November 2008
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Pachmarhi – Hill Station in Madhya Pradesh, India

Area: 59.01 sq km
Altitude: 1,100 m above sea level
Languages: Hindi, English
Annual Mean Rainfall: 785.84 mm
Maximum Temperature: 25.7°C
Minimum Temperature: 14.9°C

Nestled in the Satpura ranges, at an altitude of 1,100m, Pachmarhi is one of the most beautiful hill stations in central India (and the only one in Madhya Pradesh). The beauty of the place is present in its relaxing nature and pace, with peace, seclusion and a quiet unobtrusive beauty as its prime attractions. Nature, finds many different way to express itself – Formed of red sandstone, the valley, ravines and the maze of gorges, add colour to this tranquil hill station. The air remains pleasantly fresh and cool throughout the year, except for the peak time in summer, thus making Pachmarhi, a hill station that can be visited throughout the year.
But more significantly it is for the silence, serenity and solitude Pachmarhi offers that keeps it distinct from many other such hill stations.
Pachmarhi is widely known as “Satpura ki Rani” (Queen of Satpura), situated at a height of 1000 m in a valley of the Satpura Range in Hoshangabad district. The highest point in the central India region and the Vindhya and Satpura range; Dhupgarh at 1100 m is located in the region.

Map of Pachmarhi on

A derelict church and houses with a perceptible colonial ambience are vestiges of the British Raj. Pachmarhi was in fact founded by Colonel Forsyth, a Bengal Lancer, who discovered Pachmarhi in 1857, and the point where he first sighted and fell in love with the area was named after him and earlier called Forsyth Point. Today this has been renamed Priyadarshini Point. This enthralling feeling of Forsyth was echoed by other Englishmen who, finding the town pleasant throughout the year, settled here and developed Pachmarhi into a cantonment, and it is still a cantonment, with the army owning most of the town. Development has come by way of government aided projects which are geared more towards cottage industries.
Pachmarhi is a place for walks, along the short or long chakkars, along the predictable way or along lesser known routes where one can come across rock shelters such as those in the Maradeo hill covered with paintings depicting warfare, food gathering and hunting, some dating as far back as 1000 BC. Walks take one through forests and meadows, to hill tops such as Dhoopgarh, the highest point in the Satpuras where the sunsets are quite spectacular, or down gorges and valleys where water and shade have led to a luxuriant growth of vegetation in every conceivable shade of green. In addition, there are more options in Pachmarhi. For more adventure there are walks in woods in the Saputara ranges. For short walks you may visit the Jata Shanker cave. Visit to the hilltop temple of Chauragarh is another interesting option. With or without guide trekking is an excellent option to explore the hill resort of Pachmarhi.
Beauty apart, the Mahadeo Hills are a pilgrimage center, with ancient shrines to Shiva concealed in deep ravines and cliffs. The sacred site of Mahadeo in Chauragarh is the spot where the God tricked the demon Bhasmasur, and Jata Shankar, as the name suggests, resembles Shiva’s untamed locks. A dark cave in Jata Shankar has two naturally formed Shivlingas on which water drips constantly from a pool. The mythological Pandava kings are said to have spent part of their exile in the Pandava Caves or Panch Mathi, which lent their name to Pachmarhi.
Complementing the magnificence of nature are the works of man; Pachmarhi is also an archaeological treasure-house. In cave shelters in the Mahadeo Hills is an astonishing richness in rock paintings. Most of these have been placed in the period 500-800 AD, but the earliest paintings are an estimated 10,000 years old.

Places to see:

Handi Khoh, is the most impressive precipice, which dramatically cuts down over 100 meters deep into the bowels of earth. One can, by making a slight effort, hear the gentle murmur of flowing water and can spot huge undisturbed beehives clinging to the sheer rock face.

The rock-cut Pandav caves are associated with the Pandavas of the epic Mahabharata. Pandavas had a halt here in their wanderings across India.

Jatashankar an important rock formation is -a place sanctified by the Shaivite lore. The stones are indeed shaped like the mater hair of the great Hindu god Shiva, and inside a natural Cavern there is a stone formation like the hundred-headed divine snake Seshnag.

