Pachmarhi is a hill station in Hoshangabad district of Madhya Pradesh state. It is widely known as Satpura ki Rani (“Queen of Satpura”), situated at a height of 1067 m in a valley of the Satpura Range. The name Pachmarhi is believed to be derived from the Hindi words Panch (“five”) and Marhi (“caves”). According to a legend, these caves were built by five Pandava brothers of Mahabharatha during their thirteen years of exile.
Places of tourist interest
Tourists visit Pachmarhi throughout the year. Pachmarhi has numerous nature spots, greenery, scenic views, waterfalls, mountain streams and rare wildlife.
Jatashankar is natural cave, a Hindu shrine located north of Pachmarhi. Cave is located in deep ravine, with enormous boulders perched above. Cave contains stalagmites revered as naturally formed lingams. Cave serves as a shrine to the God Shiva and is popular destination for pilgrims. Jata means hair and Shankar is another name of Lord Shiva. There are two different types of little pond, fed by springs, found in the locality, one of cold water and the other one of hot water.
The highest point in the Satpura range, Dhoopgarh hilltop is a beautiful spot to see marvelous sunsets and sunrises. However, this point can only be reached by trekking. The trekking route is relatively tough as it passes through some waterfalls and valleys.
It is a Shiva Temple, in a very narrow cave. One can enter into the cave from one side and there is very small place inside the cave where shivling is there for worshipping.
Chauragarh is the second highest peak. It is a pilgrimage site with Lord Siva’s temple at the top. There is a Chauragarh fort there built by the king Sangram Shah of Gond Dynasty. It is also a very well known spot for sunrise viewing. The sun rising scene seen here is breathtaking and climbing 1300 steps to reach the point makes it worth. Surrounded by dense forest and verdant valleys, the Chauragarh or Chota Mahadeo Temple is perched on the Chauragarh Peak, which is one of the most revered shrines of Lord Shiva in the Pachmarhi Region. The temple is situated at a mighty height, and one needs to climb 1250 steps to get to the top. After the arduous climb, devotees are charmed with thousands of trishuls stacked in the temple courtyard.
Though Pandava caves proudly associate with Mahabharata, many archaeologists contradict the fact. They believe that these caves belong to the Gupta period (9th or 10th century AD) and even predict their construction by Buddhist monks. Traces of an ancient brick-built stupa have been unearthed on top of the caves, which dates back these caves to the Buddhist period. Archeologists believe the stupa is a remnant of the regime of King Ashoka.
Bee Fall is a popular water-fall located at Pachmarhi Hill Station. There are number of waterfalls in Pachmarhi but among them Bee Fall is considered as most popular one and must visit tourist point. Pachmarhi is a popular tourist destination among domestic tourists. Here we can find tourism activities throughout the year. It is a natural water fall deep below valley, reached with the help of jeep to some distance then footsteps. There are many water falls in Pachmarhi, but no one is like Bee falls, as the waters of a perennial stream tumble down 35 meters, giving a spectacular view to all those nature lovers who come here, there are many waterfalls around Pachmarhi, but the beauty of falling a narrow stream of water from a great height, and when it looks like falling melting silver, this all make Bee Falls alike to other.
This is the point from where Captain James Forsyth discovered Pachmarhi in the year 1857. It was only after this that Pachmarhi was recognized as a hill station and a resort. Priyadarshini point gives an eagle’s eye view of the entire hill station and its serene landscape.
Situated some 6 kms away from Pachmarhi is a natural cavern that has opening at both its ends. One has to scramble up a boulder to enter the cave and to exit from it other end, one should be willing to enter a narrow canyon wherefrom once a stream must have snaked through. Visiting this place is an adventure in itself and it does make one of the top places to visit near Pachmarhi.
On the way to Rajat Prapat, Apsara is a small cascade whose water accumulates in a pond. This place is ideal to stop by for some quiet time before making to the most visited tourist place, Bee Fall in Pachmarhi.
It is a point en route Chauragarh that offers incredible view of a 100m gorgeous gorge with 300 m towering cliffs. One can also see Chauragarh in distance along with Priyadarshini or Forsyth Point from here. According to the locals there was once a lake here which dried off and this place came to know as Andhi Khoh, which later turned to Handi Khoh, due to its shape. The verdant gorge is home to large number of bees and a small ravine whose sound can be heard amidst perfect silence. This place is ideal for nature lovers and those seeking some solitude.
How to reach Pachmarhi
Bhopal and Jabalpur airport serves as the nearest airports to Pachmarhi. Visitors can avail direct flights to these cities from Delhi and Indore. Otherwise connecting flights till Bhopal or Jabalpur from other Indian cities including Raipur, Hyderabad and Amhedabad can be availed. From the airport, buses or cabs are available for Pachmarhi.
Plenty of state government and private buses are available for Pachmarhi from nearby cities like Bhopal, Jabalpur, Nagpur, Indore and attractions like Kanha National Park and Pench National Park. Being a cantonment town, road condition here is quite good. Visitors must note that even if they are travelling by train or flight, the last journey till Pachmarhi has to be done by road.
Visitors have to board trains till Pipariya railway station, the nearest railway station to Pachmarhi. Quite a number of direct trains link Pipariya with important cities like Kolkata, Jabalpur, Agra, Gwalior, Delhi, Ahmedabad, Varanasi, Nagpur etc. In case one cannot find a direct train till Pipariya, train till Itarsi railway station can be boarded.