|Fort Name :||Alphabetically||RangeWise||DistrictWise||CategoryWise||GradeWise|
|Manikgad||FortHeight : 2500|
|Type : Hill forts||Fort Range : Nil|
|District : Raigad||Grade : Medium|
|Travelling along the the Mumbai-Pune Highway, we come across many forts. Prabalgad, Irshalgad, Chanderi, Matheran, Karnala, Lohagad, Visapur and in the line of these forts, we can find one more thats Manikgad. To reach Vadavali the base village of Manikgad being in the proximity of Patalganga MIDC; there are many travel options available.|
|Fascinating Spots :|
The crown of manikgad peeps from the hill behind the Vadgaon village at the foothill of the fort. But reaching there is not straight forward. Initially; after climbing the hill behind the village; we arrive at Thakarwadi. After crossing the huge elongated stretch of plateau from Thakarwadi; one arrives at the base of the fort. There is a steep path through dense foliage that detours around the entire fort and reaches that side of the fort which is opposite to the side of the fort visible from Vadgaon. From this side; the fortification and bastion of the fort become visible. On this plain; there is a water tank. Going a little sideways ahead, we enter the fort through wreked fortifications at the east side. After entering the fort; one faces a grooved channel in stone which was used to mix the lime for constuctions on the fort. Earlier a stone wheel used for mixing process was present at this place. Nowadays it is found nowhere on the fort. Presently a small replica is carved in the stone beside the groove. From this lime grinder; paths split; we can take any of these two paths for the fort visit. By going straight; one reaches the north-facing entry doorway of the fort. But the doorway and the porches for guards are now ruined. The inner side of the door has a small dome structure where an idol smeared with sacred redlead powder paint(Shendur) is kept.
Ahead of the forts main entry doorway is the second south-facing doorway. The square frame of the door is still intact and there is a lord ganesha carving on its upper mantle. As we cross this door and steps in; we are now standing on the fort top. To the right is a large decreipt architecture and ahead is the biggest water tank of the fort. Walking onward with the valley on the right side; there are steps to climb down. These steps lead us to the northen point of the fort to ruined bastion. From there turning right ( keeping the valley on the left side ); we reach ruined Chor Darwaja or the hidden doorway used for escape from the fort. Further ahead are two water tanks now filled with soil. A little ahead lies a hollow area which has Shivpindi of Lord Shankara and Nandi the bull carrier of Lord Shiva; in the open. There is a deteriorated idol smeared with sacred redlead powder(Shendoor) and four water tanks in line beyond that. Among the four water tanks the smallest tanks has potable water suitable for drinking. Aside from this; there is another rock smeared with shendoor in the direction of the valley and another water tank on the lower side of the valley.
Moving on we reach the bastion on the eastern edge of the fort. There is a route through the wreked fortification of this bastion from where we can enter the fort; but it has of a stretched rock patch and can be slippery to hike. One should avoid taking this route in rainy season. Walking over the bastion; we can see that many parts of the fortification are ruined. Further ahead we reach the bastion at highest point of the fort. This bastion which is in good shape; bears flower petal designs stone structures ( Charya) on it. It has steps from where we can see a doorway in ruins. After observing the two dilapidated doorways on the inner side of the fort; it can be concluded that the fort top had fortification earlier built around it. Going through that doorway; we reach the same place where we first started.
North to this fort; are Prabalgad, Irshalgad, Matheran ; to the northwest there is karnala fort and sankashi fort in the northeast region. It takes about half an hour to cover the entire fort visit.
|Ways To Reach :|
| Vadavali village at the foothill of the fort can be accessed via Panvel or Khopoli. The Vadavali is near to Paatalganga MIDC; so there are various options of vehicles.|
Via Panvel :- There are two ways from Panvel to reach the Vadavali village at the base of the fort.
1) Panvel old Mumbai Pune Highway Dand fork road Rasayani Paatalganga MIDC Vashivali Vadgaon. The distance is 25 km.
2) Panvel old Mumbai Pune Highway Saavala fork road Rasayani Paatalganga MIDC Vashivali Vadgaon. The distance is 20 km.
The buses from Panvel to Vashivali run in the interval of half an hour. 6 seater autorickshaws can reach Vadavali straight from Dand Fork road and Saavala Fork road.
Via Khopoli :- Khopoli Chowk Dand Fork road Rasayani Paatalganga MIDC Vashivali Vadgaon. The distance is 25 km.
|Accommodation Facility :|
|Food Facility :|
|Drinking Water Facility :|
|Available round the year in the water tank.|
|Time To Reach :|
|Three hours from Vadgaon.|
|Forts in the District of Raigad||Avchitgad||Bhimashankar||Bhivgad(Bhimgad)||Birwadi|
|Chambhargad||Chandragad to Arthur seat||Chandragad(Dhavalgad)||Colaba|
|Khubladha Fort (Thal Fort)||Kokandiva||Kondhavi||Korlai|
|Sondai||Songiri (near Roha)||Sudhagad||Talgad|