Pune Shirdi Pune: A Roadtrip To the Sacred Place


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Travelogue : Pune -> Shirdi -> Pune

Folks, I did the Pune -> Shirdi -> Pune trip on 9th Sep 2011 and here is the travelogue for you.

Route: Pune -> Ahmadnagar -> Shirdi -> Ahmadnagar -> Pune

Distance: 370km
Car: India V2

Me and my buddy decided to go to Shirdi to have the godly darshan of Shirdi SAI BABA and take his blessings. So we packed one change overs and put that in the car and zoomed towards Shirdi. It was around 5pm when we started from Pune, Hinjewadi. We exited the city of Pune where the vehicle traffic was no too jam packed but was not empty roads either. It took us about 25mins to come on to the highway and get the wheels rolling freely. We drove for about 2hrs before taking the halt for tea/coffee and on the way clicked few pictures on the way.



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My friend's Horse


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Kids playing football in the field

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On the way to Shirdi

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The shot is scary as if its gonna hit the building, but don't worry its too far from the building :)

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In Pune sky

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Then we started again and switched the positions. This time I got behind the wheels as my friend was driving too slow :(( Anyway, so I got behind the wheel and got the wheels rolling at 80kmpl as it was already dark and I didn't wanted to risk our lives by driving the Indica too fast. Also we were not in too much hurry as we planned to do the darshan next morning if we get to Shirdi after 11pm. So we continued our journey and reached Shirdi around 10:30. We asked few folks out there for the timings of the temple and were told that by 11pm, it will close. So we decided to check-in to a hotel and relax and do the darshan next morning.

So we got a hotel for about 600Rs a night and we immediately took it. Then we went for a quick walk and for stretching our legs and then came back and crashed into the bed. Next morning the alarm went off at 4:30 but we kept on snoozing it and finally left the bed at 5:30am, got fresh and then got into the queue for keeping the camera and mobile phones into the cloak rooms as provided by the Shirdi Sai Baba sansthan.


Then we got into the queue and surprisingly the queue was not too big as is the case in Shirdi most of the times. So slowly and steadily we kept on moving with the queue and kept chanting "Om Sai Sri Sai Jai Jai Sai" and in about 55mins of time we were in front of Baba. It was a great feeling as always and got the blessings, offered our offerings to Baba and then exited out of the main hall. It was too good to do the darshan that quickly. After that we went to collect the "Udi", did the darshan of other small places there in the temple premises like Abdul Baba dargah, holy tree, Udi place etc and then came out for Dwarka Mai darshan. The queue for DwarkaMai was not very long but as it takes a little time, we did the darshan in about 15mins time. After that the final stop was at the Hanuman Ji temple and luckily it was Aarti time. So we did the darshan at Aarti time and then came out.

Contd...
 
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Thread Starter #2
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Contd.. from above

Pictures below of the temple surroundings......

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One of the places you can keep the Shoes, Mobiles and Cameras you may want to.

Then we collected our Shoes, cameras and cell phones and headed for the Laddoo Prasadam queue. The queue at the Laddoo counter was fast moving and we could collect the Laddoo prasad in about 5mins time. Then we had breakfast at one our regular restaurants there called "SherePunjab". We ordered some mix vegetable paranthas which were yummy and then had tea. After that we straight away headed to hotel, collected our bags and started our return journey.

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Crowd near the tea stall/canteen and Shoe stand

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Tea stall

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Tea stall. Look at the garbage/empty used cups thrown by pilgrims over there making the place so dirty and unhygenic :(

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People relaxing in the temple compound

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The place where you can take bath and freshen up before going to the temple. Also has cloakrooms.

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Vendors selling local stuff out there including prasadam, dry-fruit, toys etc..

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Generic shots of people

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Hawkers and local vendors selling misc stuff

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Temple surroundings

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Queue isles

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Local vendors

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Local vendors selling Nasik raisins

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Localites who depend upon your little givings/offerings

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People in various costumes and avatars asking for your kind help

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Flowerist

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Flowerist and Prasadam shop.

A little word of caution for the first timers. These vendors will try to sell you everything they can and say that its a standard rate and approved by the Shirdi Sai Sansthan and all but its not true. A piece of cloth (dress offered to SAI RAM) which they'll sell you for 250Rs; inside the temple you'll get it for 60Rs.

So beware and don't fall for these tactics. Spend on what you feel is worth. These offerings are not accepted inside temple and they return you everything.

Contd.. pictologue
 
Thread Starter #3
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Main entrance to the temple premises

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Main entrance to the temple premises. Photography beyond this point is prohibited so I could not take more pictures. But you can visit Lindi Baug, Dwarka Mai, Khan baba place, Hanuman temple etc behind this place.

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Small kids surround you near the temple to sell some goodies. I bought some for a picture of him and he was Happy :)

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Flower sellers selling flower bunches to be offered to Baba. You can buy one for 10INR.

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Another person who posed for me

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Some shops around the area
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Hotel lane. This is where you find almost all the good budget hotels with restaurants.

