Doing nothing in Fagu, beyond Shimla

When we, five members of our family,decided to have a week’s break after the 10th Board exam of our grand daughter,we thought of Shimla which we have not visited for many years, though we go to hills almost twice a year. The drive to Shimla from Gurgaon became quite easy after we read the very detailed and valuable information about the route right up to Stutter wine shops and Shimla. I must thank you all at ghumakkars for making trip to Shimla an easier trip to drive. Your article was most useful, especially avoiding almost dozens of traffic police at various points in Panchkula and buying Stutter wines. Also your tips about avoiding jam at Panipat flyover proved very useful.

Beautiful Hill Side

Beautiful Hill Side



Some pictures of Army Heitage Museum, Annadale Shimla, showing the Surrender document of East Pakistan,accepted by Gen. Jagjit Singh. Place worth visiting while in Shimla..

Surrender document of East Pakistan

Surrender document of East Pakistan

Thats me

Thats me

Army Heritage Museum , Shimla

Army Heritage Museum , Shimla

After having stayed at Hotel Peter Hoff of HP tourism, and roaming around crowded Mall, we decided to go to Fagu,which we had read about . We always prefer small quite hill places away from crowds and noise.

I must tell you readers about Fagu-which is 23km away from Shimla (and 3km from Kufree) is a great place for doing nothing and morning walks among apple and potato fields. Fagu is ,situated on the Hindustan Tibet Road at a height of about 2500 mts. We drove through Chhotta Shimla,and other crowed parts on to the road to Wildflower Hall and Kufri, stopping on the way to enjoy the fantastic views. You go thro the Victory Tunnel to CHHOTA SHIMLA- part of Kannaur Shimla, through Sanjauli,,cross another tunnel, through wooded forest toward KUFRI which is about 19 km from Shimla ,thro KUFRI by-pass and Fagu is 3km from Kufri on the Hindustan -Tibet road. It took us about 90 minutes, in our Skoda to reach the hotel of HP Tourism — Peach Blossom. Its a small village with only few small typical shops selling essential, nothing else. But the place is dotted with Apple gardens, terraced fields, potato fields etc . There was another group of People from Mumbai–all senior citizens, enjoying the place. We went down the hill though the apple gardens and fields. you can literally walk for hours- surrounded by Himalyan range so close,you could almost touch it. We were lucky that during our stay from 3rd April to 5th April, it became very very cold and we could see fresh snow falling on the peaks, and the whole area was totally covered by low clouds for hours.

Fagu

Fagu

HP tourism has a property “PEACH BLOSSOM” which has been recently built. For a quiet village holiday, a nice and reasonably priced place.

Peach Blossom Fagu

Peach Blossom Fagu

Next day when I went out for morning walk on the Hindustan Tibet Road, we came across about a family of 10 cow-herd–sheperad with about 6000, goats, lamb and sheep .When we talked to them we were surprised to learn that they were coming from Rajasthan and going to Kashmir to sell their herd. They told us that this the normal route they always take to kashmir from Rajasthan which takes them about 2/3 months–walking.

Sheep on the way to Kashmir

Sheep on the way to Kashmir

Next day we went out to visit a temple which is situated just outside the hotel–but you have to climb about 1000 steps which were quite steep. Half of our team didnt dare, but once you reached on the top at the temple, you were on cloud 9. So if you enjoy this kind of nowhere-place with no shops or malls, and just hotel meals(which are pretty decent) then may be you would like this place, atleast for couple of days.

Fagu - Doing nothing

Fagu – Doing nothing

There is nothing to do except walk in the large Apple Orchards and Potato Fields, or just sit in the hotel grounds, enjoy mountain views and read books. In Fagu, you can be surrounded with clouds, allover.

73 Comments

  • nandanjha says:

    Welcome Aboard Sir. You are the most senior ghumakkar so far out here and I believe we must be really blessed to have you around.

    I have never heard of this place and I always wanted to go beyond Shimla but not too far so that we can reach there before it gets dark. I guess ‘Fagu’ is the place. The sheep going to Kashmir and it taking few months to reach there is really very interesting.

    Please be around and encourage fellow travelers as you find time.

    Once again, thanks for sharing your thoughts and your world with us.

  • matt says:

    thats a lovely first photo

  • Ram Dhall says:

    Sir,

    What a refreshing description of Fagu, a place which we visited about 15 years back. In those days there used to be a small solitary resort, with a tiny little cafe and a few rooms. I still remember the long walks into apple orchards.

