Long Weekend Getaway – Panchgani On A Budget

Do all your trips go as you planned? Well, my initial answer would have been “No!”. But this time, it actually did go the way I planned it & also took a little help from my friend who’s already been to Panchagani.

I realised that I need a break from the usual routine & work, just like everyone else does. But it was at a point where I could just tag along with anyone who was planning on going for a vacation (I just needed a vacay that bad). I didn’t wanna plan much or ask too many people because you know how plans work when there are too many people involved hahah. Infact I was planning to do a solo trip for the first time. Didn’t matter where I had to go, didn’t matter if It wasn’t a great place, all I wanted to do is run away from the city life. I guess you can understand how badly I just wanted to go on a vacation. The other thing that pushed me to do this trip was the fact that I wrote “travel to three places by end of December 2018” in my to do list & if I write something down, I give my best to make sure it happens.

I didn’t want to travel in a stretch from Bombay to panchagani as I would have to board two buses in a day & I have really bad motion sickness. Actually, I used to have but not anymore, let’s keep that story for another time but my motion sickness was so bad that if I sat in a car/bus/taxi for even 15 minutes I would end up puking. So I decided to go to Pune on friday & stay at my friend’s place for the night and then leave for Panchgani the next morning. At first we weren’t sure if we would be taking his car or going by bus, but then we finally considered everything & decided to go by car & trust me that was the best decision we made because it helped us travel wherever & whenever we wanted to. I think it’s always more convenient to have your own vehicle especially in places where you have very little knowledge about local transport.

So we left from Pune at 9 AM as we had to check in at Zostel by 12 PM. This was my first road trip so I was actually more nervous & scared than excited, because of my motion sickness. As we started our journey I was a bit uncomfortable & my head started hurting but as we reached the highway I started feeling a little better & calmer (thanks to Lendl Paul’s driving skills). I think it’s very important on how the person drives. Well actually, that’s the second thing. The first thing about motion sickness is that it’s just in your head and I can say this because I had it & now it just disappeared. Maybe because I stopped thinking of travelling in a bus or car as a problem or being afraid of it. Yes! I hated it that much.


Coming back to our journey, so we reached the Zostel at 12 PM (11.55 to be precise) I have no idea how that happened. It took us just two & half hours from Pune to Panchgani, which is not bad at all (at least not as bad as I thought) I thought it would take us about 4 hours or more for sure, probably even more. The first thing I wanted to do when we reached Zostel was to check how the place looked (because it looked damn beautiful in the pictures on their site). And let me tell you it’s exactly the way it looks on the site, actually, it looks more startling in person, it was totally worth the wait!


After we kept our bags & freshened up we met this really fun volunteer who stayed with us in the same dorm, he made sure we were comfortable & got everything we needed. We sat outside our dorm & started chatting with him & guess what we found out? He was a really great photographer & a videographer and has worked on amazing projects & is currently working on his short films. Now you can imagine how excited we were to talk to him & know more about his creative field & also learn a little more about cameras & photography.

Our actual plan was to reach Zostel, have lunch & then start exploring so that we don’t miss out on any beautiful places. But the weather wasn’t as chilled as we expected it to be in the afternoon, so we just went out for lunch at a restaurant called Friends & came back to Zostel & rested, till the weather could cool down a bit.


Table Land

In the evening we visited a place called Table Land which is one of my favourite place in Panchagani. And yes, it looked as flat as a “table” except for it was covered by some beautiful grass. This place has more spots inside it so you either have an option to tour the whole place by hiring a horse or go walking. But we didn’t do any of it because we just wanted to enjoy the breeze & stair at the view around so that’s what we did. And it was also late in the evening so it would get darker by the time we roamed the whole place. I’m sure the sites around would be really amazing so if you go there you can definitely check the whole place. But I believe you don’t always have to try & visit each & every spot in a specific place when you’re traveling, sometimes the best moments can be experienced just through small things. And the purpose of traveling differs from person to person, so if you’re someone who loves exploring each & every spot in a specific state/country that’s cool too. Just remember to always have fun because that is all that matters.


Okay let’s get back on track, so I ended up having Maggii after chilling at Table Land (because I was extremely hungry as always) But no, I swear this time it was the wind around table land that made me feel hungry. We just visited one place on Day 1 but we were really excited about spending the rest of the evening at Zostel as they were going to have a jam session & who doesn’t love jam sessions? but the other thing I was looking forward to was, chilling in the common area because the ambiance was cray & chill.

Well, we headed back to Zostel & damn! It was so breezy there because of where it’s located. Although the AC was on  in the room, I preferred staying in the room than sitting out because it was too windy & I started shivering after a point. So we decided to finally go n stick our bums on the bean bags in the common room instead of freezing ourselves to death in that weather. Well, the weather made me hungry, Again! So I had to order khichdi because that’s my favourite food to eat while I’m traveling, (if I had a chance I would taste each & every type of khichdi in the world)

Check the next blog post for Day 2 & Day 3 so that you don’t miss out on all the fun & interesting things at Devrai art village.

Part 2 link – https://thateclecticone.com/2018/11/30/long-weekend-getaway-part-2/