Duration : 4 days
Best time to visit : April to Nov
Welcome to Himachal Pradesh side of Himalayan tour.
Day 1: We started from Delhi via HPTDC Volvo bus and the journey was indeed a nice one. Roads were in good condition and so the bus.My son slept in the bus without any disturbance which was good news for us. As we crossed Mandi at around 3:00 AM and the road started winding into the mountains. I being inquisitive in seeing the views, had kept my eyes wide open to see early morning sun at 4:00 AM over the Vyas river. From then, the road on one side and Vyas river flowing on the other side, was a very thrilling experience. We entered the tunnel as we neared to Kullu and had a cup of tea. By 8:30 AM, we landed in Manali, the destination we wanted to be.
We checked in at Hotel Manali Continental and is one of the best hotel both in terms of service and cost. This hotel is very near to Sulphur Spring called as Vasistha Spring and makes it advantageous to visit the Vasistha spring by walk. The hotel is run by my friend Anup Thakur and after meeting him, planned the itinerary on places to visit.
After breakfast, it was time to do sightseeing in Manali and covered following locations:
Gayatri Devi Temple at the start of Jagatsukh and Sandhya Gayatri temple at Jagatsukh
Hadimba Temple : Built in 1553, the four tiered pagoda wooden roof of the temple concealed in a deodar forest with its caved doorway is certainly a show piece of traditional architecture. This temple is dedicated to Hadimba Devi, wife of Bhima in the Mahabharatha tale was the presiding deity of Kullu king.
Manu Temple : We then visited the old Manu village which commemorates Manu, the great ancestor who is regarded as the savior of human race.
Naggar Castle : A unique medieval structure, Naggar Castle is a very popular tourist spot located close to Manali in Naggar. Built around 1460 AD, by Raja Sidh Singh of Kullu, the castle has a unique architectural blend of western and Himalayan style. The castle is scenically located near the Beas River and offers panoramic views of the surroundings. Along with that it houses the Reorich gallery that displays the paintings of the famous Russian painter, Nicholas Reorich.
Manali Club House: In the evening, went to the Club house to have fun with cold water of Vyas river.
Day 2: This day, we planned to visit Rohtang La (Pass) and Solang Valley. Rohtang pass is at 13,000 feet and the road ride is breathtaking in terms of views, snow and the atmosphere. One can play in Rohtang before returning. One thing to be noted. During summer seasons, there would only be people instead of snow. Thus, leaving as early as 7:30 AM would help in playing with snow with peace and lesser traffic hurdles. Solang Valley with sparsely wooded slopes is an awesome place for winter skiing. When we went, it was grassy with greenery everywhere and added to that is the para gliding. It is one of the experience to have.
Day 3: Today, as planned we visited Kullu Valley. Before entering the valley, had darshan at Vaishno Devi temple at Kullu and then proceeded to Manikaran Sahib where one side Parvati river flows ferociously and water being cold and another side is Manikaran sahib temple which is a Gurudwara where the water is boiling hot. One can get the rice cooked and then take cold water from Parvati river to drink. Also at Manikaran, is Sulphur hot springs which is slightly made cold for people to take bath which has medicinal value. I just had my feet put in hot water.
After we returned back, we got a surprise pack. A 20 minute ride on Hot Air balloon. The experience was awesome.
Day 4: This day was reserved for shopping and walking around the streets and visit to Kullu Bajinath temple. We lazed around a bit and then was time to catch bus to New Delhi.
Next blog would be from Manali to Spiti and Lahaul and then Manali to Leh. Keep coming back and enjoy reading…..