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Shimla – Manikaran – Manali

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Route to Shimla:

The nearest railway station to Shimla is Kalka which is about 90 kilometres away, you can take cab or bus to Shimla. You can also take bus straight to Shimla from Delhi.

 For a family of 4 you can take a small private car from Shimla, for 6 people Innova is suggested and for 14 people you can also opt for Travellers cars.

In the month November 2020, the price we paid was rupees 2250 per day for a small car rental which included car, oil, toll tax, parking fee, driver’s accommodation and food. You don’t have to pay anything else. Depending on the price of oil and demand in 2021 the price may increase.

Image by confused_me from Pixabay

Exploring the queen of hills:

Cover as much places you can, talk to the cab to set up the route, some famous places you can explore are The Ridge of Shimla, Kufri, Green Vally, Jakhoo Hill (the mandir is the main attraction here) however you will not be able to complete all these in the first day. Do not miss the chance to travel on the Toy train and make plans with the Driver accordingly. Get back to the hotel in Shimla at the earliest and try to get lunch from here which will be healthy and pocket friendly. In the afternoon visit Shimla Kalibari, Shimla Mall, Scandal Point, Christ Church, Locker Bazaar by yourself. No car is needed.

Next day take the car after breakfast or the earliest so you can complete Fagu, Kufri, New Kufri, Jakhoo Mandir, Vice Regal Lodge. Follow similar routine and try to get cover the places as soon you can so you can return at noon to have lunch and take rest. In the evening explore the rest of Shimla Mall and the places nearby, you can eat at a restaurant in the evening with your partner or family which applies to you.

Now this is time to leave Shimla for Manikaran. Manikaran will take around 7:30 hours, make sure to take a cab so you can check out the beautiful Nagar Lake, Pandoh Dam, Hanogi Mata Temple. Some roads are very bad so take precautions as in medicine to stop vomit, plenty of water, some dry food. Finally you will reach Manikaran and it is smart to book your hotel post reaching there so you don’t have to look for hotels. Although you will be missing Shimla but once you reach Manikaran, get ready to be amaged at the river Parvatis roaring with anger. Take plenty of rest and have your dinner and go to bed early so you can utilise the next day.

Get up early in the Morning and get ready to explore this place, you can have the same cab and in case if you do not then make sure to talk to the hotel or go to the market to fix the cab on the day you arrive Manikaran, I would suggest you to make a good deal with the previous driver and ask them to stay till the end of your trip, they are tied up with the hotels so they can stay for the whole trip with you. Anyways in the morning visit Gurudwara, Shiva Temple and few more temples. Kullu is a must visit. You can buy Kullu made shawl, sweaters, cheap at Sriram Shawls shop. 

Then you can head towards Manali on the same date. In the afternoon, check out local sites in Manali by foot, include Hidimba Temple, Mall, Club House, Banabitan, Tibetan Monastery in your list.

It’s time, leave early in the morning and cover Palchan Bridge, Solang, Burba, Dhundi and Atal Tunnel. You can cross the 9 km route in 15 minutes and reach Sissu Helipad. The road through the yellow leaves of the Poplar tree is mesmerising. Get back to Manali as routine, do not miss Nehru Kund, Basishta Mandir, Manu Mandir, come to the hotel on the way then have lunch and go out towards Naggar Castle. Visit Manali Castle, Roerich Art Gallery and Museum, Tripura Sundari Mandir. Chopstick Restaurant at Manali Mall is popular for delicious food, take a stroll, eat if you are hungry.

If you want to go to Rohtang Pass it will cost you around 5000 to 6000 rupees and you will have to book a separate cab from Manali to Rohtang Pass. In the month of May there is a snow wall of 20 feet high.

In the end do remember to paraglide in Solang Valley, one life, enjoy while it last.

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