All buses headed to Manali via Kullu cross through Raison, but it’s a blink and miss kind of a place so you need to keep your eyes and ears open and get off at the right spot. You will ‘hear’ Raison before you see it, because the ancient Beas river flows right past the town, gushing down from its Himalayan origins at the Rohtang Pass and making its way to the plains of Punjab. The river traces the periphery of the town and gives Raison its own personal soundtrack that plays through the day and the night! There’s not only music for your ears, but also some magic for your eyes at Raison. The lower altitude features of the Pir Panjal range cross through the town, with rich soil that makes the valley a perfect setting for growing fruits. Indeed, apple orchards decorate most of the hills of Raison adding a splash of red to its green cover.
Things to Do
While a place like Raison does not necessarily require a definite list of things to do by virtue of its peaceful, let-time-come-to-a-standstill vibe, there are some things that you must indulge in during your visit here.
Local Weavers and ‘Pattu’
While establishments at Kullu and Manali churn out Himachali shawls and stoles, the old-school practice of weaving a ‘pattu’ on a traditional wooden handlooms kept within the household has been kept alive in Raison. A ‘pattu’ is a thick woollen shawl with patterns of cultural motifs. Most of the rural houses in Raison have at least one such vintage handloom that caters to the family’s winter needs. Older women of the community can often be spotted basking in the sun as their fingers magically move the loom and the threads to create a ‘pattu’. Stay awhile and chat with them and learn more about this slowly dying craft that has been passed down from generation to generation among the hill people of Himachal. Produced mostly in small numbers, you might get a chance to purchase this item should there be an abundance of this in one of the households - try your luck!