We were a bunch of youngsters, set out to enjoy our new year in Himachal Pradesh. Our journey started from New Delhi, on a train. The journey was as usual, but because we were a group, we did a lot of masti. :P
We reached Kalka in the morning. Surprisingly, the train was on correct time. This was because tourists need to board Toy Train for Shimla.
Since it was winter, hence the weather was too chilly. We hadn't booked toy train tickets beforehand. This was a major mistake. A huge queue was gathered for the tickets. Finally we had no choice but to book a cab. If you are planning for this destination, it is advised to book Toy Train tickets online. :)
But, the cab ride was much interesting too. We experienced a beautiful and mesmerizing view of nature. The scenery was awesome. There was no snow in Shimla at that time.
We booked Hotel Gulmohar. And it is again much advised to book Hotels before the trip. It lessens the hassle and also you will pay lesser price online. The hotel was excellent with good service. The temperature was almost 0 degrees there. Hence, room service used to make tea outside of our room only, other wise it will cool off by the time the tea reaches us. :P
We were advised to turn on the Geysers 3 hours before bathing. But bathing was an impossible thing. But we did the impossible.
Our tour started with the Mall road. The crowd was excellent. You can't do much shopping there, but fruits. The brands you find there are everywhere, so it hardly matters.
Advisable places to visit: Mall Road Church, Hanuman Temple.
Mall Road church is a walking distance destination. But for Hanuman Mandir, you need to board a shared taxi which takes 10-20 rupees per person per side. You would find a lot of monkeys, so don't carry any eatables openly in your hands.
We went for the new year's eve, hence there were a lot of parties organized in clubs. We found a good one and got a huge discount afterwards for being the party poppers in the eve. :P
The next day, there was a live band organized near the church square. It was awesome.
We decided to go to Kufri. We took a cab ride and it took about 1. 5 hours for us to reach as there was ice on the roads. The weather forecasting declared it would snow. We were very excited. But the cabs won't take you to Kufri, but to a intermediate destination, where you can take a ride on Mules (hybrids of donkeys and horses) Because there are no roads for cars. The mule owners would ask for a huge amount but generally they settle for 150 per person.
This ride is adventurous in it's own way. The mules walk at the edge of the roads, which terrifies at some points. We saw snow when we reached there. There were several adventure spots with economical packages. But you can again bargain with them.
We made a huge snow man. Our hands and legs turned blue due to snow and ice. We enjoyed a lot. Returning to out hotel, the journey was coming to the end.
We were lucky to get tickets of toy train this time. The train experience was awesome and it's a must experiencing ride. :) The train runs at a speed of an average of 20 kmph. So you can get down any time. But it is not advised. :P Risky enough.
This was my trip and I enjoyed a lot. Hope my review helps! :)