Guest Post || Trip to the Tranquil land of Lanjhni By Lekha

You all would agree with me for the title if I tell you I am talking about no place other than Himachal Pradesh known as devbhoomi (land of devatas). There is this different sense of calmness once you cross the Punjab border and enter into Himachal.

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I recently got a  chance to visit this paradise and trust me if you are expecting me to talk about Mcleodganj, Dharamshala, Shimla etc, I am going to disappoint you because Himachal is not just these places(for a trip to Shimla you can read Yatripandit’s Story). There is much more to it and that is still hidden on the hill tops, inside the forests and God knows where else. So let’s take you to these serene villages of Himachal (They are no villages) and absorb the tranquility of these plush green places. As you enter the Himachal border from Pathankot , you are welcomed with a cool breeze usually every time of the year and long deodar trees. It will take you around an hour or two to reach banoi chowk if you boarded the Kangra bus from Pathankot. Usually these chowks are named after the names of rivers flowing there or nearby, and let me remind you throughout the way the rivers are not gonna leave you, from the bus you can follow the river waters and it might not be surprising if the bus stops suddenly on the road side and conductor gets down to fill his water bottle from the water seeping through the roadside hill. Yeah, it’s the purest water – chilled and all for free. On the way there are many dhabas (Unlike Karnataka) to serve you delicious tandoori roti along with Kadi and Rajma and this hot meal is exactly what you need on those hilly cold Raasta.

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As you reach banoi chowk, you have to get down and take a jeep to Lanjhni  (It’s a village on the hilltops in district Dharamshala and tehsil Kangra with around 150 houses , built almost one or two per hill ) Usually the locals living there provide guest houses for rent to travelers, but it’s hard to find on your own since it’s almost a non-traveller zone, so you have to make arrangements in advance or you could even take help from the drivers or hotel owners in Dharamshala as this place is just 10 KM from Dharamshala.

Once you are set in that cozy room of your guest house facing tall deodar trees and pin drop silence you have all the time in the world to be face yourself. The silence here is not deafening, it’s music to your ears when you can hear your own heartbeat. I would suggest to reach the guesthouse before the sunset just to be on a safer side (Although people here do not lock their homes..)

Enjoy a great adrak wali chai and let the artist within unwind. (That’s my personal touch to it)

Next morning , it’s an advice to wake up early because you surely would not like to miss one of your life’s best sunrise, the first rays breaking through the clouds(although you are on cloudsJ ) and sun rising behind that green cover of trees .  After making up your morning, the walk through the hills between the clouds would lead you to a soul awakening path, the cool breeze and the warm sun is the perfect combination for the awakening.  No need to rush, nowhere to hurry for…Just Live and by this I mean actually LIVE LIFE.IMG-20170922-WA0001

You have all the time to explore the village now and you would really be astonished to know that this village is built much better than many of the cities we live in, with all the amenities  and yes there is hardly any power cut happening in this village. Please take your time to talk to the elderly people here, you will fall in love with the sweetness of their language and affection , they will tell you how their ancestors bought these hills and constructed those houses which are more robust than many of our recent constructions, they have the plethora of stories some depicting their ancient beliefs and you will feel how innocent and pure their hearts are while some will tell you some daily tales about myths which might scare you a bit,but overall this is gonna be a lifetime experience for you.

If you craving for the outside world , you can anytime tale a local jeep or cab to Dharamshala and ahead to Mcleodganj and have a gala time, do a real time cheap shopping ,enjoy your time with little cute monks in Dalai lama temple , visit the famous Shiva Café and Bhagsunag temple and Falls.

This trip would give you a soul stirring and calming experience or I should say ‘A Murakami experience’.

Please do write to me if you need any details for this place in case you are traveling.

 

About the Author:

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Name: Lekha Mishra

Job: Who cares

Ethnicity: Is often misconstrued and lead to miseries, so don’t have one.

Loves: Time I cultivate the dreams and nurture the art within and love to love the loved ones who make life a lovable livable affair for the downtrodden too.

Outlook about Life: A cup of hot ginger tea and a big window seating with a book or a calm listener or a healer

Do you cry: Often! Yes it cleans the slate.

Shopping: Need more almirah maa!IMG-20171101-WA0000

Yatripandit addon: Lekha is an amazing soul who believes in LMAO theory showing her all 32. She always carries a full of life attitude and is ready for all challenges. We wish her all the best for all future journeys and life.

 

 

Disclaimer:  *Contents in this story is Authors personal views and presentation.

