Kazan Cathedral, Saint Petersburg

Monday, 10 April 2017


Google Maps: Shivpuri, Uttarakhand, India
  • Shivpuri is home to rafting. White sand river-side used to be perfect for camping as well although recently that has been prohibited by Green Tribunal.
  • Stay at a nearby resort or makeshift camps close to Ganges. It is better than Rishikesh for those who come to avoid the hustle of city.
  • Rishikesh is 20 minutes drive from here. You can plan for evening aarti and dinner at chotiwala and comfortably come back by 9.

We reached Rishikesh at 2 and immediately hit traffic. The way Rishikesh has developed, a bypass merges into the city right at the middle of the busiest road. We crawled and reached Shivpuri at 3. To our utter disappointment, the riverside camps were moved sideways away from the Ganges. Now it attracted mostly bachelors. We decided to go back to Rishikesh but found a good resort called Bull's Retreat close by.

View from near Bull's Retreat Resort

It was a good decision. We settled and refreshed ourselves and immediately went for the riverfront. The cool white sand and flowing Ganges create a calming air. Now famous as Paddler's Zone, this is the point where most of the rafters start. We simply sat there, our legs inside the cold water and minds in a reverie.

Paddler's Zone, Shivpuri

It was getting dark when we decided to come back. After watching few overs of an IPL match, we went for dinner. A bowl of tomato soup and butter panner with tandoori roti were more than filling. I partly completed my Cormoran Strike novel at the bonfire and then in front of TV before we slept. Next morning was not planned yet.

Rafters in action

Early morning we were ready by 8 and decided to trek the hill overlooking our resort. On the other side was Ganges and I was how it looks like from above. By the time we were back sweating, we were also ready for the complementary breakfast. Puri sabji, a dosa, couple of omlette bread, two glasses of milk and some papaya later we left for our room with a plan in mind.

Here it all begins

We agreed to spend another day vacationing but not at Shivpuri. Devprayag looked like a good option, being less than fifty miles away. It was even possible to just visit, come back at Rishikesh by 6 and watch the famous Ganga Aarti. A good plan was shaping up and we decided to act upon it.