When the hills come alive

Winter wonderland

When the hills come alive

A  land of enduring beauty, Mussoorie unfolds a panorama of dense forests, temples, waterfalls, spectacular hills, meandering roads and sprawling sights. This pleasant hill resort stands in splendid location of 2,005 m of height around 35 km away from Dehradun in Uttaranchal. Mussoorie’s British origins can be seen in its quaint cottages, its beautiful churches and its Victorian Bandstand.

Sightseeing is the prime attraction of Mussoorie. Gun Hill, the second highest peak of Mussoorie, can be seen in the northern skyline from the local tourist office. It draws its name because of the location of a gun that used to be fired at 12 noon everyday, as a time signal during the British regime. The inhabitants used to set their watches to coincide with the gun firing. Nowadays, tourists can avail a thrilling experience of travelling to the Gun Hill Point in a ropeway trolley. The cloud-covered mountain peaks and the sight of the twinkling Doon valley from here never fail to enchant us.

The Kempty Falls, Bhatta Falls, Mossey Falls and Jharipani Falls are filled with gushing water. Especially the Kempty Falls, which is one of the most engrossing one here. The waterfall derives its name because of its proximity to the village Kempty. These falls are a string of water running throughout the year that starts from southwest of the village Bunglow ki Kandi and somersaults from an astounding height of 4,500 ft. Splitting into five other cascades, the water further falls 40 ft onto the rocks below...

Though all roads in Mussoorie are spellbinding for quaint morning walks, the prime among them is Camel’s Back Road. Three kilometres long, this road stretches from Kulri Bazaar to Library Road, lined with deodar trees and is shaped like a camel’s back. Excursions from Mussoorie lead to Dhanaulti and Surkanda Devi Temple. Dhanaulti has emerged as a popular weekend getaway 24 km near Mussoorie, due to its panoramic snow-covered mountain views and easily accessible exquisiteness and tranquility. It is quiet, calm and serene and apt for those who want to remain pleasantly idle. The quietness of the hills and the stillness of the exhilarating mountain air is something that one can experience amidst the misty mountains of Dhanaulti. It is surrounded by dense forests of oak, alpine and rhododendron.

Eight kilometre further down Dhanaulti is motorable road up to Kaddukhaal. A two-kilometre climb on a hill from there leads to Surkhanda Devi Temple. This temple is associated with the myth of Shiva and Sati’s tandava nritya. It is believed that when Lord Shiva passed through this place carrying Sati’s dead body, he accidentally dropped her head at this spot. This is how the temple of Surkanda Devi came into existence, and is known to be visited by many devotees throughout the year.  

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