Most tourists make a beeline to Shimla, the summer capital of the British days. Though I am yet to visit that Queen of hill stations in India, I have a feeling it's not going to be half as good as Kasauli which is around 75 kms short of it in the Solan district of Himachal Pradesh. After we climbed the hills we had the Kalka-Shimla train running alongside for a short time before it disappeared through one of the tunnels. Getting off from the highway on the left 65 kms from Chandigarh, the narrow road led to this once army cantonment of British heydays. Well , there still is an army establishment here that also looks after the once much sought after Kasauli Club.
Why do I prefer Kasauli to Shimla? For it's quiet charm. For it's unpretentious aura. For the lovely roads that you can walk around without treading on fellow traveller's toes. And that's what we did .Walked around a lot taking in the plants and the wild flowers. Letting the clouds envelop us as we crossed paths going our ways. A walk around the Sadar Bazaar barely took us a few minutes, looking at all those wares which one finds in every hill station in India irrespective of the region. The wooden spoons, ladles, Kashmiri shawls and stoles, pull overs and cardigans, gloves, curios ...you name it and it's there. I was convinced I was not the naive tourist but a seasoned one who could see through all the gimmicks. It is another matter that after the stroll, I found myself walking out with two umbrellas.
A few minutes walk from the market is the Christ Church of Kasauli. A quaint structure surrounded by tall trees. The stained glass windows inside, said to be of Spanish and Italian origins, are exquisite. One can spend a lot of time sitting in the cool interiors or admiring the view from the grounds. We found a Gilbert Trail that went along the side of the hill, with colourful wild dahlias peeping out from everywhere, leading to an opening that had the plains of Punjab in view. The clouds played peekaboo cloaking and unveiling Chandigarh spread below. It was the evening view that took our breath away. Chandigarh sparkled like a diamond necklace in the darkness.
|Morning View Of The Plains|
|Evening View Of The Plains|
Kasauli is great for a weekend getaway if you are in Delhi or Chandigarh. It is the Gilbert Trail that I have my heart set on. And so I leave you with my favourite spot of Kasauli. Is there a particular place of your vacation that has stayed with you?
This post was written for the A to Z Challenge 2014