    Yes Sir, even Richard Carlson, the author of “Don’t sweat the small stuff “series, has emphasised on what you have said – doing nothing and just relaxing. He even goes to the extent that it’s good to “bore” your self sometimes.

    The photograph showing the sun rays piercing the clouds and slowly dawning on the hills is simply seperb. And who will not feel proud seeing the “surrender document”.

    The description of herd of sheep going from Rajasthan to Kashmir is interesting.

    Welcome aboard and please do keep on favouring us with your crisply written posts.

    Thank you for sharing.

  • Patrick Jones says:

    Been to Kufri a couple of years back. Started wondering why we didn’t venture beyond, after reading this post.

    Great post. Keep coming.

    Ram,
    (hope the first-name addressing is OK)

    Your posts and comments are a delight to read on; however, it seems you were in a hurry this morning.

    :-)

  • Celine says:

    A pleasant read. Thanks for sharing.
    And great to be seeing a picture of you. :)

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  • abha says:

    not bad dadaji! that was a nice post. nice to see people giving you such a nice responce. keep up the good work!

  • manish khamesra says:

    Jatinderji,

    Thanks for sharing this beautiful experience of yours with us. I too never ventured beyond Kufri. I think now I know of another place that can be visited. And yes visiting army heritage museum and having a chance to see the surrender document is definitely a matter of proud for all of us.

    And as Nandan said, I think as fellow ghumakkars we are blessed that we are sharing our experiences with a senior citizen like you.

  • manish khamesra says:

    One thing I forgot to ask is that how the booking of Peach Blossom can be done ? Is it possible through internet ?

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Thanks Manish ,Yes, you can do the booking on Net thro the site of HPTOURISM CORPORATION and pay thro the bank. Good site to know about all the places in HP.Very helpful.
    Incidently the above comment from one “ABHA” -well she is my grand-daughter who instigated this trip.

  • manish khamesra says:

    Thanks a lot Jatinderji for the useful information.

    Yes I noticed comment from Abha, who seems to be so proud of her Dadaji and in-fact its a moment of proud for us too. We are contributing to a portal that have people sharing their experiences from all age groups.

    We would be looking forward to more comments/travelogues from you. I am sure your experience would help us to let us know more about many places …

    Thanks again

  • Neha and Geetika says:

    hello dadaji!we are abha’s friends from school working at office with her too. abha showed us your post and we happened to like it a lot and so decided to write here.it is so informative that we really feel like going shimla and fagu too!let’s plan a trip together, and you be the leader of the group!!!!!

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    This is to thank Neha & Geetika for thei dupport. Congrats,girls,for very good marks your group obtained.I think Geetika tops.You plan with Abha to gogo back to Fagu.

  • pankaj says:

    After reading all this I,m planing to go to Fagu in my Dussehra Holidays

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Pankaj, Thanks for informing me of your trip in October.Hope ypu get nice and cool weather. Sometime back I came across reference to “PHAGU”( that how they spelt it) in one of the Traveller magazine of OUTLOOK, anmd they had given the rout thro, Chandigarh which sounded pretty interesting thro, orchards of peaches and plums etc.I will try to locate and let you know before you go.Outlook is quite a informative mine, and we are planning to go to a place between Kulu and Manali on the river bank called SRAWBERRY COTTAGES. Will revert tto you later. .

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Pankaj, I found the referance..See if its useful. Its a verbatam pick -up(courtesy Outlook) from the Outlook Traveller and feature called:10 Classic Drives for the Seaon from theJuly issue.Here it goes:-
    RAJGAH, may not be prominent on the tourist map, but could easily be if it tried. Set at 49oom, its got plenty of pine cover. But the point of driving up (in July) is to catch the peach season. Keep to NH-22 till Solan(its from Vhandigarh), the turn right into town and hit the RAHGARH road from Solan to the GIRI river at GAURA is excellent stretch.The Giri forms the boundry between Solan and Sirmour districts .Rajgarh is just half-hour drive away. FROM here continue on either the HARIPUR DHAR or HABBEN road. The latter has most of the peach orchards,especially at PHAGU(its sam as FAGU), and Bhanat village,20 km from Rajgarh. Distance from Chandigarh 125 km.ROUT.Chandigarh,Solan-Giripul-Rajgarh-Phagu. Places to stay .PWD resthouse in Rajgarh(contact SDM) or one of the many resorts at DIDAG-12 km from Rajgarh.

