A Sudden Trip To Shimla and Kufri – I

It was mid of February 2011 when all of a sudden me and my husband planned this trip to Shimla. Since he had to join his new job after 4-5 days and as my relatives living in Shimla had invited us many times so at that time, so we decided to leave the next day only that was Saturday.

The first thing that came in mind was the mode of travel for which we chose Himachal Roadways (HRTC) Volvo Bus direct from Delhi to Shimla. As we wanted to board the bus same day, so we could not do online bookings from their web portal and we had to go to HRTC office at Janpath, Connaught Place (CP), New Delhi. (Tip for Ghumakkars: Try to book Volvo tickets at least 24 hours prior to your journey else you would also have to go to their office to get tickets like us). The bus departure time was 8:30 pm on Saturday. It was my working day in the office and after struggling hard to manage for leaves on Monday and Tuesday, I left at 6:30 from office. We hurriedly reached the bus stop near their office in CP. (One more thing to take care of: Reach there before 10 min. as the bus gets departed at exact departure time and will not wait for you, if you are even 5 min. late). The bus also stops at Mandi House Delhi (at 8:40 pm) after its departure from CP to pick some passengers, so you can board from there also. There were only 20-25 passengers in that huge bus and most of the seats were vacant. And here goes the start of our impulsive journey.

New Delhi -> Sonepat -> Panipat ->Karnal ->Ambala ->Panchkula->Solan->Shimla.

Total Distance – 343 Kilometers

Total Time – 8 hrs

Volvo Bus Fare per Person – 860 INR

The only thing that disappointed me about the bus was the movie that was being run on the DVD player. It was some Sunny Deol’s Movie which I could not bear for a single moment and slept soon. I was awaken when were stopped at some Dhaba near Karnal for dinner. After that bus only halted at Shimla at 5:00 am, Sunday. We reached our relatives house that is located at Ghoda Chowki, 4 kms before Shimla main bust stand. The house is located down along a hill slope and we had to go down almost 250 stairs to reach the house. After meeting and chatting with every one at home, we retired to bed to get some relax.

A Spectacular Dawn at Shimla

We had only two days for trip so the first day was decided to visit places within Shimla itself. I had visited Shimla many time before so I was more excited for the next day which we had planned to visit Kufri and experience snow. Well, after getting ready and having breakfast, we left for Sankatmochan Temple which is almost 2 kms away from my relative’s home at Taradevi Shimla. As it was Sunday, so we got a chance to have Langar (community lunch) at the temple.

View From Sankatmochan

From there we headed towards Ridge Shimla. One can easily travel within Shimla by local buses. We boarded a local bus and reached Shimla Bus Stand after almost 15 min and from there we walked towards Ridge. The first thing that strikes you when you reach Ridge is the classic Christ Church which still maintains its Aura after so many years of its origin. The church is as beautiful from inside as it looks from outside.

The Beautiful Christ Church

Inside Christ Church

View From Ridge

Our next destination was Jakhu Temple which is located at a distance of 2 kms from Ridge and at the highest peak of Shimla. It is famous for the legend behind its origin and lots of naughty monkeys. According to human mythology Lord Hanuman rested on this peak on his way to find Sanjeevani Herb to cure Lakshman, brother of Lord Ram. The temple is built where Lord Hanuman left his footprints and the monkeys are known to be his descendants.

Entrance To Jakhu Temple

Earlier, one had to walk to reach the temple but now taxis have been started by local administration with which you can just reach there in 10 min and mind it journey by taxi to Jakhu is too scary. The taxi driver was driving very fast without any fear at those steep curves and straight heightened roads but our nerves were getting chilled to experience that adventurous ride. I literally thanked God when we reached temple safely.

Idol Of Lord Hanuman At Jakhu Temple

The temple now has world’s tallest idol (108 feet ) of Lord Hanuman. A chilling breeze was blowing at the peak and it was a great experience. I was quite scared of monkeys who were trying their best to snatch prashad from hands, purses, bags and pockets of every person going to the temple. One of them literally checked my husband’s pocket to find something to eat. Never keep your hands in your pocket or let them see your purses, else you will be stopped for a prashad-check by monkey groups.

Beautiful Pine Trees

We stayed at the temple for an hour and came back to Ridge. We had our lunch at famous Indian Coffee House. Though you do not have too much choices on menu but you are quite surprised to see the affordable prices of food items at that one of the oldest restaurants of Shimla. After that we just roamed around the market at The Mall, Lakkar Bazar, Kali Baari Temple devoted to Deity Kaali and Dargah Peer near the home and came back home tired, had a great family dinner accompanied by a round of tea and chat and went to bed for next day trip to Kufri.

To be continued…

23 Comments

  • vinaymusafir says:

    Great post, Shefali. Last year I was there, but didn’t know about Jhaku temple. Hanumaan ji’s statue is really breath taking. really nice pics. Waiting for next part.

  • Thanks A Lot…

    Ya the statue is really wonderful and makes us proud that we have the world’s tallest idol in Our Country.

