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20 April 2014

Hill Stations in Kolhapur city

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Vishal Gad

About 60km northwest of Panhala and 18km south from Kolhapur -Ratnagiri road,Vishalgad is situated on a mountain. The road passes through thick wood. The fort is separated by a deep narrow riven from the road terminus. Its vastness is big as per its name Vishal. Steep cliffs separate it from adjoining land, making difficult to enter except existing entrance. One Bhosala warrior climbed this fort with the help of Ghorpad (an inguana) and captured it on behalf of Adilshaha of Bijapur. He was named Ghorpade onwards.

The Bhunda Darwaja or a bare gate seen from the busstop shows wrong way of the entry. Actual entry is separate. Nothing is there except the ruins of old buildings. Now the fort is known to people as place of Malik Raihan Dargah. A Sati Mandir is there in memory of Ambadevi the queen of King Rajaram I , who burned as Sati after the death of her husband. The Samadhi or tomb of great warrior Baji Prabhu Deshpande who fought until death with Siddi Masood, commander of Adilshaha who was persuiting Shivaji at the time when he escaped from siege of Siddi to fort Panhala and was rushing to Vishalgad.

He was about to capture Shivaji in Ghod Khind, a narrow pass 15 km short of Vishalgad Baji Prabhu stood there as a wall. Siddi succeeded to pass the Khind only after his death, by the time Shivaji was reached Vishalgad. Baji Prabhu alongwith his brother Fulaji who also killed that time were cremated here afterwards. Regular bus service is there from many cities in nearby area.
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