Before the pre-wedding jitters take over, it’s time to decide on a pristine landscape for a romantic escapade. Though incredible India definitely throws up a plethora of options for the couples to take their first step into wedding bliss, most of us are puzzled to pick one destination. However, my confusion was eased when a friend suggested Manali. I was thrilled because my idea of a lovey-dovey holiday always included cozy wooden houses, fireplaces, snowy hills, undulating boulevards and greenery. After all I have grown up reading Mills and Boons like every other girl!! So here is the spirit-soaring account of my unforgettable experience in this dazzling locale.
One of the most picturesque and dreamy destination for a perfect honeymoon, Manali has been fondly christened as the ‘Switzerland of India’ by travellers. This gorgeous hinterland located in Himachal Pradesh is blessed with indescribable beauty. Verdant valley surrounded by mountains draped in snow, gushing waterfalls, lavish apple orchards and awe-inspiring views welcome newlyweds to a wonderland invoking a sensory pleasure like no other.
Veiled under this tranquil landscape of lush meadows, serene woods and mesmerising hills is the quaint town’s vibrant culture and adrenaline pumping activities. Offering couples the best of both the worlds – private cocoon in a beautiful vista as well as adventure filled opportunities, this majestic land peeking out of a white canvas of snow is a lover’s paradise.
As a traveller, I have explored the length and breadth of the country but the breathtaking sights of this region remain etched in my mind till date. If you are a pair who is interested in thrills and chills, then the best time to visit the place is December-February to enjoy skiing and other winter sports. Otherwise spring-summer is the ideal time to soak in the splendour of this nature’s bounty. The town is well connected by road to most parts of Northern India and the nearest railway station and airport are located in Chandigarh. Tourists can embark on a hilly joy ride in a bus to reach this coveted destination.
Speckled with enchanting hotspots, the best places to visit in Manali are:
The awesome view of the Solang valley beckons explorers of beauty and serenity. It is not just a picnic spot, but also offers plenty of getaway space for those willing to go on long walks while holding hands. It is a haven for people seeking adventure as an array of sports are available here ranging from paragliding to parachuting. It is also the perfect destination for skiing and zorbing. To make the peaks of Manali more easily accessible to tourists, a multi-million ropeway-cum-ski project at the charming Solang Valley has been installed recently. The visitors can take a ride to the top of Mount Phatru at an elevation of 3,200 m high and enjoy the magnificent views with delicious food at the cafés on top.
This temple dating back to 1553, has been immortalised in various Bollywood films. Built in the honour of Hidimba, the wife of Bheema from Mahabharata, this holy shrine is visited by pilgrims from all across the country. Immaculately constructed from stone and wood, the walls of the sanctum are embellished with woodcarvings of dancers and horns of bulls and ibex. A sight to behold, this historic structure encompassing a four-tiered pagoda roof transports you into a world of peacefulness.
Getaway to Lahaul and Spiti, Rohtang Pass is tucked away in nature’s lap with immense beauty and thrill. About 50kms from Manali, Rohtang is a high mountain pass on the eastern Pir Panjal Range of the Himalayas. Often termed as a trekker’s paradise, Rohtang pass is famous for skiing and trekking. Here you can experience beautiful sight of crystal glaciers and magical mountains. Further along Rohtang, you will pass the cascading Rahalla Falls. Also, from the summit of the pass, you can look north for dazzling views of the central Lahaul Massif of the great Himalaya cradling the Sonapani glacier and down at the Chandra River looking straight out of a fairy tale.
Nestled in the Parvati Valley, amidst the Beas and Parvati Rivers, Manikaran leaves you dumbfounded with the miracles of nature. A hot water spring in the middle of chilly mountains, it is revered by a lot of people who take a dip in the warm water. A must-visit for every nature lover.
An exclusive hideaway for lovebirds, this idyllic site is located 20 km away from the main bus stand. A lot of tourists pick this spot for camping in the stunning environs overlooking the towering emerald mountains. A night spent under the beautiful moon lit sky here is surely an experience of a lifetime.
Truly a dream come true, Manali is worth a visit. So if you are searching for a sought-after honeymoon destination, this hill station is your best bet.
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