Road Trip-Exploring Beautiful Himachal-Part-III (Shimla- Mashobra- Naldehra)

DAY-3 29th March’11
SHIMLA – MASHOBRA – NALDEHRA – SHIMLA – 55 Km

We woke up leisurely at around 8am as we knew that today we donot have to cover much distance. As I glanced through the room window a chilly breeze marked the start of the day. Monkeys were hopping on the tree branches , sweet chirping sound of the birds , tall rock solid mountains and sunrays coming through the room window what a treat to watch . After this beautiful sight one just forgets the tension in life and just hope that life remains such cool and calm.


A Teaser Pic :)

Coming back from the dream , we were ready by 10 am. Firstly , we went to the mall road to have breakfast. Then from the mall road we directly proceeded to the parking area. At 11am I started my silver queen again. I had no clue about the road conditions till Naldehra. After moving about 7 Kms from Shimla , there is a Y shaped point. The right side takes you to NH-22 to Narkanda,Rampur while the left side takes you to SH-13 to the Karsog Valley which is around 98 Km from here via Naldehra , Tattapani.We had to go to the left side.


Left Turn towards Naldehra

ROAD CONDITIONS –

SHIMLA – MASHOBRA – NALDEHRA ON SH-13 –28 Kms – ExcellentThe road to Naldehra really surprised us. Earlier we thought that the road to Naldehra would be bad just like Narkanda. But we were really shocked.This beautifull narrow winding road takes you to Naldehra. SH-13 was in much better condition than NH-22 mainly because of the less traffic. Driving was really very enjoyable on this narrow road. Again we had to stop literally after driving a couple of Kms for clicking the pics.
DRIVING TIME – 1.5 Hrs ( Including innumerable photo session breaks )


Silver Queen on the Beautiful Road to Naldehra

MASHOBRA – Is a beautiful village which was built in 1850 by Lord Dalhousie. It has an average elevation of 2200 metres (8000 feet). It is around 10 Kms from Shimla. The entire valley is covered by dense woods of oaks and pines. Mashobra is an exceptionally beautiful and a very soothing place away from the rush of tourists. There was nothing much to do except clicking some fantastic views. I was really impressed to see the green plantations among the hills. We stopped there for about 15 Minutes. Then our next and final stop was at Naldehra.


Views From Mashobra


Silver Queen posing on SH-13

NALDEHRA – Naldehra is the site of the the oldest golf course in India which was developed by Lord Curzon. Naldehra is situated at an average altitude of 2100 meters (7000 feet) above the sea level. This place was the most beautiful place which we saw till now in this trip. Really very calm and a peaceful place away from the rush of tourists. Naldehra got its name from a Nag temple situated inside the golf course. Tall deodar trees surround the links making it one of the most beautiful golf courses in the world.


Vistas enroute Naldehra


This is the Nag Temple inside the Golf Course

The USP of Naldehra is its unusual golf course which is 100 years old. The golf course is India’s oldest and is regarded as one of the most challenging links in the world. The golf course of Naldehra is situated at a height of 2044 meters above sea level. One cannot imagine that a Golf Course Ground can be built at such altitude. Trust me, when I saw the golf course I was stunned at its beauty. The nine hole Par 68 course has four new greens and tree hazards in the back nine. Himachal Tourism maintains the Naldehra golf course.


View of the valley from Naldehra


A Group of local Himachali School Children posing .

After reaching there we parked the silver queen in the parking. Then from the Maggi Point bought 3 plates Vegetable Maggi as it was lunch time. Trust me eating hot Maggi and looking at the beautiful green hills all around and in a cold wealther the Maggi became all the more tasty and delicious. I was thinking on writing a story on ‘Me and Meri Himachal Wali Maggi’ . Jokes apart. Now back from the Maggi story to the original story .


Views from the Parking area.

There is a Rs 15/person entry ticket for the Golf Glade. After the entry there are two ways to reach the Golf Course. Either one can take ponies to climb up the steep route or second option is walking. My family is really afraid of the ponies so decided to climb up on foot.


Entry of the Golf Course Ground

It was a dusty steep half a Km trek upto the Picnic Spot in the Golf Course. The trek among the thick forest is really very beautiful. Actually tourists can only go upto the picnic spot. This spot is seperated from the Golf Course by fencing. One can see the Golf Ground across the fence as the Golf ground is only accesible to the Golf Club Members. We enjoyed there for a good couple of hours and then came back to the parking area.


This is the steep trek route to the Golf Ground


People riding on the ponies


Thick Forest area


View from the Top of the Golf Glade


Finally this is the Golf Glade

The time was 2pm. We started our return drive to Shimla. On the way on SH-13 there comes a small Shiv Gufa Temple. As we had ample time in hand I stopped the queen and we did the Darshan. I enquired from the Priest about the temple history. According to the Priest , the Temple was built 5 years ago. Actually when the road was under construction , the blasts used to occur to break the rocks and stones. At this point, where the temple is currently even after the blast the rock did not break. So the workers started to break the rock manually. Just when they were breaking the rocks they found this Natural Rock Shivling . Even on the Shivling the rock in the form of Snake is also visible.


This is the Natural Shivling.


The Ghumakkar Silver Queen

After the Stop , I again started to drive. I was driving just at a speed of 30 Km/hr and was just enjoying natural beauty. Here is a video of driving on the road To Naldehra. Take a look of the road conditions –
Driving on the Naldehra Road on SH-13 .

We reached back Shimla at 4:30 pm. After parking the queen , we straight went to our hotel room as we were very tired. Took rest till late evening and then we proceeded to the Ridge and Mall Road. The main USP of the ridge and the Mall Road is that one can never feel bored there. We remained there till 10 pm and after having dinner we came back to the hotel.


