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About Maharashtra

, Maharashtra

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Maharashtra is a state located in the western part of India. It is the second most populated state in the country after Uttar Pradesh and is the third largest state in India, area wise. Mumbai is the capital city of Maharashtra and Marathi is the language spoken here. Maharashtra is the richest state in India and contributes to 13.2% of the total GDP as per the 2005-06 reports.

The state covers 9.84% of the geographical area in India. Marathas rose to power in the 17th century under the leadership of Chhatrapati Shivaji and covered an area of over 250 million acres. Maharashtra was a part of the Bombay State during the British Raj. The state of Maharashtra was created on the 1st of May, 1960.

Why Visit Maharashtra?


Maharashtra encompasses a cluster of tourist spots ranging from beaches, hill stations, heritage temples, ancient caves, and wildlife parks. Scores of tourists come from all over the world to visit the state.

The state is famous for its hill stations like Panchgani, Lonavala, Malshej Ghat, Mahabaleshwar and Jawahar. Most Indian films are shot here, due to the picturesque views. The Sahayadri hill range, which is a part of the Western Ghats, comprises of all the hills mentioned above.

The Juhu and Marine Drive beaches in this state are known for their wonderful view and have a large number of visitors every single day. The Dahanu-Bordi beach is home to many Portuguese forts and monuments which are in ruins now. Beaches like Velneshwar have a range of water sports.

The Ajanta and Ellora caves here range back to the 2nd and 3rd BC and stand as proof of the evolution in Buddhist, Hindu and Jain architecture. The caves are sure to excite architecture buffs. The Elephanta Caves were built by the Guptas during the 9th to 12th centuries.

Mumbai is one of the most modern cities in India and is the country’s financial capital. Tourists come here to visit the Gateway of India, the Siddhi Vinayak temple, and Juhu and Marine Drive beaches. The Indian film industry, “Bollywood” is based in Mumbai.

Exploring the Culture of Maharashtra


Temples in Maharashtra are hundreds of years old and show the evolution of Hindu, Jain and Buddhist cultures. The state is dotted with numerous heritage temples. Mughal architecture is evident in the Bibi Ka Maqbara at Aurangabad. The last Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh, set up his abode in Maharashtra.

Maharashtra has a vast range of its own folk music like Bharud, Gondhal Lavani and Powada. Hindi and Marathi film music and local songs are popular in the state.

Marathi literature has produced stalwarts like Sant Jnyaneshwar, who wrote the Bhawarthadeepika. The compositions from early Marathi literature are mostly spiritually inclined. Modern Marathi literature figures include the likes of Prahalad Keshav Atre, Kusumagraj and P.L. Deshpande.

Maharashtra displays its true diversity when it comes to the local cuisine. The Konkan region normally has a fish and rice based diet. The eastern parts feature a staple diet of wheat, bajra and jowar. Modak and Chivada are some famous dishes and Kolhapuri Chicken is a treat to every non-vegetarian’s taste buds.

Some of the famous folk dances of Maharashtra are Lavni, Dhangari Gaja and Povadas.

Facts for Tourists


Women are advised not to wear revealing clothes due to the general presence of moral policing groups in and around Mumbai. Summer visits require cotton clothes and lots of water should be consumed during this time. Venturing alone at night or over friendliness with taxi and auto drivers might prove to be dangerous.
 

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