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Help seekers

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My favourite place for Paranthas, Snacks and Tea

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Menu
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Mix Veggie Parantha, yummy :)

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Ganpati Bappa Moriya

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Back to Pune

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Another entrance to Darshan Queue lane

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Traffic cop busy in reading newspaper on duty. Jai Ho !!

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On the way to Pune

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On the way to Pune
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On the way to Pune

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contd..


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Some pictures of the fruits being sold on the roadside stalls

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Some pictures of the fruits being sold on the roadside stalls

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Some pictures of the fruits being sold on the roadside stalls


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Some pictures of the fruits being sold on the roadside stalls


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Return journey was a breeze but was a little tiring as we both were a little sleepy :) So we took turns, drove slowly and reached Pune around 1pm.


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Toll booth

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Ganpati Bappa Moriya. People taking Ganpati Ji for Visarjan on the special day.

Generic advise to travelers:

  • Keep atleast 45-60mins in hand for darshan on weekdays and during aarti times on weekdays could take a little longer
  • Saturday's and Sunday's usually take longer - 1 to 2 hours or more sometimes
  • If you go on a festival day - time for darshan depends upon the crowd
  • Inside the temple, you have all the facilities like restrooms, drinking water, tea, coffee, milk, light snacks like biscuits etc.
  • Do not keep mobile/camera in your pocket. Keep them in the hotels or in the cloak rooms provided by the Shirdi Sai Baba Sansthan. They are 100% SAFE. - Charges: 2Rs per gadget
  • Remove your Shoes/Socks etc as well and keep them in the Shoe stands provided. Charge - 50paise per pair
  • Do not break the lines inside when you're in the queue, its not gonna save you lot of time anyway.
  • Put all your donations in hundi's provided. Do not hand over the money to priests or any people standing there inside temple.
  • So go and enjoy and have a great darshan.



Amazing darshan it was. Will cherish the memories for long.

******************* JAI SAI RAM ***********
 
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Great report and suggestives. I am planning to take my parents to Shirdi coming december. This will surely help me.

Thanks a lot [:)]
And man, are those pics nice! Awesome snaps.
 

350Z

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Excellent pictures with a very nice narration. It always feels good to visit Shirdi. The place is developing fast but since lakhs of pilgrims visit there every month, it is important to get the management and other infrastructure right. There was also some news about opening of airport. Any updates on that?

The shot is scary as if its gonna hit the building, but don't worry its too far from the building :)
That’s an amazing shot.

Then we got into the queue and surprisingly the queue was not too big as is the case in Shirdi most of the times.
Was it a weekday?

Drive Safe,
350Z
 
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Travelogue : Pune -> Shirdi -> Pune


The shot is scary as if its gonna hit the building, but don't worry its too far from the building :)
Wow!! Nice shot.

Its an IL76 Heavy Lifter of Indin Air Force which can carry 47 MT and operate from unpaved runways.
 
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Excellent pics and narration Amit.

Pune was so confusing to me, just after entering this tunnel.
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Just after finishing this tunnel, there was turns, i was amazed people calling it ghat section, down in southern ghats of Shiradi is the true ghat section for me.

Just after entering Pune, i was confused, there was dedicated bicycle lane, with lane for those red buses too, with lots of space for footpath, with space wasted with a guys statue.
And where ever there was signboards, it was obstructed by trees or flex boards, from starting till the airport we roamed the whole city, upto Shoppers Stop.
Then an Auto guy came to our rescue and he told us few names, Hadapsar bridge, then we were back on track.
But the traffic jam was marginally less in Pune near Hadapsar bridge as what we are used to here in Bangalore.

In pune we purchased famous Laxmi Narayan Chiwda, it was amazing, we bought it in different flavours.

You refreshed my visit to Shirdi in Dec 2009.

We had purchased those raisins and fresh farm Guvavas.

Nothing much has changed, we had stayed in Shri/Sai Tulsi Palace, so parking was not an issue.

We entered the temple from the direction, where there was Baba ki Chawdi.

What does that Chawdi meant?
All the people were praying in front of photo, ladies on one side & gents on other.

All was a quick refresh of my visit, thanks for sharing, i thought you did that trip in your Hawk.
 
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Excellent pics and narration Amit.

Pune was so confusing to me, just after entering this tunnel.
View attachment 32963

Just after finishing this tunnel, there was turns, i was amazed people calling it ghat section, down in southern ghats of Shiradi is the true ghat section for me.
This is one way. If you check the other section you get the ghat i.e. from pune towards Bangalore called 'khambataki ghat'.
 
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There is one more good and short route to go to Shirdi from Pune. Take the Pune Nasik highway & take a right turn at Sangamneer & then follow the sign board. This is approx 185 Kms from Pune. The raod is pretty well with less traffic. I have recently done this route in month of Sept 2011
 
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But looking at the traffic & time taken I feel this route to be more ok. It takes around 3.15 hours only from Chinchwad to Shirdi :) with decent speed of 80-100
 
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There is one more good and short route to go to Shirdi from Pune. Take the Pune Nasik highway & take a right turn at Sangamneer & then follow the sign board. This is approx 185 Kms from Pune. The raod is pretty well with less traffic. I have recently done this route in month of Sept 2011
Hey buddy, when i had been to Pune i did the same route to Shirdi way back in 2009.
 
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