Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Longing For The Mountains – Uttarakhand

Uttarakhand has been on my mind for a while now. I am longing for the mountains that I grew up watching. Although I have lived in different cities since childhood, the earliest days of my life were spent mostly in Uttarakhand. Thus, I share a special association with it. I have fond memories of Dehradun and Mussoorie in particular. I would say those were the first impressions on my heart that still remain there beautifully.


So much to explore

I think Uttarakhand is a modest land. It is so incredibly beautiful, yet it has not been devoured like other places of its stature. Well, in a way, it is good, because when a place is thronged by tourists, it doesn’t remain the same. Mussoorie, Dehradun and Nainital are the only ones that are frequented and hogged by the regular tourists. Of course, there are Haridwar and Rishikesh too. However, there is so much of Uttarakhand still in its pristine state.


Reminiscing the carefree days in the hills

I am itching to revisit my roots – Pauri Garhwal. I want to walk the same old path, see the new faces, and relive the simple pleasures of life. Although not very vividly, I remember a few anecdotes from my childhood when we visited Pauri for a wedding; it was such an enjoyable experience. The house where we stayed was at a certain height and we used to be out of breath ascending the steps. But we still enjoyed running small errands from one house to another, in the course of which, we plucked fruits from the trees on our way, loitered around for a while, and inadvertently had a good time.


Pining for Landour

Another nice memory that I have is of Landour, a town neighbouring Mussoorie. We visited it in the month of June or July, when there are frequent showers and it gets chilly towards the evenings. We used to set out on spontaneous treks among the Deodars, Pines and Oaks. The experience was more special because we were guests at somebody’s house. So, we also had the joy of having home-cooked food in the bargain.   

   
Gaze the Himalayas

Thus, I am craving for a slow sojourn in Uttarakhand, which would allow me to just sit idle, gaze the Himalayas, inhale the fresh mountain air and chew on each blissful moment. I am not sure where I want to go, but it has to be somewhere unexplored and less frequented. I have been to Sattal, which is also one of the quiet and unassuming places in the Kumaon region. I’d like to pay a revisit there too.


Curious about Lansdowne and the Kumaon villages

Among the places that I haven’t visited, I would like to visit Lansdowne, which is close to Kotdwara where I was born. I’m kind of fascinated with its name and curious to find out the kind of place it is – its atmosphere and people. I am also particularly keen on exploring the villages of Kumaon, but on a really slow pace. I would like to give my camera a break for a while and see the places with my actual eyes, because when I am clicking constantly I feel I miss out on the real stuff. Thus, I would want to stop being in a hurry and absorb my surroundings.    


Uttarakhand needs ‘us’ to be able to recuperate

Last year, due to the rains and the disastrous floods, Uttarakhand suffered great losses in terms of life, economy and tourism. Although it was primarily Garhwal that was under the influence of the floods, the region of Kumaon also had to bear the repercussions. Hopefully, things will look better this year and everything should be back to normal.


The whole idea of vacationing in Uttarakhand is to discover its unsung places, know its people, make a connection and come back with some meaningful experiences.

Now I want to hear from you!


What do you think? Which part of Uttarakhand should I explore?

18 comments:

  1. I wish I could visit this beautiful place some day! :)

    - Rahul

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :) You need to fulfill your wish yourself! Go, plan, pack and set off!

      Delete
  2. Beautiful article and felt like i am viewing my home from your eyes :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I'm glad to know that. :)

      Delete
  3. Excellent Post !!
    Lovely pics great to be in the lap of nature !!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Beautiful. The photo in the mist is so atmospheric!

    ~ Katie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Katie :) Yeah, even I like it.

      Delete
  5. I know what you mean Renuka. I am a 'pahadi' girl at heart too even though i have lived in different cities like you. Every Once in a while, the mountains do beckon :) Uttarkhand is so beautiful and i enjoyed seeing it through your eyes. Hopefully, it can recover soon after the disasters that struck last year. Beautiful post! Loved it :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad to know that, Pallavi. :) I happen to bump into a lot of 'pahadis'. Yes, mountains do beckon once in a while.

      Delete
  6. Wonderful post and I can resonate with so much of what you say. When we discover somewhere beautiful we want it to remain that way, not be overrun with tourists.

    Also, giving the camera a rest for a few minutes is no bad thing. You want memories of places to be pictures etched in your mind, not just on an SD card.

    Lovely writing by the way, you express yourself very well.

    As for what to see? Well if I was you I'd make a plan to see them all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks The Guy for stopping by and dropping such a valuable comment. :) If I had my way I'd have seen all of it, but there is so much to explore in Uttarakhand. Well, what matters is whatever little I explore, it should enrich me as a traveler and as a person.

      Delete
  7. I'm always a little scared to visit places that I have fond memories of; as much as I yearn to do it, I'm worried things won't be the same as I recall and the memories will be tainted!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are so right, Catherine! It happens. I remember when I visited Dehradun after almost a decade, it wasn't the same. Although it is developed now, it used to be so charming earlier.

      Delete
  8. Uttarakhand is definitely a gorgeous place. Of the little that I have seen of it (Naukuchiatal and Binsar), it is absolutely a spectacular destination.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How lucky of you! Binsar is one place in Uttarakhand where I really want to go.

      Delete
  9. Uttarakhand sounds and looks like a beautiful place to explore. I totally agree that sometimes it's best to put the camera down and absorb your surroundings, and Uttarakhand looks like the perfect place to do just that!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Dana Carmel :) True, Uttarakhand is a kind of place where you can just sit and do nothing, yet have a great time. Although it's hard to put the camera aside, it's worth savoring the beauty with one's naked eyes.

      Delete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...