Day 4: Simla – Manali (Chasing the mighty Beas)
It was time for moving ourselves to our next destination – Manali – the adobe of Manu. If Hindu mythology is believed – Manali is where Human Life was recreated after the great flood. Keeping the mythology aside, one great fact about Manali is that the most important fruit in humankind – Apple – was introduced to this country here by the British. The most delicious apple in the country is still cultivated here and supplied worldwide.
The road between Shimla & Manali is one of the most picturesque paths in the country. narrow roads cutting the rocks of the mountains follow the path of the mighty Himalayan Rivers – Satluj & Beas. The 250 Kilometres travel passes through some extremely beautiful locations. The narrow roads cut through the rocks of the mountains keeping the river on one side are enough to give goosebumps.
We booked a taxi from Shimla to Manali which stayed with us for next 4 days and took as back to Shimla. The Vishal Taxi Union, located right beside the Lift, agreed to provide us a taxi at a reasonable rate. It is suggested to start the journey early in the morning because it takes the entire day and traffic jams are very common there. The HPTDC Volvo bus is also a very good option but in our case, we wanted a bit more flexibility because of the kid.
The journey was vis Darlaghat, Barmana, Sundernagar, Mandi, Pandoh, Kullu. Many may argue if pre-winter is the ideal season to visit this place because there are not many snow-capped peaks around and also the cities are yet to see the season’s first snowfall but in my opinion, the beauty of the green hills is no less than the snows. We were totally mesmerized by the view of the mountains, the waterfalls, and the rivers. This will certainly remain as one of the most scenic journeys in my life.
The road trip takes about 10 hours but we faced a huge traffic jam and ended up sitting in the car for about 14 hours. To enjoy the best of the views of nature try to start early so that you have plenty of daylight until the end. There are plenty of good places to have lunch or a snacks break so even if you are not carrying foods, you need not worry.
En-route you may stop at Kullu and buy woollens. As I suggested in Shimla Travel Guide, Kullu is the best place to buy these kinds of stuff. Ask your driver to take you to one of the Factory Outlets. You will be surprised to see the difference in price between these and the ones in Shimla. Kullu is culturally very rich and ‘Kullu Dussehra’ is one of the most renowned festivals of Himachal Pradesh. You can also plan to have a day’s break at Kullu.
We reached the hotel at around 9 O-clock in the night. Manali appeared to be less crowded & cleaner than Shimla. The weather was also more pleasant and cooler. The burble of the Beas can be heard from all over the city. We had made a superb road trip and our son was surely the hero who did not make a single sign of irritation throughout the long journey. We were to get a good night’s sleep since the next morning was reserved for Rohtang Pass.
Read Next: Rohtang (The Bridge between two cultures)