A town in Satara District in Maharashtra, Wai, which is located around, 33 km from Satara, has the epithet name “Dakshin Kashi” or Southern Kashi. It is probably called so because of the features it shares with the holy city of Varanasi or Kashi. In old times, it was known as Virat Nagari. Wai is known in Maharashtra for its ghats on the banks of the Krishna River and its temples, including especi ally the “Dholya Ganapati” temple on the “Ganapati Ghat” and has also known called “the town of temples”.
Just like Kashi is known for the various Ghats, or steps along the river, Wai too has many such Ghats, and, like the ancient city, is filled with temples small and big. Moreover, Nana Phadanvis, one of the Peshwas, had his house in Wai near the Menavali ghat.
Wai is also a famous film location. Also read: Top hotels where Bollywood movies were shot in
Films like Gangaajal, Omkara, Dabangg, Swades, Ishqiya, Singham, Bol Bachchan, Gulaab Gang, Chennai Express and many others having been shot here.
Getting there: Wai is 1520 kms from Delhi and the route to take is- Delhi → Jaipur → Bhilwara → Chittorgarh → Dhule → Kopargaon → Peth → Khandala → Wai
Places to stay:
- Hotel Sanai Residency, Wai: Located in Wai just 10 minutes away from Panchgani and 30 minutes away from the tourist destination Mahabaleshwar, Hotel Sanai Residency is ideally located near a variety of areas of interest including the Wai Ghats, Dholya Ganapati Temple, Dhom Dam, Menavali Ghats and many more key attractions.This hotel consist of 32 Rooms comprising of 16 super deluxe AC double Room, 8 Deluxe AC Double rooms, 6 Non AC Deluxe double room & 2 Exclusive Suite Rooms. Rooms are priced starting at 2700 INR.
- Hotel Pearl, Wai: A decent hotel with nice room service and ambiance.. Has AC rooms and all other basic amenities such as hot water, etc.It’s located next to bus stand and has good connectivity to Panchgani and Mahabaleshwar. Rooms are priced starting as low as 700 INR.
- Anand Van Resort, Wai: A mid-segment getaway resort at Wai, Anand Van Resort offers guests a spreadout layout and base to explore pilgrimages and view points around the area. The place offers 4 different cluster of rooms and cottages (Total 27 Rooms and 6 cottages).Recreation area includes Children’s park and large open areas. Room are priced around 3000 INR.
Places to see:
- Ghats: Ghats, steps, at Wai are located on the Krishna River and it is the most famous feature that it shares with Kashi.Wai has seven Ghats known as Gangapuri, Madhi Aali, Ganapati Aali, Dharmapuri, Brahmanshahi, Ramdoh and Bhimkund. Many temples are located around these Ghats.
- Temples: also called as ‘a town of temples’ and ‘Dakshin Kaashi’, Wai has a lot of temples in and around it. Temples built in the “Hemadpanti” style of architecture, using huge stone slabs are the general architecture of the place.There are various temples at the sides of the ghats in Wai.
- There are four temples Chakreshwar, Chimneshwar, Kaunteshwar/Harihareshwar and Kaleshwar near Brahmanshahi ghat.
- Krishna Mandir lies at the Govardhan Sanstha.
- Shiva Temple, Dwarka Temple, Bahirob Temple, DattatreyaTemple are located on Gangapuri Ghat.
- Near Brahmanshahi there are Vitthal and Ganpati temples.
- In Dharma Puri there are Lord Vishnu temple and Mahalaxmi temple.
- The Ramdoh ghat has Rameshwar temple, Ramkund and Chilavali Devi temple.
- On Ganpati Aali there is Ganpati temple and Kashi Vishveshvar temple.
- Dholya Ganpati temple is one of the prime temples in Maharashtra. 18th Century Lord Ganesha temple on the bank of River Krishna built in traditional Hemadpanti temple architecture.The temple has one of the largest Ganesha murti in Maharashtra – nearly 10 feet tall and 8 feet wide.
- Paga Talim: When Afjal khan came to Wai, he is supposed to have kept his horses here. Locals of Wai had helped Afjal khan & provided this place to use. They have also given other information to Afjal khan about the Mahabaleshwar forest & area around it.
- Govardhan Sanstha (Goshala): About 110 years old Goshala, Govardhan Sanstha has a lot of cows kept here.The institute has launched a pioneer model project of electricity generation from cowdung.
- Dhom & Dhom Balakwadi dam: The Krishna & Kamandalu River has the Dhom dam.The Balakwadi dam is 19 km from Wai also built on Krishna.
- Wakeshwar: Situated in the village Bavdhan on the bank of Krishna river, this is the “Hemadpanthi” type Temple of lord Shiva.A great architectural example.
- Sonjai: On the hills of Sonjai in the Village Bavdhan, this is the temple of Goddess Sonjai & Kaleshwari. These hills are the main stream of the Sahyadries, the height of these hills are at about 2000 ft.
- Lohare Palpeshwar Caves: 5 km north of Wai and 39 km from Satara, Lohare Palpeshwar Caves are very old caves of the region.Situated in the village Lohare, they are the caves of lord Shiva. A beautiful work of art, they are examples of the ancient art of Vastushastra.
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