Mount Abu: The Only Hill Station In The Desert State Of India

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mount abu

Mount Abu: The Only Hill Station In The Desert State Of India

The cool breeze brushing across my face was an indication that we were soon approaching our destination. And this transition was not only a treat for the tactile senses, but also for the visual senses, as I witness a backdrop of rocky cliffs interspersed with colorful bouts of bougainvillea in all imaginable hues of the rainbow. It’s hard to take your eyes off the window, I wonder. So when we finally reached Mount Abu and checked into our hotel room, my heart was itching to go out and explore. Accompanied by good walking shoes and a hungry tummy, we set forward to explore what this place has to offer.




With plenty of time at hand and plentiful of new roads to be discovered, we decided to walk our way upto Nakki lake and Sunset Point (which we later realise is not the ‘main’ one!). And being a hard-core foodie, here comes my favourite part-the route is studded with all sorts of shops and ‘thelas’ selling everything right from Chana Zor Garam to sinfully delicious Rabdi (Ah!). Stocking up on our energy levels with these delectable treats is a requisite, as what awaits us is hours of nonstop walking, coupled with soaking in the cool air of Mount Abu and taking in the scenery that looks straight out of a fairy tale. All geared up, we tread upon these new roads, frequently lose our way, ask for directions, whine at the seemingly never-ending distance yet happily take in the breathtaking views, and ultimately reach the spot. Only after coming back to the hotel room do we realise that we have been walking continuously for almost five hours! Time for some replenishment!

At Mount Abu, you have fancy dining options and various thalis on offer, such as Rajasthani Thali, Gujarati Thali, etc. which are slightly pricey. But if you are like me and prefer hearty meals for fewer bucks, I would suggest the Abu Bhojanalya, a modest dhaba that serves filling thalis for just 80 bucks! The tamatar sev, a tangy preparation of tomatoes and a namkeen called Sev is a must-have for all the spice lovers. And continuing our walking expedition, we go out looking for some meetha paan to end our meal!

Mount Abu has something to appeal to the unique traveller in you. With a plethora of awe-inspiring landscapes and scenic roads it is pure bliss for nature enthusiasts and family vacationers alike. If an adrenaline rush is what you need, you could go trekking or hiking here. For all the foodies out there who crave for local treats, you could go food-hunting just like I did. And if you are a divinity seeker, you can visit the various temples here-like the Dilwara Jain Temple, Adhar Devi Temple, and Achaleshwar Mahadev Temple. Perhaps a moment of solitude drowned in the varying colours of the sunset at Sunset Point is what your heart longs for. There is something for everyone here!




This is one trip that will remain close to my heart, for it has shown me the true essence of travel. Travel is not about checking off things from a list, but about letting ourselves meander through strange nooks and paths, and in the process absorbing new experiences that come our way. Travel, in short, is all about losing and finding yourself, all over again!

-Written By Vinita Srinivasan

 

More Articles By Vinita: A Foodie On The Loose In Pondicherry


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A Foodie On The Loose In Pondicherry

We all love food, but how far can the love for food take you? In my case it took me precisely all the way upto Pondicherry, to explore the vibrant food scene there! Read on to know more about my delicious journey through the alluring lanes of Pondicherry, which all successfully culminated in my tummy and made my taste buds happy in the process!




(WARNING: Don’t read this on an empty stomach)

Pondicherry

A map, a pair of good walking shoes, and a hungry tummy coupled with a fervent desire to explore the local jaunts that a place has to offer, are the best companions  of a ‘foodie on the loose’. And I had all these, and the only thing that was left to be achieved was some soul food that would not only tantalise my taste buds but also make a way to my heart.

Determined, I start my food journey from the heartbeat of Pondicherry- the Promenade beach, a unique mélange of rocks and the sea-shore on one side, and merry travelers and busy shops on the other side. I decide to commence this ‘food pilgrimage’ from the iconic Le Café, a seafront café where you can relish your coffee with the gentle breeze coming from the Bay of Bengal.  As I sip on my cold coffee while taking in the breathtaking view of the play of colours between the Sun and the sea, I can already envision myself happily in search of more stuff to please my palate.

ALSO READ: Hampi, More Than Just Ruins

This task that I have set upon is no ordinary task, and I have armed myself with a map of Pondy in my hand to decode the food scene here. En route, I pay my respects at the Ashram, a place that resonates a certain aura of tranquility.  And after wandering through some roads and nooks and corners, I reach at my next destination-Hot Breads. Call me a rebel if you please, but I started this epic journey with some sweet goodies, which were so tempting that I couldn’t even find the time (or the patience) to click a photo of these and dug into them, straightaway. My Red Velvet Cupcake, with a whopping amount of frosting, and the refreshing blueberry pie found a way happily to my tummy, and intrigued my senses for more. Here I also learn that a café nearby, Café Xtasi, serves authentic wood-fired pizzas, and being a pizza lover that I am, I immediately realize my next stop.

cafe xtasi pondicherryImage by pondicherryinfo.com

After a lot of searching around, I spot this quaint, little café tucked around in a corner, and am immediately greeted by the warm hospitality of its owners. Browsing through its extensive menu, I zero in on the Vegeteriana Pizza. And believe me; it was like no pizza I have ever tasted before. Its super-thin crust and exotic veggies landed it the prestigious ‘Best Pizza Till date’ title! (Again, I couldn’t resist the urge and couldn’t click a pic of this beauty; perhaps I should work on my patience!)




If you love chocolates (who doesn’t?) consider stopping by Zuka, a store that boasts of a variety of chocolates and chocolate-based desserts, and indulge in the sinful decadence that so far you have only dreamed about. Do check out the decorations on their ceilings which they have done using chocolates itself!  After fulfilling my chocolate fanatsy, my stomach, and my heart, both have found contentment and I return back to my room with some great memories!

A big shout out to all the foodies out there! In search of a reason to set out and explore? Perhaps it’s time to pack your bags and embark upon a journey through tastes and cuisines!

ALSO READ: 5 Places Near Bangalore For Photographers

How to reach:

By air: Fly upto Chennai Airport, which is 135 km away from Pondicherry.

By rail: The nearest railway station is Villupuram, which is about 35 kilometres away from the town.

By road: There are various buses that one can take from Chennai, as well as other major towns in Tamil Nadu.

Best time to visit:

October-March

Pin the delicious journey through the alluring lanes of Pondicherry.

pondicherry 1

 

Featured Image By India.com

-Written By Vinita Srinivasan


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