Valentine’s Special: Pick From These 8 Staycations in Himachal

With Valentine’s Day approaching, I couldn’t help but chart out all the best couple destinations for the love birds. Alone time is all that a couple needs to make the most of this holiday and there’s nothing like escaping to an offbeat mountain destination for it. Winters are still at their peak up North, giving all the more reason to barbeque by the river, enjoy a hot cuppa chai at sunset, and cosy up in bed and stargaze.

Barbeque by the Beas river in Shuru near Manali
Guests enjoying a private barbeque by the Beas river in Shuru, near Manali. Picture by Ankit Gupta.

This and other special experiences await you at Zostel Homes at some of the best places in Himachal Pradesh. Below is a list combined of ZostelX homes and 2 other recommendations that’ll help you with the best staycations with your loved one. :)

Kotgarh

75 km from Shimla, a 2.5-hr drive

If you and your partner are willing to opt for a combo of adventure and tranquillity, head to this lavish home in the midst of woods. Kotgarh is undoubtedly one of the best places to visit in Shimla wherein you can choose to chill indoors and enjoy the company of our hosts while gorging on authentic Himachali food. As you step out, you have adventure activities like skiing through the alpine slopes of Narkanda, rafting, and ample of hikes in store. For the best sunset view in Himachal, head to the Hatu Peak, which also makes for a romantic drive.

Where to stay: ZostselX Kotgarh

ZostelX Kotgarh luxury resort in Himachal Pradesh
The rooms at ZostelX Kotgarh look out at splendid views of the Himalayas. Picture by Ankit Gupta.

Activities and highlights- Trekking, hiking, cycling, village walks, an evening walk to the Tani Jubbar Lake and rafting are a few add ons to the outdoor activities. However, if you wish to spend your time in leisure, try gardening in our organic garden. :)

Pah Nala

12 km from Kullu, a 30-min drive

Imagine living in a dream house, overlooking the mountains and a river flowing nearby- welcome to our ZostelX home in Pah Nala in Kullu Valley. Days here comprise of leisure walks through the pomegranate farms and dipping in the stream for a refreshing bath, a rarety seldom found in other places to visit in Kullu. From waking up to delectable breakfast spreads to exchanging a travel story or 2 with our hosts over authentic Himachali dinner, you’ll feel right at home here.

A luxury resort in Himachal Pradesh by a stream in Pah Nala
Our chalet by the river in Pah Nala, a luxury resort in Himachal Pradesh. Picture by Rachit Arora.

Activities and highlights- A drive up to the Mathasaur Lake or down to the Prashar Lake, cycling (available on request), fishing, village hikes and tours, and a moderate trek to Kais Dhar.

Shuru

5 km from Manali, a 15-min drive

A bonfire-barbeque by the river Beas sounds like a perfect way to celebrate Valentine’s Day, doesn’t it? Apart from painting a colourful palette of green, blue and violet with its exteriors, our home also has an inbuilt bar to make the nights younger. Places to visit in Manali come with a lot to explore and Shuru sure tops the list. :)

Where to stay: ZostelX Shuru, near Manali.

A private room with a view in ZostelX Shuru near Manali
How does this space look for a romantic getaway? Picture by Ankit Gupta.

Activities and highlights- A day out in Manali, Solang and Vashisht, hiking in Rohtang La, Hamta Pass, village walk in Naggar, offroading sessions, fruit picking, jam and pickle making from fresh farm produce are some of the many things to look forward to here. :)

Dobhi

20 km from Kullu, a 35-min drive

Swing in the lap of comfort and warmth with the Lahauli family as they host you in ZostelX Dobhi. Imagine holidaying in the midst of knee-deep snow as you struggle to find your feet on the ground, an experience not exclusive to most places to visit in Kullu. And of course, views of the great Himalayan skyline out the window sills are complementary.

Offbeat Himachal Pradesh luxury hotel in Dobhi, Manali
Our Home in Dobhi is perched up on a hill, secluded from the bustle of the nearby Manali, Himachal Pradesh. Picture by Rachit Arora.

