INDIA TRAVEL - LOOKING FOR ADVENTURE, NATURE OR PEACE? DON'T MISS THESE 2 PLACES

Hello guys! Everyone looks for some respite from hustle bustle of life. A break from daily grind. And the purpose is to find some peace. So here I am, bringing to you, two most peaceful destinations of India, which are not only beautiful but also provide ample scope for adventure. Very little explored and much less crowded, these places provide ideal locations for a peaceful yet enjoyable stay. These places provide equal opportunities for peace seekers, spiritually inclined, nature lovers and adventure seekers.

1. BIR BILLING - This is the paragliding hub of India. It boasts of having organized a paragliding world cup in 2015, in which over 150 trained pilots and over 500 other free flying pilots participated.
Bir Billing is situated in Joginder Nagar valley in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh state of North India.It is a combination of two places. Bir and Billing. While Billing serves as the take off site for paragliding, Bir is the landing site. Together they are called Bir Billing. 
Bir is a small village, known for eco tourism, meditation and spiritual studies. It's scenic beauty is simply eye catching with hills all around and colorful Tibetan Monasteries spread around the village. The beat part is that it is not at all crowded like some of the other better known hill stations.

WHAT TO SEE IN BIR

Tibetan Colony in Bir
TIBETAN COLONY
Image Source-hellotravel
1. Tibetan Colony - This is a Tibetan resettlement colony, built around 1966 when third Neten Chokling came to India with a small group of people and built a settlement of about 300 houses. You can see the complete Tibetan culture here and enjoy Tibetan food too. The colorful houses with equally colorful flags atop them here, are a treat to the eyes. Tibetan colony also has a Tibetan handicrafts center, a branch of Tibetan Astrological and Medical Institute a Tibetan village school and a medical clinic.


2. Chokling Monastery - It was built simultaneously with Tibetan colony and is located in the colony. It's main attractions are a huge stupa and a magnificent statue of Padmasambhava. It is a must see place for it's sheer beauty, Tibetan architecture and the spiritual atmosphere. A restaurant is also there inside the premises, where you can relish Tibetan cuisines. It also has a guest house.

Chokling Monastery in Bir
CHOKLING MONASTRY
Image Source-traveldglobe
3. Deer Park Institute - Again located in Tibetan colony, it is a center for programs on meditation, art, culture and philosophy. A number of lectures and seminars are organized with reputed scholars and teachers on the above subjects. The Institute may provide even meditation retreats to you. This institute was established in the year 2006, with blessings of Dalai Lama.

Deer park institute in Bir
DEER PARK INSTITUTE
Image source-holidayplan

4. Bir Tea Factory - If you are interested in seeing the process of tea making, you can visit Bir tea factory. Or else, you can stroll around in Bir tea gardens to enjoy the natural beauty and greenery.

Bir tea garden
TEA GARDEN AT BIR
Image source-gomissing

5. Dharmalaya Institute - This is again an eco institute, where a number of eco friendly activities take place. Some of these are organic farming, meditation and green building. If you want to make a productive use of your time during your stay in Bir, you can enroll in any of these activities as volunteer and learn something new.

THINGS TO DO IN BIR

1. Paragliding -  It is not for nothing that Bir is called the paragliding capital of India. If you go to Bir, Paragliding is a must. If you are not trained, you have two options. If you have sufficient time, you can do the training course or else you can take a professional along at an additional cost. Billing is the launch site of paragliding. It is at an altitude of 2400 m and is situated 14 km(8.8 mi) from Bir. If you take a professional pilot along, you can sit back and relax and take a lot of pictures of the valley below and the beautiful surroundings. Do not forget to take your selfie stick with you.

Paragliding place at Bir
PARAGLIDING IN BIR
Image source-himachal.ind.in

2. Trekking - Bir provides ample options for trekking. There are many tribal villages of Himachal Pradesh around here. If you are a trekking enthusiast, you can trek to these villages from Bir. You can book best trekking options with TOGEDR.

