Seriously, A great Trip with Family 🙂 If you read one article about North India this one is perfect for you.
I was amazed to see the landscape changing from South India to North India. Incredible India!
Trip to Chandigarh, Manali, Kullu, Shimla, Rishikesh, Haridwar, Agra & Mathura in Nine Days!
Day 1 : 1st January 2010 :Mumbai-Delhi-Chandigarh :
Hola! Amigos. It was a month of December. So, my family decided to go on vacation. And the places we decided are the world famous. Nobody need to explain about the beauty about these places. The purpose I am writing about these places is for those they are visiting Manali, Kullu, Shimla, Haridwar, Rishikesh, Agra, Mathura and will know about things to take care of like money, travel hacks, budget and all. I learnt many things when I travel. I believe that ;
“Travelling leaves you speechless and turns you into storyteller”
We reached to Mumbai Airport for flight to Delhi on 18.00.Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport is second busiest airport in India. The staff is very co-operative.
We landed on Delhi Airport on 20.15
That was the first time when I saw the airport. It was best airport I have ever seen till this date.
At Arrival gate we booked taxi for Hotel near New Delhi Railway Station.
Architecture of Delhi Airport is outstanding.
The cab driver was showing us Akshardham Temple, Rashtrapati Bhavan from car. He told us that you can roam around Delhi in four days.
You can check out my Delhi Tour in five Days.
Delhi’s people are bold and courageous as compared to other top cities of India. You will get this information in much detail at my Delhi Tour in four days blog.
We booked hotel room at Paharganj, New Delhi. At morning we had train from New Delhi to Chandigarh.
(Shatabdi Express : One of the fast train which serves hot meals and breakfast on the board.)
We reached to Chandigarh around 10.30 and booked room nearby Chandigarh Railway Station.
We went to Rock Garden at 2.00 PM.
The Rock Garden of Chandigarh is a sculpture garden in Chandigarh, India, also known as Nek Chand’s Rock Garden after its founder Nek Chand, a government official who started the garden secretly in his spare time in 1957.
The Rock like statues made by Nek Chand are simple yet powerful sculptures & arrangement of garden was amazing.
There is a small waterfall in Rock Garden which will really make you feel good.
Then we started for Sukhna Lake which is 3 km2 in sector 1 and the water comes from Shivalik Hills. Himalayas water come to Chandigarh in this lake.
On 7.00 PM we started for Musical Fountain Laser show in Sector 17. It was quite good. You will get happy if you are with children. They love to dance on music according to this view.
Then, my parents booked Innova for travelling to Kullu, Manali, Shimla, Agra, Mathura, Haridwar, Rishikesh for 32000 INR.
Next day we started for Kullu and Manali early in the morning.
Day 2 : 2nd January, 2010 : Sightseeing in Manali
As I started to take photos of places all the time I had no idea it will turn into a great asset for Travel Blogging.
At 10.00 we started for Manali. The distance is about 310 kms from Chandigarh city. You will be there in approx 8 hours including meal, tea, snacks time.
We reached around 20.30 in Manali. And booked Hotel Natraj on Leh-Manali Highway (NH-21).
I recommend my readers to stay at Hotel Natraj. Budget friendly, on the banks of Beas River with this beautiful view.
We took rest after delicious food (Paneer Butter Masala, Dal Tadka, Roti, Jeera Rice)served by hotel staff.
Day 3 : 3rd January 2010 : Solang Valley, Hidimba Devi Temple Manali
We went to Solang Valley for Paragliding Adventure.
At the top there is Solang Ski resort and we can do skiing too.
The iced mountains, Fur trees and Beas river making this view as the imaginary picture we draw in drawing book.
The weather was so refreshing that anyone can get fresh in this weather.
Really, my eyes can’t get off of this beautiful place. So I wasn’t in control to stop clicking 🙂
After these activities we had snacks like Maggie and Tea.
Then we went to Hotel room and my mom made home-made food in Hotel Natraj. Literally, mom talked with Kitchen staff and I took permission from manager to make food by ourselves.
Home-made food in Manali was much delicious. Sometimes I think to start a Maharashtrian Food chain in Manali so that you can roam like you are at your native place.