    ” This ends the outlook pick-up.
    At fagu you can stay at the Himachal Hotel “Peach Blossom” If you follow the above rout for going, you can come back via, Fagu, Kufri, Shimla, Solan and so on. Try thi\e above Outlook rout and let us know your views. Good Luck.

  • Barry Chapman says:

    We walked the road from Kufri to Fagu on a warm October morning and arranged to meet our taxi at the Peach Blossom Hotel.
    Arrived parched, only to find the hotel has no liquor license – no Kingfisher!!!! Srves me right for being a boozer I suppose.
    I was distraught.
    May I take this opportunity to thank everybody we met during our time in India.
    Compared to England, your country is a mesmerizing and chaotic experience, but we were met with nothing but kindness regardless of how humble the surroundings.
    As a people you can be justifiably proud of your country and yourselves.

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Barry,
    Thanks for your comments, wherever you are now. But I think your comments are very patronising, especially the last line.!!!

  • Barry Chapman says:

    Not intended to be patronising I can assure you. I was met with kindness throughout my trip and I meant every word I said.
    If it offends you then I apologise.

  • Manish Khamesra says:

    Barry,

    We at ghumakkar will like to thank you for visiting us and leaving your kind comments. Travelogues – Invite people to places they have not visited, rekindle old memories about the places one loved and sometimes also remind us of some very interesting things, though not pleasant ;)

    Its so pleasant to read your interesting experience. Your comment reminded me of a Dutch tourist I met in Nawlagarh. I was asking his experiences in India and he shared with me both the +ve and -ve. Finally he said, sometimes I like India, sometimes I hate it. But for sure this country is one which I can’t resist loving.

    We would love to read more from about your experiences, you are also welcome to share your travel accounts and your suggestion to fellow travellers will also help many.

    Looking forward to hear more from you :)

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Barry,
    I may hjave been a bit touchy, but,certainly,not offended because I know my country and my people and all our own faults.Your comparison with England takes me back to my years in London(perhaps you were not in this world yet). I kived in one of the most beautiful area of London, Hampstead from 1958 to 1965. The back door of my ground floor apartment ,opened right into the Heath, and the house was justy few steps away from the house of Keats where he wrote his Ode to Nighting gale., and most of the residents were all very liberal minded people. Yet sometimes, my wife and I felt being patronised—maybe wrongly, but we never felt offended.I really felt the greatness of your people, when my son–who was born in Hampstead,went to visit his place of birth and met some old friends of ours.My son was so humbled with the kindness shown to him after years..
    So banish the thought that I got offended. To compensate you for not getting your cool Kingfisher, I will give yiou a tip—if you really love to travel in India–from my travel memorobillia–travel in Karnatka, Tamil Nadu, by public bus system and see all the Temple towns and meet the INDIANS.
    I ofcourse, travelled by road in my own car (when the price of the petrol had just been increased to 90 paise, while I was in Coorg., on way to Tanjore.
    Well, heres wishing you the Seasons Greetings and Merry X-Mas. Good-Bye.

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Mainish,
    Thanks for your above comments which seem to have pacifying effects on Barry who seem to have got offended by my earlier comments. So, no more comments.

  • tanya.s says:

    a very pleasant write up…..amazing pics and very valuable information… thanks for taking me beyond shimla…and I really like your words ‘ doing nothing’….after all who woudn’t love to laze around at such a beautiful place away from the zest of the city….

    I hope I can make it up there some time….

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Thank U Tanya.s for ur words. I have, in fact, just come back home after running in the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon.And your words were especially welcome on the 8th November as it happend to be my birthday which we celebrated at the Jama Masjaid Karims place, Revisit to Dariba Kalan and Gali Kababan brought back great old memories, Will write a small note .Thanks. JATINDER SETHI

  • tanya says:

    belated birthday wishes to u Jatinderji!

    what a way to celebrate one’s day amongst the pillars of history…!!

    hope u always have some amazing extravanzas to experience and then write about!!:)

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    thanks Tanya.Belated “Wishes” are never stale.God bless.

  • sanjana says:

    Well it was great to read such a nice write up of my hometown ‘Fagu’:)
    My extended family resides there and just the thought of fagu makes me feel nostalgic about all the summer vacations we have spent there…will be going this year at the end of december… I will also like to add here that there is a resort there as well ‘snow king retreat’ ..however it can prove to be a bit expensive on your pocket..

