Pawna Lake Camping – Attractions, Visiting Time, How To Reach And Activities

You may like mountains, but what about a lake where the mountain seems to touch the water on the horizon?

Yes, it exists.

Pawna Lake near Lonavala is one of the most popular weekend destinations for couples and families in Mumbai and Pune. There are several camping sites around Pawna lake where you can camp in the best tent with good facilities such as a toilet, food, sports and of course security. Camping at the bank of Pawna Lake is a thrilling adventure and totally worth the moments.

Pawna lake water

Where is Pawna lake?

Pawna lake is located at a distance of 21 Km from Lonavala, Maharashtra. After the construction of the Pawna dam is complete in 1973, the Pawna Lake became very popular among tourists over the years. The lake is surrounded by lonely mountain tops where you can feel the silence of nature. There are more than fifty well-maintained campsites around the lake that made it a very popular weekend destination among adventure lovers.

mumbai pune highway to reach pawna lake

How to reach Pawna Lake?

Pawna lake is located in between Pune and Mumbai. If you are coming from Mumbai, you can travel to Lonavala by train and then take a private cab to reach there. You can also hire a cab from Mumbai and directly visit Pawna Lake. The distance is around 115 Kms.

If you are traveling from Pune, you can hire a car and reach Pawna Lake at a distance around 55 Kms. There is a nearby railway station called Kamshet from where you can also avail of a cab ride to Pawna Lake. The distance is approximately 22 km from the Kamshet railway station. So, pack up your best trolley bag with the travel essentials you need to take and ride out for Pawna Lake!

Attractions of Pawna lake

Near Pawna lake you can smell adventure in the air. Camping is a dream of every outdoor lover. The magnificent lake surrounded by big mountains and fresh greenery looks very beautiful during sunset. You can spend some amazing time with your loved ones there.

Staying in the tent next to the lake, the warmth of a campfire, mouth-watering barbecue, enjoying the beauty of nature under the sky are every traveler’s wish. The overnight stay in the tent next to the lake gives an outstanding experience for a lifetime. For this reason, Pawna lake camp is one of the best camping places in India.

Pawna Lake

For entertainment with friends and family, there are different types of outdoor games like cricket, badminton, volleyball, carom, football, archery, paragliding, etc. in most of the camping facilities. Enjoy campfire with delicious barbecue from 7:30 PM at Pawna lake camping. The dinner is served between 9:30 PM and 11 PM.

In the Pawna lake camping sites, you will get all the camping essentials to stay comfortably and enjoy the place. You do not have worry about cooking on a camping stove or chilling your drinks, as all these facilities are available in the camps.

Apart from these activities, you can also trek and hike to the nearby hills which can be arranged by the camping authorities during daytime. The cost of camping at Pawna lake is ₹1499 per person, including overnight stay in tents (4 PM to 11 AM), welcome tea and snacks, barbecue, unlimited dinner, bonfire, music, breakfast, gaming and outdoor adventure facilities. Overall, I have found it to be worthy and value for money. You can book a camp at Pawna Lake here.

Pawna Lake camping at night

Pawna Lake: Nearby places

There are many beautiful places to visit around Pawna lake that has some great historical values as well as mesmerizing natural beauty. The Lohagad fort, Tikona fort, Bhaja cave, Tung Fort, Karla Caves, Rajmachi Fort, Duke’s Nose etc.

Pawna lake from Lohagad fort

Lohagad fort

It takes around one hour to reach Lohadad fort from Pawna lake. It has great historical value as Chatrapati Shivaji used this fort to keep his valuables. The Lohagad hike is an ideal destination for beginner trekkers/ hikers. You will be amazed to see how they would have managed to construct such a great fort at so much height. The top of the fort gives an excellent view of the surrounding mountains.

View from Lohagad fort

Karla cave

Karla cave is an ancient Buddhist cave situated on a hilltop near Pawna Lake. The main attraction of this cave is its massive prayer hall. It is an ideal example of the great ancient architecture and magnificent structure with rows of symmetric columns. The beautiful figures and sculptures carved on the entrance to the cave as well as in the halls.

