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peaceman Shimla - A travel report by Peaceman
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Shimla,  India - flag India -  Himåchal Pradesh
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peaceman's travel reports

Peaceman Travel-Manali

  3 votes
Shimla ,Manali is perhaps the main tourist center of the state of Himachal Pardesh. Thronged by the likes of honeymooners, hippies, trekkers and local tourists, Manali has emerged as one of the main hill stations.

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(term coined for places in hills that people tend to go to during summer in India).
It seems everyone has their own reason to visit Manali. The local tourist come here to escape the summer heat or even to see mountains clad with snow, to experience that moment that they might not have ever seen experienced in a tropical surroundings.

The hippies and backpackers are there for their own reasons of peace and quiet and some for the quality charas. Then there are the trekking and nature enthusiasts who use Manali as a base for some short hikes and serious expeditions around the region.
Manali’s main street, the Mall, is the busiest street with most of the bustling activity happening around it. The street is surrounded by restaurants, cafes, the taxi stand and tourist information centers. However amidst all this, basically one can really enjoy the serene and pleasant environments and a much laid back atmosphere.

Favourite spots:
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Places to go to :
Manali is a small little town and all the places to see can be done pretty much in a single day.

1. The Hadimba Temple:
Hadimba temple is Manali’s oldest shrine and it is located north-west of the Mall (the center in Manali). About twenty minutes of steep walk along the Hadimba Road or a five-minutedrive, takes you up to this temple dedicated to Hadimba ( the wife of Bhima, the protagonist from the renowned Indian epic Mahabharata).

2. Old Manali and The Manu temple:
Old Manali, as the name suggests is the older part of the town that gave birth to its new namesake ‘Manali’, lies north-east of the Mall and still returns traditional feel, along with its architecture of the old Pahari style houses with stone roof and wooden balconies.

What's really great:
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Solang Valley – Jagatsukh - Naggar
This trip takes you the enchanting Solang valley with excellent views, ski slopes and artist Nicholas Roerich.

Rohtang Pass
This is a definite side tip to under take depending on the time of your visit. The roads to Rohtang pass are open and safe for travel only from May-mid September.There are other forward journeys that can be undertaken for further into Leh and Ladakh.

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Tips and Comments :
1. If you are short of time, 2 days and 2 nights is pretty good minimum time that you need to enjoy Manali.

2. If you are staying longer in Manali, go explore some trekking options.

3. Manali is a laid back place, do not expect much of a nightlife, but a relaxing, scenic nice weather and shopping are the things to look forward.

4. While shopping for things do not hesitate to discount upto 40% in your head before negotiating for shawls, jewelry, etc.

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The following restaurants are all around the Mall area.

Mayur, Mission Rd, just off the Mall.
A very cozy Indian restaurant with nominal prices offers wide variety of Indian dishes Recommended for food.

Chopsticks, The Mall
The restaurant offers a wide variety of Tibetan food along with some contemporary meat / chicken platters. Nice ambience Recommended for food.

Sagar, the Mall, just below Old Manali Rd.
The restaurant caters to your south Indian palette. Wide variety of south Indian and Gujarati food recommended.

Peters Café, off Old Manali Road
Near the Mall this place is known for its breakfast.

German Bakery, Old Manali Road
Near the Mall, a bakery with good choice of breads and breakfast. Good place to handout, grab a coffee/tea and chit-chat. The owner (Himanshu) is enthusiast who also organizes treks to trips.

Other recommendations:
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Shopping :
Shopping in Manali is mainly restricted to Tibetan and Kashmiri arts and handicrafts. Manali provides a great souvenir shopping opportunity with its wide variety of local stores selling shawls (Kullu and Kashmiri) and other jewelry and embroidered stuff.

The village Vasisht boasts of a Gem store (owner named Shafi) that deals in semi-precious stones, unset stones, silver ornaments,carpets, rugs and shawls. This corner shop just below the main square in the village will suffice all your jewelry shopping needs in this region.

Published on Saturday July 17th, 2010

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