Activities and highlights- Hikes to offbeat spots, a walk through the Fojal village, paragliding and stargazing are some of the outdoor activities that Dobhi blesses you with.

Rumsu

27 km from Manali, a 1-hr drive

A gateway to the snow-capped peaks of Himalayas, Rumsu combines the best of distinctive culture and rural lifestyle of Himachal. Living in a comfy home surrounded by all things earthy and artsy sure makes for an escape to the mountains this Valentine’s. Contrary to popular belief, not all places in Manali are touristy.

Where to stay: ZostelX Rumsu

A homestay in Rumsu village of Himachal Pradesh
Our homestay in the offbeat Himachal Pradesh village of Rumsu sits overlooking a beautiful valley. Picture by Ankit Gupta.

Activities and highlights- Chanderkhani Pass Trek, a short visit to the Naggar Castle and Nicholas Roerich Art Gallery, and village walks.

Theog

28 km from Shimla, a 1-hr drive

A little goes a long way when it comes to our cosy little home on the rim of a mountain in Theog. Unlike other tourist places in Shimla, days here arrive with a whole lot of soaking in the sun with your better half and ending them with a bonfire in the verandah. Walk through the fruit orchards or sip on hot cocoa while playing pool to add to the overall experience here.

Where to stay: ZostelX Theog

A private luxury homestay in theog Himachal Pradesh
Prfect for a romantic weekend getaway, isn't it? Picture by Rachit Arora.

Activities and highlights- hikes to Kanag, Shali Tibba, Hatu Peak and Narkanda. If you wish to explore the tourist side, head to Kufri for skiing or shopping for local stuff.

Tirthan Valley

Tirthan Valley lies 50 km south of Kullu, located on the banks of the river Tirthan- a tributary of Beas. The Great Himalayan National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to some of the most exotic flora and fauna, like all the places to visit in Himachal. Does the idea of a riverside retreat tip-toed by mountains and the one you love by your side tickle you? It sure does to me.

Where to Stay: The Blue Sheep Tirthan

Blue Sheep Tirthan Valley Himachal Pradesh
The dreamy common area looking at the forested Tirthan Valley of Himachal. Picture by Blue Sheep Tirthan.

Activities and highlights- Trek to Serolsar and Parashar Lakes, explore the hidden waterfalls, village hopping, visit historical sites, camping and stargazing are some of the non-hidden treasures of this place.

Hampta

Distance from Manali- 14 km, 45 mins

Glampeco cottages in Hamta are known to promote eco-friendly ideas of camping, without compromising on the experience. Glamping or glamorous camping, as the name suggests, goes best with the theme of Valentines Day. Staying in Geodesic domes or rustic muds instead of usual camping tents sure enhances the experience, generously curated by Glampeco. Below is a short list of what all you can choose from.

Glampeco Geodesic dome in Hamta Valley of Himachal Padesh
The surreal Glampeco Geodesic Dome in Hamta Valley of Himachal Padesh. Picture by Glampeco.

Activities and highlights- visit India’s first igloo village in Sethan, skiing, trek to Hampta Pass, Jobri waterfalls and Prini peak, ziplining, rock climbing, and strawberry picking are few of the many activities that aren’t hidden and also some of the most anticipated Himachal Pradesh destinations.

About ZostelX Homes

ZostelX Homes are homestays and luxury accommodation in offbeat locations, catering to culture, nature, adventure, and solitude. These homes are handpicked so that they offer the best views to soak in on a leisurely holiday, along with a homely and luxurious stay experience.

ZostelX Passu, a luxury resort in Dharamshala
ZostelX Passu, a luxury resort in Dharamshala. Picture by Ankit Gupta.

Activities a couple can enjoy at ZostelX Homes vary from stargazing, bonfire, barbeque, hikes & walks for sunrise, sunset, valley views, drives, dipping in waterfalls & streams, and trying local food & clothes to get up close with the culture.

Writer, Kanak Kundlani.


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