    Will try my best to post the next part also.

  • Aditya says:

    Hi Shefali,

    Great Post and pics… I went to Shimla last year in June for some official work.

    It was the monsoon that did the magic to the scenery then.

    The only interesting thing i saw there was the Viceregal Lodge also known as The Indian Institute of Advanced Study.

  • Thanks Aditya :)

    I had been to Viceroy Lodge on a previous visit, not on this one due to lack of time, but ya the place is really very interesting.

  • maheh semwal says:

    Hi Shefali,

    I have been to Shilma two times to attend some conference. Last one was almost 8 years back :-) , thanks for refreshing the memories.

    Never have been to Kufri, looking forward to see your post on it.

  • Vibha says:

    Hey Shefali,

    I have been to Kufri once and it was during summers. People had advised us otherwise saying that Kufri is only worth visiting in Winters after snowfall. But even in summers I found it enchanting. Getting there was a scary experience though with our bus barely making the sharp hairpin curves. But once there, I was mesmerised by the rustling of wind in deodar forest near our resort. It was a short but very calming stay.

    I know Shimla is crowded but I loved it there though I remember all our walks were overshadowed by a monkey threat. I remember huge, intimidating gangs of them walking boisterously all over the mall road and ridge road. But I still liked Shimla.

    Thanks for refreshing my memories.

    -V

  • Abhijit says:

    Vibha is right. Shimla is almost a two-month visit for me. I jog on the ridge among monkeys. They drop from all places on the road, and breakfast on Mall!

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  • @Mahesh…Thanks a lot..Will try to post next part soon…

    @Vibha…I agree with you…Shimla is always beautiful.

    @ Abhijeet…Thanks for the comment

    @JATDEVTA….???? ?????? ?? ???????, ???? ?? ????? ????? ?? ?????? ????? ?? ????? ?? ??? ?? ????? ???? ????? ?? ????? ?? ?? ???? ??? ???? ??????? ????? ?? ????? ??? ???? ??????? ?? ! ???? ??? ????? ????? ?? ?????? ???? ??? ???? ???? ?? ???? ??? !

  • Sahil says:

    Hey Shefali ,
    So finally you wrote down your Shimla trip. Great

    Good post. In my trip this time we skipped Jakhu Temple and Visceral Lodge as we had visited it in our earlier trip. I really like the monkeys on the way to the temple. But definately they are scary …

    Sahil

  • Subodh says:

    Looking forward to your part II with bated breath. I am planning a visit to Kufri this February myself. And would like to know if you caught some snow. And how. Have heard scary stories about the ponys at Kufri. Maybe, you can post a quick answer here even before the next post is ready? Thanks. Looking forward.

  • Saurabh Sundariyal says:

    hi. this is September 2012 and I am planning a trip to shimla/kufri/rohtang pass with my friend in November afer diwali. as we will be just 2 unmarried young guys on the trip, can u tell us a cheap way to live there for like 4-5 days?

  • I got my trip planned for towards the end of this month.. Is Quality Inn Himdev a good hotel to stay in?

  • shefali26 says:

    @ Saurabh Sundriyal @Aaynoo Da Passionate Traveller … sorry I don’t have much knowledge about hotels or guest houses in Shimla etc. coz I have my relatives there and I stay with them only…you can find many cheap staying options through travel websites and forums …all d best :)

  • Vijay Singh says:

    I read your blog and it is very informative. Shimla is one of best beautiful places in India. I have been to Shimla & Kufri once and it was during summers. That was a wonderful experience, thanks for sharing the useful information.

  • Gurpreet says:

    Mam the post you shared is very helpful. I think you enjoy your journey very well. I advised you to visit this time Chandigarh also where you get many gardens,lakes,malls,water parks. But i recommend you to visit Aqua village water park which is very pocket friendly where visitors /travellors come to enjoy with their family,friends, and loved one’s…

  • Mukesh says:

    Hey Shefali,

    Great job here on ghumakkar. You know what?
    I read a lot of blog post and I never heard of a topic like this. What a fantastic story. This is so chock full of useful information.

  • rana says:

    i like jakhu temple, kufri and army museum in shimla most. it was a good experience

  • julie says:

    l love hill station…Kufri is a small hill station in Shimla district of Himachal Pradesh state in India and Kufri is a beautiful hill station..Thanks for sharing lovely blog..!!!!

  • Meghna says:

    Oh, I love the mix of spontaneity and travel. This is was interesting one!
    Being a travel enthusiast myself I love these sudden plans. If it is solo even better!

  • Dhanvi Tour says:

    NIce Article, Always we have to escape from the taunting people when we go to the new places because they always try to despoil us, So we have to beware always.
    Anyway, I like this place also the different culture the travellers more. I like the “glimpse of the farm stay”. The eye-catching art by the lady is appreciated.
    Thanks for this nice article.

  • inshimla says:

    I love your blogs… Very good and informative blogs you post. Keep doing that. You can check these kinds of same articles related Shimla travel guide and search your ideal hotel here https://bit.ly/2SaY8Fk

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