Home Site Map
Travelling Home Page

Trip to Kumaon, Uttarakhand

23rd May - 3rd June 2010


[Home] [Planning] [Map]
[Kausani] [Suman Royal Resort] [Kausani To Munsiyari] [Munsiyari] [Munsiyari Home Stay] [Munsiyari To Nanital]

Munsiyari




Munsiyari is a fairly big town, half way down the Gori Ganga Valley. After driving up a steep climb one reaches the Kalamuni Pass before descending down the valley. Now that you have reached Kalamuni Pass after a long long drive, there is no hurry now, take your time and enjoy the view. Ask someone to show you the Khalia Top from there, which is the highest point of the ridge. Munsiyari is just about 20 mins away, so relax!

Munsiyari
View of Munsiyari from Khalia Top

Munsiyari
Schematic Map of Munsiyari


Though located in a beautiful valley, Munsiyari at first glance seems dirty, with garbage strewn all over. Gradually you get used to the dirt and see the beauty around you. The "Central square" which is a circular open space in the center is the dirtiest. But don't let it put off, because nature has given Munsiyari too much beauty for man to destroy.

Munsiyari
View from Munsiyari, the Panchchula Range


We stayed at Kumoan Mandal Guest House which can be booked online. It has two sections, the old section (housing the 4 bedded family suites and so called Deluxe Double Bed rooms) is a bit gloomy and damp with no balconies. The new section (having the double 'royal' and 'executive' rooms) is fresh & with balconies. Try getting the corner rooms (201 & 206 ; 301 & 306) as they have two windows with great views. Rooms 201 & 202 always run out of water in the mornings. Food in hotel is great and economical and the staff curteous.

If you want to try something different, try Sarmoli Village Homestay. Pandey Lodge seems to be a clean lodge in the middle of the Munsiyari (+91-9411130373).

Munsiyari
Kumaon Mandal Vikas Nigam, TRH, Munsiyari


There seemed to be no restaurants where one could walk into for a meal, so had to stick to the hotel, which, since we stayed for 5 days became a bit monotonous.

Munsiyari
Nanda Devi Temple in Munsiyari


Visit the petrol pump as soon as possible and fill up if you are lucky, because nothing in the town and the surrounding places can be reached on foot.

Munsiyari
Khalia Top, Munsiyari


List of places to see can easily be found everywhere. The only thing you will not find is that a trek to Khalia Top is a must. Take a guide with you, we took one from the Sarmoli Village Home Stay people for Rs 400/-, who doubled up as a porter and guide. Leave early in the morning, it is a four hour trek, and come back by evening. Most of the guides and websites say you must stay overnight there, frankly, I disagree. Total distance up & down is 16 kms, it is doable.

Munsiyari
Way to Khalia Top, Munsiyari


Nothing much to do up there, it is better to be back in your comfortable bed by evening. When we went up, KMVNL was making a guest house about half an hour before the Top, probably then one could consider staying over there. We left our hotel at 9.30am due to rain in the morning, reached the top by 12.30, had tea and reached back by 4.30pm. Carry packed lunch, plenty of water and umbrellas, as even if the day is clear, by afternoon it tends to rain.

Munsiyari
Balanti Potato Farm, as seen on way to Khalia Top, Munsiyari; I km after starting to trek


Drive to Mad Kot village and visit the hot water spring about 3 kms away from there. Unfortunately, we didn't. It is good to take a guide to this place too, as he can tell you a lot of local things. The beautiful Gori Ganga flows along the road when you reach the valley. If you have a SUV drive upto the river wherever you see a track, otherwise leave your car on the road and walk and touch the icy waters of the river. We saw small black frogs swimming in the river!

Munsiyari
Mehsar Kund, about 20 mins walk from road head, Munsiyari


There are lots of places you can walk to, see the map above for the green lines, which show were all you can walk to.



Munsiyari
Me in Munsiyari


We did not stay at Zara Guest House, but it is a highly recommended place on travel websites. From outside though, considering it is just a building on the road, with no garden or parking place, seems not so good. Probably their service must be excellent. As we drove by we could see clearly into the rooms on ground floor. Personally, would not stay in such a place.



Munsiyari
Zara Resort, Munsiyari


A Must visit is the women's self help group Market Saras and the independent women's group Maati (Contact Rekha or Basanti at +91 5961 211158, +91 9410978123 and +91 9456340309). They offer a variety of traditional and hand crafted wool products like Shawls, carpets and beautiful Ramsarans. Products made of the rare, light and warm Pashmina are also available. Wild and cultivated Himalayan herbs like Jumbo (Dried Chives), Thoya (Caraway), Timur (Zanthoxylum), Chippi (Angelica) and many others are on offer. Also do visit the Tribal Museum, which is a unique place.

Munsiyari
Tribal Museum, Munsiyari


We stayed in Munsiyari for 5 nights, and wished we could have spent a few days more. It takes a while to imbibe the place in you, a two day visit is of little use.

Munsiyari
Saras Emporium, Munsiyari






[Home] [Planning] [Map]
[Kausani] [Suman Royal Resort] [Kausani To Munsiyari] [Munsiyari] [Munsiyari Home Stay] [Munsiyari To Nanital]