Himachal Pradesh Prakriti Yatra relates to tourism in the Indian State of Himachal Pradesh. This is famous for its Himalayan landscapes and popular hill-stations. Many outdoor activities such as rock climbing, mountain biking, paragliding, ice-skating, trekking, rafting, and heli-skiing are popular tourist attractions in Himachal Pradesh.
Until the British reign, tourism in Himachal Pradesh was very limited to a few places around the hills and some spiritual destinations. The British developed hill stations during their reign one of them being Shimla which they called The Summer Capital of India. After the British rule, tourism in Himachal Pradesh was on the rise with the highest number of tourists in the mid 1980s and 1990s.
Shimla, the state capital, is popular among tourists. The Kalka-Shimla Railway is a mountain railway which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Shimla is also a famous skiing attraction in India. Other popular hill stations include Manali, Kinnuar, Kasol, Parvati Valley, Chamba, Kullu, Kinnar Kailesh, and kasauli.
Dharamshala, home of the Dalai Lama, is known for its Tibetan monasteries and Buddhist temples. Many trekking expeditions also begin here.
The Ridge is a large road in Shimla which is the centre of most cultural activities of Shimla.
Himachal Pradesh Tourist Attraction’s Places
- Reckong Peo
- Spiti valley
- Parvati Valley, Kheerganga trek,
- Bir Billing
Shimla Tourist Place
- The Mall : The Mall is the main shopping street of Shimla. It has many restaurants, clubs, banks, bars, post offices, and tourist offices. The lower part of Gaiety Theatre lies here.
- The Ridge : The Ridge is a large open space, which is situated alongside the Mall Road and hosts all the cultural activities in the city. Christ Church situated on the Ridge, is the second oldest church in Northern India. Inside there are stained glass windows that represent faith, hope, charity, fortitude, patience, and humility. There are State Library and Gaiety Heritage Cultural Complex too which are some of the notable buildings located here.
- Jakhoo : 2 km from Shimla, at a height of 8,000 feet, Jakhu Hill is the highest peak in the city and has views of the city and of the snow-covered Himalayas. At the top of the hill is an old temple of Lord Hanuman, a Hindu deity which is popular among tourists and locals alike. A 108 feet (33-metre) statue of Lord Hanuman, at 8,500 feet (2,591 metres) above sea level, is the statue standing at the highest altitude among several other masterpieces in the world, overtaking the Christ Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Jakhoo has ropeway also which connects Jakhoo temple to the ridge ground and is the first ropeway in Shimla.
- Kali Bari : Kali Bari is a famous temple dedicated to Goddess Kali’s fearless incarnation Shyamala on which Shimla city is named. The temple has a beautiful view, many sites of the city can be seen together from here such as Annadale, Shimla Railway Station, Railway Board Building, Old Bus Stand, ARTRAC, TV Tower, etc.
- Annadale : Developed as the racecourse of Shimla, Annadale is 2-4 km from the Ridge at a height of 6,117 feet. It is now used by the Indian Army. It has an Army Heritage Museum and a helipad. Every VVIP, VIP, or celebrity who visits Shimla comes by Annadale helipad. Annadale is one of the prime tourist sites of Shimla. First Durand Cup Football Tournament was organised here in 1888 by Mortimer Durand.
- Indian Institute of Avanced Staudy : This institute is housed at the former Viceregal Lodge, built-in 1884-88.
- Himachal Pradesh State Museum : The museum, which was opened in 1974, has tried to protect hill-out and the cultural wealth of the state. There is a collection of miniature Pahari paintings, sculptures, bronzes wood-carvings and also costumes, textiles, and jewellery of the region.
- Summer Hill : The township of Summer Hill is at a height of 6,500 feet on the Shimla-Kalka railway line. Mahatma Gandhi lived in these quiet surroundings during his visits to Shimla. Himachal Pradesh University is situated here.
- Sankat Mochan : It is a famous Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Hanuman.
- Tara Devi Temple : 11 km from the Shimla bus-stand. Tara Devi hill has a temple dedicated to the goddess of stars on top of the hill. There is a military Dairy Town here as well as the headquarters of Bharat Scouts and Guides.
- Sanjauli : The main suburb of Shimla
- Jutogh : Located 8 km centre, this army cantonment is near Tutu, an important suburb of Shimla city.
- Mashobra : 13 km from Shimla, site of the annual Sipi fair in June.
