Category Archives: Uttarakhand

SatTal – Serene Hills & Seven Lakes




SatTal, located at about 20-25 kms from Nainital, literally means ‘seven lakes’. These are mysteriously interconnected fresh water lakes namely, Hanuman Tal and Bharat Tal which have less water and are located side by side; Ram Tal, Lakshman Tal, Sita Tal make up the three main lakes; Panna or Garud Tal ; Nal Damayanti or Sukha Tal which is mostly dry

SatTal was one of the very few tea plantation areas during the British rule. Oak and pine trees make up for its dense forest and its a good birding place as it attracts many migratory birds. You will also get to see a variety of butterflies and a museum on them built by Frederic Smetacek at Jones Estate. You also get to feed the famous sacred masheer fishes.

I had a beautiful experience of boating in moonlight – romantic, leisurely, serene and enchanting. I believe the quietude was possible as I chose an off season time to enjoy the place (which during tourist season is crowded and noisy). Early morning treks are the best way to explore the place and its beauty. In fact, SatTal has some of the best cycling and trekking trails in Uttarakhand.

Try your hand at trekking, cycling, angling, birding, boating, nature watch ….. The rest of the day time one can visit Bhimtal, Naukuchiatal, Mukteshwar. There is a freshwater spring Subhash Dhara in the dense oak forest which I could not visit.








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Monika Ohson / TravelerInMe


Trivia: Swallow


Its Surely Summer For There Is A Swallow. Come One Swallow, His Mate Will Follow.

Much folklore surrounds the swallow. To see the first swallow of the year is regarded as a good omen. The sight of this bird indicates that summer is on the way but watch to see if the bird flies low as this will signal that rain is on the way. If this bird builds a nest on the roof of your home, it is thought to be lucky and to be protective against fire, lightning and storms.

There are around 84 species of swallow. Swallows are known to spend more time on the wing than any other songbirds in the world. It takes a pair of swallows up to 1,200 journeys to build a nest. Swallows always drink on the wing, flying low to sip the water. This one I guess is the red rumped swallow.

SwallowSwallows seen @ Baggar. Parent Love @ Gugukhan. District Nainital


203014931750d4adc9d14b9Swallow comparative credit Adesh Shivkar





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Monika Ohson / TravelerInMe


New Delhi – Kathgodam Shatabdi Experience



I had to share the experience as it is an interesting one from a traveler’s point of view.

We had outward journey on 23 May ’16 from Delhi to Kathgodam. The train maintained its timing though we have a good feel that a Shatabdi can do away with so many stops and have a reduced journey time that’s associated with it.

On the way I read the newspaper and happily left my reading glasses in the mesh pocket. I was sad when I realized what I had done and cursed myself for a while on such carelessness. Well the days passed and just a day before we had a return journey via the same train my sub conscious kept saying “you will find your glasses” and please do not ask me how…… but I had the entire process of tracking it playing on my mind. Please note, Airtel (contrary to its claim of being connected everywhere) does not have a network there. So I was completely off any connectivity that would allow me to google etc

Finally our return journey day came and I decided to track down my glasses. My friend accompanied me in the hunt which began with the Station Master who guided us to the Railway P. S. The policeman was helpful and personally checked through the almirah and register to see if a certain reading glasses was submitted to them. We were unfortunate here. He then guided us to the linen room where most of the left / lost things are submitted. We looked around the station for the room and when we did — Lo and behold it was closed! I asked a coolie passing by if lost things are kept in the linen room to which he gave an affirmation and was quick to ask the train we had traveled by. He gave a valuable info forgotten things in Shatabdi are kept by the train team itself. Only if its Ranikhet Express the linen room angle would be of help. Now I was sure I was getting close to my goal. A sincere hard work pays!

I walked down the platform to the bogey we had traveled in. A familiar attendant was there and through sign language we had him open the door. I asked him if they had found a reading glass in the bogey a few days ago and the answer had me ecstatic. They did! He even mentioned the cover was blue and there a 10 rupees note in it. I was overjoyed more for the fact that my conscience guided me right and I listened to it. I finally got them (kept in there office) when I reached Delhi.

So peeps I hope you know that if you leave something behind you can trace it back. Our railways does have some real honest and helpful employees (main ref to the attendant) and a process that is probably being followed.

Now the ugly side. As soon as we entered our bogey (from Kathgodam) we were greeted by a horrible stench from the unclean and full of flies toilets. This had filled the entire bogey and we wondered where was #swachhbharat basics? The coach was dirty and stinky from the starting point itself. With the network now back i quickly tweeted the plight (12039 C3 Low std dirty stinky coach & toilet. Regressing rlys. Aswachh bharat. @gmnrly ). What I highly appreciate is the quick revert and action on the complaint. We had our compartment and its toilet being cleaned at regular intervals till we reached Delhi.

Here I wish to appeal to all fellow citizens that basic hygiene is a must learn. Just because certain places are for public use and someone other than you is responsible to keep it clean, does not mean we have the right / privilege to forget the hygiene rules. Lets make it a point to leave the place clean after use. This also goes for the pantry men who were found using the toilets often and leaving it unclean. Also the railway team need to ensure the toilet infrastructure is proper and functional.

Some request / suggestion to our railways department w.r.t. F&B on board. Can we please have a change/variety in the food menu offered? Maybe like we have on the airlines, choice left to the passengers with an option to pre-book meal at the time of seat reservation. A small pantry in every bogey that stores snick snacks that can be bought by passengers on payment.


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Monika Ohson / TravelerInMe