About the book
‘The story of the Ganges, from her source to the sea, from old times to new, is the story of India's civilization and culture, of the rise and fall of empires, of great and proud cities, of adventures of man...’ — Jawaharlal Nehru. The Ganges is a river which has held India's heart captive and drawn uncounted millions to her banks since the dawn of history. Originating in the mist-filled valleys of the Garhwal Himalayas – a land of dense forests, icy white glaciers, clear gurgling streams and towering mountains— a land which has been known as `Dev Bhoomi’ or the land of gods, the Ganga traverses hundreds of miles through the heartland till it flows into the sea. In this travel memoir, noted writer Ruskin Bond captures the breathtaking beauty and splendour of this magical landscape, describing with nostalgia and affection the places and people he has lived with and encountered for over forty years. In this engaging book, Bond provides a wonderfully evocative description of the mountain streams, the birds and animals, the wild flowers, the natural biosphere, the villages and dharmshalas, and the many shrines and places of pilgrimage — Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Jamnotri, nestled in the mighty mountains —all written with the touch of a poet. Bond takes us to his quaint little world of charm, portraying an untarnished landscape and exploring the Ganga in her pristine glory, at the confluence of the Alaknanada and the Bhagirathi. From passionate descriptions about the pine and deodar trees in the hilly environs of northern India to plain reminiscences of the legendary ‘Gun Hill’ in Mussoorie, or vivid descriptions of birdsongs in the hills, Bond’s sensitive and lucid style and an eye for ordinary details make this book a pleasurable read.