When the whole country would be celebrating Independence Day on August 15, contrast to joining the celebrations; people of nation’s capital Delhi are planning vacation tours to hill stations.
Tour booking request to Ladakh, Manali, Shimla, Dalhousie, Kinnaur and Spiti are pouring in from everywhere in the country, mostly from Delhi. According to hoteliers and travel agents, they are receiving thousands of booking enquiries for this Independence Day. August 13 being second Saturday and August 14 a Sunday, next weekend is the best time for people to enjoy three day-long holiday. By not having the sense of August 15 celebrations, residents of Delhi are first in queue to take advantage of this moment.
August 12 and 13 evening being the best time to start journey (overnight) to nearby hill stations, almost all luxury buses to Manali, Kullu and Shimla have already been booked. Bholenath Travels owner Shiv Sharma, who operates Volvo bus service between Delhi and Manali, said all the tickets of his bus have sold out in advance. He said, “We have three days holiday this Independence Day. Tourists are making best of their vacations. Almost all Volvo and luxury buses to Manali have been booked in advance.”
Not only buses, but taxis and hotels too are booked in advance. Manali-Leh highway is expected to witness a heavy traffic next weekend. “Travel agents and tourists are having a tough time finding taxis to Ladakh during this Independence Day. All mid-sized cabs to Ladakh are booked. Unavailability of good taxi to Leh is forcing tourists to book air tickets,” snow peak travels owner Pritam Thakur said.
On the other hand, several people from hill state are planning tour to Delhi to witness the Independence Day celebrations. According to tour planners, special buses to Delhi have been booked from Kullu, Mandi, Hamirpur, Kangra, Shimla and other parts of the state. It is surprising that several Delhi residents have no interest in August 15 celebrations and they consider this day just a day of fun. And salaried employees are at the forefront in this category.