Fairy Forest of Pulga
Hello there! My name is Pulga and I am a quaint little town in Himachal Pradesh. The name of the state literally translates to “snow-laden province”. We truly enjoy life in the lap of Himalayas. I am one of the many pretty villages that adorn the Parvati valley in Himachal Pradesh. And I am known for the fairy forest. In fact, some people just refer to me as the Fairy Forest.
Sitting at a height of 9498 feet above sea-level, I am quite cut-off from the popular family-holiday destinations in the state. The wooden houses capsuled in the lush green forests and loft mountains is straight out of your fairy-tale books. One of the reason why I’m secluded is because there is no motor-able road leading to me. The best way to reach me is to take the HRTC bus to Barchaini and then trek for around 1 hour.
Whether you are solo or in a group, the time will glide in this heavenly landscape before you even realized. During your trek you will cross a creek, marvel at the snow-capped Himalayas and watch the river flowing along the pine forests. All the supplies come to my homes on mules and horse-carriages. You will be accompanied by over-friendly dogs all your way.
As you draw closer to me you will find the typical Himachali houses, locals knitting shawls and greeting you with a warm smile. In no time you will reach the real fairy forest. Well, that’s a bluff because there’s no fairy here. But many people claim to see some apparitions in this forests.
Hike a little further to reach Bhandak, from where you can see the green meadows, river and tall trees whose branches look like wings of a fairy. That’s where I got my name from – the fairy forest. You can camp in the forest in the summer or stay in one of the hostels in the village. There are endless trekking trails in the forests that will take you too hidden waterfalls, wooden bridges and hot-springs.
Over time many Israelis have come and settled in my abode. They have opened up quirky cafes for young travelers. There are a few Indians from other states who did the same. They came, they fell in love and they lived here happily ever after.
You can visit the Narayana temple located at the center. Then you can take a guided tour of the tea plantations nearby. If you are an adventure-lover, you can trek further to Kheer Ganga. It’s 5 km in the Himalayan terrain. Will be difficult for casual travelers but worthwhile. The locals believe that Shiva-Parvati’s elder son Kartik meditated here for many years. From here you can also go to Kalga, another quaint village in the Parvathi valley.
With the mercury levels soaring high in most of India, this is the ideal time to escape to Himalayas. But I know, you are stuck. Don’t worry. Save the letter and plan your next trip to Parvati valley after the lockdown. I will be waiting for you.
Blogger’s notes: The post is a part of the series “Postcards from India” written for the A2Z Blogging Challenge. I am writing about stunning offbeat destinations in India which I want to promote for tourism once the lockdown is over. I have personally visited most of these places, while some of these are high on my bucket list. My sister, Sananda made a solo-trip to the Parvathi valley in the summer of 2018. I look forward to going there and thank her for all the pictures and stories. I also owe some of the information to the land of wanderlust, the team with which she booked the trip and Native Planet.