Mussoorie, the Queen of Hills, has been a famous tourist and recreational destination since the 1800s. Built by the British, it is something of a walk into our own past and history, with ancient brick-and-stone buildings, a bustling local market and other quaint features. Although an old city that has steered clear of the ravages of time, Mussoorie still has many engaging activities, which are famous across the nation.
As a hill station with pleasant climate and small bouts of snowfall in the peak of winter, Mussoorie is open to visitors all year long, although during the monsoon season, the roads leading up to Mussoorie become difficult and slightly dangerous to drive on due to constant rainstorms and landslides. Mussoorie is accessible via road, and the nearest railway station as well as the nearest airport is that in the valley of Dehradun, one hour from Mussoorie.
1. Street Shopping
A large part of Mussoorie is the Mall Road, stretching from the library on one end to The Picture Palace on the other, the main promenade where a large variety of shopping is to be had. There is also the Tibetan Market and Kulri Bazaar. These markets have a mind-boggling range of small stores, which sell clothes, jewellery, antiques and other artefacts at throw-away prices. The Tibetan Market is especially famous as it caters to anyone who loves the intricate arts of the Tibetan Buddhists. There are also a lot of quiet bookstores with ancient volumes that have been preserved beautifully. A lot of art and creativity that truly showcases the skills of the local people can be seen here.
2. Restaurants And Cafes
Mussoorie is home to various famous restaurants, cafes and hotels, many of which have been around for quite a few years. The most famous is The Tavern, where good food and drinks can be accompanied by pleasant live music. There is also Kalsang Friends Corner, an old Tibetan restaurant with some of the best noodles, soup etc. that one has ever tasted. Another place that must not be missed is the Lovely Omelette Centre, a globally acclaimed family owned business, said to serve the very best omelettes in the city. Other than this, one can enjoy the tea and snacks in the shops right outside the gates of St. George’s College. Chaar Dukaan in Landour is famous for delicacies such as their unique chocolate pancakes, as well as tea and coffee, enjoyed in the fresh mountain air.
The hotels and resorts here also are famous for their food. This includes the Rokeby Manor, Cloud End and the Jaypee Residency Manor, where many couples often go to enjoy a romantic evening.
3. Hiking and Trekking
Going off the beaten track, literally, one can attempt all the treks Mussoorie has to offer. There is an easy trek going from Dehradun to Mussoorie, which, on an average should not take more than a few hours. This trek leads out at Jharipani, where one can take another trek to the Jharipani falls, which is one of the less explored and thus still very scenic falls in Mussoorie. Small paths lead out from temples and away from the main roads everywhere, and as the topography is dominated by hills and water bodies, one can be sure to be greatly rewarded if one dares wander down them on foot.
4. Boat rides
The government in recent years has built many artificial lakes within Mussoorie, such as the Lake Mist and the Mussoorie Lake. One can go on a leisurely paddle-boating trip around these lakes without spending a lot of money. These lakes have been planned so as to provide spectacular views of the mountains and water around them.
5. Cable Car Rides
One of the original attractions of Mussoorie is the cable car ride that goes from the middle of the Mall Road all the way up to the Gun Hill, from where one can see clouds and various surrounding peaks. The ride is a wonderful and unique experience to have with your loved ones through the mountains. Once one arrives at the Gun Hill itself, there is not only the fresh air and views to be enjoyed but also other activities such as tea and snacks and amusement park rides for the children.
Mussoorie has found ways to preserve itself and yet keep itself engaging. One must definitely come here and spend a good amount of time.