Harihar Fort Trek in Maharashtra – Complete Travel Guide

Brief About Harihar Fort Trek

Harihar Fort Trek is one of the most popular treks in Maharashtra which was reason enough for us to visit it. It is also known as Harshagad & is located in the Nashik district of Maharashtra.

The view from the top of the fort is magnificent, where you can see other forts and peaks such as Bhaskargad, Anjaneri fort, Brahmagiri, and Utwad fort.

The fort is counted among the most visited forts in Nashik, and it is situated at a distance of 45 km from Nashik, 14 km from Trimbak, and 70 km from Igatpuri. The two villages located at the foot of the fort are Harshewadi and Nirgudpada/Kotamwadi. Overall, Harihar Fort Trek is an excellent destination for nature and adventure enthusiasts.

Amazing view of Harihar Fort Trek from far away
Amazing view of Harihar Fort Trek from far away

The fort appears rectangular from the base village and is built on a triangular prism of rock. It has three vertical faces and two edges at 90 degrees, while the third edge towards the west is inclined at an angle of 75 degrees. A rocky staircase with niches carved out for ascending and descending the fort, consisting of 117 steps, leads to the top.

On the way, you pass through a staircase inside the rock-like Peth Fort or Kothaligad Fort. At the top, you can find a small temple of Lord Hanuman and Lord Shiva and a pond with drinking water.

Key details of the Harihar Fort Trek:

  • Ideal Number of Days for the Visit: 1 day
  • Trek Distance: 3.5 km one way
  • Trek Altitude Range: 3500 feet
  • Starting Point: Nirgudpada Village
  • Nearest Railway Station: Nashik Railway Station (56 km)

Best Places to Visit at Harihar Fort Trek

I can say that climbing the nearly vertical staircase to the top of the fort is the most thrilling aspect of the hike. The small steps are created on the rocks, and notches are carved into the rock-cut steps that help you keep hold while climbing up till the first door.

  • The vertical views are breathtaking, and the Sahyadri mountain range is a sight to behold. The view from the top of the fort will amaze you, and you can see other forts in Nashik like Durg Bhandar, Bhaskargad or Basgad, Utwad fort, Anjaneri fort, Brahmagiri hill, and other renowned places.
  • Then Trimbakeshwar temple, Durgawadi waterfall, and River Vaitarna falls are must-visit places nearby.
  • The Trimbakeshwar Shiva Jyotirlinga Temple is an ancient temple in the Trimbakeshwar tehsil near Harihar fort.
  • The Durgawadi waterfall is a beautiful waterfall in the Nashik district of Maharashtra that attracts a huge number of tourists.
  • The River Vaitarna falls, situated amidst beautiful nature, has a calm and peaceful ambiance with cool breezes and quiet surroundings, making it a perfect place for nature lovers.

Vertical Climb reaching the gate of Harihar Fort
Vertical Climb reaching the gate of Harihar Fort

What is the best time to visit Harihar Fort Trek

The best time to go for the Harihar Fort Trek is during the early hours of the day, around 6 AM to 9 AM, when the sunlight is at its lowest, to avoid the scorching heat. The best time to do the Harihar Fort Trek is from June to February when you can see the spectacular views from Harihar Fort.

During the monsoon season, you can witness the lush green Sahyadris, while post-monsoon season offers a clear view of the famous forts and peaks from the top. However, trekking to the Harihar fort during summer is not recommended due to the extremely hot weather.

How to reach the starting point of the trek?

To reach the base of the Harihar Fort trek, there are two accessible routes that can be reached by public transport or by private vehicle.

If you’re planning on reaching the village by your own vehicle: The two base villages for the trek are Nirgudpada (Kotamwadi) and Harshewadi, and both have roads wide enough to accommodate cars. So you can just start your drive from Mumbai or Nashik and follow the google maps to reach there.

If you are traveling by public transport: From Mumbai, take a local train every 15 minutes to Kasara, and then take a shared taxi to Nirgudpada from Khodala.

Alternatively, if you are traveling in a group, it is recommended to hire a taxi for a roundtrip. From Nashik, reach Trimbakeshwar and then take a cab to Nirgudpada.

It is recommended to begin the trek during the early hours of the day from 6 AM to 9 AM when sunlight is lowest, and it is not recommended to trek during the scorching summer.

Availability of accommodations and food near the trek


You can find small dhabas and shops in the nearby villages, which offer food and water. If you are trekking during the monsoon season, you will find many small streams on the way to the fort where you can fill your water bottles. However, it is recommended to carry a minimum of 2 litres of water with you.


As far as accommodation is concerned, you can either camp on the fort or stay in the local villages around it. Additionally, you can also choose to stay in a hotel or resort in Nashik or Mumbai, and travel to the base village, which is easily accessible.

Soma Vineyard Resort in Nashik for Harihar Fort Trek Stay
Soma Vineyard Resort in Nashik for Harihar Fort Trek Stay

The Difficulty level of the Harihar Fort Trek

This trek is considered moderately difficult. The iconic rock-cut steps on Harihar Fort trek are the most challenging section, and caution is required while climbing them. The staircases before and after Mahadarvaja can be slippery and risky, especially during the monsoon season due to the moss formation.

Additionally, there is a tricky narrow traverse that should be crossed with caution. As a fit trekker with prior trekking experience, you can attempt this trek, but it’s not recommended for beginners. Wearing good trekking shoes is essential, and maintaining three-point contact and facing the mountain while descending is recommended.

Is Harihar Fort Dangerous?

For experienced trekkers, the Harihar Fort trek is an exciting challenge, but it is not recommended for beginners due to the steep and narrow iconic stairs that can be a bit intimidating. During the monsoon season, the trek is prohibited by the forest department and collector office due to overcrowding and past accidents.

The climb up the nearly vertical staircase that leads to the top of the Harihar Sahyadri gad is the most thrilling part of the trek. The carved-in notches on the rocks keep your fingers in place, but if you are afraid of heights, it is recommended to keep your gaze forward while climbing. The view from the top is breathtaking, but looking back down at the stairs can be terrifying.

Is Camping Allowed on Harihar Fort Trek?

You can camp on the Harihar Trek without any restrictions. Although, on top of the fort, there is limited space available for pitching tents. A better option would be to camp on the plateau located just before the iconic stairs, which has enough space for camping and is closer to the village.

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