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Trip to Manali - Chandigarh
31 students from Std. XI reached school in a euphoric state early on the morning of 3rd October 2014. All were in jubilant spirits, waiting to be loaded into the bus to reach the airport. We started off this enterprise in exalted minds. After an hours' journey in the bus we reached the airport and were almost immediately supplied with our morning ration of burgers and breakfast packages which we devoured hungrily. We cleared all our formalities at the airport and were soon inside the aeroplane watching Mumbai pass by. After a two and a half hour long plane ride we arrived at Chandigarh airport where we met the travel guide, who was an extremely jovial fellow, and were again put into a bus to travel to Manali. On our way to Manali we stopped at a KFC outlet for lunch and were told to toughen ourselves up for the rough ride ahead.

The ride from Chandigarh to Manali was one of absolute scenic beauty, the mountains on one side and the river Beas on the other was a tonic for our city weary eyes and souls. We gaped at the lush mountain side from our windows knowing not some of us dozed off turn by turn. At the late hour of one we finally reached our hotel in Manali and made the quiet hotel come alive with our noisy repartee. The entire lot woke up by 8:30 in the morning and rushed to the windows to get a better view of the coniferous trees clad Himalayas, we then left for breakfast and readied ourselves for the day. Since we had had a tiring day the day before Sangeeta ma'am and Rupa ma'am suggested that we leave after lunch and we couldn't be happier. We had our lunch by 2 o'clock and then left for river rafting. It was a two hour drive to the river and 14 of us decided to do river rafting.

We wore the riding gear and sat on one boat excited, nervous and holding the rope for our lives. Goose bumps were visible on all of us. It was probably one of the best experiences all of us ever had; the river was sky blue and ice cold. When we reached an area of relatively calmer river the boat instructor told us we could dive into the river, a little reluctant at first we all dived into the river. The river water was ice cold and all of us were shouting out with happiness and excitement. We were all pulled up again to the boat and continued our journey in the river. The river's waves crashed into us now and then and would send us into a frenzy of laughter. We got another opportunity to dive into the river which all of us immediately availed, and then we finally reached the shore. The half an hour had passed by us like a minute and we were left craving for more. All of us finally reached the hotel, had our dinner and retired for the night looking forward to an eventful next day in Rohtang Pass.

The third day started off for us on a happy note. Everyone was looking forward to this day as we were going to visit the Rohtang Pass. About 53 km from Manali, the Rohtang Pass connects Kullu valley with Lahaul and Spiti which in turn provide access to Leh. Known for its scenic beauty, Rohtang Pass holds strategic importance for India. The Rohtang Pass is a natural divide between the humid Kullu valley which has a predominant Hindu culture and the arid, high altitude Lahaul and Spiti valleys which are predominantly Buddhist.

We boarded our vehicles at 6.30 in the morning from the hotel ‘SNOW VALLEY RESORT' where we were put up. On the way we stopped at a place to wear our jackets and extra woollens which were given to us to avoid the biting cold. After reaching the Rohtang Pass we were a little disappointed when we did not find any snow so we drove further to the zero point from where climbed a part of a mountain and found snow.

Initially we thought that it was no mean feat to climb the mountain until some of us started panting but all of it was worth the breathtaking view that we got to see from that height. It was mesmerizing. We were surrounded with snow covered mountains. It was a memorable experience which will remain in our hearts forever. We took many selfies from that place, threw snow balls at each other and enjoyed every moment.

Later in the evening we decided to visit the Vashisht hot water springs and temple which is one of the famous attractions of the Manali region. The hot water springs that came out of the granitic deposits cover a huge part of the Himalayas in this area. The temperature in these hot water springs vary between 110 and 123 degree Fahrenheit. It was indeed a beautiful experience for all of us.

We were too exhausted when we returned from the hot water springs. So we took an hour's rest at the hotel room and then left for a shopping spree at Maal Road. The day came to an end with a DJ night at the hotel. Each one of us danced to glory and enjoyed the evening.

On the fourth day all of us woke up early and first visited the Hadimba Temple and then left for Chandigarh. We stopped for lunch on the way and then resumed the beautiful journey. We reached Chandigarh at night and visited the Pinjore Gardens which were lit up and looked more beautiful than anything we had ever laid eyes on. After an hour or so at the Pinjore Gardens we left for our hotel and after having dinner we all retired for the night.

The next day we were all up by 8:30 and had our breakfast, after packing up our bags we left to visit the rock gardens. The rock gardens made us realize that creativity can take many different forms. We then enjoyed an hour of shopping and then left for the airport. We departed Chandigarh with the memories of the trip of a lifetime.

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Hiranandani Foundation School
Wood Street, Patlipada,
Off Ghodbunder Road,
Thane (West), Maharashtra, India
Tel: +91-22-25867300
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