On my recent trip to Manali, I stayed at a magical property, one of the prettiest in the hill station - Johnson Lodge. Located between the Mall Road and Old Manali, it's the perfect place to stay, especially if you're looking to explore Manali on foot. The cafe and bar serves delicious food, I loved their English breakfast with eggs, sausages, bacon and mushroom. The cottage rooms are super comfortable and we got fresh logs to light up the fireplace. In the summer months the staff even arrange a bonfire outside in the garden if you're in a large group. There's a cosy little spa in the corner, inside which lives Tango - the adorable cocker spaniel at Johnson's. If you're looking to visit Manali at any time of the year, this place is a perfect ten on location, rooms, activities and most importantly food!
The Johnsons Cafe and Hotel next door is also a great option to stay as well as eat at. Post a ten minute walk from the hotels towards old Manali, one can find lovely little stores selling Kinnauri and Kullu shawls and traditional Himachali woolen handicrafts. On the other side, the Mall Road is hardly at a distance of a few hundred meters with its iconic Chinese Tibetan restaurant Chopsticks.
The room tariffs at both the Johnsons properties are extremely affordable at under 4k for 2. If you book the cottage which can accommodate upto 6 people, the tariff is about 6-9k.
I will write more about food & activities in Manali in some of my future posts. Happy traveling!