- Chharabra : 13 km from Sanjauli an important suburb of Shimla city. It is situated between Shimla and Kufri route.
- Kufri : 16 km from Shimla at a height of 8,600 feet, Kufri is the local winter sports centre, and has a small zoo.
- Naldehra : 22 km from Shimla, with a nine-hole Naldehra Golf Club. The annual Sipi fair in June is held in Naldehra.
- Junga : Junga is the nearest Tehsil, 26 km from Shimla. Its original name (with diacritics) is Junga”, and it is a former royal retreat of the princely state of Keonthal. It is known as the Keonthal Estate.
- Chail : Situated at 45 kilometres from Shimla, Chail was built as a summer retreat by the Maharaja of Patiala during the British Raj, it is known for the world’s highest cricket ground at a height of 7220 feet situated in the cantonment area.
- Badi Ki Dhar : Badi Dhar is situated at an altitude of 6781 feet above sea level. Beautiful sights of Shimla can be seen from the top of the hill. The place is famous for its Lord Shiva temple and annual fair which is organised on 14/15 June.
- Anand Vilas : Midway between Shimla and Junga. “Sarva Dharma Mandir”, Temple of all faiths, is a spiritual group dedicated to Mother Nature. Thousands of visitors and devotees come here every year. There is an “Art is Values” school with pupils from all over India. Classes are provided free of cost.
- Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP) : India’s youngest national park, spread over 700 km (430 mi), lies between Kullu & Spiti region of Himachal Pradesh. The park is home to different mammals, birds, insects. The park now boasts of 7th UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site in India.
- Raghunath Temple : In the 17th century, Raja Jagat Singh of Kullu committed a great mistake. To atone for the sin, he sent a senior courtier to Ayodhya for a statue of Lord Raghunath – Lord Rama. This temple was built by Raja Jagat Singh to house the image and even today, is greatly revered. Every year international fair Dussehra is celebrated with local deities in honour of lord Raghunath.
- Shringi Rishi Temple – Banjar : About 60 km (37 mi) from Kullu is Banjar valley wherein Shringi Rishi Temple is located. Shringi Rishi is the ruling deity of Banjar valley. In fact, before the Lord Rama’s advent into Kullu valley from Ayodhya Puri, Lord Shringi was the ruling deity of Kullu. Shringi rishi is one among the “atthara kardoo” (eighteen chief deities) of the Kullu valley.
- Maha Devi Tirth Temple : Shri Mahadevi Tirth, popularly known as Vaishno Devi Mandir (by localities), situated about two kilometers North from the Kullu valley on Kullu Manali road, though a newly founded temple, yet it is acknowledged like any old famous temple. The foundation of this temple was laid by Swami Sewak Das.
- Bijli Mahadev Temple : It is located at 2,435 meters from sea level and is about 10 km (6.2 mi) from Kullu. The staff of the temple is 60 feet high and can be seen from the Kullu valley too. It is the highest point around Kullu from where there are views of the whole town.
- Devta Narsingh : A temple of deity ‘Narsingh’, situated in Sultanpur block of Kullu.
- Raison : By the banks of the Beas and on the Kullu–Manali highway – Himachal Tourism runs a camping site here. Ideal for a taste of adventure.
- Shoja : At 2692 m, this is a vantage point for a complete panorama of the Kullu area – snow peaks and valleys, meadows and forests, rivers and streams. From Shoja, Jalori pass is 5 km (3.1 mi) far from where you can take an extreme view of Shoja and its vicinity. From some distance from Jalori you can visit a lake named Sareuolsar. It is an extraordinary place to visit but there is no means of transportation so you have to go on foot.
- Basheshwar Mahadev Temple, Bajaura : One of the most charming temples in the Kullu valley, this is renowned for its intricate stone carvings. It is said to be built by pandavas.
- Kasol : An open glade by the banks of the river Parvati. Clean white sand separates the lush green grass from the water. A good spot for trout. Himachal Tourism has a Tourist Hut here.
- Naggar : For 1400 years this was the capital of Kullu. Its 16th century stone and wood castle is now a hotel run by Himachal Tourism. Here, a gallery houses the paintings of the Russian artist, Nicholas Roerich. Naggar also has three other old shrines. There are many old pagoda shali temple also there.
