Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Kullu Manali - Nava's Travel (Part 1)

Bye-bye Shimla (Shimla Part 2 & Shimla Part 1). Sadly. Although, deep down inside me, I would have appreciated, least to least, another day in Shimla. Then again? The reality to travelling is otherwise. You got to move on darling. Move on to the next destination. Indeed, on this particular morning, we began, give in and take, our seven hours journey to - Kullu Manali. Hah! Ah! Finally, my moment to the beauty of Manali, after the years of listening to others. Also, this drive towards Manali, was the moment to viewing Shimla's slopes, mountains and valleys, which we missed on the way up, due to night has fallen. 

Now, approximately two hours of journeying, the much appreciated customary comfort break took place in Bottliya Mart.

The comfort for relaxing the bones and muscles, plus, sipping into a cuppa of tea or coffee. While some preferred to linger outside, others including myself, we made our way into Bottliya Mart, where I picked up a couple of, made from natural ingredients, Made In India body lotions and hair oils. Ah! One of those things I love about India. Speak about how far this country has marched forward, in terms of natural ingredients skincare and body care products. Hats off to the brains behind and in front of such Ayurveda products and these are really affordable for a Malaysian like me. 

From Bottliya Mart, we journeyed again, and by 2.30pm, we were already seated in Mayur Restaurant, Sunder Nager, District Mandi, Himachal Pradesh. Lunch time! Between the 5 of us, we tucked into Thali vegetarian set (2x) paratha (3x), butter chicken and mushroom soup. Did these items punch wake-up my palates? If I say, yes, I'm lying. Instead, let me put it in a professional food matter. Simply said, these were for filling up the hunger gap, and yes, can be regarded as an appreciated meal. Otherwise, nothing to blow about. 

Up next? The journey of another few hours, prior to making our presence in Westin Hotel And Resort, Manali. Politely declining the late dinner in Westin, I headed into my room, which impressed me. Cleanliness at its best, a comfort zone and me, ending my day by showering, before bed-time.
What about buffet breakfast next morning? Mmm!! The regret to - I should have packed some Malaysian instant noodles in cups. Would have been a better game changer breakfast pleasure. Having said that, food must go into tummy because, its gonna be a day to energy driven activities in Rohtang Pass.
Obviously thereafter, oh-yes. Rohtang Pass. Located on the Eastern Pir Panji range of Himalayas, at a height of nearly 4,ooo meters above sea level, and 50 meters away from Manali. First thing first at the road side before heading into Rohtang Pass? Renting winter jumpsuits, shoes and gloves. We were told its a must by the guide. Seemingly, because the winters clothes, shoes and gloves we were wearing, won't do the job of withstanding winter in Rohtang Pass. 

Into the shop by the roadside, the lady helpers were helpful in fitting us into the jumpsuits, but for the gloves and shoes, self service please darlings. God! What a thing, the 25 of us within the small space. Furthermore, simultaneously, holding on tight to our handbags. Thankfully, done and over, and while waiting for the rest, I had my moment. Nava's moment of her style for a couple of short videos. Followed by another of my grooving-moving, at the area where it is the adventure to jeep ride, pony ride, and what not I didn't really pay attention to. No, no, sorry, not for me, because I've had more than enough share of such adventures. In fact, countless times in other parts of the world and in my country too. The fun for me was already more of the grooving and moving, for being myself even when I am travelling. 

To be continued...........


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