Nashala : A Tiny Village In The Mountains of Himachal Pradesh

There are many, many quaint villages in the Himalayas, and how we wish we could visit as many of them as possible before they get commercially exploited and lose their charm and innocence.

Nashala is one such quaint Himalayan village. Towards the right of Naggar Haveli, a winding 5km road around the hills, and through pine forests lies this gorgeous village, where most of the homes are still traditional in architecture. This sleepy agrarian village was the perfect spot for us to spend a day hanging around, photographing. Stay was in Manali, and all meals at Naggar Castle. Katrain could also be a good place to stay with delicious home cooked meals in your own tree house!

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Dhaba on the way to Manali on the Chandigarh – Manali Highway.
Manali Highway Road Construction
The road to Manali is terrible, with construction everywhere. So bad, that I now fear driving to Manali. It was like this earlier last year, and so about 4 years ago.

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Dhodap Fort : Gorgeous Hills Away From The Crowd

Many a time one wants to get away from the maddening crowds of the city, to reach somewhere serene. Such places are increasingly difficult to find, and we found one by happenstance. About 50km away from Nashik, towards Dhule, there are these beautiful hills which have the Chaturshringi Temple and the Dhodap Fort. This fort, at 1472 meters above sea level, is the second highest hill fort in Maharashtra. We drove till the base village of Dhodambe, and then a tiny hamlet of Kanherwadi  from where a trek takes you to the fort. We didn’t go for the trek, but spent some time in the hamlet and taking walks in the breezy meadows around the hills.

Full of lush old forests, the hills are a treat. I was sad at not having carried my binoculars and long lenses for birding.

We hope these beautiful landscapes remain unspoilt and untouched, for all future generations to enjoy and recharge in.

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In the village of Kanherwadi.

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Walwande : A Not So Happy Trip

We had recently visited the village of Walwande near Jawhar in Mahashtra, as part of a Rural Tourism Initiative.

Walwande is a small village on the Jawhar – Vikramgad Road. The primary occupation is agriculture.The land seems fertile, with the monsoons having coloured it green. We had our meals at a local villager’s house, and they were the most delicious meals of this trip. Somehow, home cooked food is so yummy!

Rural Maharashtra
The drive to Walwande from Mumbai taking the NH8 then right through Chiroti Naka goes through some lush farms.

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Birk, Punjab : A Photowalk

There are trips of exploration, trips full of adventure and then those we take to revisit our roots. So this was a trip to Birk, close to Phagwara, near our ancestral village Kahma. A quiet village in Punjab where our forefathers spent the sliver years of their life.

Visiting Birk, 107km from Amritsar, Punjab, made us feel that the idea of quietly nestled villages in India still exists.
This village comprised of a few by lanes and a lots of silent turns. You could hear footsteps of passer bys with clarity, and soon identify the incessant sound of sewing machine that informed the village that BC tailor was still at work.
Birk definitely made for a photo walk!

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