Help: Delhi-Narkanda-Sarahan-Chitkul-Kalpa-Sungri-Chail-Delhi in end May/June

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#1 Apr 24th, 2011, 15:40
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#1
Dear friends I am a new member here and impressed by the first hand information and resources here. My short trip to Puri/Konark forthnight was made easier because of members help here..

I am again need of your help. I want to travel (self-driven) to Kinnaur valley for 8-10 days in last week of May or First week of june with my wife and two kids, 7 year old daughter and 4 year old son. Please help me in finalizing my itinerary/things to do and places to stay. I would like to indulge in light tracking (which my children can endure), some fun including Pizzas, Pastas, cakes and Brownies for the Kids and some solitude with scenic beauty for wife and self. There are lot of threads here but it has led to lot of confusion. However my limited browsing here has lead me to chalk out following rough itinerary:

Day1: Delhi –Narkanda
Day2: Narkanda-Sarahan
Day 3: Sarahan –Sangla/Chitkul (Where to Stay Sangla or Chitkul)
Day4:Sangla/Chitkul
Day5: Chitkul-Kalpa
Day 6: Kalpa
Day 7: Kalpa to Sungri (Via Taklesh)
Day 8:Sungri-Shimla/Chail
Day 9: Shimla/Chail-Delhi

1) I would have ideally liked to complete the trip in 8 days but I can extend is upto 10 days. Please feel free to suggest addition or alteration to the above rough itinerary.
2) Please suggest if the above travelling is fine. I have chalked out the above itinerary keeping in mind the distances between various stations should not be too much for my kids to handle and hence covering Sungri during return trip. I have included the halt and Chail to provide a break in the journey. I can skip Chail if can return from Sungri on same day. Any other atlernate suggestion would be fine.
3) Please suggest things to do at the various places.
4) Please suggest places to stay and eat. Our budget is upto 1200/- per night excluding foods(Some +/- is OK). Although @Shimla/Chail we may have to spend more for comfortable stay. My wife is pure vegetarians but my kids love eggs. I have read in Times of India that “New Himalaya Hotel” past Narkanda serves delicious breakfast. Do I need prior reservations at any of these places?
5) I have 4 year old Honda Civic. Can I use this vehicle for the travel. I am asking this because Civil has really low ground clearance. And I have read here that road beyond Narkanda is really bad. My friend has diesel Ford Verna, Should I take his vehicle instead. Do I need to carry fuel/spare parts? What about the repair facilities? (I can do no more than tire change.)
6) Please advice about the weather conditions. Do we need to carry Woolen clothes/blankets, food items etc.
7) Any other suggestions/information.

I know I am asking for a lot, but I will be highly obliged. This will be my first road trip after five years (3 days trip to Shimla) so lot of quarries.
#2 Apr 25th, 2011, 10:29
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#2

Post

No reply yet
Anyways I am trying to fine tuned my itinerary. Please hep and advice.

25th May Day 1: Delhi – Narkanda via Shimla (Stay at HPDC-Hotel Hatu : Rent 2000/- little expensive cheaper option 1300/- not available, please suggest any alternative?)
26th May Day 2: Narkanda-Sarahan (Stay at HPDC-Hotel Srikhand : Rent 1800/- again cheaper option 1500/- not available)
27th May Day 3: Sarahan –Chitkul ( Kinner Villa: 1800/- and Rakpa Regency 1600/-)(Spoke to Mr. Sandeep as posted in other thread by Kshil for Rakpa and Panchali Resort booking, he says that Rakpa in not available on 28th-29th May, he adviced me to go to Sarahan-Kalpa and then to Chitkul as per the room availability, Please suggest)
28th May Day 4: Chitkul
29th May Day 5: Chitkul-Kalpa (Panchali Resort : 1400/-)
30th May Day 6: Kalpa
31st May Day 7: Kalpa-Sungri via Nogli-Taklesh(Please suggest staying options) I have opted for Sungri to provide a break in the journey. Is it ok? please advice. Should I instead proceed to Thanedhar? Is their direct road from Nogli/Nirath to reach Thanedhar or do I have to take detour via Narkanda. Please advice.
1st June Day 8: Sungri- Kufri/Chail/Shimla (Please suggest something, so that Kids can enjoy)
2nd June Day 9: ??
3rd June Day 10: To Delhi

Please advice. We need to make hotel reservations because of tourist rush.
Last edited by dinesha; Apr 25th, 2011 at 18:16..
#3 Apr 28th, 2011, 09:57
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#3
Somebody please advice … it will be a great help to us..

1. How is the road condition between Rampur and Chitkut/Kalpa . Is it drivable. Somebody told me that roads are really narrow and too risky to drive.

