Tourists head to Dharamshala & Mcleodganj; Travellers go to Palampur
Are you a tourist or a traveller? I found a perfect place for my staycation when everyone was stuck in the traffic of Shimla, Manali, Mussoorie, Dharamshala.. I am revealing the big secret, the best place to stay in Palampur - a secluded accommodation perfect for a staycation or a romantic getaway in this blog among other things. It is a completely different terrain. Paddy fields and tea gardens overlooking the mighty snow-capped Dhauladhar Himalayan range.
P.S. The famous movie ‘Raja Hindustani’ starring Aamir Khan and Karishma Kapoor was shot in Palampur amidst the tea gardens in this beautiful valley. It is also called the ‘blue-eyed tea capital’.
Before I start this blog, let me tell you that we wanted to be really really safe and hence, we had pre-packed the snacks for the road. You can check out my blog ‘Pack a healthy backpack’ for more details.
1. How to reach Palampur?
By road: Drive from Delhi-NCR to Palampur is 10-12 hours depending on the number of stops for breaks. The road is in pretty good condition. The only hurdle these days is the farmers’ protest at the Singhu border, which might cause ~1 hour delay. Try to leave early in the morning by 6 am. It took us 11 hours from Gurgaon with 2-3 breaks.
By air: Direct flight from Delhi to Kangra and then 1 hour taxi from the airport.
2. Where to stay in Palampur?
I couldn‘t find any luxury places to stay in Palampur and I think that’s the charm of the place. It is still unexplored with quaint, boutique, home-style hotels to cherish nature.
We were a group of 8 friends and wanted a place to ourselves to be as safe as possible from the possible covid spread and also to avoid the crowd. When all other cities were getting blown by the media, we spent a 1 week staycation in a quiet corner of the world with no-one but us.
Revealing our big secret: Seclude Palampur (Staycation - July 2021)
We wanted a real escape and a safe place from covid and were lucky to find this gem. Just us at the whole property with no tourists near us but yet everything at the easy access of 30 mins if we wanted to explore. We had the best of both worlds.
A bit about the property… It is set amidst the lush green paddy fields overlooking the snow-capped mountains. There are four rooms on the main property. Bhawra (master bedroom, largest), Jugnu, and Patanga (smallest) on the first floor share a common patio. Titli is on the ground floor. There is a Cedar cottage (best room for a romantic getaway) opposite the main property with a separate entrance and amazing views. All the five rooms have beautiful views.
The food options are limited to Indian & Chinese but they serve fresh & yum food and the service is good. You should definitely try some of the local food (ask them and they will make something special for you). There will be mosquitoes but you can’t expect anything else living amidst nature.
Feel free to contact me for more details. P.S. We had also stayed at Seclude Ramgarh in an earlier staycation. Blog coming soon. Subscribe to foodinza.com to not miss it.
3. What to explore in and around Palampur?
Nature, nature, and nature. Explore the tea gardens, read that long pending book, go for leisure walks or cycling, do random hikes, enjoy dipping your toes in the flowing cold water, find your secret waterfalls & river streams and just chill there. In short, just sink in the fresh air and literally do nothing! Take the road less taken - find your hidden gems.
4. Where to eat in Palampur? Wait for it! 😉
A detailed blog coming soon with a list of cafes and local food to explore in Palampur. Subscribe to foodinza.com to not miss it. Till then enjoy a few glimpses of my Palampur food stories on my Instagram feed @foodinza.
Do comment your local recommendations. Have a safe staycation. Cheers!