- Kais Dhar : A place with grass meadows and densely forested mountains. It is a part of trekking route and is not connected through road, hence the natural environment is preserved. This place has a forest rest house which was built by Britishers, who liked this place. It not far away from Kullu town, approximately 10 km (6.2 mi) from the town. But it is not connected through road.
- International Angora Breeding Farm : The farm is located 4 km (2.5 mi) from the center of town. Though the area itself is grand and is surrounded by a forest on two sides, and the river Beas on the third, the front of the farm is easily accessible from India Highway 21. It was the first farm in Asia to have a complete cruelty free environment, which included the painless cutting of the Angora rabbit’s hair for high-end luxury shawls and stoles. In 1976, this farm became the world’s largest rabbit farm
- Fungani Mata Temple : This temple lies on the top of the lug valley. This temple is in a secluded area which has helped it retain its original charm. It is about 30 km (19 mi) away from Kullu town.
- Beasar Valley : This village of kullu is situated 26 km (16 mi) away from Kullu bus stand and 16 km (9.9 mi) away from temple Bhekhli mata.
- Solang Valley : Solang Valley derives its name from combination of words Solang (Nearby village) and Nallah (water stream). It is a side valley at the top of the Kullu Valley in Himachal Pradesh, India 14 km northwest of the resort town Manali on the way to Rohtang Pass, and is known for its summer and winter sport conditions. The sports most commonly offered are parachuting, paragliding, skating and zorbing.
- Rohtang Pass : Rohtang Pass are named as such due to people working in CBRE dying in bad weather trying to cross the pass). It is a high mountain pass (elevation 3,980 m (13,058 ft)) on the eastern Pir Panjal Range of the Himalayas around 51 km (32 mi) from Manali. It connects the Kullu Valley with the Lahaul and Spiti Valleys of Himachal Pradesh, India.
- Hadimba Temple : Hidimba Devi Temple, locally known as Dhungari Temple, also known variously as the Hadimba Temple, is located in Manali, a hill station in the State of Himachal Pradesh in north India. It is an ancient cave temple dedicated to Hidimbi Devi, wife of Bhima, a figure in the Indian epic Mahabharata. The temple is surrounded by a cedar forest called Dhungiri Van Vihar at the foot of the Himalayas. The sanctuary is built over a huge rock jutting out of the ground which was worshiped as an image of the deity. The structure was built in 1553 by Maharaja Bahadur Singh.
Baijnath, Himachal Pradesh
Baijnath is a town in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh. It is about 50 kilometres from Dharamshala which is the district headquarters. The ancient temple of Lord Shiva (Baijnath) is situated here giving the town its name.
Baijnath is around 51 kilometres from Kangra. Besides the main temple there are several other shrines which are of equal importance for the local residents. Some of them are Mukut Nath temple at Sansal (6 km) and Awahi Nag temple (1.5 km) the Mahankal Temple (5 km) at Mahankal on Chobin Road, Shobha Singh Art gallery (Andretta/ Panchrukhi 11 km from Baijnath). The town offers splendid views of the Dhauladhar Ranges and numurous mountain streams. Tibetan Monasteries at Sherabling (Bhattu) (5 km), Chauntra and Chowgan on the Mandi Highway and at Bir (14 km).Billing (28 km) is an international paragliding site which is considered as one of the best in the world for paragliding and other aerosports. The site has been the host to international events such as the Paragliding Pre-World Cup multiple times and other national and international events.
Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh
Kinnaur is one of the twelve administrative districts of the state of Himachal Pradesh in northern India. The district is divided into three administrative areas – Pooh, Kalpa, and Nichar (Bhabanagar), and has six tehsils (counties). The administrative headquarters of the district is at Reckong Peo. The mountain peak of Kinnaur Kailash is found in this district. As of 2011, it is the second least populous district of Himachal Pradesh (out of 12 districts), after Lahaul and Spiti.
Sangla, Himachal Pradesh
Sangla is a town in the Baspa Valley, also referred to as the Sangla valley, in the Kinnaur District of Himachal Pradesh, India, close to the Tibetan border.
Being located at center of the Baspa valley, Sangla is the locus of exploration and trekking trails.
