Date: 16-18 April 2016
Venue: Shoghi, Himachal Pradesh
Done with Shimla? Himachal has a host of other options. During long weekends almost entire Delhi Gurgaon is looking out for escapades. Consequently finding any peace or for that matter accommodation at popular hill stations such as Shimla or Nainital becomes an arduous task.
Internet searches now throw up alternatives. For instance given the devastating tourist pressure in Shimla, small places around Shimla are shaping up as tourist spots with government guest houses, private hotels and as we experienced in our recent trip to Shoghi, homestays. Shoghi is a village in Himachal few kilometers before Shimla. This place now has some small hotels, resorts and quite a few homestay options. We booked at one such home Stay at Shoghi.
How to reach Shoghi from Delhi
We started off at about 6.30 on a Friday morning. Looking at the traffic movement on the highway, it appeared to be an exodus, the whole Delhi is trying to escape. It is therefore no surprise that instead of the predicted 6 hours on the Shimla route it took us more than 8 hours to reach Shoghi from Delhi. The route we took was Delhi>>Ambala>>Chandigarh>>Parwanoo>>Barog>>Solan>>Shoghi.
After Chandigarh we took a 1 km detour to have lunch at the restaurant inside Pinjore Garden.
What we did
We checked in at our accommodation, freshened up and pottered out. Shoghi, what they say is a hamlet. It is quiet, serene, gives you great views of the Himalayas and Shimla city. That apart there was not a lot of touristy things to do. This suited us perfectly since we wanted this to be a slow leisurely trip that did not involve pursuing running after a lot of touristy goals. The well laid broad roads and little motor traffic made this place apt for long walks. And big appetites.
Places to eat in Shoghi
Dev Bhoomi Himachal is a state of temples. Because of Tara Devi temple and Hanuman temple in this area, Shoghi is also predominantly vegetarian. For locating bread and omelet breakfast we had to walk almost out of Shoghi where we came across Good Luck Restaurant. We had omelet, toasts and tea here. After the period of Navratra abstinence this was a welcome break and we did not mind the extra oil on the omelet. There are quite a few vegetarian eating places in the main market and most of them looked simple and clean.