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Hi SANJANA,
    Didnt realize that the”post” can keeping visitors even after such a long period.Thanks. Well, we are booked again to go to Fagu from 28th December to 2008 to Ist Jan2009.We have no idea about this “snow King”. Will you let us know or may be I can find it on Google,Is it on a hill top with a big hoarding before Peach Blossom? Seasons Greetings.

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Hi SANJANA,
    Didnt realize that the”post” can keepgetting visitors even after such a long period.Thanks. Well, we are booked again to go to Fagu from 28th December to 2008 to Ist Jan2009.We have no idea about this “snow King”. Will you let us know or may be I can find it on Google,Is it on a hill top with a big hoarding before Peach Blossom? Seasons Greetings.

  • sanjana says:

    Warm greetings,
    Well I can give you the contact number of snow king retreat..its the same resort thats there in the first pic of fagu tht you have uploaded here….they have put a lot of hoardings throughout the Kalka-Shimla highway.Hope you would enjoy the serenity of fagu this time as well..

    Snow king retreat:09816039666

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Thanks for info.We may switch to Mussoorie,to cut the drive in winter.Old reliable resort.Thanks again

  • nikhi sood says:

    excellent picks

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Thanks,nikhi. Visitors even after long time. Great wok by Ram and Nandan & Party.While your message came, at the same time I was asking my old friend-Husain Khan to write for this site, Husain and I,while in Mumbai from 1965 to 2000. used to travel a lot with our families all over Maharashtra and other places in south.Hussain was a great Shikari and used to carry gun with him, we, both,in those days had Standard Herald, and used to get detailed rout map from WIAA,. I hope he contributes to Ghumakkar, sins,like me, he is retired but travels abrod to meet his famil..,Thanks once again.

  • this hotel is like a dreamy house.all the rooms gives a beautiful moments for every person life. all the furniture is so marbalous. all the sun shine give me a admirable message.

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Hi Ranjay, When we went to Peach Blossom Hotel, Fagu, it had just staerted and the rooms were still being done up.but had great location and view. Obviously.it seems you went to gahu?When.Thanks for your note. See if you can climb upto the temple outside the hotel.

  • gurudutt says:

    Hi, we are just back from fagu after 3days trip. We were 8 friends stayed at Hotel Peach Blossom. We experienced good amount of snowfall. Mr. bhandari, general manager of the hotel informed us that we can get a glimps of Kedarnath and Kinaar kailash from the roof top of the hotel.
    We cooked our food outside hotel actullay in dense forest. It was great experience. Dont forget to carry a good pair of lens.

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Hi,Gurudutt,glad you like the place. Wonder if you walked around the apple and peach gardens behind the hotl?Cookin what in the forest? Bar-be-que? Seasons greetings.JATINDER

  • I want to submit a name, PHAGOO Rajgarh. If u a Ghummakkar, trip to Phagoo. Not to worry to stay and food. My house is registerd under “HOME STAY SCHEME” with “Tourism Himachal Pradesh”. I can accommodate about Ten persons at a time.

    contact: 09817018010, 09418739230, 01799/202111
    Email: dharkot7sj@yahoo.com

  • Jatinder Sethi says:

    Sherjung,
    Thanks for the very useful info.Tell me is this place at Rajgarh,which is on the way from Chandigarh to Fagu? How far is it from the Peach Blossom,and what are the eating arrangement? Do let us know and the tarriff also. Thanks again.We will try your place .

  • 11 Feb.2009
    Mr. Sethi
    This is the place on the way to shimla but bifercates from solan via Rajgarh to Fagu (sirmaur) distanced about 55 k.m.from Solan.
    By the CM the area is annonced “The Peach Valley Of Himachal Pradesh”. But the Other Fruits are commomnly croped also.
    About food: Common food and can be available local food also. I have three Double Bed Rooms renting 1200 Rs. each per day. What type of facilities you expect, please confirm before.
    Thanks.
    Sherjang Chauhan

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Thank you, Mr. Chauan, for the useful information.I will let everyone ,interested to go there,know about your place.Hope you have a good season/