- Kamru Fort
- Lake and Dam, Kupa
- Badrinath Temple, Kamru
- Bering Nag Temple, Sangla
- Chitkul Mathi Temple
- Piri Nages Temple, Sapni
- Rupin Valley Trek
- Sangla Kande Trek
- Charang Chitkul Trek
Kalpa, Himachal Pradesh
Kalpa is a small village in the Sutlej river valley, above Reckong Peo in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, Northern India, in the Indian Himalaya Inhabited by kinnauri people and known for its apple orchards. Apples are a major cash-crop for the region. The local inhabitants follow a syncretism of Hinduism and Buddhism, and many temples in Kalpa are dedicated to both Hindu and Buddhist gods and goddesses. The average literacy rate of Kalpa is around 83.75%. India’s first ever voter Shyam Saran Negi also belongs to Kalpa.
Nako, Himachal Pradesh
Nako is a village in the Himalayas of northern India, located near the Indo-China border in the Trans-Himalayan region of Kinnaur district in Himachal Pradesh, Nako Lakeis a prominent feature here where it borders the village. Nako Monastery, dated to 1025, is located in the village as well as several other Buddhist chortens.
Chitkul, Himachal Pradesh
Chitkul (or Chittkul) is a village in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh. During winters, the place mostly remains covered with the snow and the inhabitants move to lower regions of Himachal.
According to a recent study by Centre of Atmospheric Sciences at IIT Delhi, Chitkul has the cleanest air in India.
Of particular interest at Chitkul are its houses with either slate or wooden plank roofs, a Buddhist temple and a small tower. However, there has been an increased use of tin-roofs, especially the high school and the army/ ITBP barracks.
The Kagyupa temple has a highly valued old image of the Shakyamuni Buddha, a Wheel of Life mandala and four Directional Kings on either side of the door. Chitkul is practically the last point of the famous Kinner Kailash Parikarma as one can hitch a hike from here onwards.
After one crosses over the 5,242 m high Charang Pass, it is a long and steep run down through slithery scree slopes to Chitkul (3,450 m). The powerful goddess of Chitkul is the only non-Buddhist deity to which respect must be paid by the Parikarma pilgrims. It is believed that the local Deity is related to the Deity of Gangotri and till recently the locals would carry the Deity to Gangotri on foot over high mountain passes. Chitkul is situated around 40 km from Karcham, the place where road bifurcates from Hindustan-Tibet Road (NH 22). The Sangla Valley is a delight for nature lovers; especially the stretch after Raksham and right up to Chitkul. The valley is extremely beautiful, on the left bank of the Baspa River are snow-clad mountains and on the right bank the whole terrain is full of apple orchards and wooden houses.
Chitkul is start point for Lamkhaga pass trek and Borasu pass trek. Nagasthi ITBP post is 4 km and Ranikanda meadows is 10 km trek from Chitkul.
Reckong Peo, Himachal Pradesh
Reckong Peo, also spelled Rekong Peo or simply known as Peo by the local inhabitants, is headquarters of Kinnaur district, one of the twelve administrative districts of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh.
At a height of 2,290 metres (7,513 feet), Reckong Peo is 260 kilometres (162 miles) from Shimla, and seven kilometres (4⅓ miles) from Powari.
Earlier Kalpa was the headquarters later changed to Reckong Peo, named after group of people who used to own this place in ancient times.
Reckong Peo is also the commercial and administrative centre of the Kinnaur district as biggest market of entire district is located here and all important governmental as well as administrative offices are located at Reckong Peo. Tourists can take buses to visit all the important villages and other places of district from HRTC Bus Stand at Reckong peo.
Karsog, Himachal Pradesh
Karsog is a small town and nagar panchyat situated in the lap of the Himalayas, near Shimla, at a height of 1,404 metres. It is in the 7th Karsog subdivision of the Mandi district in Himachal Pradesh in India. It lies in the Pir Panjal range of the Himalayas bordering the Shimla and Kullu districts.
Places to Visit near Karsog Valley
Shikari Devi Temple is near to Karsog valley. Shikari Devi Temple is situated at the height of 3359 m. Shikari Devi can be accessible by two ways from Karsog and Janjehli.
Janjehli and Karsog are popular for adventure activities like trekking, night safari, and mountaineering. Shikari Devi is at a distance of 11 km from Janjehli and 14 km from a place known as Bakhrot near Karsog. At night there are some amazing views of lights from the houses on the nearby mountain ranges like Pir Panjal and Hatu ranges.
Tattapani is known for its Hot Springs and is about 52 km from Shimla on the way to Karsog valley. This place is also a famous tourist spot. Here you can see the mesmerizing view of Satluj River flowing through the mountains.
