The mountain ranges of our country are the only places which are yet not fully commercialized by us and still remain undiscovered, or at the very least - under discovered. There are thus, still places where the beauty of nature is quite raw and at its purest and exotic best! One such place is Solan, a small town in Himachal Pradesh an hour’s drive from Shimla and just seven short hours away from Delhi. Here’s how we spent our day in the hills!
Our first view of Solan was turned into a picturesque memory in our minds because of the pretty sunrays blanketing the beautiful curves of the mountains, the small villages and the town’s hustle and bustle. When we asked around about the origin of the town and its unusual name, we got to know that it’s named after a beautiful goddess by the name of Shoolini Devi. After seeing the town for ourselves, we couldn’t agree with the namesake more!
In order to experience the beauty of nature as our first agenda, we decided to dive headfirst into it by a walk through the small hills of Salogra, few minutes drive from the town proper. Before we made it to the the slopes, the shops at the outskirts tempted us into buying morning breakfast in the form of bread pakodas and samosas, our treat for getting up early!
Then we walked our way downwards and after swaying through different paths all in the heart of nature and breathing in the pure air, an exclusive speciality of the hills, we found ourselves sitting on a grassy cliff gazing at the gorgeous view, and plenty of snacks to enjoy it with!
After a walk full of peace and quiet, we decided to indulge ourselves by visiting the local market and see what the town had to offer. It was filled with a multitude of shops ranging from extremely old and prestigious, like Ratan Jee’s - the oldest pakode wala in town, to new and upcoming Chinese restaurants, clothing shops and a little bit of westernization through the means of a Madame and Levi’s store. But the most important part of it all was their cinema hall, which humbly catered to the entertainment needs of the people with the unheard-of price of just Rs 50 onwards for a ticket *still dumbstruck*!
After our little shopping spree, our tummies started rumbling and we decided to head down to a famous lake of Solan called Ashwini Khud which the locals promised us offered view to behold, for an afternoon luncheon. Glistening with sunlight-speckled water and surrounded by the mountain ranges and all kinds of vegetation and exotic flowers, this place was tailor-made to take away the miseries of our everyday monotonous lives.
We sat on the boulders which studded the lake and while dipping our feet into the cool water and nibbling on our food, we felt all our tension melting away into the windy and soothing aroma of the place.
After satiating our appetite, we headed over to another tourist attraction of the place and hiked our way to the local railway station. Unlike the big city railway stations, Solan’s Railway Station had an old-time charm about it, owing to its cute little railway stop and the tracks that were surrounded by the picturesque mountains and gave us the completely unique experience of seeing a town through the eyes of train tracks. We also got to see different kinds of trains such as their famous Toy Train which was such a charming thing to behold!
We ended our wonderfully rejuvenating day in Solan by welcoming the abundance of clouds and more clouds providing us with a mesmerizing view as a parting gift. It left us with an illusion of us being on the top of the world and having the ability to jump onto the clouds and take some of ‘em home *dreamy sighs*!
All we’ll say is that pictures don’t do justice to the place and if you want to get away from your chained-to-the-desk life, then this place shall be your knight in shining armor!
These images have been clicked and contributed by Mehtab Luthra for So Delhi