From colonial-era monuments and ancient temples to leafy suburbs and ashrams, Pune showcases traditional and contemporary India. This city on the Mula and Mutha rivers boasts centuries of history, from the Brahmin Peshwas to British rule.
Many come to Pune for spiritual enlightenment, principally at the ashram established by the late New Age guru Bhagwan Rajneesh. Meditate among the ornamental ponds and waterfalls of the Japanese-style Osho Teerth Gardens. Find the ashram and gardens in Koregaon Park, a leafy neighborhood with dozens of cafés and restaurants.
Pune has plenty of other attractions to keep you entertained for days. Browse the narrow streets of the Old City by rickshaw or on foot to find architectural and cultural treasures. See fading Haveli-style houses and visit traditional bazaars.
Enjoy the views from the ramparts of the 18th-century Shaniwarwada Palace, where a sound and light show explains the building’s history. Experience Mahatma Phule Market, a busy produce market set in a Victorian-era warehouse. See artifacts such as musical instruments, hookah pipes and toys at the Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum.
Cross the Mutha River to enter Pataleshwar Cave Temple, an eighth-century rock-cut temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, and the adjacent Hindu temple Jangali Maharaj Mandir. Catch a rickshaw to Aga Khan Palace, where the British once jailed nationalist leaders. Take a short drive from the palace to shop, dine or watch a movie at Phoenix Market City.
Get back on the history trail at the Tribal Cultural Museum, with artifacts from local tribal communities. Walk along Connaught Road and MG Road, Pune’s main shopping districts and also the biggest concentration of restaurants and street food vendors. Sample garlic-infused curries or sweet snacks bursting with coriander and tamarind flavors.
Pune is 95 miles (154 kilometers) southeast of Mumbai and its domestic airport is a 20-minute drive from the city center. Intercity buses and trains frequently leave from Pune, for those who would like to explore the rest of the Maharashtra state.