Hello people, how are you all? I hope you all have read my previous post “My unexpected trip to Himachal Pradesh” if not I urge of you to kindly read it. In the post I had mentioned how I became part of this trip.
In this post I will share about my journey ( with my family and friends) to Shimla in Himachal Pradesh.
Did you know that Himachal Pradesh is also referred as the Dev bhoomi ( Land of Gods) and the Veer bhoomi ( Land of Braves)?
I already mentioned in my previous post that we were to take train from Bandra Terminus for Chandigarh and then we will be making a road trip to all the places we had decided to visit on this trip.
As planned our travel partner for this road trip “Ashtvinayak travels” who operates from Manali had ensured that the vehicle for our journey was at the Chandigarh station before we reached. I had already spoken to Gaurav (the driver) who was assigned to us for our journey and had shared the update on our expected arrival time at Chandigarh.
After we alighted from train I called Gaurav as to which side of the station we should come. As instructed we came out from the station, only to discover that we came to the wrong side which was near platform number 6, where as he was waiting in the parking area outside of platform number 1. He was not aware of this and that lead to the confusion and my friend “S” did not take this well. Since we hardly knew the guy and the place was new to us as well so we let it go, but made sure that Gaurav does not make such mistake going forward with other clients.
After loading the luggage and all taking there seats we started our journey for Himachal Pradesh, the state in northern part of India which is a ‘Province of Snow Laden Mountains’
The drive from Chandigarh railway station to our homestay was for 110 kms and barely 45 minutes into our journey of about 12 kms we took our first stop to make a purchase. Let me make this more interesting and fun. I want you to guess what it was that we bought? Drop your guess answer in my comments section and let me see if any of you give the right answer. I will announce the name of the one who answers correctly, if not then I will reveal what it was in my next blog on this series 😉
After making our purchase, kids in the crew also demanded for something to eat so I asked Gaurav to stop at someplace good for a tea and snacks break. The restaurant was a bit upscale, we went in anyways and placed the order for 3 plates of bhajiyas, chai for all and burgers for kids. By the time our order came in we took on to taking pics of the place and the view from there.
After taking pictures and selfies we had our tea and snacks, Gaurav also had his share of tea and snack in the other section, he preferred to be on his own ( during the entire the trip I also noted that most of the hotels/ dhaba’s and Restaurants in HP offers free food to drivers)
On the way through Solan to Shimla we came across some amazing views and also we noticed trees with soft purple blooms known as ‘Jacaranda’ or Neeli Gulmohar, and they looked so vibrant and beautiful. I did manage to capture them on video but got only two photograph of this beauty.
I had made reservations for our 2 nights stay at ‘Thakur Apartments‘ a modest homestay in Shimla on Jutogh road near Totu in Shimla. We reached there around 8:45 pm and by this time most of us were tired from the 27 hours train and over 3 hours road journey for Shimla.
The homestay turned out to be a good and spacious two bedroom, hall apartment with working kitchen a dining table and sofa seating for five with center table. The place was equipped with TV, Geyser, Gas and utensils with supply of spices, tea and sugar to make for a basic cooking.
The owner of the homestay Mr. Pramod Thakur was there to welcome us, he was friendly and polite and helped me with phone number of local food joint for our dinner. As soon as we checked in I placed order for our dinner for the night and by the time the food came we all got freshened up and after dinner all went to sleep. We did not realize it but damn, we were tired…
After dropping us at the homestay Gaurav went to meet his replacement driver Ashok, who he said will show us Shimla the next day as he had to go to his village that same night for a day for some unavoidable work. He promised me that he will be back the next evening for rest of our journey ahead.
The account of our sight seeing with Ashok is something I will share with you all in my next post on this series, so stay tuned for our adventures/ nuances with Mr. Ashok on sight seeing at Shimla, and do remember to post your guess answer for the question I asked in this blog. Until then stay happy, stay safe 🙂
Love & Gratitude,