If you have not visited Manali, visit it; if you have gone in the past, go again and, if you have gone a few times in the past, visit again and again. This is my feeling culled out of my intensive experience at Manali. The place is a visitor’s paradise: a place where nature has descended to spread its fragrance and to give its feel to each and every man everywhere.
From the tourism point of view, Manali may not be the substitute of Srinagar, but, certainly, an alternative. It has to offer so many breath-taking places to the tourists and visitors that you have to stay a minimum of fifteen to twenty days, if not more, to enjoy your outing to the brim.
Manali is mountainous valley in the right lap of the Himalayan ranges. Himachal Pradesh is known as “Apple-land of India” and Manali has a great share of apple production of the state.
I, with my family, left for New Delhi Airport from Bhubaneswar Airport by Indian for a two-hour journey during Mid-August, generally considered as an off-season chosen by me as ideal because I got all my reservations for journey and lodging at a big discount. The next morning, an eighteen-seator single-engined aircraft was ready to start at 06.30AM, but took off at 09.30AM as the climate in the Himalayan ranges was cloudy. Ultimately at about 10.30AM, we reached Kullu Airport.
The experience inside the aircraft was very exciting because co-passengers were only four, not to speak of the pilot who could be considered as a co-passenger in the sense that his driving seat was at our front like the seat in a luxury bus and he was a nice fellow who talked to us all through our journey. He, also, had tea, coffee and snacks for us and a packet full of chocolates besides fruit juice. There was no air-hostess or attendant and self-service was the provision. But what was irritating was the sound of the aircraft; but to get something you have to give up something and at the end of the journey, we were disappointed that such an exhilarating experience had come to an end.
Kullu area is a valley and very nice in every way. The Dussera Festival here is observed with much pomp and ceremony and the Kullu King leads a huge procession which is almost the best in the country and must be seen to be believed.