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''Romantic getaways for honeymooners to thrilling adventure sports, Manali has it all''

From ancient temples, gompas, magnificent landscapes and apple orchards to umpteen adventure sports such as jeep safari, paragliding and skiing, the place offers almost everything in a platter. Besides, a perfect place to indulge in some serious photography and make trip worth reminiscing.

LOCATION : About 550kms from Delhi. Manali is on the banks of river beas in Kully valley.

WHY GO THE DISTANCE : Visit Manali for breath-taking beauty never experienced before. At least my wife and I felt so. Nestled in between snow-laden hills, Manali’s charm has only increased over the years and is one of the most frequented hill stations.

What mesmerised and scared us most were snow-clad mighty hills surrounded by deep gorges. At times, we would just spend time sitting by a ridge standing steady against the skyline and just admire the scenic view and feel cool breeze on the face. At lower elevations were lush green patches of grasslands. It was too great a magical feeling to be described in words. It was kind of a second honeymoon for us.

My kid too enjoyed a lot as the place offered too many adventure sports options and he tried hands on many. Zorbing and river-crossing is what he enjoyed most.

Manali is also a starting point for a number of treks including Chandrakhani Pass and Beas Kund. Old Manali can also be visited for some old wooden architecture and Buddhist temples. Naggar Castle and Art Gallery are a must see here.

Dedicated to Hidimbi devi, this temple is also known as ‘Doongri Temple’ and has a skillfully crafted four tiered pagoda roof. The surrounding cedar forests adds to the beauty of this temple.

The rare and endemic nature of many animal and plant communities at GHNP are of interest not only to scientists, but to lovers of nature worldwide. A few treks could also be done from this place.

Has some of the finest skiing slopes and picnic spots. Also well known for winter sports such as parachuting, paragliding, skating and zorbing.

A high mountain pass connecting the Kullu valley with the Lahaul and Spiti valleys of Himachal.

It’s on the Beas river.

The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is about 11kms from Kullu. Take a bus from Kullu to Chansari village and then trek about 3km to reach the temple. The location gives a panoramic view of Kullu and Paravati valleys.

Famous for hot water springs.

Named after maharishi Bhrigu, this lake is about 6kms from Gulaba village in Kullu.

Other places of interest include Manu Temple, Tibetan monasteries, Jagatsukh, Manali Sanctuary and Pin Valley National Park.

Volvo Buses for Manali are available from Delhi and Chandigarh. If driving, one will have to go Manali via Chadigarh and it would take some 8-10 hours.

By Air:
The nearest airport for Manali is Bhuntar, at a distance of approx. 50kms.

By Rail:
The closest narrow gauge railhead is at Joginder Nagar, 165 km away. The closest broad gauge rail heads are Chandigarh and Ambala.

WHEN TO GO : In winters the place witnesses heavy snowfall that blocks roads many a times. Heavy woollens recommended in winters. Temperature is mild in summers and can be managed with light woollens. So, summer seems to be the ideal time.

STAY OPTIONS : Rock Manali: 0124 404 0014
Apple Bud Cottages: 01902 254 177
Hotel SilmogGarden: 01902 252 862
Hadimba Way: 01902 251 522
Shingar Regency: 01902 252 251
Hotel Sitara International: 099 71 499489
Indrapastha Cottage: 098 16 675135
Snow Valley Resorts: 01902 253 228
Hotel Monarch Residency: 098 88 438898
The Manali Inn – Et: 01902 253 550
Hotel Le Grand Manali: 098 16 047324
Hotel Yak: 01902 254 197
Hotel Sun Park Resort: 01902 253 037
Sandhya Resort & Spa: 094 18 281903
Hotel Him View: 098 16 150900
Banon Resorts: 01902 253 026
Imperial Palace Manali: 01902 253 330
Hotel Snow Princess: 099 58 058135
Utopia Resorts: 098 15 979959
Hotel Park Paradise: 098 16 900922
Hilltone Resorts and Spa: 01902 206 241
Hayer Regency Hotel: 01902 252 984
The River Crescent Resort: 01902 253 510
Lords Residency: 01902 250 425
Mountain Top Hotel: 01902 253 696

Source / Review By : Deepak Nautiyal

Deepak is a consumer goods sales & marketing expert

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