I have lived in London for 2 years and have seen many snowfalls during this time. After moving back to Mumbai I was missing the snowfall, and so in January 2015 I planned a trip to Shimla- Manali.
I myself booked hotels and flight ( Mumbai-Chandigarh) on MakeMyTrip. I also hired a car from Chandigarh for my 6 day tour and sightseeing of Chandigarh-Shimla-Kullu-
Let me share with you my experiences from this tour.
having spent most of my life in Mumbai, I never got the chance to experience winter at its best, because the city is always warm and humid.(the city being one big island) We hardly get few days of cold but not below 15°C So, as soon as I stepped out of the airplane at Chandigarh Airport I was hit by a cool and refreshing breeze, the temperature was a chilling 5°C. a new energy and enthusiasm engulfed me. the mere walk from the Airport to my car was a refreshing experience. a beautiful journey was about to begin. and I was looking forward to it like an excited kid waiting for Christmas.
now we were enroute shimla, and we stopped by an authentic Punjabi Dhaba by the highway for lunch, we ordered the Traditional makke di roti and sarson da sag ( corn flour bread, with sesame gravy) and trust me, the food was in every sense of the word, finger licking good. and also, a chilly climate with hot rotis make a deadly combination.
Here is a video of our route
Shimla – we began the next day by visitng all the famous tourist spots of shimla.
Viceregal Lodge – A must visit, Christ Church,Scandal Point, Mall Road, Kufri – The snow point, Chail
Then next day we started for Manali – It took a whole day of travelling from Shimla to Manali and we reached manali in the evening and yes it was snowing and there was snow everywhere around. So we checked in at our hotel and spent the evening lazing around with snow outside and hot coffee inside while watching the beautiful scene from my window.
Manali – Here we visited Solang Valley – snow point, Hidimba Devi Temple, Naggar Castle, Van Vihar National Park, Tibetan Monastery , We missed Rohtang pass though, due to very heavy snowfall, roads were closed. We also visited Club House where in you can take part in many adventure activities.
And then next day early morning we started for Chandigarh and reached there by 1 pm.
On the way we did River rafting at Kullu which was a really awesome experience, The adrenaline rush you get when the raft catches speed with the stormy, gushing river and the cold water splashing on your face is a magical feeling.
Chandigarh – Actually Chandigarh was not on my itinerary but due to the heavy snowfall in Manali we cancelled one day from our stay there and we decided to stay at Chandigarh, and I still thank God, this happened, else I would’ve really missed out on something .
This city is so clean and organised.It is indeed a beautiful city and the cold weather added to its beauty. The city is so nicely developed that I was stunned.
Attractions of Chandigarh
- Sukhna Lake
- Rock Garden
- Chandigarh Rose Garden
- Open Hand Monument
- Elante Mall
finally, my fun filled snowy trip came to an end, and I took off for Mumbai via Flight.
Important Advice: Don’t buy any snow gear early from shops while reaching a snow point, as the prices are hiked. you’ll get the same stuff for cheaper rates at the snowpoints itself. I personally had not rented anything as I was already wearing padded shoes and a winter jacket.
Don’t forget to have boiled eggs and Maggi from the stalls all over shimla and manali as they taste supper yum in the cold weather :).