The bus had been honking for quite some time now. I am in the northern fringes of India and the big plan of this day was to travel from Chaukori to Kausani. I hopped aboard and the vehicle started rolling down the hills. It crossed the farms, villages, huts, shacks and finally stopped in the town of Bageshwar for a break. Continue reading
From the roof I watched the sparkling green water of the Himalayan lake of Nainital in India. The next sight where I settled my eyes on was the exquisite minarets of the Jama Masjid. It is impossible not to praise the beauty of this mosque. The hotel I stayed in was perched atop a steep incline emerging out of an alley near the Nainital Stadium. Due to the steepness of the hotel’s location, watching the town from its roof was like observing from a watchtower. Continue reading
In the Kumaon circuit of India, Almora is more or less overshadowed by the presence of its ‘big brother’ destinations. The travelers are more engaged composing poetry in Munsiyari or sailing the yachts in Nainital. This is my second visit in the Kumaon belt and in my first one I too had developed such a ‘nothing special’ concept of Almora. It changed this time. I rediscovered Almora.
The tedious train journey from Kolkata to Lalkuan followed by the short bus ride to Nainital for overnight stay before setting off the next day to reach Almora had drained me of any considerable time to enjoy a walk. I pounced on the first opportunity I got to take that very essential walk. Continue reading
It was already 8 PM when the bus pulled over in an attempt to relieve its aching muscles. The passengers had been long waiting for the driver to make the final announcement. They are tired by the super-long journey from Almora to Munsiyari. I was there somewhere amidst them, getting tossed by the infinite number of hairpin turns all throughout this 250 kilometer of journey. It was tedious but just like any other Himalayan journey, had its own charm. The pine forests of Kumaon Himalayas in Uttarakhand, India are quite popular and the journey involved occasional breaks whenever a lonesome pine fruit was found loitering in the street. The joy of gathering these is only comparable with the ecstasy of collecting the Apples from orchards of Kinnaur. Sometimes when the distant fog cleared a tuft of the snow-peak becomes viewable and all my restlessness flew off. Continue reading