A Travellerspoint blog

November 2010

Himalayan Retreat

sunny 20 °C

After nearly a fortnight of perpetual noise and pollution in Delhi and Punjab we were easily convinced to take a week’s retreat in the Himalayas and had vision s of a rustic stone cottage with magnificent views of India’s highest peaks. Here’s the view from our balcony - as spectacular and pristine as anyone could imagine.
This is the view of India's highest mountain, Nandi Devi, taken from our balcony.
But, somehow, our heavenly little cottage in the foothills of this great mountain morphed into a palatial six bedrooomed mansion complete with butler, cook and houseboy. Our mountain “retreat” is designed for at least a dozen guests but it is brand new and, like everything we’ve seen in India, unfinished. We are, therefore, the only guests and have the enormous place and the staff to ourselves. This is our grand dining room…
Our mountainside garden is still in full bloom with roses, dahlias, chrysanthemums, lilies, daisies, fuchsias and narcissi, and, despite the approaching snows, the cherry trees are in blossom…
But all is not pretty up here above the clouds. Ramgarh, a one-horse village of dilapidated houses and stores close to the Nepal border, is being overrun by the extravagant and somewhat garish summer escapes for India’s nouveau-riche. Here’s one of the many developers who have set up shop here…
Seemingly unrestrained real estate development is bringing both wealth and its attendant problems to this area, and it’s only a matter of time before this beautiful landscape will be as polluted as the cities the newcomers are attempting to escape. However, we have arrived in the nick of time. The summer tourists have gone and left us in peace to walk in the Himalayas under clear skies, and to pick our own tea in the local plantation…
This is truly a heavenly Himalayan retreat – but hurry or you might miss it.

Posted by Hawkson 04:39 Archived in India Comments (4)

Himalayan Hiatus

sunny 30 °C

We're trekking off to the Himalayas for a week or so. Nothing spectacular like Everest - just high enough to give us a short taste of winter before we start heading south towards the equator. We're hoping to find internet access up there, but if we can't, do not adjust your set ... normal blog service will be resumed as soon as possible.

Posted by Hawkson 10:01 Archived in India Comments (6)

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