|Fort Name :||Alphabetically||RangeWise||DistrictWise||CategoryWise||GradeWise|
|Gorakhgad(Manmad)||FortHeight : 3052|
|Type : Hill forts||Fort Range : Satmaal|
|District : Nashik||Grade : Medium|
| The twin forts of Ankai-Tankai are near Manmad in Nashik district. 3 kms from these forts there is a hill named as Gorakhnath hill in the village of Ambewadi. This hill is a sacred place. Although official records do not state this as a fort but the water tanks and caves built on it point towards the fact that this might have been a watch tower serving fort in earlier times. The Bramhani caves on Ankai-Tankai and this fort must have been in the same era. When the twin forts got higher importance this Gorakhgad fort might have lost focus and its control must have been gone to the saints of Nath tradition.
With one’s own private vehicle one can visit 4 forts of Ankai-Tankai, Gorakhgad and Katra in 2 days. One can start from Manmad early in the morning and visit Ankai-Tankai by afternoon which takes usually 5-6 hours. After this proceed to Gorakhgad and stay overnight in the temple at base village or head towards Katra fort at 7 kms and reach the base village of Katarwadi for overnight stay in the Hanuman temple. On the next day visit Katra fort.
|Fascinating Spots :|
| There is a large banyan tree at the base where shrines of the saints of Nath tradition can be seen. The steps to access the fort start from here. Two beautiful carved shrines can be seen to the right while climbing the steps. The steps end below the half way mark of the hill after which there is an unpaved narrow pathway. 30 minutes trail on this route takes us to the first level. Here, a path to the right goes to the cave of Gorakhnath which is deeply carved inside with sculptures of Nath saints in it. Coming back to the route of rock cut steps and a further 5 minutes walk leads to the caves below the rock wall of the hill. A large rock cut cave can be seen here. To its right is the cave of Saint Kanifnath. From the path taking the left route there is a water tank but it doesn’t have potable water. There is another large cave ahead. Going ahead from here by keeping the rock wall to the right and valley to the left proceeding towards the western edge there is a needle hole in the mountain. A rock patch of 10-12 feet has to be climbed using proper equipments to reach the top most part of the fort. There are no remnants here. A flag which has been mounted here is changed at every Guru Pournima day. Ankai_Tankai, Katra, Mesana forts can be seen from the top. The needle eye hole can be visited which takes about 15 minutes to reach by descending the rock patch.|
The path after the caves isn’t well paved and marked and isn’t used frequently. Its very narrow and has to be crossed with extreme caution.
It takes 45 minutes to climb the fort and 1 hour to visit the entire fort.
|Ways To Reach :|
|Manmad junction is well connected by road and railway. 10 kms from Manmad on Manmad – Aurangabad highway there is Ankai village. 01 km before Ankai village there is a diversion for Ankai railway station. Just opposite this diversion there is a road going to Visapur village and on the entrance there is an arch which reads “Shree Kshetra Gorakhnath (Visapur village)”. While passing on this road we can see the Gorakhnath mountain to the right. 01 km from this arch to the right there is an unpaved road which goes up to a large banyan tree below the hill. The steps to access the fort start from here. Ambewadi is the base village of the fort and can be accessed by vehicle. One can get down at Visapur road junction by S.T. buses from Manmad going towards Yeola, Aurangabad. From the junction it is about a 1.5 km walk to the base. Only passenger trains halt at Ankai station and it is 2 kms from the base and thus it is not so convenient.|
|Accommodation Facility :|
|Food Facility :|
|Available on Manmad – Aurangabad highway|
|Drinking Water Facility :|
|Time To Reach :|
|45 minutes to ascend|
|Best Season To Visit :|
|July to February|
|Forts of Grade: Medium||Achala||Ahivant||Ajmera||Balwantgad|
|Dehergad (Bhorgad)||Dermal||Devagiri (Daulatabad - Deogiri)||Dharmapuri|
|Nanded Fort (Nadgiri)||Narayangad||Narayangad(Amboli)||Nhavigad|
|Panhalekaji Fort||Peb||Pemgiri(Shahagad)||Peth (Kothaligad)|
|Shivneri||Siddhagad (Malvan)||Sondai||Songir (Dhule)|
|Songir (Karjat)||Songiri (near Roha)||Suvarnadurg||Tahuli|