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Raiding Mighty Himalayas – Himachal Pradesh

As you might have understood by far that I am a road trip person.

Before getting to the trip, let me introduce to a new member – A white Maruti Suzuki Swift VDi and the owner is none other than, my brother from another mother, Sandy. He has recently shifted to the capital city, New Delhi imparting me a chance to plan and RAID the Mighty Himalayas.The new family member Swift VDi

Coming back to the journey, I booked myself on late night flight to Delhi from Mumbai and landed to be received by Sandy at the Airport. Trust me I was more excited to see the car than seeing him. We reached Sandy’s place around 2am and tried to get some sleep before the Raid, but the butterflies of excitement in our stomach had planned the other way round.

We left early in the morning and our breakfast haul was at Sukhdev Dhaba in Moorthal just outside the national capital. The paranthas are to die for and you cannot afford to miss the white makkhan (butter) even if you are on diet. Filling out tummies and satisfying our souls we are all set to hit the road again.Sukhdev dhaba

We stopped at Ambala to meet an old friend from the university and continued our journey. After crossing Chandigarh bypass, we were welcomed by a board saying, “Welcome to great Himalayan Highways.” There we are, the commencement of uphill journey begins. After, a few KMs we could not control of emotions and urge to have Maggie noodles on one of the Maggie points (Any hill u go in India, Maggie points are omnipresent)

In about 10 hours we reached Kasauli (our would be basecamp) and wasting no time we booked Hotel Pine View located off Chandigarh – Shimla Highway, towards Kasauli. It was a budget hotel, which offered us a Room for two in Rs 1300/- (excluding Meals). Not a bad deal at all, being a long weekend.Hotel pinewood

Kufri:

We decided to rest that night and dozed off after having dinner in the hotel’s restaurant itself.

On the 2nd day, we left after having tea and breakfast to reach Kufri, on the journey we drove through Solan, Shoghi and Shimla (bypass) . The dist. Is about 100 kms but Kandaghat is not easy to drive on, the average speed was about 20 km/h. We obviously stopped at some Monsoon waterfalls and Maggie points to grab a hot tea and Maggie. Reached Kufri in around 6 hours and then our guide (avoid hiring one) told us to take a horse ride to see some sightseeing points (we came back half way disappointed by the ruthless way the horses are treated and made to walk in the mud slurry till knee height) We had to pay the full amt. about Rs. 350/- per horse. Nonetheless, we decided to visit, The Himalayan Nature Park. It is home to about 30 Himalayan wild animals and birds. Witnessing this was a true delight. We started our return journey at 4:30 pm from Kufri ( as we had decided to avoid driving after dusk ) we managed to reach our base camp by 8pm. We had dinner at very famous Giani Dhaba, but it turned out to be even worse than what we could have got at some other not so famous place. AVOID GIANI DHABA.

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Note: The area is a landslide prone, so be cautious while driving and follow sign boards strictly.

Shimla:

Next Morning was the most pleasant one, I have experienced in my lifetime. The sun was playing hide and seek with the clouds and the fog was waiting to embrace us in its arms. Wasting no time we head started our journey to state capital – Shimla. Driving through Kandaghat was not as difficult as the weather was pretty clear.Fresh apple from the orchid

Do not forget to take an apple break at the magnificent apple mandi(market) in Solan.

Reached Shimla in about 5 hours and had to struggle a lot to find a Parking place. We headed straight to Mall Road, which is a must visit when you are in Shimla. Bought some Pashmina shawls and stoles for our loved ones, after a lot of bargaining. We were mesmerized to know about the history and importance of Gaity theater. This theater was constructed by British and is one of the six theater left on the planet to be built on Victorian Gothic Architecture. After wandering around and having luscious Chole bature and Chole Samose, in a local Stall, at Mall road. We decided to explore Shimla a little more and click some pictures.

We were back to Kasauli by 8:30 pm and decided to have dinner at Haveli, trust me the food was delicious and way better than what we had @Giani Dhaba last night.

It was an amazing journey with Sandy who got hitched recently. We enjoyed every bit of the mountains. Pure air, green mountains, warm hospitality, well maintained roads, lip smacking food and the most welcoming Pahadis. That’s Himachal for you.

This trip to Himachal Pradesh – The land of Gods will be relished till we leave the land to meet Gods in heaven.

Signing off with a song playing in my mind in loop,”maye ni meriye” by Mohit Chauhan. Here is the link

Trip Duration – 5 days

Expense – Approx. INR 9000 PP (Excluding Flight tickets)

— Abhimanyu@yatripandit

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