Forsyth Point: This vantage viewing point marks the place from where Pachmarhi was discovered. In 1857, Captain Forsyth from the Bengal Lancers approached the plateau at the head of a column of troops. At this point (originally named after him), he first glimpsed the extraordinary beauty of this aucer-shaped scenic spot. Now called Priyadarshini Point.

Duchess Falls: The beautiful streams of water get divided because of big rocks and fall down from a 4.0 kilometers of hight. The different branches of water fall makes it looks like silver embroidery over a leaf green saree.

Mahadeo: This is lord Shiva’s temple, in a hilly area. People climb long stair cases to reach the temple and few people donate Trishuls to make their wishes come true. On the way coming down there are caves with paintings and carvings.

Dhoopgarh: This nice sunset point is in the peak of Satpura range and give a beautiful picture of surroundings. Always carry ample amount of water if going to do tracking towards Dhoopgarh, there is no proper water source on the way.

Catholic Church: A great example of French and Irish mixed architecture, built by the British in 1892. There is cemetery attached to the church which has graves from the time of world war I and II.

Christ Church: This is most beautiful small church in Madhya Pradesh, built by British in 1875. Another momentum of British rule. This church’s architecture is as fascinating as catholic church.

Apsara Falls: A lovely little bathing pool, and easily accessible from Jai Stambh, this ‘fairy pool’ is an idea. Picnic spot for families with children, as the pool is shallow. Deepening only towards the base of the fall which cascade gently into its waters.

Rajat Pratap: Those seeking adventure will find it in this ten-minute walk over rocks and boulders from Apsara Vihar to the top of Rajat Pratap, the ‘big fall’. A thrilling experience is looking straight down to the bottom of the fall which plunges down a 350-foot-high precipice.

Irene Pool: This pretty pool was discovered by Irene Bose, wife of Justice Vivian Bose, and named after her. The approach to this bathing spot is from the car stop to Reech Garh, The route upstream leads to a cave, through which the stream goes underground and then over a khud in a series of falls.

Satpura National Park: For the animal lovers visit to the Saputara National Park is a must. The park has fantabulous flora and fauna. You may spot animals like the bison, tiger, leopard, bear, four-horned deer and blue-bull et al. The evergreen sal, teak and bamboo together with the mountain peaks add to the beauty of the park.

How to reach
By Air: The nearest airport is Bhopal (195 km), connected by regular flights with Delhi, Gwalior, Indore and Mumbai.
By Rail : 45 kilometres by road from Piparia station on the Indian Railways. Piparia is on the Itarsi Jabalpur train line, a 2 hrs train run from Jabalpur. All the trains on this line pass through Piparia, but only a few halt here. Although you can also take a car / taxi from the Bhopal railway station
By Road : Pachmarhi is connected by regular bus services with Bhopal, Hoshangabad, Nagpur, Pipariya and Chhindwara. Taxis are available at Pipariya.

Places to stay:

Panchvati Huts & Cottages
Golf View Pachmarhi
Rock End Manor
Satpura Retreat
Amaltas Hotel
Glen View Hotel
Pachmarhi Regency Hotel (link)
Holiday Homes
Pachmarhi Hotel
Hilltop Bungalow
Misty Meadows (link)
Club View Hotel
Indraprastha Hotel
Giri Shingar Hotel
Pandav Hotel
Sahakar Bungalow
Evelyn’s Own
Highlands Hotel

External articles:

1. Blog on (link)
2. Pachmarhi lake (link)
3. Detailed article on (link)
4. Pachmarhi on (link)
5. Detailed trip to Pachmarhi (link)
6. Trip to Pachmarhi on nainakohli’s blog (link)
7. funzzone.blogspot article (link)
8. Visit to Pachmarhi (link)
9. Unforgettable trip to Pachmarhi (link)
10. Visit to Pachmarhi (link)
11. Photo of rock paintings at Pachmarhi (link)
12. Journey to Panchmarhi (link)
13. Trip to Pachmarhi with friends (link)
14. Videos of a trip to Pachmarhi (link)
15. Photos of Pachmarhi at Webshots (link)
16. Waterfall stream in Pachmarhi (link)
17. Pachmarhi photos at (link)
18. Photos of Pachmarhi (link)
19. Photos of Raj Mahal at Pachmarhi (link)
20. Photos of various tourist spots at Pachmarhi (link)
21. Road journey from Indore to Pachmarhi (link)

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