Sahyadri range is mainly divided into three parts: “Shambhu Mahadev” Range, “Bamnoli” Range and “Mhasoba” Range. The forts Santoshgad, Varugad, Mahimangad and Vardhangad are a part of “Mhasoba” range and in ‘Maan’ district. It takes two days to see visit all four forts. Santoshgad is also called as ‘Fort of Tathawada’, since the base village is called by that name.
Santoshgad is divided into three parts. First part of the fort is the protective (defensive) fortification, second part is the flat portion on the mountain and the topmost part is the “Balekilla” or the top citadel. There is a ‘Math’ (cloister/ monastery) on the way to Santoshgad. Besides this monastery is a cave with water storage tank. Also, there is a statue of “Valmiki Rishi”. There is an entrance on the upper side of the monastery, for which we need to go around it. The path to the left side of the monastery goes along the fort walls and takes us to the main entrance. There is a small temple on this way.
There are hardly any remnants of the main entrance, but the porches (meant for guards) are still intact. After entering through this door, a tank called ‘Hanuman Take’ can be seen. Behind this tank are many dilapidated structures and some old warehouses. Behind these buildings is a huge water tank with steps carved into walls of the tank for descending. There is a Shiva temple inside.
How To Reach
There are Maharashtra State Transport buses available for every half an hour from Phaltan to Tathawada. We can get down at Tathawada village, by the Satara-Phaltan bus which passes through PuseGaon-MolaGhat. The distance between PuseGaon and Tathawada is about 23 kms. There is a proper trail from Tathawada to the fort. It takes half an hour by this route to reach to the fort.