After spending over a month in Bombay, Goa, and Delhi, when Malini offered me the opportunity to head north to the mountains and visit the marvelous new JW Marriott Mussoorie Walnut Grove Resort & Spa, obviously I jumped at the offer.
I had been invited specifically at this time to witness the rare phenomenon known as the winter line. Unique to parts of Switzerland and Mussoorie, the winter line occurs when the light of the setting sun is refracted across a dazzling band of shifting colors along the horizon. Visible only during sunset from mid-October through January, it is truly a rare and magical sight to see.
So, leaving Delhi under a blanket of cold fog and winter smoke, I traveled upcountry toward the mountains. ‘Twas all breathtakingly clear skies and endless rolling hills. When we reached the resort, set on sweeping grounds in the Garwhali Range, my first step outside into the crisp, clean air made for the most refreshing welcome I could have imagined. Although the trip wasn’t that long from the capital, it was like I has been transported into an entirely new world.
The JW Marriott Mussoorie, though only a little over a year old, is already well-known from Delhi to Bangalore as one of the premier new luxury getaway properties in India, and for more reasons than one.
I had a wonderfully packed itinerary my first full day at the resort, starting with a Hatha Yoga class. Not only was the class amazing, but the backdrop against which it was set made me forget that I was even working out. Simply gorgeous!
Following yoga, I visited the resort’s Cedar Spa by L’Occitane for some much needed R&R. The spa spreads over 5,500 square feet and is all about the pampering! I was received in one of the lux couple’s suites, complete with its own steam room and jacuzzi.
Lunchtime found me being led to the JW Organic Farm for one of the resort’s ‘experience dining’ options. The food was superb, sourced locally by their very own farm; and the view…breathtaking!
JW Marriott Mussoorie hosts numerous restaurants, ranging from al fresco dining at Wisteria Bar & Grill to Teppan, a gourmet Asian-restaurant that boasts a bonafide teppanyaki grill manned by Chef Vikram. However, Trout Bar & Grill had the trip’s best meal, a freshly-caught trout from a local stream, prepared in the confident hands of head chef Vikram.
After farm time we took off to witness the winter line over Mussoorie and the Dehradun Valley. En route, we also toured charming Landour and Sister’s Bazar.
We finally headed to the highest point in the area, Lal Tibba, and watched in awe as the sun dropped on the horizon and the shimmering winter line appeared.
As the final colors faded into darkness above Dehradun, we strolled along the lively Mall Road in Mussoorie to browse some shops and take in the scenes.
The next day offered a guided trek through the hills and villages near the resort (much needed after indulging at one restaurant after the next)! We trekked our way through a lovely forest and came to pause upon a peaceful, crystal-clear stream. The sprawling cities to the south had never seemed so far off…
Although I could share numerous more pictures and experiences from my getaway, it all falls short of capturing the true beauty surrounding the JW Marriott Mussoorie Walnut Grove Resort & Spa. It’s just one of those trips you need to take for yourself to appreciate the picturesque setting and the ultimate R&R. Visit the JW Marriott website to begin your journey to paradise!