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  • This could well pass off for Kashmir or even Switzerland, when the pristine white powdery snow covers the entire range. True, Auli is not a huge city, rather an extremely small town, with limited resources and even lesser hotels. But what it does have, and what really commands its position as one of the most sought after slopes is the fact that it commands excellent views of the neighbouring hill ranges. That too, without the usual flocks of first-time snow-seekers. The air is fresh and scented with pine and the sky is light blue. And it's surprisingly modern - what with the swanky new cable car system moving to and fro Joshimath, and the ski lift, which saves you from trudging up and down the slopes in those heavy skis. True, you might not be an ace ski champ! But with the ski classes managed by GMVN, you could just find yourself whizzing down the slopes in no time. So skip the usual getaways this winter, and head up north for an addiction you cannot afford to give up!

  • Exploring Auli is best done on foot. Buses and State Transport buses operate between Joshimath and Rishikesh, Haridwar, Dehradun and Delhi. From Joshimath onwards, buses and taxi services are available for Auli. Deluxe coaches and private vehicles can also be got on hire. The most popular way to move about in Auli is by the cable car service which runs for 3 km. This also lets you get panoramic views of the snow covered peaks and pine forests.

  • in a cave here. Just before you enter the Math, you'd come across the Kalpavriksha Tree, where he is said to have attained Samadhi. Dotted with temples, big and small, the Narasimhadeva Temple houses an idol of Lord Narasimhadeva sitting in a lotus position. Next to him are idols of Rama, Sita, Garuda and Hanuman. The temple is believed to be almost 1200 years old. A popular Vaishnava Temple, Vasudeva Temple houses a black stone image of Lord Vasudeva. Next to him are idols of Sri, Bhu, Nila and Kama and the entrance of the temple has an idol of the dancing Ganesha.

    Gurso Bugyal: Located 3 kms from Auli, Gurso Bugyal is a huge meadow spread amidst a mixed forest of oaks and conifers. Joshimath is connected from here via the ropeway. This place is especially popular for weekend excursions and is ideal to catch spectacular views of the region.

    Chattrakund: Located a kilometer from Gurso Bugyal, Chattrakund is located in the middle of a jungle and houses a tiny sweet water lake.

    Saildhar Tapovan: This tiny village located 15 kms away on the Joshimath road is home to numerous hot springs and hot water fountains.

    Kwanri Bugyal: 12 kms from Gurso, Kwanri Bugyal is a must visit on every trekker's itinerary. Situated almost 3350 mts above sea level a number of summer camps are.

    Chenab Lake: Accessible via the Dang Village in Joshimath, this pristine lake is almost isolated. The road is tough and quite a trek and definitely not for the faint hearted.

    Vanishinarayan Kalpeshwar: 12 kms from Joshimath, the beautiful cave of Kalpeshwar is the attraction.

    Bhavishya Badri: This is where one of the five badri shrines is located in the region. Located in the midst of dense deodar forests, it is believed that in future, when the shrine of Badrinath becomes inaccessible, Bhavishya Badri would be held in similar reverence.

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