Jivdhan Fort is an important historical fort standing at the edge of the Ghats of the Sahyadri Mountains. This is a hill fortress located in the Junnar Taluka in Maharashtra’s Pune district. The fort is situated at a height of about 3,630 feet above sea level. Trekking up Jivdhan Fort is considered easy to moderate, but a must-do if you are an experienced trekker or an adventure enthusiast seeking to explore your boundaries!
While exploring the fort, you will come across a huge storehouse or Kothi, which has remained intact over the years. This pillared storehouse is sculpted out of rocks and its beauty is enhanced by intricate carvings. It has many smaller rooms inside. Besides the storehouse, there are several interesting ruins and remnants, including a few water cisterns and a temple dedicated to the Goddess Jivai.
The fort’s Northern bastion is in pretty good condition even today. There are a few cisterns and remnants of old buildings near this bastion. From this point, enjoy the stunning views of nearby places such as Naneghat, Harishchandragad, Nimgiri Fort, Hadsar Fort, Chavand Fort, etc. In addition, you will also be able to clearly see the entire Junnar plateau, the Manikdoh Dam and the full stretch of the Naneghat route.
To the west, its walls drop a sheer 1,000 m into the Konkan.
Jivdhan Fort dates back to the Satvaahan era. It has been a significant fort throughout history due to its proximity to the historic Naneghat caves. Jivdhan Fort acted as a protector of the important Naneghat trade route (toll collection point), which connected the sea to the mainland. Over time Jivdhan Fort was controlled by several rulers including the Bahamanis, the Nizam, the Mughals and the Marathas. In 1818, Jivdhan was captured by the British, who destroyed all approaches leading to the fort.
One of Jivdhan Fort’s highlights is its breathtaking view of the “Vanar Lingi”, popularly known as the “Khada Parsi” pinnacle. The pinnacle looks small from afar but starts appearing bigger as you get closer to the top of the fort. Only when you reach the top of the fort, can you fully gauge the real magnitude of the approximately 430-foot-high pinnacle!
Naneghat was a part of an ancient trading route and is famous for a major cave with Sanskrit inscriptions in Brahmi script and Middle Indo-Aryan dialect. These inscriptions have been dated between the 2nd and the 1st century BCE, and are attributed to the Satvaahan dynasty era. The inscriptions are notable for linking the Vedic and Hindu deities, mentioning some Vedic Srauta rituals and names that provide historical information about the ancient Satvaahan.
The inscriptions present the world’s oldest numeration symbols for “2, 4, 6, 7, and 9” which resemble modern-era numerals, more closely those found in modern Nagari and Hindu-Arabic script.