We reached Delhi around 8.30pm in the night and met our 3rd partner Akash. Boarded our bus at the last minute , thanks to Delhi traffic. We had packed biriyani for dinner and around 11pm started this trip of lifetime.
They say that once in a year you should visit a place you have never been before and that's what brought us here. Heard a lot about Himachal Pradesh from lot of people about its serenity and calmness and it came out to be all true when we woke up early in the morning somewhere near Mandi for an early morning tea.
Morning 7.30am we reached Manali and just after getting out of our bus we felt like standing on an ice brick. It was freezing cold 4 degrees there. Our homestay was a little up from the highway so we had to walk for a kilometer to reach there. The roads were covered with mild snow and this was the very first time we were experiencing all this.
After checking in to our homestay we decided to take a nap for a while. After having our Aloo parathas for Lunch on bed we decided to go for some local sightseeing in Manali. First was Hadimba temple which is quite popular destination when you are in Manali . Then we took a short walk to the Manu temple though old Manali town. The view from the temple was simply exquisite and relaxing.
After this we had typical himachali style chai and evening snack on the way back to our stay. It was almost dark around 6 in the evening and temperature was reaching towards Zero.
Later in the night around 10.30pm we saw something we didn't expected and was the best feeling i ever had. It was all white feather outside and drizzle of snow. But this turned out to be a disappointment for the next day.
Day 3 was a spoiler for us as we were stuck in our homestay for the entire day waiting for the snow to stop. It literally didn't stop for the whole day but we found a reason to get on the bed.
Finally it stopped around 4 in the evening and we decided to go to mall road for some evening time. Cabs were super expensive because of the last night snowfall. We had to pay 500 bucks just for 2 km. We had fried momos on one of the shops on mall road, took some pics and came back to the stay hoping to have sun back on next day. Our host suggested to take a heater so we took one for 300 bucks per day.
We planned Kasol from today as heard lot about it. We woke up early around 7 am and immediately checked outside. And finger crossed it was a bright sunny day so we modified our plan. Booked a cab to Nehru kund as Solang valley and other places were in accessible. On the way to Nehru kund we saw some mesmerising views of the Himalayan range covered with snow and water streams all around. It was definitely the best mornings of all time for us. We took snow kit which had a suit, boots and skiing for 2300 per head which was the flop deal of our entire trip. I would suggest to go for this only if its required.
We reached Nehru kund which of course was crowded with vehicles as all tourists wanted to go out on the sunny morning. There is a small shop which serves great aloo parathas , we ordered for 4 parathas and filled our belly. Around 3 in the afternoon we started back for town and boarded our bus to Bhuntar and luckily we got the last bus for Kasol from bhuntar. 8pm we checked in to our hotel in Kasol.
Kasol is completely different from Manali, a small town (should be around a km wide) . You will find everything green around, stream of Parvati valley is everywhere in the town.
Kasol is called trekker's paradise as it is surrounded by beautiful trekking places like Kheerganga, Tosh and Malana. Our first thing to do in Kasol was to trek to Malana as it was the only accessible place in that season.
You need to stop at Jari village on the way to Bhuntar and then take a private cab to Malana village. It costed us 1200 rs for the cab and we started the 4 km steep trek to the mystery village of Malana. It took us around 3 hours to reach to the peak and what a beautiful village is this.
As it was difficult to trek in snow so we decided not to stay there for long as it was getting dark, had our evening tea and maggie and started back through the other route which was relatively easier. It was too slippery to decend down the hill. We called the cab guy to take us back and he dropped us to Kasol around 7.30pm in the evening.
Our Final day was to visit the holy place Manikaran sahib Gurudwara which is very close to Kasol (2 Km). We walked to gurudwara in the morning, took bath in the hot spring and had delicious prasad after the darshan. After coming out of the place standing on the bridge I felt being completely there and surrounded by Nature.
Sometimes just experiencing the moment feels so relaxing to the soul. All three of us were lost at this point and somewhere wishing that this happens again.
We had our return bus from Bhuntar at 6pm in the evening so our plan was very straight forward to reach their in time. We had Thupka on the way to Bhuntar and boarded our bus for Delhi.
Reached Delhi in the morning around 9am we went to Chandni chowk as it is known for its street food around the world. Did some local shopping and headed back to the airport for our flight to Bangalore.
There were lot of things we missed out on this trip like Rohtang pass, Trek to Kheerganga but let me tell you this was one of the best experience of my life to be there with my best buddies.