Views while coming back towards Shimla


The Christ Church in the Evening


The Church at Night


The Mall Road at the Night’


Shimla City at Night

Just when we were sitting we thought that tomorrow ie.Day-4 lets cover Kasauli also. Our earlier plan was straight Shimla to Delhi. But now Kasauli , Pinjore and complete Chandigarh was also added.
After all these plans finally Day-3 ended.


Once again Thanks to my trusted 11 yr old Silver Queen .

Plan for DAY-4 – Shimla – Kasauli – Pinjore – Chandigarh (Rock Garden – Sukhna Lake – Sec-17 Market) -And then finally at last Delhi.
Stay Tuned for the next Part which will cover Day-4 which came to be the most tiring and a adventurous day.

Till Then :-)

28 Comments

  • Nitin says:

    Sahil Bhai , Awesome pics. Have heard about Naldhera but never been there. Looks like a really serene place. Overall a very good post.

  • amitk227 says:

    Great post bro. Besides everything you are write about maggie. I too can’t miss to have it in any of my hill’s venture. I guess there must be some reason that why it tastes so good in chilling weather.
    I specially liked the kids pic. Sometimes I feel that people from hills have natural photogenic face.

    • Sahil says:

      @ Amit.Thanks a lot :)

      It is true that people from hills mainly children are very cute and really have very sweet and photogenic face.

      Sahil

  • sanjay says:

    marvellous pics. I really liked your post. Really Himachal is great.

  • RAMAN says:

    Sahil bhai,
    Lovely pics. I am travelling to Mashobra next week & am really excited after going through yr post. Any suggestions regarding places worth visiting or worth leaving. Any idea on Tattapani? Is is worth visiting with family & kids? Also I initially thought that it would take me 6 hrs to reach shimla (4hrs to chandigarh & onother 2 hrs to shimla), but after going through your post ,I think I’ll have to leave very early to reach by 1.00pm. In the post you have mentioned that one needs to take a left turn from Zirakpur, whereas Maps of india shows that one has to take a right turn from Zirakpur. Kindly confirm.
    Thanks.
    Raman

    • Sahil says:

      @ Raman …Thanks a lot.

      Regarding your Queries –

      1. Tattapani is a place for hot sulphur springs and is situated at the banks of river Poonch. It is situated at an altitude of 700 m. So you will have to drive down from 2200 m to 7oo m. It is around 70 Km from Mashobra. In my views you can skip this place. It would take around 3 hrs from Mashobra. I too skipped it. Did not find it worth visting in the pictures.

      2. On this route place worth visiting is Naldehra. You should not miss it.

      3. Regarding Zirakpur , you need not climb up the Zirakpur Flyover. You will see a signboard there just before the start of the flyover which indicates Shimla and Patiala on the left side. Go beneath the flyover and turn left. It is basically a byepass of Chandigarh. If you climb up the Zirakpur Flyover you will straight enter Chandigarh which will waste your time.

      4. Earlier Shimla could be reached in 7 hrs but now add an extra hour because of the construction work on the whole NH-1. From Chandigarh you cannot reach Shimla in 2 hrs. It would be a minimum of 3hrs drive with some photo breaks.

      Best wishes for your Journey.
      Sahil

  • Nandan says:

    Sahil Bhai sounds better than Sahil :-) . If you do not mind then probably fellow Ghumakkars can call you by this name, just the way we call Manish K as ‘Professor Sahib’. Sahil Bhai and Silver Queen together can make a great Ghumakkar cocktail.

    Great pictures. I really like your enthusiasm in clicking beautiful pictures with silver queen in front.

    Look fwd to read the last part of the sojourn.

  • Patrick Jones says:

    Splendid pics!

    Wonder how many will share the appreciation Nandan shown towards ubiquitous ‘queen’. Frankly, I don’t.

  • sanjay says:

    @ Patrick, I will definately share the appreciation with Nandan…I have read many other posts by Sahil and definately Sahil bhai and his queen make a great combo…

  • Sanjay says:

    Sahil, which camera do you use ?

  • Ram Dhall says:

    A close friend from Shimla has been pestering me for a long time to visit him. Your post has prompted me to catch up with him, sooner than I thought.

    Thanks for sharing this brilliant piece of writing. The pictures are simply mesmerizing, as usual.

  • Sahil says:

    Ram Ji , Thanks a lot for your kind words . I really appreciate it.

    Sahil

  • Manojkecy says:

    Dear Sahil,

    Well explained & picturised.

    What is the no. of your SILVER QUEEN ?

    I am eager to know that.

    Regards
    Manoj

  • Akshi Thapa says:

    Hi,

    I am looking at going to Simla in April end. But do not want to stay in heart if Simla because as per what i read its going to be crowded. How far is Mashobra from KAlka by road. Also could you suggest a place to stay in Mashobra or Simla ( not in the Mall). Thanks

    • Sahil Sethi says:

      Hi Akshi, Yes Shimla is quite crowded. Mashobra is just 15 Km ahead of Shimla, away from the tourists.

      In Mashobra, you can go for Whistling Pine Resort.

      Sahil

  • Rahul says:

    Lovely photo’s and thnx for all the feedback on your trip which acts as guidance to us travellors

  • rituraj says:

    well done sahil ur explanation of ur journey is soo good … very nice

  • Jagjit says:

    Hi Sahil

    Thanks a lot for detailed information. It is very helpful to plan the 4 days.

    What is the good place to stay in Naldera with family?

    Regards
    Jagjit

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