The distant whistle of the toy train became louder as I slowly opened my eyes. The twittering of the birds announced the morning glory. Those morning sun-rays falling on my face, the feeling of being in the lap of nature and the hazy hills were the luxuries I was indulging in far away from my hectic city life. The meaning of vacation for me is not just being in an exotic location, rather being in the unhurried pace of life where time stands still.
Holding my cuppa of tea, while watching the hilltop with a cluster of houses from my luxurious cottage at Aamod Shoghi, I dreamt of having my own house in the hills one day. Located on a beautiful hill slope, wrapped with a thick cover of oak and pine trees, Aamod Shoghi looks like a secret location, far away from the mainland. As I negotiated through the narrow pathway in the forest, walking towards my log cottage, I was blown away by the location.
The serene surroundings of the hills, strategically located cottages and the feeling of being close to nature makes a whole new difference. A nomadic soul like me, who is in constant search for quieter abodes, I had found one in Shoghi. Being an eco-tourism resort, Aamod Shoghi has designed their cottages in such a way that it blends well with nature. The pre-fabricated cottages were placed strategically, without disturbing the forest. The curling stone pathways, leading to the log cabins on the top of the hills make it one of the most picturesque weekend gateways.
Located on the ridge, the super deluxe cottage with a balcony, overlooking the valley and the vaguely visible toy train track was too perfect to ask for.
Well-equipped with all the modern amenities, the luxurious cottage was spacious and designed elegantly. The best part of the cottage is its location.
The sun-drenched balcony was my favorite corner of the cottage where I spent most of my time admiring the surroundings, whether it was in the morning with the rising sun or in the evening with the dazzling stars in the sky.
The Experiences I liked the most
When vacationing at Aamod Shoghi, don’t miss their signature experiences that include the private Jacuzzi on top of the ridge, Spa sessions, private romantic dinner, adventure activities or the nature trail. Each activity is beautifully designed and can be customized according to guest’s demand. Here are my favorite experiences:
Watching the Sunset on the ridge
If you want to have the best view of the sunset, taking the stone pathway towards the ridge is highly recommended. Watching the sun painting the sky in orange hues while enjoying the private Jacuzzi on the ridge was the luxury I indulged in completely.
The changing colors in the sky, the slow transition of the daylight into darkness and the illuminating lights in the surrounding valleys were worth waiting for on the ridge, for the perfect moment.
If there was something which completely blew me away was their private dinner set up on the ridge. The candles were lit, cutleries were placed and drinks were served. The private butler was by your side for any kind of services. Aesthetically designed and thoughtfully executed, my private dinner experience was one of its kind.
I probably had not experienced such romantic, elaborate dining experience in an exotic location like this anywhere until that day.
The holidays in the hills always include the nature trails where I love to walk a few miles into the woods. Meeting the locals, spending a few delicate moments, striking random conversations and eating local food is always high on my agenda. As decided, I along with one of the local staff from the resort started walking towards the thick forest of pine, just next to the main road. The temperature was soaring high until I entered the forest. The peeping sunrays, cold breeze and the chirping sounds of birds accompanied me throughout.
Not just that, many locals crossed my path, exchanging smiles without communicating. The simplicity of the humble people and the warmth in their behavior brings me back to the hills every time. Well, the trek route also includes a few villages.
And to my surprise, I was invited by the head of the family to one of the households to have a cup of tea. I was also handed a bag full of apples from his orchard. The overwhelming behavior of the locals always makes me believe in humanity.
Toy Train Ride
The highlight of the trip was the Toy Train ride I had from Shoghi station. It was my childhood dream to go on a Toy Train ride in India and my happiness knew no bounds when I finally boarded the train that day.
The childlike excitement of being inside a toy train and crossing those dark tunnels was fascinating for me. I felt as if it had transported me back to my childhood days. Popping my head out of the window I was enjoying those sharp turns on the tiny tracks like never before.
Apart from these highlighted experiences, I also indulged in their sublime spa session.
If you are an adventure junky, Aamod Shoghi is the perfect place to pump your adrenal rushes by experiencing their adventure activities. You can access the Burma Bridge, Rope Bridge Walk, Commando Net, the zip line, badminton court and what not. You can also opt for cycling on those twisting roads in the hills.
If you are someone who loves to escape the monotony of life, to live a few quiet and wonderful moments in the woods, away from the regularity, Aamod Shoghi is the place for you. Almost 13 km short of the British summer capital, Shimla, this place offers the best holiday experiences with an unparalleled hospitality. The uninterrupted views of the mountains are a bonus.
I was invited by Escape Route and hosted by Aamod Shoghi Resort
The charming hill station in Himachal Pradesh can be reached via Air, Train, or by your private car from Delhi easily.
Train: There is no direct train between New Delhi and Shoghi. The most convenient way to reach Shoghi is to take a morning Shatabdi Express and reach Kalka station. The journey from Delhi to Kalka will take four hours. From Kalka Station, you can hire the private cab or you can opt for the Kalka Shimla Himalayan Toy Train ride till Shimla. The private taxi will take more than 2 hours, but the Toy Train ride will take around five hours. The distance between Kalka and Shimla is 90 KM by road.
Air: There are no direct flights available between Delhi and Shoghi. The best option is to take a flight from Delhi to Chandigarh and hire a private cab to reach your destination.
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