Historical | Adventure / Trekking
At a distance of 2 km from Naneghat and 32 km from Malshej Ghat, Jivdhan Fort is a hill fortress located near Malshej in Maharashtra. Situated near Naneghat, it is one of the historical forts in Malshej Ghat and among the popular trekking places near Pune.
Situated at a height of about 3,757 feet in the Sahyadri Mountain range, Jivdhan Fort is a part of the 'Famous 5' forts near Pune. The other four being the Chavaand, Hadsar, Shivneri, and Naneghat. As per the history, Jivdhan Fort dates back to the Satavahana era and has been a significant fort throughout history due to its proximity to the historic Naneghat. Jivdhan Fort guarded this route, which was a strategic location for many kingdoms. The Mughals imprisoned Murtaza, the last ruler of Adilshahi of Ahmednagar, at Jivdhan Fort. In 1635 Shahaji Bhosle, the father of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj freed him from the prison and declared him the king of Ahmednagar. The fort was sacked and plundered by the British upon siege between 1815 and 1818.
Although the fortifications have crumbled down, one can see a huge storehouse or Kothi, which has was used to store grains. Besides the storehouse, there are several interesting ruins and remnants, including a few water cisterns and a temple dedicated to Goddess Jivai, who is supposed to be the patron deity of the fort. The fort's Northern bastion is in a pretty good condition even today. One can also see a few cisterns and remnants of old buildings near this bastion. From this point, one can get the stunning views of nearby forts such as Naneghat, Harishchandragad, Hadsar, Chavand, and Ratangad. The highlight of the Jivdhan Fort is the breathtaking view it offers of the Vanarlingi Pinnacle. The pinnacle looks small from far but starts appearing bigger as you get closer to the top of the fort.
There are two routes to reach the top of Jivdhan Fort. You can go via the Naneghat route or else take the Ghatghar route. The Naneghat route is suitable only for experienced trekkers as it is rather challenging, and there are chances of getting lost due to confusing trails through dense forests. It takes about 2 hours to reach the top via this route. Even though the Ghatghar route has many rocky patches, this 5 km trek route is easier when compared to the Naneghat route. On this route, after a certain point, there are rock-cut steps, which lead to the fort's Kalyan gate. Be cautious as these steps may be slippery in monsoon. However, supportive hooks attached to the walls along the rock-cut steps makes the climb easier. No matter which route you take, make sure you hire a guide to show you the correct path leading to the top of Jivdhan Fort.
The fort is open 24 hrs to the general public for all days of the week. One has to show their ID to enter the fort and for foreign nationals, the passport is mandatory. For camping, Kothi is an ideal place to stay which has the capacity of accommodating 8-10 people if you do not have tents. If you have tents, make sure that you set up your campsite where the wind is less. Also, ensure that you check the surrounding area for any crawlers.
Timings: 6 AM - 6 PM