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Uttarakhand: A Quick Guide To Kasauni

Uttarakhand: A Quick Guide To Kasauni
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A small hill station rich in myth and folklore

On a clear day, Kausani (6,201ft) offers a lovely view of the Himalayas. Scores of wild flowers and ferns grow all over this region steeped in myth and folklore, where in the local imagination the lines of the Katyuri kings mix freely with the Pandavas and the avatars of Goddess Durga.

Things To See & Do

Kausani is virt ually a village and most of it can be covered on foot. The Anasakti Ashram was built as homage to Mahatma Gandhi, who fell in love with Kausani and wrote his treatise Anasakti Yoga here. The ashram has a reading room and library, a prayer room with photographs from Gandhi’s life, and a small bookshop. Sarlaben, a disciple of Gandhi, founded the serene Lakshmi Ashram overlooking the Kosi Valley. There is a workshop where you can

buy sweaters, gloves, bags, prayer mats and suchlike. You can also visit the ancestral house of the legendary Hindi poet Sumitranandan Pant. It has been converted into a memorial.

Where To Stay & Eat

All around the Anasakti Ashram are a clutch of guesthouses and hotels. The most trustworthy of these is Hotel Sagar (Cell: 09997255933, 09873635370; Tariff: ₹990—3,500). Aashritha Kausani (Tel: 258016, Cell: 09761895012, 08126886255; Tariff: ₹4,000—4,500) boasts the best views of the mountains. Krishna Mountview (Cell: 09927944472; Tariff: ₹2,250—9,000) boasts a gift shop, gym, pool table, ice-cream parlour and a discotheque. KMVN’s Trishul Tourist Rest House (Tel: 258006, Cell: 086500 02545; Tariff: ₹1,500—4,500) offers the best Himalayan views. The staff is polite. They also organise tours and treks.

A number of resorts are located near the tea gardens on the Baijnath Road. The Heritage Resort (Cell: 08958667000, 09720193444, 09412092099; Tariff: ₹5,500—8,500, with two meals) has 18 rooms, a good restaurant, a coffee shop and amazing views. Himalaya Darshan Resort (Cell: 09719247224, 097584 42888; Tariff: ₹4,000—9,000, with two meals) offers eight cottages. Divya Darshan Ashraya Resort (Cell: 09756694250; Tariff: ₹1,550— 2,500) offers rooms and cottages, a restaurant and guided treks. Garden Restaurant and Yogi Restaurant on the Mall, and Hill Queen and Saurabh offer vegetarian Punjabi, Gujarati and sometimes Kumaoni cuisine. Try the ubiquitous tea shacks that serve cups of sweet milky tea, and everything from buttered toast and omelette to delicious pakoras and paranthas.

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