The hotel manager suggested to go for the kakad aarti as that is the time to find least traffic of devotees but we were successful in not waking up😋, but were ready at 6.00 am.
Hotel city point just opposite to gate 1 of sai baba mandir also called samadhi mandir ,provides a good pay parking service..
**You will be flooded with guides and touts fir easy/quick darshan dont give in and dont buy anything from them.
We bought a mala and prasaad thali for Rs 150 which the shopkeeper was selling for Rs300 as we looked disinterested (suggested by hotel manager).
If you dont mind spending Rs200 to avoid standing in queue for long hours head straight to PRO office buy a VIP pass which costs Rs200/head and head straight for darshan. VIP passes can also be pre booked online if you plan on visiting in peak season.
Once you are inside the temple a nominal wait if 15-20 minutes(we were lucky it is least crowded on mondays) is obvious for visiting baba's darbaar for blessings.
Note:quick darshan can be booked for Rs1500 subject to availablity but we felt it will take away the quintessential shirdi darshan experience.
Post darshan we went to ahimsa the vegan café for a quick bite and left for home.
1.Plan ahead and book bhakt niwas of sai baba temple trust.
2.Do visit the prasadalaya for bhandara(we regret missing it)
3. very well connected, can be reached by air, rail and road
4.best season december to march
5.best time monday tuesday wednesday 12 noon to evening.
Thursday sees maximum footfall
6.A visit shani shignapur and grishneshwar temple will be worth your time.