Around 24 km from SATARA, 37km from MAHABALESHWAR and 130 km from PUNE lies KAAS plateau, locally known as KAAS PATHAR. Recently (June 2012) declared a bio- diversity site by UNESCO, KAAS PATHAR is really western India’s very own Switzerland. As you get closer to the site, the views get better and better and is incredible as you approach the top. Once there, the all around scenic beauty leaves its indelible imprint in your mind to last forever.
THE JOURNEY- If you want to visit from MUMBAI, come to Satara by train and then take a private car to Kaas Pathar. The journey is quite comfortable and enjoyable. By car, it takes around half an hour to reach Kaas Pathar from Satara. Plenty of budget hotels are available at Satara to stay overnight and have a day trip to Kaas Pathar. You are advised not to look for staying options at Kaas Pathar. En route you may visit Mahabaleshwar, a famous hill station and quite close to Satara(about one hour by car). You may opt to stay at Mahabaleshwar and in my opinion will be the wisest decision. Plenty of staying options are available at Mahabaleshwar that cater to the need, taste and budget of every individual. Mahabaleshwar is famous for leather footwear all over the country, trousseau saris, strawberry fields, forest honey, turmeric and last but not the least its all around scenic beauty. If you opt to visit Kaas Pathar from Pune, the approximately three and half hour journey by car is quite enjoyable and comfortable for the well maintained four lane highway.
STAYING OPTIONS- If you want to stay in style and utmost comfort, choose either Mumbai or Pune. If you want to mix styles and comfort with adventure, choose either Mahabaleshwar or Satara.
FOOD OPTIONS- If you are an Indian and travelling by car, you will pass by many famous towns of Maharashtra where you can pick and choose from a wide range of food items that cater to the need, taste and budget of every individual. However, if you are an outsider, pack and take along your lunch box with you from your hotel.
THINGS WORTH DOING AND WATCHING AT KAAS PATHAR
If you visit KAAS PATHAR on a clear day ( the best time is between September and February) you may view the incredible and massive Shivsagar lake and the Sajjangadh fort at a distance. The awesome landscape all around dotted with the rarest of the rare wild flowers of different colors is a sight to behold and lives in the memory forever. Walk around and enjoy the incredible Flora and Fauna, some of which are only found here and are among the most endangered species. Spend some time down-hill on the bank of KaasTalav ( Kaas lake) that will remind you of a sea shore as the bank of the lake is flat and sandy like a seashore. The view of a waterfall falling and flowing into the lake adds to the overall beauty of the place, especially during the monsoon.
One thing is for sure, you will see many different shades of pink and purple here in the flowers that can hardly be seen anywhere else in the world.