Reach The Sandhan Valley Trek Point
Once you get to Mumbai, you will need to take a train to Kasara (or Igatpuri). On reaching Kasara you can hire a shared jeep and reach the Samrad Village. There are plenty of jeeps available for Sandhan Valley from Kasara and Igatpuri.
The Route Of Sandhan Valley Trek
The trek route starts right from Samrad. You will be walking through shallow water bodies in the first few hours itself. Through this entire path, you will be descending. You will reach Tarzan Swing Point. This is the point where you will be rappelling. You can avoid this point and carry on if you want to do your Sandhan Valley trek without rappelling. You will also be using a rope ladder for climbing and then there is some cave crawling waiting for you. After this, you will be going on a hike among the rock patches. Here you will find some deep water pools which you will have to wade through. Following this, you will reach some wide rocks, crossing which you have the camping ground. Here you will get to view the Bann pinnacle and Ajoba Hill.
There will two paths for the return journey. For the first one, you can take the same route that you took while coming here and return with that. For the second one, you have to keep moving forward and then descend through the gentle slopes and keep trekking through the river bed. You will then reach the Dhene village from where you can take a bus to Asangaon station.
Best Places To Visit On The Trek
Here are some attractions and tourist sites you can visit along the way for an extra dose of thrill and adventure.
1. AMK Forts
Make sure that you are trekking uphill to the ancient forts of Alang, Madan, and Kulang. But if you are too tired after the main trek then make sure you are getting some rest before you head out for the second trek to these forts the next day. The trek to these forts is demanding as well so you will need your energy for the trek that is to follow.
2. Ratangad Fort
This is another fort that you cannot miss. Going to this fort is a steep ascent but it is not much of a demanding experience so you can do it on the same day as the AMK forts. Though it’s not as big as the AMK forts, it’s a great place to get an insight into the history of this valley and see some age-old architecture that is a testament to the skills of the masons of old.
3. Nanhe Ghat Waterfalls
This waterfall is just a few kilometers away from base camp so make sure that you go to Ratanawadi to visit this. It’ll be a refreshing experience to have a picnic near this beautifully cascading waterfall and/or take a dip in the pool that collects at the base of it. Don’t forget to keep an eye on your belongings at all times and do click a lot of pictures!
Places To Stay On The Sandhan Valley Trek In Maharashtra
You can camp overnight at the gorge. This will give you the best camping experience ever. It must be remembered that their area has no hotels or lodges nearby.
You can stay at a number of homestays in and around Samrad which are not luxurious but are comfortable enough.
If camping is not something that you want to do then you can head to a hotel in Bhandardara.
Tips For Sandhan Valley Trek
- If you are a first-time trekker then make sure that you are getting yourself a guide or a trekking operator.
- If you have a heart condition, then it is best to avoid going on this trek.
- This trek tests your stamina to a huge extent so you need to be careful.
- Carry enough packaged food and small nibbles on the go. Keep a few energy bars.
- Make sure to take some mosquito repellents and windbreakers.
- Carry a fully charged power bank.
We hope this comprehensive guide helps you plan an exciting getaway to Maharashtra and engage in the dauntless Sandhan Valley trek through the lush foliage and mighty hills of this Indian state. If we missed out on any important element that should have been a part of this guide, let us know in the comments below and we’ll happily add it.
Frequently Asked Questions About The Sandhan Valley Trek
A. This is a two day and two nights trek.
A. There are no toilets en route. There are available at the Samrad village and after the tour is over at Dehne Village.
A. Children below 15 years of age are not allowed on this trek without parents’ supervision.
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