Oh what is this life, so full of care
We have no time to stand and stare!
I was constantly reminded of this verse by W.H.Davies at Mountways Kot Naikana
It was a holiday made in heaven, with natural beauty, adventure, local cuisine, a wonderful itinerary and so much pampering by Pushpanjali Singh.
Thank you #TCBG_Trips that I got this opportunity
The scenic beauty of this Himalayan retreat is of course unbelievable as you will be able to see from the photos but the adventure quotient was quite high too.
The last mile connectivity to Kot Naikana is a mud road in the hill which has just been cut out so can’t be gravelled for next two years.
We reached at night and trekked the last portion. I stuck behind the sure footed Puneetinder Kaur Sidhu and didn’t go wrong. It was thrilling with a few heart stopping moments but well worth it.
Our Woh Kaun Thi moments!
The next day we woke up to to wisps of clouds, flirting with us as we all lounged around in bed with the open window letting the atmosphere soak in.
It was a moment we wished would just keep stretching and never end.
It’s a small 4 room resort with a little bit of India in every room. It’s been beautifully curated and decorated with local art from Bengal, Jharkhand and Rajasthan.
The appan or rice flour paintings which skirt the room are a lovely local touch.
We were invited for lunch to a local house and had the most delicious food with the bhang ki Chutney, kadhi, local grain roti and bhaat ki Dal.
The road to the house and up was a visual treat. Of course full stomachs get groaned a bit when we walked up.
A well earned break after all that serious eating!
It’s proximity to Almora ( an hour away), Jageswar ( if not raining them a beautiful walk or an hour’s drive away), and of course Katarmal Sun Temple and Chittai Temple make for a divine itinerary.
we visited them all.
The first day our Almora market walk was long and tiring but interesting.
The woodwork in the khazanchi and johri bazar on the houses were a pleasure and pain. Pain because they are decaying and I don’t know if they are getting the kind of care they need. So many of them have already been replaced by ugly plain boards
The Diggi Bungalow visit was a lovely break. The writer Yashpal stayed in one of the 5 houses in that compound and wrote Jhoota Sach.
The Tagore House was a disappointment and waste of time as nothing remains to remind us of his presence except a plaque, and neither are the people very friendly.
The Uday Shankar Centre is very underwhelming unless there is some program on its not worth a visit
However all disappointments vanish when you visit the Katarmal Sun Temple. It’s glorious and one can soak in the history of a thousand years in the few minutes or hours you sit there.
So are the Jageswar group of Temples. We were lucky to visit it during the Sawan puja as that’s the time that the locals come for Parthiv puja.
Alka Kaushik, Puneet and Ruchira Shukla are the greatest company one could wish for so it was a laugh a minute but with lots of learning on travel and travel writing.
The walk back!
The adventure ended but we will be back!
It’s that kind of place you keep missing and longing to ho back to.
Did I mention it has no TV abs no mobile network!
That’s half the charm as you enjoy the scenery aND not the mobile screen.