Pune is the second largest city in Maharashtra after Mumbai, situated 560 metres above sea level on the Deccan plateau. Pune is also called the cultural capital of Maharashtra. Pune has a rich history almost as old as 1600 years. Pataleshwar caves in Pune are believed to be an old settlement from the 5th century. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaja, the founder of the Maratha Empire, hailed from Pune which later saw growth and development during his reign there. The city of Pune derives its name from Punya-Nagari which translates as the 'City of Virtue' in Sanskrit.
Pune is a relatively hilly city, with its tallest hill, Vetal Hill, rising to 800 metres (2,600 ft) above sea level. Outside the city, the Sinhagad fort is located at an altitude of 1300 metres. The Pavana and Indrayani rivers, tributaries of the river Bhima, flow through the northwestern outskirts of Pune. The climate of Pune is very pleasant. Pune has a tropical wet and dry climate with average temperatures ranging between 20 to 28 °C (68 to 82 °F).
Pune is a fairly diverse city. Pune epitomizes the Marathi culture very well. The culture lays emphasis on arts and crafts, music, theatre and education. Pune also boasts a centre of modern architecture in India, with prize winning buildings. Pune culture reflects a blend of traditions with modernity, which is evident in regular classical shows as well as an active nightlife. Most of the residents of Pune are Marathis and speak the language Marathi, but Pune is also highly student populated. Many colleges and institutes ranging from engineering, medicine, arts, science to management are found here. Pune is a very young city.