In pursuit of peace and mind rejuvenation, my old friend Rajat and I decided to take a trip which would be away from traffic, overcrowded hotels and shops, a trip which would offer us peace. We went to Mukteshwar in the State of Uttarakhand.
Having reached Mukteshwar early in the morning, we could feel the chilling temperature, and then quickly had a sumptuous breakfast with a wonderful view.
Mukteshwar is situted at a height of about 7500 feet in the Kumaon Hills. The place has many tourist attractions apart from Mukteshwar temple in its account. Chauli ka Jaali is another famous attraction.
Mukteshwar is a popular tourist destination in the Nainital district of Uttarakhand, India. It has hilly topography nestled with fruit orchards and coniferous forest. It is about 350 km from Indian capital city New Delhi.
The Mountain Trail
We started our hike just before noon to Mukteshwar Mahadev temple. Once there, we found the silence of the forest alluring in itself.
The candid conversations mingled with chirping of birds and made the journey altogether beautiful. We then found a friendly ride and completed the last leg of our journey via pick-up truck.
The green cover all around was so mesmerizing, and the clean air for the urban junta appeared nothing less than luxury. The spiritual tranquility in the Devbhoomi, which we felt in the premises of the temple, was unparalleled.
The temple is dedicated to lord Shiva. Mukteshwar, the name is derived from Lord Shiva, one who offers moksha (salvation). The alternate route before entering the temple leads to Chauli ki Jaali, another tourist destination.
On way back, we came across Sitla Forest area which is banned for pedestrians, as wild beasts including tigers have been sighted at multiple locations. Though nature lovers can explore this place, they need to be mindful that staying or stopping is not allowed there as per administrative guidelines.
There are some good organic café available in Mukteshwar, like ‘Chaandi Maati’ which offers Kumaon dishes and local cuisines, and Nirvana Café which has wide range of books to read besides a small local store for organic products.
In the evening, we sat at the rooftop for long, from where we could see a totally glittered up sky. We were witness to a splendid sky whose photo cannot justify the beauty.
The Waterfall Expedition
Bhalugaad waterfall is known for its scenic beauty, and the green trek of 1.2 km leading to the waterfall is worth the efforts. There is small waterfall also before the main one, where you can swim in the 30-feet deep pond.
Chauli Ki Jaali
We trekked to Chauli ki Jaali also, as we wanted to see the sunset from there. With the help of a retired employee of Indian Veterinary Research Institute, we explored the campus.
The campus is extremely beautiful with its colonial architecture and greenery all around. The quiet walk around campus which leads to the Mukteshwar temple remains a memorable experience.
Over all Mukteshwar is a place which has all that a rejuvenating place should offer – nice resorts, good cafe, helpful people and everlasting peace.