3. Camping - If you want to enjoy the nature, camping is an option for you. Bir offers camping using sustainable methods. You will have safe and comfortable tents to enjoy nature and beauty of Bir in most unconventional manner.

A camp in Bir
CAMPING IN BIR
Image Source-adventures365

4. Travel by Toy Train - You can enjoy most enchanting views of the area on a toy train, You can travel to  Ahju which is 3 km(2 mi) away and grasp the breathtaking scenery en route.

REACHING BIR - 

Air - Nearest airport to Bir is Gaggal in Dharamshala, which is about 67 km(42 mi) from Bir. It has flights from major cities.You can hire a taxi from here to reach Bir.

Rail - Nearest broad gauge station to Bir is Pathankot, which is about 140 km(88 mi) from here. From Pathankot, there are regular buses to Bir. If you have the time and want to enjoy your journey, then you can take the toy train on narrow gauge. It will take around 7 hrs to cover the distance and will take you to Ahju, which is 3 km(2 mi) from Bir. From Ahju, you can hire taxi to reach Bir.

Road - Although Bir is well connected to other places by a good road network, there aren't regular bus services from other states to Bir. From Delhi, which is about 510 km (320 mi) from here, there are two buses which run upto Baijnath, which is 10 km(6 mi) from Bir. These buses leave Delhi in the evening and reach Baijnath early morning next day.

WHERE TO STAY IN BIR
There are a number of guest houses and hotels in Bir, most of them located in the Chowgan village at the southern end of Bir.

2. MUKTESHWAR - Situated at an altitude of 2286 m(7500 ft) in beautiful Kumaon hils, in Uttarakhand state of India, Mukteshwar is both a pilgrimage as well as tourist destination. This picturesque town is located at 51 km (32 mi) from Nainital and 343 km(215 mi) from Delhi. The quietness and serenity of this small town coupled with it's natural beauty will mesmerize you.

Mukteshwar gets it's name from a 350 year old temple called Mukteshwar Dham, which is located at the highest point of the town. One story says that Lord Shiva killed a demon here. The demon pleaded for mukti or salvation. Lord Shiva granted him mukti, hence the name Mukteshwar.

View of Mukteshwar
MUKTESHWAR
Image source-explara
This is an unpolluted area and it's beauty has not been spoiled by human invasion. The beauty of the place is that it is covered with dense forests on one side and enchanting view of the valley and mighty Himalayas. You will get a stunning view of the majestic Himalayas from here. Himalayan peaks like Nanda Devi, Trishul, Nandaghunti, Pancha chali and Nanda Kot are clearly visible from Mukteshwar. Wake up early and here the chirping of birds and see the sun rays kissing the cliffs. It is a not to be missed sight. And if you like, you can go and treat yourself to a short trek in the woods.

PLACES TO SEE IN MUKTESHWAR

1. Mukteshwar Temple - It is an important place of worship for Hindu devotees. Located just 1 km from the town market, this temple is situated at a height of 2312 m (7700 ft).
A white marble Shivalinga and a copper yoni is enshrined in the temple. Mukteshwar temple is one of the 18 Shiva temples considered important. It's architecture is very simple and you can reach the idols of deities through a series of stone stairs. Idols of other two Gods in the holy trinity, Brahma and Vishnu are also kept here.

View of Mukteshwar temple
MUKTESHWAR TEMPLE
Image source-hellotravel
Since the temple is at the highest point in the town, you can also enjoy a breathtaking view of the surroundings from here.

2. Chauli ki Jali - Just behind(at it's back) Mukteshwar temple lies a piece of mythology. Chauli ki Jali bears a testament to what is believed to be a fierce fight between a Goddess and a demon. There are umpteen outlines of sword and a shield along with an elephant trunk, which are considered as the proof of the battle.

View from Chauli ki jali
CHAULI KI JALI
Image source - travelsarthi
Chauli ki Jali is a heaven for adventure seekers and nature lovers. While this place is used for adventure sports like rock climbing and rappelling, it also provides a mesmerizing view of the Kumaon valley and Himalayan range.

