The Khadakwasla Dam is built on the Mutha river. It lies 21 km away from Pune city center and is a popular getaway for the locals. This dam has created the Khadakwasla Lake that forms the most important source of water supply for Pune and nearby areas.
It was built in 19 century after a severe drought experienced in East Pune. The plan to build the dam was recommended by Captain Fife Re of the British army. He was also involved in the construction of it. This is the reason why the man-made lake was called Fife lake until 1947.
The construction began in 1869 and was completed in 1879 and cost 65 lakhs to the exchequer. It was rebuilt after the floods of 1961 that caused massive damage to the city of Pune. This lake is still the major source of water for Pune city today.
A favorite spot for Pune locals
The best time to visit this dam is the monsoon season. This place becomes a nature lover’s paradise during the season – breezy, misty, and abundant with greenery.
The dam is a popular weekend escape for the urban tribes who wish to have a peaceful end to their hectic week.
With a height of 250metres and a drop of 31.7, the view of the water cascade in season is powerful and incredible. Watching the turbulent waters cascade down is a great adventure in itself, especially from the bridge across the dam.
Bird nesting sites nearby also bring in ornithologists to this dam.
There is no entry fee to enter the dam. The timings are 10 am to 6 pm. Some people prefer to come here to watch the magnificent sunrise and sunset.
Peacock bay, owned by the National Defence Academy, is one of the scenic places to visit here. It is named after the number of peacocks found in the area. Lion-tailed Macaques, civets, and deer are also other residents here.
The Neelakantheswar temple is on a hillock nearby. It lies between this dam and the Panshet dam. It is the site of an ancient Shiva temple. The temple can be reached by walking a certain distance and climbing few steps. There is a Hanuman statue in a sleeping pose in the temple premises. Other statues inside depict legends and mythologies from Hindu Pantheon.
Kudje village has many resorts with rural and natural settings. It is also a green picnic spot where you can spend your whole day with friends or family. There are small hillocks nearby that kids would love to climb and explore Youngsters can try Night cycle trails packages in the twilight on the track running parallel to the Khadakwasla backwaters. Even beginners can take upcycle excursions up and down the gentle slopes enjoying the lovely climate and greenery.
Eateries near Khadakwasla Dam
There are abundant stalls near the dam to enjoy some yummy snacks. Pure vegetarian fare is available at Hotel Mejewani. Cold and hot coffees are specialties at Café Durga. Lovers of street food can rush to Kata Kirr, the Misal Paav specialist before the stocks are exhausted.
There are more places to explore on a weekends trip here.
National Defence Academy is close by. Cadets from all the three wings of the Armed forces are trained here. Permission is to be taken before entering the building.
There are many architectural buildings on the grounds that amaze you. The gardens are well maintained and a sight to behold. Watch the cadet’s training or be in time for the passing out parade that happens in June and December.
Krushnai Water world is 7 minutes from the dam. It’s a fun place for couples, friends, or family. The wave pool is the most favored ride here.
Pune Okayama Friendship Garden is 2 km away from the dam. This beautiful and peaceful garden attracts visitors all through the year. Along with the Japanese garden, you will also find Mughal gardens and a small children’s play area. Do note that eating is not allowed inside the garden.
Dharshan Museum is located 7.5 km away from the dam. It was built by an educationist and visionary SadhuTL Vaswani. The entry is free.
This museum has 3d Holographic, HD vide, Hi-Def Audio, realistic sets, Theatrical lighting, and Life-size statues. The tourist feels he or she has entered into a cinematic scene in this amazing museum.
Raja Dinakar Kelkar Museum is 4.8 km away from the dam. This museum has a great collection of rare ancient paintings, sculpted ivory and wooden doors, musical instruments, idols, and historical objects. The entry fee for adults is Rs.60/- Though it looks small from the outside, the collection inside is big and worth a visit.
Blades of Glory Cricket Museum is a perfect stop for cricket lovers! It is among the largest cricket museums in the world.
It displays bats signed by the 12 world cup winning teams. On display are more than 50,000 cricket-related memorabilia including bats, balls, and clothes worn by cricket players across the world. There are of course many rare photos that the fans of the game will relish.
Joshi’s Museum of Miniature railways is a personal museum and has had a mention in Limca’s book of records in 2004. It has a miniature Funicular Railway, Steam trains, Wuppertal Hanging Railway, Rope Railway High-speed intercity express, underground train, Trolley bus, and more on display. 65 signals, lamp posts, flyovers, fences, etc, platforms, cranes, goods loading facilities, announcement systems can also be seen.
There are about 2000 figures in various poses, a business city center with flashing lights, a building with lighting, a fairground with the circus, toy train, roller coaster, merry go round which come alive with sound effects. Overall it is a very interesting and informative place to visit.
The University of Pune is a building from the time of the British Raj. Private tours of the University are also available. Those interested can also attempt cycle trips inside the University.
Bhimashankar wildlife sanctuary This sanctuary is about 3.4 km away from the dam It is home to animals like Malabar giant squirrel, leopards, barking deer, wild boar, Indian Pangolin, Sambar, golden jackal, and Striped Hyena.
Shaniwar Wada – A historical stop around 4.8 km away retelling a tragic story of a prince. Sinhagad Fort is a fort steeped in the history of wards.
Some temples that are close by are the Parvati temple, Narayani Dham temple, Katraj Jain temple, ISKCON NVCC TEMPLE, and Sarasbaug Ganapathi temple.
Laxmi Road is a shopping destination to discover the latest in fashion. Bargaining is a must here though.
People from the city of Pune or other cities on a week-long holiday can visit
- 2000 year old Karla caves that house Chaityas and Viharas of Buddhist period.
- Taljai hills at a height of 2000 feet that provides amazing glimpses of the skyline of Pune.
- Lonavala or Lavasa are popular choices lying on Pune Mumbai highway. Checkout trekking options here too
How to reach Khadakwasla Dam
The nearest airport to this place is Pune
This place is just 20 km from the city center so; you can hire Ola, Uber, self vehicle, or local buses to reach the Dam.
Pune is connected to all major cities of India by train as well as air. Take a cab from the Khadakwasla Kudje that is very near the Pune railway station.
If you reach by intercity bus, go to the Khadakwasla Dharan bus stand or Khadakwasla Goan bus stop and take a local bus to this place.
Places you choose from for a weeklong trip at Khadakwasla Dam
- Aquaris resort, a homely resort, with facilities such as lakeside dining, kids area
- Saffron Stay Meado – place for the whole family, just outside Pune. Has awesome views of the Lake
- For lavish rooms, villas and dormitories available at Wilderest Hilltop Resort.
Deccan Wind resort has all facilities like a Wife TV and more.