Once recovered from the horrific taxi ride from Dehradun to Atali Ganga, we found our souls relaxing as we settled into our mountain oasis. At Atali Ganga, the resort is comprised of private mountain-side cabins. Our was #22, I jokingly referred to the cabin as the Penthouse, as it was the last cabin at the top of the hill.
Inside the cabin, was cozy and inviting. There were yoga mats beside the king size beds and a giant shower. Outside, our cabin featured a great veranda perfect for watching the sunset over above the Ganga River.
Our first night we were surprised to learn that you can’t order a glass of wine or a beer at the Resort. Atali Ganga sent their request for a liquor license almost a decade ago, and they’re still waiting. Luckily for us, the other guests were happy to share. After a nightcap and a game of cards with new friends, we sent ourselves to bed. We were going white water rafting in the morning.
We woke early, to the sun peeking through our window. We quickly dressed for a day on the water. Shorts, sunscreen, bathing suite, runners. After a quick breakfast, we were fitted with a life jacket and a paddle. From there we made our way to the resort vans to be driven to our drop off. Once at the river, we set up in the raft and began to paddle. Our guide was excellent, after a quick tutorial we were ready for the rapids. Our boat jumped as it danced through the wild waters. Both T and I were all smiles as the holy water splashed on our face.
Up north, the Ganga River is clean! Both T and I couldn’t resist escaping the mid-day heat with a dip in the fresh water. We rafted some 20 km, over rapids of varying size. It was a thrill to be on the water, experiencing a very different India.
As we approached Rishikesh, we could see the van waiting for us (with snacks). Once back at the hotel we lounged by the pool.
After the thrill of White Water Rafting, we were excited to try the other activities offered by the resort. I pushed my nerve of hights aside as I concurred the high ropes course. We hiked through the jungle, in hopes of (not) seeing any snakes. As we explored the jungle behind the resort, the joy of the wild filled me with excitement. I found myself embracing my inner Mowgli as we jumped over the vines.
Next we kayaked, we swam, we played, we yoga-ed, we relaxed.
On our last night in Atali Ganga, I received a message from home. My 14 year-old black lab puppy had a stroke, and my mother had made arrangements to put him down. My heart was broken. Brisco was my goofy love, he was my side kick, my cheerleader, my furry friend. I couldn’t image him not being there to welcome me home. That day, by the river I found a struggling butterfly in the river. It crawled on to my finger, and wouldn’t let go. I like to think the butterfly was Brisco’s way of saying good bye to me.
Our stay at Atali Ganga was the perfect end to our wild Indian Adventure, while taking a little time for ourselves. From check in to check out, the resort makes you feel at home. If you find yourself in India, Atali Ganga is a must.
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