3. Indian Veterinary Research Institute - This is a very old institution dedicated to the development of the region. It deals in livestock research. It has very advanced research facilities. The IVRI was found by Britishers in the year 1889 and was started in Pune. But four years later, in 1893, it was shifted to Mukteshwar.

IVRI, Mukteshwar
IVRI
Image source - hoidayiq
4. Dhanachuli - At a distance of 14.5 km(9 mi) lies a small hamlet named Dhanachuli. The only reason to visit this village is to view it's scenic locales. It is blessed with an unmatched natural beauty. It is located at a height of 2100 m(7000 ft) and you can get a breathtaking view of the Himalayas from here. You will also get a marvelous view of the apple orchards, the dense forest etc. And you will get to interact with locale people, who are otherwise very shy.

Dhanachuli, Mukteshwar
DHANACHULI
Image source-dnaindia
5. Mukteshwar Inspection Bungalow - A landmark of Mukteshwar, this PWD bungalow is an architectural marvel in itself. It is close to the temple and has lush green surroundings. It is also the sunrise point. You can clearly see the sun rising from behind the hills, from here. Although this is a government guest house, you can also stay here with prior booking.

ACTIVITIES IN MUKTESHWAR

1. Rock climbing and Rappelling - Mukteshwar is a popular destination for adventure seekers and the most popular among these are rock climbing and rappelling. Chauli ki Jali is the ideal place to go rock climbing and rappelling.

2. Trekking/Hiking - Mukteshwar has quite a few trekking trails and adventurous souls can enjoy trekking and hiking to their full satisfaction. The most prominent trekking trails in Mukteshwar are Peora to Almora and Binsar to Artola.

3. Camping - If you want to spend time in the lap of nature or want to huddle with your family or friends, you have the option of camping in Mukteshwar. You can camp in dense deodar forest to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of mother nature.

4. Soak in the nature - Mukteshwar has a large and dense forest and has a large variety of wildlife such as tigers and bears.Apart from this, as many as 22 Himalayan peaks are visible from here. Enjoy the bird watching. Soak in the spiritual atmosphere. This clean and quiet town is an ideal place for meditation. Listen to the sound of wind crossing the dense forest. All these things make the visit to Mukteshwar a memorable experience.

 REACHING MUKTESHWAR -

Air - The nearest airport to Mukteshwar is Pantnagar, which is about 98 km(61 mi) away. Four round trip flights are available every week from Delhi. You can hire taxi from the airport to reach Mukteshwar.

Rail - The nearest railway station is Kathgodam, which is nearly 65 km(40 mi) away. It is well connected to all the major cities of India. You can hire taxi from Kathgodam to reach Mukteshwar. Alternately, buses are also available from here.

Road - Mukteshwar is well connected by road to other major cities of Uttarakhand. Buses and taxis are available from cities like Delhi, Nainital and Haldwani to reach Mukteshwar.

WHERE TO STAY
Apart from PWD guest house, there are budget and luxury hotels in Mukteshwar. Checkout FabHotels for best budget hotels. There are quite a few hotels located around the city market.


HAPPY TRAVELING!!!!


2 comments:

  1. https://www.indiafoodtraveling.com/2018/04/asolabhatti-wildlife-sancutary-delhi-backpacking-adventure-traveling-india.html
    Hi Vimal Ji today i again visit your blog to read more interesting story. Thanks for sharing this intersting post about our beautiful country india. I really hope you will like my today's latest upadte about Asola Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary lies at the far southern edge of the city of Delhi, at Asola near Tughlaqabad in the Delhi National Capital Territory of India. This protected area contains one of the last surviving remnants of Delhi Ridge hill range and its semi arid forest habitat and its dependent wildlife, the northernmost extension of the Aravalli mountains that begin in the state of Gujarat Once this forested ridge area throughout the city of Delhi, but development has all but destroyed it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Sumit. I am sure you would like my other posts too. My effort is to bring out the hidden beauty and diversity of our country and I am continuosly working in that direction. I am in the process of writing my next post, which is again going to be about some of the lesser known beautiful places of our country, India.

      Delete

Would love to know your thoughts on this post.