I have modified my return itinerary and am planning as such
Day 7: Kapla to Shoja via Jalori pass
Day 8 and Day 9:Stay at Shoja
Please advice staying options for us and our kids. I have read lot about Shringi Vatika/(Raju Guest House is full)/Banjara Retreat.. please advice
Can the Hyundi Verna cross the Jalori pass with ease. Please advice.
Day 10: Proceed to Mandi
See lake Prashar
Staying options please
Day 11: proceed to Delhi

Please advice.
#4 Apr 29th, 2011, 09:06
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#4
Don't take Honda or Verna in this road. Even small cabs are better than these, I used one Indica.
Road condition is not that bad , fine upto Kalpa, like any other hill roads of HP.
From Mandi you can visit Prashar lake and return to Mandi for lunch and then visit Rewalsar Lake. ( Plan night stay at Mandi )
At Narakanda there is a good hotel at the market center. I have to search for its name. That will be cheaper than Hatu.
All other things are fine.
#5 Apr 29th, 2011, 11:00
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#5
Thanks name of the Hotel (@ Narkanda) would be a great help.
Have you or anybody else heard of "Apple Orchard Farm and Camping" at Sangla just opposite to Banjara Camp. i had called up Prakash Guest House for booking but it was full. Mr. Prakash recommended me his brother-in-laws place called Apple Orchard. I spoke to the owner Mr. Negi. He has quoted Rs.1400/-(with Breakfast), Rs.2000/-(with Breakfast and one meal) and Rs.2500/-(Will all meals). Please advice.

Will driving Verna between Rampur and Sangla/Kalpa be difficult?

Thanks
#6 Apr 29th, 2011, 11:21
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#6
I stayed opp to Prakash Guest house ( it was full ) in Bobby guest house for Rs 1000 ( no food ). Road facing room, backside rooms were less price. So 1400 with breakfast is fine. If you are staying at Sangla market area then few more budget hotels are there. I will try to get those details by evening.

Upto Rampur you will not face any problem with Verna, but after that in many places particularly in landslide - road repaired areas you will hit the boulders. Upto Karcham this problem will be there beyond that roads are better. In my trip to these areas ( two times ) I have not seen Honda or Verna in these areas mainly because of these problems. Even Maruti 800 is better here and I have seen at Kaza also.
If you are staying at Sangla then walk upto the village near river. Send me your email address I will send the scanned copy of the visiting cards of hotels of that area.
#7 May 2nd, 2011, 03:34
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#7
Just seen this thread, dinesh.

Delhi-Narkanda is a hard haul and I certainly wouldn't do it with kids. Better to break at Shimla. Then again, Shimla is a dump. You mentioned Chail, good idea to break there on Day 1. Next day you can go to Sarahan via Kufri without entering Shimla even.

Sangla or Rakchham will be a better place to stay than Chhitkul, which has only basic accom. Kinner Villa and Rakpa Regency are not at Chhitkul.

In general a car with very low ground clearance is not a good idea for Kinnaur. But upto Rampur is basically ok, and you have to be very careful on any bad stretches. Karchham to Kuppa (near Sangla) is a very narrow stretch, but nothing to be overly concerned about so long as you (a) drive slowly and (b) don't look down.
I would have to vote against the Sungri/Taklech route with your kind of car based on what I've heard of it.

You don't need to carry fuel, there are pumps at Rampur, Powari and R/Pio in that area. Mechanics are also around in most places, certainly on the NH, but don't expect complicated repair works. If you have tubeless tyres, great, otherwise carry an extra tube of good quality, just in case.

You don't need really need to carry too many woollens, just take along a light sweater and a heavy jacket each, in case of unforeseen weather (unseasonal snows have been the order since last year ). You'll get enough blankets/quilts wherever you stay. I always like to carry my own sleeping bag along, but that's just me.

I don't know what the condition of the Jalori road is now, but in 2009 I drove the full length of it in a car with low clearance, so I'd say no problem to go to Sojha. I don't know about accom as I only passed through. Shringi Vatika looked nice from the outside though.
You are adding many kms though returning via Mandi. And Parashar lake will be out of the way, considering you have to return the same way. But if you're ready for all that driving, it's upto you.
You have to walk the last 1 km to the lake.


I hope you've read kshil's trip report from last year and Darumar's from this year. Very detailed and good. I suggest you PM them to read this thread and give their inputs as they're more up-to-date than me.
Last edited by Dilliwala; May 2nd, 2011 at 16:32..
#8 May 2nd, 2011, 15:58
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#8
Dilliwala,
Thank you very much for the valuable info..
Actually we are planning to complete the whole loop and cross the Kunzum Pass on around 16th June. What are the probability of being open then please advice?
If the pass is not open I am think of returning from Kalpa towards Shoja and to Manali.
I have already got some good advice from Kshil and am going to contact Darumar next... and ofcourse their travalogue is must read for anyone planing to be there..