  • I want to explain more about the place PHAGOO (RAJGARH). The area is situated in between the height of 2000 ft. to 13000 ft. The Highest mountain peak is named Churdhar. To reach churdhar, there is a trek about 15 K.M. long. Trekkers love it. The mountains are having very precious herbs, shrubs and trees on the way.
    DEBUT OF VIRGIN VALLEY PHAGOO (RAJGARH) SIRMAUR H.P.
    Topography : The area is situated in the lap of sub himalyan belt surrounded by snow capped mountain peaks.
    Weather : Rosy winter & icy summer. The snow and nature with small hill tops, places it next to Gulmarg.
    Access : Well connected by road from every side. It is about 450 km from Delhi and 140 km from Chandigarh.
    Hub of horticultural activities : A less known fact is that, this area is a Peach Bowl of India.
    Sight Seeing Treasure : It is the gate way to the mystic meadows. Entire walley has dotting of ancient Templesdating back to Mahabharta times.
    Typical Hill Villages : A peep into now almost extinct lifestyle, habitat, culture, dietry habits and above all architectural and village composition system unfolds itself to the viewer.
    Adventurous sports : The place provides ideal and execellent opportunity for all sorts of adventurous like Trekking & Hiking with minimum risk.
    Nature and divine : Un-bruised and un-ravished jungles of pine and deodar present the nature in its most beautiful way to the visitors.The gushing and gurgling brooks add divine music to it. The serpentine roads with high cedar trees on both the sides welcome you to the valley. Deep gullies, slops and hilltops covered with wiled floral growth, green bushes and sprinkle of old and traditional PAHARI HOUSES provide a warm & breathtaking view, which infuses new life and sprit to onlookers.
    Lodging and Boarding : The entire valley has a network of forest rest houses and private lodging-boarding units. One of those is Home stay unit of Sherjang Chauhan Phagoo.
    Camping for tourists coming in groups : Those who want to enjoy camp life, tents can be provided in camping grounds at different places.
    Last but not the least the magnificence of nature and climate can be judged by the presence of people of the international repute, who have made this valley, a second home.
    EXTRA FACILITIES :
    Adventurous : Rop climbing, rock climbing, river crossing, tree climbing and swimming.
    Games : Table Tennis, Badminton, carrom, Chess, Volleyball.
    Music : Have fun with hindi, english, punjabi and Pahari songs. Instrumental music : play and learn about harmonium, fluet, guitar, tabla, casio and so on.
    IT facilities : Telifone, mobile, computers, laptop, internet, mobile internet, audio-video faciliies etc.
    Pahari Culture : Avail culture with traditional food, traditional dance and song. See traditional art in stone & wood carving.

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    Sherjung, thanks for such a valueable information about Phagoo Valley.I am sure visitors to this place will get in touch with you.I certainly will,for our next visit.When is actually the fruit season if one wants to see peaches growing/eating?

  • dhiman says:

    i love this place very much , and every year i visits that……..

  • Jatinder Sethi says:

    Dear Dhiman
    Its nice to see some one going through this post after almost years.Where do you stay there now.
    because we are planning to drive down in the last week of December.The plan isnot yet Pucca, but almost there
    Do let me know more about FAGU and places around which we might visit.Seasons Greeting to you.
    Regards

    • JATINDER SETHI says:

      Akshit
      Wonder of wonder. Some one seeing the Fagu story after years.
      Shows the popularity of
      ghumakkar.Tribute to Nandan
      Jatinder

  • Prateek Luhadiya says:

    We are here at Peach Blossom today. Early morning at 7, the temp is abt 17C… pleasant but misty. Waiting for it to clear off. Will send updates soon!

  • Jatinder Sethi says:

    Hello Prateek,
    Just happened to open my mail, and was rather surprised to find you at Fagu, Peach Blossom.
    And that too after years. Shows the power of “ghumakker .com'(salute to Nandan & Dhall)
    Hope you enjoy the walks at te back of hotel. and,if gor enough energy, WALK upto the Temple,next door. 1000 steps.
    Do let us have the photos and your views. Enjoy yourself.
    God Bless Jatinder Sethi

  • JATINDER SETHI says:

    After years, reading my own POST( thanks to Nandan Jha) Makes me feel to go back there. But our main stimulus was our grand-daughter, who is now gone off to do her MBA. May be we will still make it once again,once the monsoon starts, and

    weather becomes pleasant for driving.

    Thanks Ghumakkar,for remembering your old pal.

  • KARUN says:

    Hi Sir,

    Never heard of this place before.
    On my wish list for next trip to Shimla.
    Thanks for letting us know about “Fagu”.

    – Karun

    • Jatinder Sethi says:

      Hello KARUN

      How come you noticed this Post Now? I believe the place has become quite popular now. When we went, we were the first of few people visiting the place.
      Thank Nandan.

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