Nighoj Potholes – A Geological Wonder
Nighoj Potholes! Located around 20 kms from Chincholi is a village called Nighoj.
No, we are not talking about this sleepy village in rural Maharashtra which comes alive only during Janamashtami festival when lakhs of devotees throng to witness a miracle. A miracle of an earthen pot of water coming out of a well in the village. There is also an interesting story attached to it. 🙂
Instead, we are here to see another wonder of nature and best kept geological secret of Maharashtra …. the potholes of Nighoj !
This article was last updated on August 29th, 2021.
What is Nighoj Potholes?
Nighoj potholes or Nighoj kund ( निघोज कुंड ) or Takali Haji potholes is a geological wonder of nature. This place needs to be seen to believe; a must see place to visit near Pune for a day trip. The beautifully shaped natural potholes in the riverbed of black and reddish basalt rock in Kukadi river are some of the largest in Asia according to geologists from all over the world who come here to study them.
These are not just potholes, I call them naturally formed rock sculptures. But very few of us have even heard of them.
The river Kukadi flows near the village. It is said that at one point, sudden geological disturbances occurred and a huge canyon was formed. The river flowed through this canyon with a great force forming huge holes in the rocks. These potholes are spread over three kilometres with an average depth of over 100 feet.
Also Read : A village of thousand peacocks Morachi Chincholi.
Popularly known as the ‘Potholes of Nighoj’, this is a geographical phenomenon where the pebbles that are carried by the river get locked in the cracks developed in the basalt rock riverbed. These pebbles swirl around due to the water current & form pot shaped cavities in the basalt rock. The process has taken over thousands of years.
Most of the rocks are black or dark gray in color but if you see closely there are layers with a tinge of red too. The thin layers of green & white marble look like markings and are very prominent.
A fair number of geologists and scientists have visited the potholes to evaluate them.
On the contrast to the scientific theory, the villagers have a different story to tell for these peculiar rock formations. According to them, the Goddess Malaganga, a local deity had a strong influence over the village and the river. It is her influence and anger that river Kukadi had to take the brunt. 😀 The temple of this local deity Malganga is next to these potholes. The locals believe these potholes to be a blessing of Malganga.
Nighoj potholes or Nighoj kund or Takali Haji potholes is Maharashtra’s best kept secret in a sleepy village named Nighoj in Ahmednagar district. This is a must visit offbeat place in rural Maharashtra.
At places it resembles naturally formed rock sculptures. We spent around two hours admiring in awe & taking photographs.
Also Read : A village of thousand peacocks Morachi Chincholi.
Where is Nighoj potholes or Nighoj kund located?
Nighoj kund is located around 20 kms from Chincholi in a village called Nighoj in Maharashtra. Nighoj is 90 kms from Pune and 245 kms from Mumbai. The closest town is Shirur, 25 KMs away from it. Nighoj can easily be visited as a day trip from Mumbai.
How to reach Nighoj Potholes
Nighoj potholes is 90 kms from Pune and 245 kms from Mumbai. A day trip from Pune perfectly suits this. The nearest airport and railway station is Pune. You can take a cab or bus from Pune up to Nighoj.
However, the best way to visit Nighoj is by car.
Directions to reach Nighoj from Mumbai
• Get onto Mumbai Pune expressway
• Travel about 85km on the on the expressway, cross both tolls and take somathane exit which goes to the Talawade IT Park.
• Get on to NH4
• Take left after railway bridge of Dehu road station. You will see the station on the left. This is Talawade road.
• Travel for 5 km then turn right for IT park.
• Go straight 10 km after turning right. You will reach a T junction. This is Pune Nashik road. Turn Left here
• Travel till Khed ( 20km), just before Khed Bus Stand turn right it is a bit sharp, more like inverted ‘V’
• after 1km you will reach Y junction, take left. pass by retavadi, Gosasi, Pabal .. total 20 Km
• After coming out of Pabal take left turn.
• Go another 10 KM, you will see boards for Morachi Chincholi Village on the right.
• There are places to stay inside the village and also outside if you bypass the village.
• Continuing on this road for 20 km after passing Malthan, Takli Haji take a right. Small road sign direct you to “Nighoj Kund“
Directions to reach Nighoj from Pune
• Go to Nagar road, travel towards Ahmednagar.
• Cross Shikrapur.
• After that, you would see an exit for Shirur. Do NOT take that road towards Shirur.
• Take the road towards Malthan, which is around 20 KMs from Shikrapur.
• After Malthan, Keep going on this road for around 13 KMs to reach Nighoj.
• As you enter the village, you will see an arch on the left. Take the road under the arch and keep going for another 3 kms. After that you’ll hit the Kukadi river with a temple.
• This is the place you are looking for. 🙂
• Small road sign direct you to “Nighoj Kund“
Best Time to visit Nighoj Potholes
The best time to visit Nighoj Potholes is September to March. The potholes are visible all thru the year and some of them may contain water. Winter is a good time to go. Summer is very hot and you can’t really step barefoot on the rocks as they also become very hot. We suggest, avoid rainy season as it’d become very slippery to walk on the rocks. Rest of the time is okay to visit.
Where to stay in Nighoj
Nighoj has very basic stay facilities such as lodges and homestays. But you may want to stay at Supa village or Shirur. The distance between Shirur and Nighoj Potholes is 25 Km by road. Click below to book your accommodation.
Tips to visit Nighoj
• While planning a day trip to Nighoj from Mumbai or Pune, one has to bear in mind the lack of any tourist facilities like stay or toilets.
• Delicious Maharashtrian food, Vada pavs, fritters may be available on road side kiosks or dhabas. Plan accordingly. Carry drinking water with you.
• Once you reach Nighoj, you’ll have to park your vehicle at a distance and make your way on foot to the potholes.
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