Then, we took rest for an hour and went to Hidimba Devi Temple for Darshan
Hidimba Devi Temple, Manali
Hidimba Temple is one of the most important temple in Manali. There is a festival named Dhungari Mela which is held on August 12 on every year.
The temple is surrounded by Dayar trees which made my mood fresh.
Then we went to Mall Road for shopping. You can shop mens jackets for just 1000 bucks which cost you 2000-3000 in City Malls or from Shops you buy.
I just read in geography that how “Yak” looks like. Now I was seeing it live.
That was one of the great day in my life. First time I experienced Paragliding Adventure, Nature’s beauty, seen Yak in a single day.
For next day we planned for Rohtang Pass.
Day 4 : 4th January 2010 : Rohtang Pass, Manali
Early in the morning, before starting for Rohtang Pass you have to take permit which charges INR 50 from Government of Himachal Pradesh.
The vehicle started for Rohatang Pass must pass Gulaba Barrier in between 6.00 to 12.00 Noon. You can also go by Government Bus ; runs 14-16 buses daily to Rohtang Pass.
Rohtang Pass / Rohtang La is the highest point in Manali which is 13050 ft from sea level in the Range of Pir Panjal Himalayas. I suggest you take Camphor with you if anyone have high altitude problem. Also bring Sun’s Cream with you.
When reached at Rohtang La, the view was magnificent.
We did ice fight over there.
We started return journey for Hotel at 15.00 and reached 17.50 which is about 53 kms. Had great dinner and took rest.
Day 5 : 5th January 2010 : Naggar Castle, Manikaran, Shimla Stay
We started for Shimla early in the morning by having breakfast at same hotel and halted at Naggar Castle in Kullu.
You will get information about Naggar castle here.
The ancient architecture is really marvelous. You will be surprised to know how ancient artists constructed this place.
Then we started for Jagatipat (This unique temple has alternate slabs of deodar timber which makes it an earthquake resistant structure.)
After travelling around 20 kms we reached to a hotel which is very terrific for stay in tent trees.
We had great food at great cost ! Food quality was good. The scenery made me to Go out & explore the world.
We reached at Manikaran on 17.00
Manikaran is situated on the Parvati River of Parvati Valley which is mainly famous for Lord Shiva Temple as well as Shri Gurunanak Devji Gurudwara.
There is a belief about Hot springs, Shiva Temple that it will keep you away from diseases.
Everyone of us amazed to see the cold water of Parvati river running outside and how can the Hot Springs be hot. These are some indian places where god had did magic which you can’t measure through science. You just have to believe in this thing when you practically experience it.
We started for Shimla and reached on 22.00 at Hotel Room.
Day 6 : 6th January 2010 : Shimla IIAS, Bird Zoo, Enroute to Rishikesh
Finally, we started exploring Shimla cause 3 idiots movie was launched and then we went to this place. So it was great feeling to go over there. We went to Indian Institute of Advanced Studies
Indian Institute of Advanced Studies (IIAS) :
The Indian Institute of Advanced Study is a research institute based in Shimla. It was set up by the Ministry of Education, Government of India in 1964 and it started functioning from 20 October 1965.
This place is a great example of British Architecture.
You can see there photos and all things related to Indian Politics inside the building.
Then we went to Bird Park nearby..
By the afternoon we started for Rishikesh as it is about 471 kms from Kullu.
Driver was exchanged by our travel agent & Car too which was Innova only but Uttarakhand Permit. Earlier was Punjab permit.
Day 7 : 7th January 2010 :
Rishikesh Darshan, Haridwar
We asked localites about Rishikesh that where should we go. The top places of Rishikesh are Lakshaman Zhula (Suspension Bridge) & Ram Zhula (one more Suspension bridge).
Rishikesh is also known as “City of Temples”. If one can start visiting every temple it will take about 2-3 days to visit all of them.
The Laskshaman Zhula is built on the Ganga River. There is Ganga aarti in the evening at Triveni ghat. The most famous ghat on the banks of Ganga River
Ram Zhula is another Suspension Bridge in Rishikesh which is approx. 3kms from Lakshaman Zhula.
Parmarth Niketan Ashram also one of the best place to spend quality time doing yoga & meditation. You can opt out for this program on www.parmarth.org
And after having lunch we started for Haridwar which is only 18 kms from Rishikesh. We reached at Haridwar on 17.00
Haridwar is most ancient city in North India and most ancient Hindu pilgrimage where Ganga River exits the Himalayan Foothills.