Satluj River through the mountains at Tattapani You can feel the thrill and speed of the cold river. This one is perfect place for outdoor activities like river rafting, mountain biking, adventure park, trekking and camping, fishing and horse riding etc. River rafting in the Satluj Culture and Food A variety of crops are grown up there and land is very fertile. Apple, wheat, corn, rice, potato, pea are the main crops. Pahari and Hindi are widely spoken languages in the region. Apple is major source of income for many people in the valley. Apple of Karsog valley is famous all over the country. Climate remains pleasant most of the time during the year. Due to chilled weather in the 7-8 months in the year dhatus, shawls and woolen jacket are the main clothing of most of people in the valley.
Dalhousie, Himachal Pradesh
Dalhousie is a hill station in Chamba district, in the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. It is situated on 5 hills and has an elevation of 1,970 metres above sea level.
Dalhousie is a quiet hill station with little nightlife, best suited for people who want to de-stress, who like the quiet, serene atmosphere, and for honeymooners, ideal for long walks picnics and treks. It is not recommended for people who want discos, malls and multiplexes. While there is plenty to do, see and experience, Dalhousie exudes an old-world charm and it almost seems like it hasn’t quite caught up with the rest of the world.
- Ahla Water Tank : The main water tank in the area, holding 100,000 gallons.
- Chamba: It is a major district town a little distance away from Dalhousie and is the seat of the former princely State of Chamba. It has a number of attractions including a major museum, restaurants, etc.
- Church : It is next to the post office and police post in G.P.O.
- Dainkund Walk : A gentle, sloping walk near an Air Force base in Dalhousie, leading to a Hindu temple.
- Ganji Pahadi Walk : It is called Ganji Pahadi (ganji means bald, pahadi means hill) because there are no trees on the summit of the hill and it looks like it’s got a bald patch at the top. You can ask a local how to get there. It is a long walk of at least an hour, but quite pleasant.
- Kala Tope Rest House : It’s on the way to Khajjiar at the toll barrier for Kala Tope, a road to the left of the barrier leads to the government rest house, a nice quiet spot and a great place for a picnic. The 3-km route through dense pine forests from Lakkadmandi to Kala Tope is simply exhilarating. No cars are allowed on the route.
- Kalatop Wild Life Reserve : (Kalatop Khajjiar Sanctuary). Kalatop Sanctuary was recognized as a game sanctuary on 1 July 1949. It lies between Dalhousie and Chamba at the northwestern extremity Daula Dhar. Dalhousie–Chamba Road runs through the sanctuary, which contains about 15 villages. In 1982-1983, there was a total of 1766 people living inside the sanctuary.
This reserve covers an area of 3,069 hectares. Its altitude varies from 1185 meters to 2768 meters (3910 feet-9134 feet.) The terrain is steep and typical of the Outer Himalayas. It is drained by several tributaries of the Ravi River which lies just to the north. There is a lake at Khajjiar. The temperature varies from -10°C to 35°C. The mean precipitation is 2,648 mm, one-fourth of which falls as snow.
Khajjiar, Kalatop, Dain Kund, Lakarmandi, and Bara Pathar are the tourist attractions in this sanctuary. From Gandhi Chowk, a steep, uphill walk will take you to the scenic Bakrota Circle. After walking about 2 kilometres, the road to this sanctuary starts near the Municipal Water Resevoir.
Kalatop is at an altitude of 2440 metres, and it is 8.5 kilometres from the GPO. From Lakarmandi, a jeepable road through the dense forest leads to the Kalatop Forest Resthouse. This is a perfect spot for a weekend retreat. The panoramic views of Pir Panjal Range and countryside are breathtaking.
- Khajjiar : A stunning valley with a spring in the middle, while being quite beautiful, it gets littered with trash in the peak season of July when a massive number of tourists come. Known as the “Switzerland of India” for the meadowy scenery.
- Subhash Chowk : This is the spot (chowk means intersection) where the road from the bus stand makes a cross road between two roads to G.P.O. and the one coming in from the bus stand. It is also a fairly active market, second to G.P.O.
- Upper Bakrota : The highest area in Dalhousie, it has a number of estates, a residential school, and an Army barracks at the top. The area is circled by a road called Bakrota Walk, on the way to Khajjiar which ends at Alah Water Tank. It was the preferred destination of the landed gentry of Punjab during the Raj, now populated by similar residents from the new India. Some of the houses are worth seeing, but are mostly on private gated estates.
