At over 1300 m high, the temperate hill station of Mahabaleshwar was a popular escape for the British in Bombay, providing some respite from the Indian summer. Still popular today, it is known for its picturesque mountain scenery and cascading waterfalls. Hike up to the 17th century Pratapgad Fort, a scenic 15 km drive, or visit the UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site, the Kaas Plateau of Flowers, well worth the 90-minute drive. To be avoided during the monsoon, when an unbelievable six metres of rain falls, the best time to visit is between November and February; though the Kaas Plateau is awash with colour in September and October after the rains have been.