From Shimla with the Train to Kalpa and on towards Rishikesh

Shimla
Told you -> there is the monkey in the morning – on our balcony…

Shimla
Finger getting better slow slow….

Shimla
WTF – they gave her this cup for coffee 🙂

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla
Express Movers Shimla

Shimla
On the way back from dinner…

Shimla
Diamonds are the girls best friend – wait they do not have them here…

Shimla
On the way to the train station this friendly gentleman wanted to hug me – great. Thank you and get off my foot now!

Kalka - Shimla Railway
No clue but Sandra wanted to take the railway. I hate them slow trains in India. This one took over 6 (!!!) hours downhill for only 93 km! Wow – I could do that on my slowest bike faster. And since that is a toy train there was no space as well. And you have to wait in every other station for the trains that come up the hill. So if anything goes wrong with the train that is going up – your trip just got longer. At last plenty of food at some stations. We where not lucky with the weather. It was cloudy and foggy all the way so we could not really see if there is anything nice to see. Makes the whole ride even more frustrating.

Kalka - Shimla Railway
2nd class waiting room

Kalka - Shimla Railway
Our Express Train

Kalka - Shimla Railway
We had to wait for this one to come up – the luxury train…

Kalka - Shimla Railway
I wonder what they do if the fire breaks out away from a station??

Kalka - Shimla Railway
There you go – train had to stop since the cow was in between the wall and the train. After a while the beast moved on and we could move as well.

Kalka - Shimla Railway
Everybody happy??

Kalka - Shimla Railway
Even Sandra went nuts!

Surprise – we made it to Kalpa! But than there was no way of getting anywhere from here. No more bus connection as it was too late and no train. On the map it does look like only a few hours drive in the morning so we got a hotel for the night.

Kalka
I did rip my shirt so this friendly man did a fantastic job in no time. That is so nice. You see a tailor shop – go in and ask and off with the shirt and they go to work. Best of all – it was free!

Kalka
Does not look very good but man – it was! And the fresh bread was one of the best i had on that trip! 50 Rp – something like 0.74 €

Chandigar
So the next morning we where off to the bus station after a good breakfast. Than we took the bus to Chandigarh. Of course they have a few different bus stations and we had to take a taxi to the other side of town. Than we waited and waited for the bus to Rishikesh – that took forever. But we made it before dawn and got a good hotel room.

Chandigar

Chandigar
Our Express Bus – fully air-conditioned – if you keep the windows open…

The Jakhu Temple of Simla

The Jakhu Temple of Simla is dedicated to the monkey God, Hanuman. It is situated on Jakhoo Hill, still in walking distance from the Ridge at a height of 2,455 m (8,000 feet) above sea level. Shimla’s highest peak offers a panoramic view of the Shivalik Ranges and the town of Sanjauli.

One legend goes that Lord Hanuman stopped there to rest while he was searching for the Sanjivni Booti to revive Lakshman in the Epic Ramayana. The main temple is small and by far not as impressive as the giant statue of Lord Hanuman. Lots of monkey action at the garden next to the temple. A nice walk up – i recommend to have a look for yourself!

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Jakhu Temple of Simla

Off to Shimla

It is not easy to leave Kalpa after a few days. The view together with the clean air and almost no car noise makes it a place where you easy can spend some time. But Sandra was on the way to Rishikesh for some more Yoga stuff and I wanted to visit The Professional in his natural habitat. So we took the small bus early in the morning to get to the bus station in time for the big bus towards Shimla. Since we reached the station early we had the two seats in the front. Great!!

Shimla
Update on the finger – getting better…

Shimla
Our trusty old bus

Shimla
These are the roads here in the mountains – now add dust – a lot of it!

Shimla
We stopped in the middle of nowhere for lunch. 50 Rp for Dal Bat with endless refill. Best tasting lunch at that whole trip! Btw 80 RP is 1€.

So far so good!

Shimla

After a few weeks in the mountains of the Himalayas it is not easy to come back to “civilisation” And if you get into Shimla at 5.30 in the afternoon you wish you had stopped somewhere before for the night. Traffic was a nightmare. The bus station a big joke. No information nowhere and best of all – no light but lots of stairs. So you walk down the dark stairs inside the building and look for a bus towards town. Somehow we could not manage to stop one and had to take a taxi. Sure enough you have to get the expensive ones from the “union” and it is so so far and that is why the taxi is so so expensive. In the end it is not really far but welcome back to the city. Took us a while to find a place but with the help of a friendly tout. He carried my bag all over the place – which resulted into me hauling Sandras bag. The man was in a hurry so we raced cross town to the Dreamland. Nice hotel, hot water and all. Good view over the to many buildings and sure enough there is a monkey on your balcony in the morning. So leaving a window open while you explore the city is not a good idea.

Shimla
Finally in Shimla – the old part looks of the city a bit like the one from your toy train

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla
But why not save the few houses that are left and preserve its charm? Nobody repairs anything. All is plastered with advertisement. Sad to see that nice part of the city go down the drain.

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla
The Indian Coffee House – we had breakfast here a few times. The coffee is not really good but the waiters still serve in the same uniforms they did a long time ago. And it is full of locals on top of that.

Shimla
Than we walked down the bazaar. Lots of food places, cheap hotels and shopping shopping shopping.

Shimla
Time to start fixing that house…

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla
This is not really the best way to present the goods!

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla

Shimla
And back to the hotel. Do you see the little red dot in the forest on the right? The Monkey Temple! This is where I take you in the next post!