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Hillside holiday

india Updated: Dec 15, 2009 19:49 IST

Hindustan Times
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TravelI am planning a family vacation to Gangtok in May next year. My friends think that there may be heavy rains during this period. Is it okay to visit during this time or should I plan the trip in April instead? — Balaji, Chennai

Your friends are right. There’s heavy snowfall and rains during this period. Gangtok is very beautiful in the rains, but it can get difficult for tourists. One may get stuck due to landslides and heavy fog makes things worse. Locals say April is a better time to holiday here. During this time there is no rain and there are fewer tourists. Hotel room tariffs are also exorbitant in May and taxis charge thrice the usual fare.

I am planning to visit Shimla and Manali for my honeymoon in March. I plan to spend three nights in Shimla visiting Kufri and other places followed by five nights in Manali. What are interesting places to visit around Shimla? Can we visit Rohtang Pass in March? — Farida, Kolkata
You may visit Naldhera, Chail and can do a lot of sightseeing in the main Shimla area. If you are lucky, and if it snows around the time you visit, then you may get a chance to see Rohtang Pass entirely snow covered. However, it is best to enquire at the hotel before you start. If it does not snow, you can travel 10-15 km from Manali to Mari/Kothi/Gulaba to enjoy the snow. Solan Valley, Hadimba temple, and Naggar are some of the places you can visit around Manali.