Blogs from Chamba Valley, Himachal Pradesh, India, Asia

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Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley November 4th 2011

The past couple of weeks has taken us up North away from the crowds and pollution of Delhi and into the foothills of the Himalayas. It's been very laid back and relaxing; certainly a very different India than what one sees on the typical Golden Triangle route. Our first stop was Shimla, the former summer capital of the British Raj. We travelled along the Kalka-Shimla railway on what's known as the 'toy train'. It took us about 6 hours to cover the 96km distance and brought new meaning to the term 'scenic route'. Remarkably, the train climbs from a starting elevation of about 650 meters at Kalka all the way to nearly 2100 meters at Shimla with no less than 864 bridges and 103 tunnels along the way. We spent the next day in Shimla soaking ... read more
Trek to Khajjir
McLeod Ganj square
Bhagsu waterfall

Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley October 22nd 2011

I'm not really at this location, but I have no idea what the province is that I am in and a location is required to publish. Actually in Varanasi at the moment. It has been ten days since my last blog - there has either been no internet, internet not working or we simply haven't had five minutes to spare. Our Tour Leader, Uttam, is Intrepids number one leader in India and he has activities planned for us 24/7. Today is my first day with Delhi Belly. Strangely, the group has been inflicted with colds rather than diarrehia. It is the last day of the first tour today. We are flying back to Dehli in an hour. We then have two days in Dehli before the next trip starts. We have done so much in the ... read more

Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley June 25th 2009

Chamba is a fascinating town set in a valley on the edge of a rushing river. It took one hour on the bus to get here from Khajjiar and it was a scary trip! The bus arrived from Dalhousie absolutely packed and had about a dozen young men sitting on the roof - all singing and whistling - in very high spirits and looking forward to day out on the field in Khajjiar. Just as we were leaving Khajjiar, as were walking through the forest to the bus stop (our hotel was set amongst the trees) we disturbed two baby snow leopards playing. What a thrill that was! The area is a forestry and wildlife reserve. The bus trip to Chamba was all down hill and the bus conductor stood at the back of the bus ... read more
Fruit stall and drinking water fountain in centre of Chamba
Loading the bus!
Resting on the steps

Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley September 27th 2007

One trip sows the seed for the next. A lazy afternoon at a hotel in Sanchi sparked our plan to go to Manimahesh. A travel documentary in TV was covering the temple complex in Bharmour, and the host left us longing for more by telling about the trek to Manimahesh. Thus it began - planning for Manimahesh. It is said that till the Lord calls, Manimahesh remains unreachable - it was a message conveyed through television for the two of us, Nilanjan and myself. Despite our best efforts to include quite a few others for the trip, everyone else dropped out in the end, some lacking in interest, others for reasons that can only be termed divine intervention; the message was definitely just for the two of us!! The route is simple. An overnite train ride ... read more
Little village of Bharmour
The Chaurasi Temple
The Sacred Bull (Nandi)

Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley June 13th 2007

Chamba is bounded on north-west by Jammu and Kashmir, on the north-east and east by Ladakh area of Jammu and Kashmir state and Lahaul and Bara-Bangal area of Himachal Pradesh, on the south-east and south by the District Kangra of Himachal Pradesh and Gurdaspur District of the Punjab. The Chamba District is situated between north latitude 32° 11΄ 30″ and 33° 13΄ 6″ and east longitude 75°49 and 77° 3΄ 30″, with an estimated area of 6528 square Kilometers and is surrounded on all sides by lofty hill ranges. The territory is wholly mountainous with altitude ranging from 2,000 to 21,000 feet. Regarding the early history of this region it is believed that this area was at time inhabited by certain Kolian tribes, which were later, subjugated by the Khasas. The Khasas too after a time ... read more

Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley June 13th 2007

Chamba is bounded on north-west by Jammu and Kashmir, on the north-east and east by Ladakh area of Jammu and Kashmir state and Lahaul and Bara-Bangal area of Himachal Pradesh, on the south-east and south by the District Kangra of Himachal Pradesh and Gurdaspur District of the Punjab. The Chamba District is situated between north latitude 32° 11΄ 30″ and 33° 13΄ 6″ and east longitude 75°49 and 77° 3΄ 30″, with an estimated area of 6528 square Kilometers and is surrounded on all sides by lofty hill ranges. The territory is wholly mountainous with altitude ranging from 2,000 to 21,000 feet. Regarding the early history of this region it is believed that this area was at time inhabited by certain Kolian tribes, which were later, subjugated by the Khasas. The Khasas too after a ... read more
Chamba, Chamunda devi temple

Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley April 6th 2007

The time in Orchard Hut was amazing relaxing, away from the intense heat and hassle of the cities. On the second day there I chose to do a trek up the mountain to where they have another building which people can use as a base when walking. Three hours up, which was hard because of the heat (it was still hot there!), but I was rewarded with great views of a Himalayan Ridge which begins with 'P'! Also was nice walking past the houses scattered on the mountain side and receiving curious, but not unfriendly, looks, which always turned into smiles when I said 'Namaste'. When we got back down I rewarded myself with a swim in the pool...well, more like a game of water volley ball (does that have a proper name?) in the ... read more
House on the Hill
Little Boys
Orchard Hut from above

Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley April 4th 2007

Ok, desperately trying to catch up before we go to the border ceremony (in Amritsar now). So on the 4th we commenced our second day's trek (with Canadian Boy, Dog and now Dog 2) to Chamba, which is, surprisingly, in the Chamba valley. We were all pleased to leave the hostility of Khadjir (besides Horseboy, the general atmosphere was quite unpleasant). An easy walk, pretty much downhill (Chamba is significantly lower than the places we'd been in Himachal Pradesh previously), with a stop at 'Biscuit Point', where the Britishers use to stop for tea and biscuits, back in the day. Being back in the bustle of Chamba Town was a little odd, and I was feeling quite sensitive with regards to any of the stares (which are, let's say, plentiful wherever you go in India ... read more
Fattest cow ever in Chamba town
Sun setting from our balcony at Orchard Hut

Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley October 28th 2006

Day I After a rather sleepless night, I caught the Sahoo bus to Chaminu and was met by the side of the road - luckily the bus conductor knew where I was going! One of the guides helped me carry my bags up to the Orchard Hut (1325m)- 30mins uphill before breakfast! I arrived flushed but wide awake and it was just as I had hoped, an elegant timber and mud house perched on the side of the mountain, with an open balcony, colourful garden, hammocks, swimming pool and amazing views looking over the village below and green Saal Valley - a perfect spot. I was welcomed in the traditional pahadi style; a red dot was placed on my forehead, mountain cap, mouth freshener (a combination of coconut, cardomon seeds and various other unidentifiable substances… umm ... read more
Golden Temple - Amritsar
Jallianwala Bagh - Garden - Amritsar
Indian/ Pakistan Board Guard

Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Chamba Valley October 25th 2006

After an early morning start and brisk walk uphill in search of a rickshaw, I made it to the station in time for my 6.20am 2nd Class train to Puthankot - a transport hub with the oddest looking scooters I've ever seen - they looked like something out of a post nuclear war movie... that one with Tina Turner in - Mad Max!. I was the only westerner at the station and searched out some nice looking Indian women to wait with, assuming we would end up in the same carriage. I stood swaying with my rucksack on my back waiting for the train, not quite sure what to expect, but poised to leap into action when it arrived. You have to be prepared if you want a seat, and thank goodness for all the practice ... read more




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