From Chandigarh, Manali is at around 300 km and that several routes exist to reach there but the shortest one is via Bilaspur - Mandi highway. This was the suggestion of my father-in-law for enjoying a weekend with my husband to whom I got married just a week ago. We both love bike riding but that was not the only reason to arouse interest, as father-in-law's Royal Enfield bullet model 1979 also doubled our enthusiasm. Early Morning Kick Off We started the bike ride in early morning at 7 am so that we could stop and appreciate the matchless charm of Himachal on the way. The National Highway (NH) 21 route took us straight, except for a diversion from where we moved left towards Shimla. This highway takes you to Rupnagar, Bharatnagar, and then to Kiratpur Sahib until which the road is good to catch good speed. You are Kiratpur Sahib once you reach a split flyover over a river. At and Beyond Nalagarh At 50 km, we entered Nalagarh and stopped for breakfast: Aloo Paratha with curd and 3 cups of tea (2 for the hubby). Then increasing the speed to 100kmph on a 4-lane highway, we covered almost 110 km without any halt. Well, it was this distance that was wavy and uneven, and that a big line of trucks decelerated our bike! However, we managed to get ahead through off-road biking. This is frustrating but my hubby had to give his best of bike riding experience. At Swarghat and Bilaspur Before it was noon, we were at Swarghat, a typical hamlet bus stand. Although there was nothing to see here, one can really have some good food at hotel Hill Top, a HPTDC place. Moving further, we stopped at 40 km, the location of Bilaspur town where we both were feeling too hot but were able to cool down with cold sugarcane juice offered at stalls besides the road. There were two options for us: One route to Dharamsala and another to Manali. Therefore, we obviously chose the latter one to reach Sundernagar in two hours from where Manali is only 120 km. Here, at a roadside dhaba, we enjoyed two big Paneer Parathas and two glasses of Lassi. As true Punjabis, we love parathas but for the first time, I was stunned to see a paratha that could easily feed three people! Along Beas and towards Mandi Past Bilaspur, we came down to the river Beas, which means you are close to Kullu. Until now, the climate was cloudy and cool but it soon started drizzling. My hubby and I together uttered, “Wow, what a picture-perfect place! Therefore, we stopped for some snapshots next to Beas, one of the roughest rivers full of rocks and gushing water. From here, we ascended and were happy to drive on good quality road with scenic spots in Mandi such as the Pandoh dam and Mandi dwar a dark and cold tunnel. Few kilometers ahead, a group of bikers with Buddhist flags probably descending from Leh greeted us with ‘Namaste, which was a memorable gesture of brotherhood! From the Mandi dwar, we reached Kullu through a narrow route having high traffic, which scared me but that fear was less than the confidence I had on my hubby. Finally, at Manali Riding through a bridge bypassing Kullu, we reached Manali in an hour! We kept driving with the river on left and entered from the Old Manali side. The river then goes to the right and a check post is seen soon for paying Rs 300 as environment tax. We enjoyed two days in Manali by staying at a holiday home named Green Vista Cottage booked through holidayrentals.co.in.