I can use all the advice from the experts here.. Thank again
#9 May 2nd, 2011, 16:34
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#9
Let's say the probability exists, that Kunzum will be open mid-June. But as you have correctly figured out for yourself, you need to keep your itin flexible to change at short notice in case it's closed.
#10 May 4th, 2011, 13:18
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#10
I spoke with the SDO PWD Kaza, He says that that Manali-Kaza road should open by 25th May. I guess that is some good news.

Please suggest road condition, distance and travel time between:
Narkanda-Sarahan via Sainj NH22
Narkanda-Sarahan via Sungri-Taklech


From what I have heard here from the learned members that NH22 between Narkanda-Sarahan is very bad. So will it be better to take the Tanedar/Taklech-Sungri road. please advice?
Last edited by dinesha; May 4th, 2011 at 21:32.. Reason: Kaza not Kalpa
#11 May 4th, 2011, 19:51
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#11
That should be Kaza, right? (please avoid double posting in different threads).

I can't see how you'd be better off going via Sungri-Talech. You can go via Thanedar if you want, but then better to rejoin NH 22 at Vithal.
#12 May 5th, 2011, 23:36
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#12

Trip Itinerary

Dilliwala and others,

This is the tentative itinerary I have arrived at:

June 3 ....Day 1 : Delhi-Shimla
June 4 ....Day 2 : Shimla-Sarahan (Via Narkanda, Thanedar)
June 5 ....Day 3 : Sarahan-Sangla
June 6 ....Day 4 : Sangla-Kalpa
June 7 ....Day 5 : Kalpa
June 8 ....Day 6 : Kalpa-Tabo (via Nako)
June 9 ....Day 7 : Tabo- Sagnam (Dhanker, Lalung, Mud)
June 10 ..Day 8 : Sagnam-Rangrik (Langza, Hikkim, Komik)
June 11 ..Day 9 : Rangrik (Kye, kibber)
June 12 ..Day 10 : Rangrik-Manali (Chandratal ?)
June 13 ..Day 11 : Manali-Shimla/Chail
June 14 ..Day 12 : Shimla/Chail (Rest Day/Spare Day)
June 15 ..Day 13 : Delhi

1. Please suggest if the itinerary looks OK?

2. I want to take my own car till Shimla, Please suggest if there are any options to Park the vehicle safely in Shimla for 10-12 Days? Any long duration parking lots?

3. I have hired a Innova to be driven by Vinkle (Kshil’s recommendation) for rest of the trip, He says no pre-booking of hotel is required. Please suggest?

4. If no parking space is available in Shimla then I will park my car at friend’s place in Chandigarh, in that case please suggest a place to halt between Manali and Chandigarh (Day 12) (Preferably closer to Chandigarh, so that drive back from Chandigarh will not be too tedious)?

5. Is it possible/advisable to do Chandra taal with Kids? will it be OK to camp there for 1 night?


Please advice.
Last edited by dinesha; May 6th, 2011 at 10:38..
#13 May 6th, 2011, 18:02
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#13
Hi dinesha..whats the final itineray planned?
i am planning - Chandigarh- Narkanda-Sangla-Shoja/Gushiani-Chandigarh around 15th to 22nd

by the way what are good staying options you have researched in Sangla..
#14 May 7th, 2011, 03:08
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#14
dinesh,

Your itin looks ok (subject to Kunzum La being open), but the Chandra Tal bit could be an issue. Read up the threads on it re possible restrictions on driving upto the lake.

I suppose it should be possible to park long-term at public lots like the one at the Lift, but confirm this with your driver. Or maybe he can help arranging safe parking.

I wouldn't go by what the driver says about accom, he may end up taking you to his own preferred places. Certainly at Sarahan it would be a good idea to book, either HPTDC or the temple's GH.
#15 May 7th, 2011, 17:44
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#15
Thanks Dilliwala,

Vedpu,
I will most probably start on 4th June from Chandigarh for 12-13 days.

There are quite a few staying options in and around Sangla. I have however decided not to pre-book.

"Prakash Guesthouse" seems to be popular here.
Bangla has suggested "Devi regency".
Baspa Guest House
Bobby Guest House
Madhu guest house
Igloo camp resort
The owner of Prakash Guesthouse has suggested "Apple Orchard and Camping" across "Banjara Camp" at Batseri.

Rupin River View at Rakchham

Panchali Resort at Chitkul
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