Thursday, May 12, 2016

Delhi- Mukteshwar road trip

   This year we decided to go by road from Delhi to Mukteshwar in Nainital district and it was an unforgettable experience no doubt! It  was an unplanned trip just after the jungle fires with the news channels  showing fire dousing operations in full steam and it was  heartening to see the trees bravely sprouting new leaves.
 We started early morning and stopped for breakfast at food halt with well known food chain restaurants catering to all tastes from burgers to pizzas! After gorging on pancakes, burgers etc we proceeded to Rampur and took a turn leading to Nainital , a well known popular crowded hill station. More of that later.
Mukteshwar  is a beautiful gem nestled in the Himalayan range in the Nainital District away from the hustle-bustle . Situated at an impressive altitude of 2286 meters in the Kumaon range of mountains , it is around 343 km from Delhi and is well connected with an airport at Pantnagar.
The road is spotted with wayside stalls selling fresh  fruits like guavas, apricots and sugar cane juice.We drove down on winding pine lined roads with an enthralling view of the graceful mountain ranges.The crisp unpolluted cool mountain air did wonders for our pollution weary souls! We stopped at Bhimtal to admire the serene lake and take photographs and proceeded to our destination.
 Mukhteswar is  full of fruit orchards, well maintained resorts and lodges and pine tree lined roads. Its a sight to see fruit trees overladen with ripening fruits like apricots, peaches growing in abundance. The local people are gracious and friendly and one can shop for local products like apricot jam,pickles and  woollies.
  The weather is cool and pleasant leaning towards chilly in case it rains .It snows in winter and most  resorts offer lodging and boarding making it a pretty relaxed vacation . It was a pleasant surprise to see  exotic flowers  in nearly all houses and resorts. Hydrangeas, foxgloves, calla lilies, fuchsias ,snowdrops, pansies, petunias, poppies, hollyhocks bloomed in profusion. Roses is all colors and varieties graced verandas and gardens. It is an enchanting and picturesque scene complete with wooden chalets with sloping roofs and well maintained gardens.

 The return journey was awesome with clouds swirling on the road and rain showers making an appearance and blowing away the next minute. The locals are always clad in woollies knowing full well that a spell of hot weather would be followed by rains bringing on the chill again.It took us approximately 8-9 hours each way with snack breaks etc but totally worth it.
Mukteshwar is a bit off  the beaten track and maybe that is the secret of its pristine beauty!

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