Having explored few hill stations in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh, my expectation from Lansdowne was similar - the town will be crowded, commercialized, bad roads, perhaps dirty too, will have to drive all the way to the top to enjoy the mountains, etc. However, Lansdowne was a revelation! It is a quaint cantonment town in Pauri Garhwal district in the Indian state of Uttarakhand. The roads are very good and the pine tree dotted drive is delightfully scenic. Lansdowne is sparsely populated, clean, organized and minimally commercialized. Military history of the town dates from the late 19th century and there are some beautiful British era townhouses and churches. Lansdowne is unique in terms of its interaction with the clouds. One can simply reach out for them or watch the cotton puffs blow in through the window! The foggy trails and the filtered sun rays bestow a magical aura to the place. When in Lansdowne, a trip to the Tarkeshwar Mahadev Temple is a must, if not for anything else but for its "wow" picturesque drive.
View of the valley.
Morning clouds embracing the mountains.
Play of the clouds!
A foggy evening in Lansdowne.
Random stop on the way to the Tarkeshwar Mahadev temple.
Dew drops on the pine blades.
Downhill pine forest.
On the way to the Tarkeshwar Mahadev temple.
Spot the ॐ (Om)!
The Tarkeshwar Mahadev temple trail.
Spot the cedar (deodar) tree trident! This is right in front of the Mahadev temple and as per the priest there is one such tree each in all the four directions of the temple.
Tarkeshwar Mahadev Temple. The ambiance of this place is convincing enough for a God's dwelling!
Random stop on the way back from the Tarkeshwar Mahadev temple.
St. Mary's Church of Lansdowne. It was built by Lieutenant AHB Hume of Royal Engineers in 1896. It fell into disuse after 1947 and it has now been restored by the Garhwal Rifles Regimental Center with the additional display of relevant pre independence photographs and audio-visual presentation of the regimental history.
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