With onset of Autum this beautiful month October is here when even leaves become flowers. Come experience the imperial and glorious range of the Himalayas and other Sightseeing in Mukesthwar at this time of the year. Every morning is breathtaking in here as you experience sight of majestic Shivalik peaks standing tall as our guardians. Mukteshwar is a place blanketed with thick forest of Rhododendron, Deodar and Oak trees with ground adorned by countless acorns. There are 35 species of Oaks in the Himalayas, and 5 of these dominate the Kumaon region. Of these, Kharsu is characteristic – with its small, thick leaves and peeling, reddish-brown bark.

Other than these you will also see the following:

Alder trees are here, you know these trees talk to each other, they foster rich fungal networks below the ground. These trees have small brownish cones and tassle-like flowers.

You will also experience Vicks plant here, break off the branch of Long-leaved dogwood (Swida oblonga) and smell it, and you will instantly recognise the smell to that of Vicks Vaporub.

Autum time you will also experience Mehul branches heavy with fruits these are called Himalyan wild pear, it is favourite of local farmers and is used in several local culinary preparations.

Late October and November you will see beautiful bright red cherries of Viburnum mullaha or Mahelo stand out in the forest. These are favourite of animals and birds. These berries are also edible and known as ‘Indian cranberry’.

The Himalayan dogwood or Bhamor is so much more than a pretty flower. Found in moist forests and along streams, Bhamor fruits are called Himalayan strawberries – red, sweet and edible they are a favourite of bears and birds. The flowers bloom in summer (June-July) and fruits ripen in late Autumn (around October-November).

Kilmora or Indian Barberry (Berberis aristata) and it is Himalayan superfood in its own right! Its deep blue-purple edible berries ripen in mid-summer and are tart and filled with antioxidants and vitamins. Called Daruhaldi (tree turmeric) in Sanskrit, its bark and roots are prized as a traditional cure for diabetes and rheumatism. It also has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties.

When you will venture on long walks through these mountains, you will encounter delightful sights of birds like Thrushes, Swallows, Woodpeckers and Bulbuls adding to the symphony of nature. You will also come across birds like Munia, Crested Serpent Eagle which fly in pair, mountain hawk, etc. With September (Butterfly month) just gone by you can encounter different beautiful butterflies as you take a walk. Butterflies like Constable (Dichorrhagia nesimachus), Blue Tailed Jester, purple sapphire, Sorrel Sapphire, Spangled Swallowtail, Campylotes histrionicus, Common Peacock (Papilio bianor) etc are found here.

Nature listens and heals here in Mukteshwar you just have to experience mindful living here. So come and sip flower-based drink, bask in the warmth of Sun, experience glorious Himalayas and stargaze in Kumaon Hills counting the shooting stars as they emerge.

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