This one also is a City of Temples. There are seven holy places which are ; Ayodhya, Mathura, Varanasi, Awantika, Dwarka, Kanchi & Haridwar.
List of places of interest of Haridwar:
1.Chandi Devi Temple
2.Mansa Devi Temple
3.Maya Devi Temple
6.Neel Dhara Pakshi Vihar
8.Dudhadhari Burfani Temple
9.Sureshwari Devi Temple
11.Bharat Mata Mandir
12.Sapta Rishi Ashram & Sapta Sarovar
14.Chintamani Parshwanath Jain Shwetambar Mandir
16.Patanjali Yogpeeth Trust
17.Anandmayi Maa Ashram.
Hari ki Pauri
Hari ki Pauri hosts a Ganga aarti (Worship) in the evening. Every devotee who asks something from god or to revive from their problems flickers lamps are floated off the steps.
After this spiritual evening; we had dinner and booked room and slept.
Next day we were leaving for Agra which is world famous for TAJ – MAHAL.
We travelled for 395 kms for Taj Mahal, Agra.
Day 8 : 8th January 2010 : Travelling to Agra
Next day we stared for Agra at 9.00. Haridwar to Agra distance is 395 kms it takes 8 hrs to reach Agra via Yamuna Express Way.
The whole day we were travelling and we observed that
There is too much poverty, lack of education in Uttar Pradesh.
Approx 20 % houses were made up of cement, concrete, slab other 80% are shelters only.
I firmly believe that if we want to do something great for our country; We have to use our education to make these lives fulfill their dreams.
Finally, we reached Agra on 18.00 and booked room near Taj – Mahal. Had a great Punjabi food and slept.
Day 9 : 9th January 2010 : Taj Mahal, Mathura
We started for seventh wonder Taj-Mahal.
Taj Mahal is mausoleum, white Marble structure built on the south banks of river Yamuna. Almost everyone knows Shah-Jahan, Mughal Emperor built this beautiful structure for his favourite wife Mumtaj Mahal. Mumtaj house of Tomb
Did you know ? It took 20 years to build Taj Mahal i.e. from 1632-1652 whose architects were Ustad Ahmad Lahouri & Ustad Isa
Taj is one of the most beautiful creation available on this earth.
This board will give you brief information about Taj..
The pinnacle of Mughal Architecture giving me a hint about how firm and talented the architects will be.
Mumtaj-Mahal’s Tomb was in the middle of Taj & right beside to him Shah-Jahan’s tomb is placed.
And after that we started for Mathura after Lunch. I have covered Agra Fort in my Delhi-Agra Tour.
P.S. : Taj Mahal is closed on FRIDAY
Please check www.tajmahal.gov.in for more information and online entry ticket booking.
We travelled almost 60kms to reach Mathura.
Mathura is sacred city in Uttar Pradesh state, India. It is said that Lord Krishna was born at this holy place. So, it is also known as ‘Krishna Janma Bhumi’. On the banks of Yumuna river there are 25 ghats. Dwarkadhish (Lord Krishna) Temple is the main attraction over there and also Vrindavan.
When you start for Darshan (Worship) one thing keep in mind that Mathura’s people cheat you and will force you to pay money for Temple Trust using these words in hindi ;
“Radhey, Radhey, Jo Mathura mein hasega usi ka ghar basega”
If you truly want to donate; go to mandir trust office and donate by taking receipt.
Mandir’s entry gate is marvellous. Great architecture.
We saw some magnificent architectures. Here we go..
Then we went to Vrindavan. The place where thousands of Tulsi Trees are planted and appox 300-400 monkeys are there. Radhe-Krishna temple is situated in the middle of Vrindawan.
It is said that Lord Krishna do Raas-Leela (Traditional Dance) over here in the night. The bhog (Prasada) is placed in the evening is eaten by Lord Krishna. The one who goes to this place not returned in all his senses like deaf, blind etc.
We did Darshana in the evening and had great dinner nearby. And then went to Mathura Railway Station to catch the train with 3AC accommodation for Manmad (Maharashtra) in the night.
Next day we came home. It feels great to be home after such a long journey.
Thank you for reading, Travellers 🙂