2 Days And A Wine At An Heavenly Abode Called Himalayan Lounge!

Empty roads, less houses, open hearts and beautiful scenes. These were some of the things that welcomed us to the lovely village of Sethan. Based 15 kms from Manali, the little village has everything desired by a solo traveler or even people traveling with friends. Consisting of only 20 houses, the village is still noncommercial having only two places to stay, Namely Serthan Heights and Himalayan Lounge and is visited by mainly snow adventure sports lovers in the winters(i.e. November-March). Here you can enjoy Snowboarding, Ice Skating, Snow Carting if you are adventure freak or create snow man, have snowball fights if you want to have a little fun.

 

The Journey…

I started out from Delhi to Manali hoping to see snow just like the last year. This year I had missed most of the winters due to personal commitments. A little research just before reaching Manali helped me zero in on the place called Sethan where snow in March is a common phenomena. But what made me confused was a place to stay. Being 2700 mts above sea level and reachable by only one road that allows only commercial vehicles to move beyond a certain point, I found that there were’t many hotels or lounges over there. And that’s when Airbnb came to my rescue.

The Discovery…

I searched for the places to stay in Sethan and Himalayan Lounge was the only search query that popped up. I straight away called the owner of the lounge Vinod Bhod and found out that the a bed was vacant. He immediately booked the room and even promised me to pick me up from the Manali Bus Depot. The bus reached Manali at around 7 AM and Vinod was there to pick up on time. Crossing village Prini, we had to go through a security check before starting our beautiful journey towards Sethan. The bumpy roads, the magnificent hills, and snow cover made our path worth remembering.

After an hour of journey and 15 Kms later we reached Himalayan Lounge, a subtle structure overseeing the city of Manali. The air was pure and views just amazing. After resting for an hour, Vinod served me with delicious pancakes, bread omlette and honey lemon tea. The lounge is run by Vinod and one of his associates who also acts as the Chef. The food they served us wasn’t high class but the taste of it surpassed everything else going on in the mind. They gave us the food that they were having and trust me it was totally worth it. I was served with unlimited of anything throughout my stay and that was one of the USPs of the Himalayan Lounge.

The Experience…

The days went by exploring the small town and the nights chilling around the bonfire with unknown people sharing stories and dancing to the melancholic music. I met various interesting people during my stay one of them being Luke from Argentina and other being Justina from Italy. The two met in Varanasi while traveling and fell in love with each other. Although they were happy traveling together but one thing that bothered them was how will they meet in future as both of them lived poles apart. We shared each other’s song preferences and had a good time bonding over the bonfire.

Just as we were about to call it a night, Vinod brought us some ‘Ara’, a local home made wine of Himachali people. The wine consists of 50-60% alcohol and gives you a high you will remember for life. All of us had a drink and that was the time emotional side of ours got better of us. The mood became light and all of us were sitting there enjoying the chilly night in silence and sharing our stories. That was the time I realized how serious we are for our life and what we do in it that we forget the real moments that give us true happiness. The drink at that time made me aware of the fact that either you live your life as you want or just fade away in the air.

The Hard Goodbyes…

Next morning I woke up early and roamed around in the lonely paths of the village with Caesar the dog who lives at the Himalayan Lounge. Holding my breath over each and every passing scene left behind I was feeling lucky that took the day off to visit a place like this. With nobody around, the nature keeps you accompanied and motivate you to do unimaginable things. Some of the places were so beautiful that I just sat there for hours doing nothing but just looking at the mountains.

Sethan will always occupy a special place in my heart and Himalayan Lounge will always be the place I will look forward while I am there.

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