Throw me into a place that is said to be the home of yoga and you're bound to find me a very happy gal. Rishikesh, in particular Lakshman Jhula, the popular hippy dippy small village up river, felt like a very special place from the get go; nestled amongst the foothills of the Himalaya, mother Ganga in all her milky blue ice cold glory flowing through the middle of it, chants singing out constantly and incense burning fervently.

We spent five nights in Lakshman Jhula, staying at a hostel called Bunk Stay Hostel, which reminded me a lot of the hostels over in Europe; common areas, rooftop views, plenty of other travellers, a classic, cheap, no frills place to rest your head, with the addition of the most doped up staff out.

Whilst there, we went white water rafting (highly recommended for the phenomenal views you get just floating down the Ganga surrounded by mountains), hiked to Neergarh Waterfall, did many walks along the Ganga (if you cross over the bridge and walk left along the road, you can walk along a relatively quiet road following the river upstream for kilometres and get some beautiful views, crisp air, right up to the next bridge along), plus I had my palms read and did plenty of yoga. You can also walk along the river downstream to Ram Jhula, another small village not too far away.

Probably on account of all the yogis in training, Lakshman Jhula had plentiful vegan options for eating. Also probably on account of it being situated way up in the mountains, the food wasn't as fresh as you'd hope and a few of the cafes we went to were a little underwhelming. However! Some of my favourite, not-underwhelming, tasty cafes were:

Ramana's, a beautiful organic cafe which grows their own produce, making it a safe place to eat a salad and get your greens in! It's attached to an orphanage and school in which the children help out with the cafe and with growing all the produce, and all proceeds are directed back into the school. There's also an amazing organic store called Pundir General Store in the village, which sells so many goodies from rice cakes and gluten free muesli to tahini, fresh almond butter, soy milk and "soy paneer" aka tofu (ha ha). They also have a selection of freshly baked cakes, including vegan doughnuts and cookies. Amazing. Plus they have a cafe above the store which we didn't actually eat at but had many a coconut milk chai and coconut milk banana lassi at. My other cafe recommendation is Cafe Okieri, an absolutely beautiful little cafe run by a Japanese lady which does sushi on Sundays (glory glory!) and Japanese thali plates through out the week. Finally, we found a place called Mocha's Dosa House (random, I know) near the bridge which did some decent and cheap masala dosa and uttapum.

Here are a handful of photos from beautiful Lakshman Jhula!