Have you ever seen a place that made you feel as if you’re a part of a picture postcard? I did when I crossed the Hampta pass and visited Chandra Taal.
If Hindi is not your first language, then let me tell you that the name Chandta Taal means “Moon Lake”, and it is so because the lake is crescent shaped. It is located in the barren Spiti part of Lahul and Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh. Some call it “poor man’s Ladakh”, but I call it surreal, because this part of Himachal is like no other. It is barren, yet cold; strange, yet beautiful and most of all has an air of mystery.
Short. Effective. Rejuvenating Jayalgarh for a weekend getaway from Delhi
Unfortunately, taking a break from the daily grind of the city and detox from its hectic pace has to be ironically bracketed into specific amount of days. Clubbing long weekends, feigning sickness to catch a few days in the outdoors and other ingenious (read devious) ways are plain exhausting. The conversations during the run up to a long weekend are around booked out hotels, lack of imaginative ideas for family vacations and lists of ‘been there, done that’ destinations.
When Viraatkhai became a classroom for elders
Not being in the company of children on a daily basis had me staring at a unique challenge when I was invited by friends to join in a family vacation to Viraatkhai. Initially nervous, and then excited to look at travel with new eyes, I joined the group in Dehradun, over a weekend. It was ideal to travel from Delhi. Three car loads of parents, their kids and I bumbled off from Vikasnagar and caught the steep climb starting from Dakpaththar.
Valley of Flowers had been on my mind for a couple of years. Though I had prepared myself for the daunting task of reaching the valley, nothing in the world could have prepared me for what lay beyond. Some places are not just pretty, they leave an indelible mark on your mind, long after you come back. Valley of Flowers has that kind of a lure.
A wise man once said that 'The earth laughs in flowers’. Maybe that's the reason why flowers always make us smile. But when there are mammoth Himalayas rising from a bed of colourful flowers, negotiating with the clouds and reaching up to kiss the sky, the scene is nothing short of extraordinary. That is exactly what happened to me. One look at the jaw dropping sights and I was mesmerised. I had always been a beach person till then. It was when walking in the Valley of Flowers that I converted to a mountain lover.