Karla Caves
Karla cave architechture

Bhaja cave

It is another great creation by the ancient artists between the second century AD to fifth century AD. There are 100-120 steps that you need to climb to reach the Bhaja cave. The cave has 14 stupas with significant features and sculptures. It is a beautiful quiet place with attractive designs on the caves that look awesome from the top.

Bhaja Caves
Front view of bhaja caves

Tikona fort

The triangular-shaped Tikona Fort is located just beside the Pawna lake. If you stay at Pawna lake camping facility and then on the next day you plan to visit the Tikona fort, it will be perfect for a 2-day trip. To reach the top of the Tikona fort, you need to trek a few kilometers on the hills. The one day trek is perfect for beginners.

Tikona fort trekking trail

Tikona Fort Trek

When you reach the starting point of the trekking trail, you may notice many families and couples with even kids are on the way. This is one of the most favorite adventure outings of nature lovers for a day there.

“Jai Shivaji! You can reach there. We are with you.”

Some of the parents constantly motivate their kids with these words. The trek, as well as these inspiring words, can really take out the negativity and teach them to self-belief, confidence, and bravery along with enjoying every bit of the moments. If you are planning for Tikona, take out your best rucksack and a good pair of trekking shoes in the early and post-monsoon times to enjoy the magnificent beauty around. If you are planning to visit there in winter, a sleeping bag may also help you get comfortable at night in the camp.

Tikona Fort trek

It generally takes around one to two hours to reach the top and the trail can be identified very easily. You can enjoy the eye-soothing greenery while walking on the path surrounded by forest and hills. There are some temporary tea stalls in the trek route where you can take rest and have tea. If you feel hungry, enjoy local pakoras and omelets there.

Some part of the path is steep and can be muddy somewhere else. You should be careful as in the monsoon it becomes slippery. After traveling for 30-45 minutes, you will witness the triangular-shaped pinnacles of rock that is covered by green grass and trees. There are some steep stairs at the entrance of Tikona Fort. You must be very careful and grab the side walls/ rope well.

Once you reach the top of the fort, the tiredness goes away with a mesmerizing view and cool breeze around.

Pawna lake from tikona fort top

On the top, you get an uninterrupted view of several kilometers of area. You can clearly see Pawna Dam and the Lake. You can see Tung fort, Lohagad fort, Visapur forts in a clear view. At the top, the cool wind, the quietness will relax your mind and you will definitely love to spend much more time there.

Best time to visit Pawna Lake

You can visit the Pawna lake throughout the year but the best time is during Winter (Nov-Feb) and the early rainy season (June). The trek to Tikona Fort as well as camping at Pawna Lake are easy and recommended in winter and early monsoon but a little bit risky in the rainy season because the trail is very steep sometimes & steps become slippery. But during the starting and end of monsoon due to rain, view from the top is breathtaking and the whole journey can give you a mind-blowing experience.

Pawna lake bank

Tip: You can visit Pawna lake throughout the year. But during starting and end of monsoon, you can see and enjoy the real natural beauty of this place.

Tips to visit Pawna Lake

  1. You should carry a raincoat and umbrella with you in monsoon time.
  2. The shoes should protect you from the slippery path and should be water-proof.
  3. Carry as much as light baggage as possible.
  4. Bring a Torch, Odomos, and sanitizer if you are planning for camping by Pawna Lake.
  5. Take sufficient water if you are planning to trek.
  6. Enjoy the beauty as much as possible but do not litter garbage around. Always use a dustbin and help the amazing place stay clean.
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Koyeli Biswas

Koyeli is a passionate traveler, hiker, and trekker with a tremendous experience in India. Backed by an M.Sc. degree in environmental science, she is a teacher and expert travel blogger focusing on sustainable and eco-friendly tourism practices.

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