Imagine lounging on a deck chair on the side of a river, feet dipped in cool mountain spring water, day time temperatures hovering around the 18 degree Celsius mark, a cool refreshing drink in hand and the sound of busy birds ringing in your ears.
Then, the ding-dong of the doorbell violently pierces through it all, and hail, enters the ‘Dhobi’ for his weekly pound of clothes!
Did you not like to be shaken and stirred thus eh?
Well, head off to Manali.
Gateway to the Himalayas north of the Rohtang Pass, Manali itself has more to offer than just a brief refueling and resupplying pit-stop on the way to exploring the remote enchanted monasteries of the Spiti Valley or the high altitude desert landscapes of the Ladakh Highlands.
A small, otherwise sleepy town in the north of Himachal Pardesh, Manali comes alive 6 months in a year during summer to autumn, hosting leisurely holiday makers, coy honeymooners, outdoor and adventure seekers, motor bikers on their way to exhilaration and mountaineers looking for greater heights to ascend.
Don’t ride motor bikes? Not a mountain climber? Not a problem. Manali has something to offer for everyone, no honestly.
So now let’s see, gazing at the snow covered peaks from your guest house balcony at Dhungri, high above it all, mountain bike ride on the dirt track by the river Beas to Solan, picking apples in the orchard of your friendly neighbour at Nasogi, power climbing 1000 meters straight up to Lama Dug and back, soaking in the hot natural thermal spring at Vashisht, transporting thousands of years back in time at the heritage site of the ancient Temple Of Goddess Hadimba, hanging out with backpackers from all over the world at Old Manali, camping with children at Manalsu river side or high altitude camping at Dhundi, rock climbing at Aleo, leisurely walk to the Jogani Waterfalls, drive up to the snow point at Rohtang and maybe cycle downhill, multi day trek crossing the Chandrakhani Pass into the enchanted Parvati Valley, sumptuous Momos and Thukpa at Raj’s Little Kitchen, and an honest heart-to-heart ‘chai pe charcha’ with the very friendly local towns people of this remarkable little existence!
Well, come to Manali for nothing else but lounging on a deck chair on the side of a river, feet dipped in cool mountain spring water, day time temperatures hovering around the 18 degree Celsius mark, a cool refreshing drink in hand and not have the sound of the doorbell violently pierce through it all.
For the Traveler
- Distance to Destination from Delhi: 550 kms
- Drive time: Approx 13 hours
- Mode: Comfortable AC Volvo semi sleeper, overnight drive. Most buses leave between 5pm and 6pm from Delhi and arrive Manali next day morning by about 7am to 8am.
- Watch out for: Fresh clean addictive mountain air.
- Accommodation and Activities Recommended with: The Ace Himalayan Tours – Old Manali.