A walk along the mall, at any point during the day, is an exhilarating experience. The throng of tourist, coupled with the vehicular traffic, may not make your peregrinations as soothing and as trouble-free as you would like it to be. Barring these mis-adventures as you take in the ubiquitous stalls and kiosks along the way, you will find your walk rather enjoyable.
The entire stretch of the Mall, starting from Library Point and going up to the Picture Palace, is a good 2 kms walk. However, as you stroll along you will hardly feel the distance owing to the variety of life that you witness.
In one corner you may notice a barber giving a swift haircut to a hapless country bumpkin while his colleagues wait for their customer for a body massage. At another point you will see a cluster of horses with their owners urging you to take a trip along Camel Back Road to Lal Tibba. Further on, you will be drawn to a woman making fire-roasted corn-cob (‘bhutta’) edible while, at the same time, she minds her baby. If the aroma of meat meets your nostrils, look further ahead to see a man preparing chicken ‘tikka’ over smoldering charcoal kept alive ingeniously by the use of a small electric fan.
If you hear haggling, look no further than a make-shift kiosk selling woolen garments. A throng of ladies may be seen choosing the most colourful of woolen scarves, caps, sweaters and cardigans.
As you walk along, you cannot but help notice the once legendary ‘Whispering Windows’ hotel. In days of yore this was the ultimate joint to be seen in and to dine. A little further on, almost in a cul-de-sac, you will notice four famous restaurants vying with one another to entice you, ‘Nirula’s’, ‘Domino’s’, ‘Café Coffee Day’ and ‘The Rice Bowl’. If that was not enough, another Chinese restaurant, ‘Kalsang’ hits you in the eye with its bright red exterior. Next to it stands, ‘Le-Chef’, the restaurant whose tag line is ‘Indian by Birth, Punjabi by Nature’. Not to be missed is ‘Howard’, the circular revolving restaurant. As dusk falls, the Mall acquires a mystic charm. The air is pregnant with romance and expectations.
While at the Mall you cannot miss the Central Methodist Church at Kulri, established in 1885. Built sturdily of stone, this massive edifies is an oasis of peace from the throng of the tourist trampling up and down the Mall.
Whatever glorious stories you have heard of Kempty Falls belongs to an era when concretisation had not taken place. In the name of improvement and facilities, this gorgeous falls has been totally ruined. A giant trolley, an incongruous temple, innumerable houses and some odd concrete platforms totally obscure the view of the falls. Do check out this video at VirtualTourist.
What is incomprehensible is the need to build facilities right up to touching distance of the falls by the authorities. The entire scene is ruined. It is like going up right close to a painting instead of stepping back and admiring the entire view. Such facilities could easily have been built on the opposite side of the falls, leaving the view uncluttered. You may get your photo but it will be of a falls hemmed in by man-made madness instead of Nature’s gracious gift formed by the Ringaul river.
All is not lost, however. As you wend you way back with a heavy heart, lean out of your left-side window and see Kempty Falls in all its glory! From an adequate distance, you will appreciate the three-tired Falls better. Whatever aberrations appear in your carefully composed photo may well be taken care of by photoshopping it. And if you wish to enjoy the Falls in the early morning light, there are a few budget hotels nearby.
Library Point is the hub of all activity in Mussoorie. This was the place you first woke up to in the wee hours of the morning if you have undertaken the bus route from ISBT (Inter State Bus Terminal), Delhi, in days of yore. It is now the most cacophonous place in entire Mussoorie. All drivers in Mussoorie appear to simply love the sound of the horn of their vehicle. Some of them lean forward, rest their elbows on the horn and doze off. Horns full blast in this video at VirtualTourist.
Straight ahead is the Mussoorie Library (from which the place gets its name), established in 1843, just below the once opulent Savoy Hotel. The first floor consists of the library while the ground floor houses a number of shops. To your left is the Bandstand, an ornate circular structure where, once upon a time, a military band would play for about an hour every Wednesday and Saturday evening.
The road to your left (Blucher’s Hill) leads to Savoy Hotel and beyond, the one to your right takes you to Happy Valley and to Company Gardens. The one, a little to your 5 o’clock, is the Mall.
As you enter Library Point from the plains below, you’ll see an arched gate welcoming you. Check out the inlaid relief of the three wise monkeys (Hear no Evil, Speak no Evil, See no Evil) on the arch. They are also known as the ‘No Evil Monkeys’, ‘Three Wise Monkeys, ’‘Mystic Monkeys, Morality Monkeys’. For more information on them you may like to follow this link:
As you stroll along the Mall you cannot help but notice the graceful sweep of the Doon valley stretched out below. The houses, the terraced cultivation, the road slithering and snaking down, the rolling hills, the fleecy clouds – all add to the charm of the exquisite scenery. But it is the gracefulness of the sweep that catches the eye. You feel you could take a sufficiently large piece of tin, make yourself comfortable on it and gleefully glide down to the valley below – just as you swept down the slide in your schoolyard.
As dusk falls, the magic begins. First a small light goes on in the valley below, then another, then the next. And so on, until the entire Doon is but a carpet of light, iridescent, shimmering, enchanting.
As John Northam wrote in his guide book more than a century ago:
“The eye never tires at looking down upon the Dun, with its multitude of lovely detail,
and commanding, as the visitor does, the view from an altitude of from 6,000 to 7,000
feet, the effect is charming, and, under some conditions of the atmosphere, enchanting.
Description is beyond the power of the pen.”
Strolling in the mall is the one of the best way to spend time,shop ,sit around or eat along the roadside stalls.
Just follow the road from the mall ..take left from green restaurant.this road leads towards camel's back road.The scenery is very beautiful .
These pictures of Badrinath Range were taken by my Handycam, which has a ZOOm Range of 120X in Digital. But it too gives us a better view.