Captivating Chail – the place to be!

Yes, I did end up traveling to Himachal again, for, perhaps the Nth time! I just LOVE that part of our country for unexplainable reasons. This time, it was Chail – a pristine hill station which is located in the Himalayas, and it used to be the capital of erstwhile state of Patiala. This picture perfect hill station is located at an altitude of 2,250 metres above sea level and is about 45 odd kms. from Shimla. The lush green forests surrounding Chail makes it an absolute paradise. It’s like the place is waiting to be explored. Not only the beauty is absolutely unbelievable, but Chail also boasts of being home to the highest cricket pitch in the whole world! The various other attractions of the hill station of Chail comprise of a Polo ground, an old Palace and opportunities of angling and even hiking. The whole town is spread over three hills with the Rajgarh Hill housing it’s main Palace, Pandhewa Hill housing the Residency Snow view and Sadh Tibba hill making up the rest of the town. As you take a quiet walk down the hill, you will come across some beautiful views of the Satluj valley, winding its way through the valley.

We started the drive early in the morning, well before dawn at 4am from Delhi. Taking the Ring-road out of Delhi was a breeze since the roads were devoid of traffic. All you need to keep an eye for is the commercial truck traffic, which quite frankly, at times can be irritating. Nonetheless, once out on the open highway, the brilliant tarmac of NH-1 makes sure that you continue at a very good pace. We didn’t even notice when we crossed Murthal and Karnal. Reaching Ambala, we took our first break and had our share of tummy filling and satisfying breakfast at this smallish hotel cum resort. The rest of the road was nothing to write home about (the usual stuff, really). The real fun, however, started once we left the main highway (NH-22) at Kandaghat and started driving on the road towards Chail. The views suddenly change, the weather becomes pleasant and the Sutlej keeps you company for most of the journey providing a peek of the whole valley down below, which in itself is a reason enough to do this drive, frankly!

Two days is just not enough time to soak in the beauty of the whole place. There are so many trails to explore, so many ‘walks’ to take that you just cannot get enough of this place. However, please keep your belongings like mobile phones, cameras, hand-bags etc. safe as monkeys run rampant all over Chail! That apart, there is nothing else that can shatter the silence of the wonderful place. There are enough hotels to take care of your needs (starting from budget hotels to real luxurious ones). We didn’t book in advance, hence, we had some problems finding rooms but eventually we did find a couple of rooms for Rs.650/- per room. The rooms themselves were good for the kind of price that was paid – availability of hot water (geaser), television, and all the other amenities were taken care of. However, for food (lunch, dinner & subsequent breakfast the next day), we needed to go to the market, which is a beautiful place to explore all by itself!

Relaxed driving with ample breaks will see you drive upto Chail in about 8 hours or so, and you would in the meantime have enjoyed some amazing views, fresh mountain air and all other things that come with such a wonderful journey. I’ve presented here a few photographs from my travel of Chail, as seen through my lens. I would highly recommend anyone wanting to take a nice weekend break to try Chail once, and I am sure you WILL go back there again. The place is JUST so mesmerizing. Highly recommended!


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  • Rahul Arora  On October 14, 2010 at 12:52 AM

    Yet another ride penned down!! Pics are nice.. Did you travel by your bike or another vehicle?


  • Amit Chilka  On October 14, 2010 at 3:02 PM

    Dude, awesome pics.


  • amit gupta  On October 20, 2010 at 12:41 PM



  • Dev  On January 23, 2011 at 3:11 PM

    What was your route back to Delhi?


  • Dev  On January 23, 2011 at 3:56 PM

    Thx bro.. could you suggest an alternate route back to delhi? btw I reached this blog from xbhp so after reading ur trip logs here n on xbhp i am quite sure u cld help me out with an alternate route back πŸ™‚
    btw we planning a early sat start and okay with a late sunday finish. n yeh its gonna be on a bike. Thanks πŸ™‚


  • Ashu  On January 25, 2011 at 3:26 PM

    HI, mate which camera do you use to click these photos and have you done some professional trainings as the images are surreal and so effective πŸ™‚


    • vulpineshooter  On January 25, 2011 at 3:28 PM

      Hi Ashutosh, I use a Canon EOS 400D and a Canon EOS 7D, for the photographs that you see in this blog. As for professional training, I have no professional training in Photography. πŸ™‚ I have learnt whatever little I know about this beautiful art, by myself. πŸ™‚ Thank you so much for the wonderful feedback, Ashutosh. I appreciate it. πŸ™‚


  • shubhojeet chowdhury  On February 23, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    THE wind was a torrent of darkness among the gusty trees,
    The moon was a ghostly galleon tossed upon cloudy seas,
    The road was a ribbon of moonlight over the purple moor,
    And the highwayman came ridingβ€”
    The highwayman came riding, up to the old inn-door.
    awsome pics dude…wish i could go there ..


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