Tuljapur is a small town in Maharashtra and is known for the Tulja Bhavani temple. The temple holds a significant importance in Hinduism and is visited by thousands of worshipers every day. You can read in detail at this WikiLink. The temple is located around 50 km from Solapur town. If you plan to visit from Hyderabad you can either hire a taxi for entire journey or you can easily cover entire journey conveniently using public transport. I had created following plan for myself, which worked out quite well and you can follow the same to finish the entire trip over a weekend.
I took Shatabadi Express from Hyderabad to Solapur which takes around 5 hours. The journey was very comfortable in chair car coaches of the train. The cleanliness level of train is excellent and they serve snacks and tea which adds to the whole experience. For accommodation in Solapur, you can either pre-book the hotel or search for hotels nearby so that you can check room condition your self. It would be better to note down names of 4-5 hotels. I stayed in Hotel Srikamal International which is an average hotel but should be fine for 1 day stay. It’s at walk-able distance to railway station and well-connected to other parts of town.
I started for Tuljapur next morning by Maharashtra State Transport bus. These buses are are very well maintained. Its one hour journey and costs 50 Rs per person. After getting down at bus stand in Tuljapur, the temple is at 10 mins walk so you don’t need to hire any vehicle unless you have any elderly people in group. As you get down you will be approached by many people who would say that they can get you special darshan. Just decline the offer politely and continue moving towards temple.
The temple is quite big and will be crowded on any holiday. It took me around 3 hours to get the darshan as it was very crowded on Sunday. However the crowd management is quite good. The queues are well maintained and fans are installed in waiting halls. After darshan you can get the return bus easily from Tuljapur Bus stand. Buses are available every 15 minutes so should not be any problem there.
In solapur, I would highly recommend a restaurant called Yash Palace which is near the station if you are looking for vegetarian food and want to try Maharashtrian cuisine. The food taste and quality is excellent and the restaurant is very reasonably priced. A meal for 2 people would cost around Rs. 250 if you stick to Maharashtrian dishes. The butter milk available in restaurant would be refreshing specially in summer time.
You can return to Hyderabad by one of the train in afternoon or evening. I took LTT – COA Express which departs from Solapur at 7:45 PM and was back in Hyderabad on Sunday. The trip overall was both cost-effective and pleasant. So if you have been thinking to visit Tuljapur from many days and haven’t figured out a plan yet, I have presented you one option :). If you haven’t heard about the temple and after reading the Wiki link feel like visiting it, the plan works for you as well :).
PS: I plan to redo the trip to Solapur just for the delicious food 🙂 along with another temple visit in the region.