Kangra, Himachal Pradesh
Kangra is a region of Himachal Pradesh. It is located in the western part of the state and in the foothills of the Himalayas.
- Bajreshwari Devi Temple : (Mata Bajreshware Devi). A popular pilgrimage.
- Gupt Ganga Dham : Is approx 2 km from the bus stand and approx 500 m from Kotwali Bazar. There is a swimming pool, and one can stay for minimal cost.
- Kangra Nagarkot Fort : Situated approx 5 km from Kangra Bus Stand on Chandigarh Road.
Mandi, Himachal Pradesh
Mandi is a town in Himachal Pradesh. Mandi has around 300 temples, with 81 stone temples known for their intricate carvings. Most of these temples are built for Shiva and Kali. Some of the temples to visit are Panchvaktra Temple, Ardhnareshwar Temple and Triloknath Temple, all declared as protected monuments by the Archaeological Survey of India. Also visit the anceint Bhootnath Temple, dating back to the 1520s.
- Bhima kaali Temple
- Bhutnath Temple : The temple was built by Raja Ajber Sen in 1527 AD and is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
- Mahamrityunjaya Temple
- Panchvaktra Temple
- Santoshi Tarna mata Temple
- Triloknath Temple : The temple was built by the queen of Raja Ajber Sen in 1520 AD. It has the three-faced Lord Shiva.
- Barkot : 40 km by road and 12 km by Haulage Trolley from Jogindernagar. Barot packs an enormous range of outdoor activities. The reservoir of the Joginder Nagar Hydel Power Project is located here. A trout breeding centre, makes it a wonderful place for angling. Across the river Uhl is the Nargu Wildlife Sanctuary-home to the Ghoral, Himalayan black bear and a variety of pheasants. A trek route through thick forests links Barot to Kullu.
- Gadda Gusaini : The valley is virgin and has not been explored by many adventure loving tourists. One finds nature at its best offering beautiful surroundings, green forests and pollution free environment. Madhopur Fort was also built by former rulers of Mandi district who had kept their arms and ammunition in it. Besides the fort was used as punishment to hardcore criminals in the state. One more fort named Tungasi was built in the valley and the remains of the fort are still visible.
- Jhatingri : It is situated on Ghogar Dhar at an elevation of 6,600 feet. It is 12 km from Joginder Nagar.It is easily accessible from Urla in Mandi Pathankot National Highway.There are beautiful deodar and blue pine forests. The spot infolds breath taking vistas of the valleys below.
- Kasorg Valley : Karsog is Sub-Divisional head quarter of Mandi district at the height of 350 m. It is famous for Mamleshwar Mahadev, Kamksha Devi and Mahunag temples. It is full of scenic beauty and abundance of apple orchards.
- Mahamrityunjaya Temple (Prashar Lake) : 40 km north of Mandi. The beautiful Prashar Lake is located high in the mountains. It is here that the sage Prashar is said to have meditated. On the lake’s edge is a three storied Pagoda-like temple dedicated to the sage. Capped with a roof of slate tiles, the temple has a wealth of wood carvings. An old temple, it is said to have been built by Raja Ban Sen of Mandi in the 14th century. An entire panorama of snowy mountain ranges is visible from this location.
- Mahamrityunjaya Temple (Rewalsar) : 24 km. from Mandi.Rewalsar is equally sacred to Hindus, Sikhs & Buddhists. It was from this place that Padam Sambhava, a zealous teacher & Buddhist missionary left for Tibet to preach his new doctrine of Buddhism. The Hindus believe that it was here that Rishi Lomas did his penance in devotion to Lord Shiva. Rewalsar is important to the Sikhs who have a Gurudwara built in commemoration of Guru Gobind Singh’s visit to this place. It is a very sacred place for the Bhutanese, who are following this doctrine of religion as their State Religion. So there is a temple, gompa and gurudwara, besides the holy lake with floating islands.
- Panjin Thach : 75 km from Mandi via Bali Chowki. These are two villages situated in the middle of thick forests of deodar, pine and tosh trees. Both villages offer beautiful scenery and base camps for adventure loving tourists.
- Shikari Devi : Trekking Paths through woods of assorted trees and shrubs-which include several medicinal herbs-two separate trek routes lead up to this ancient shrine which crowns the top of a hill. Hunters in the area once prayed to the goddess for success in their hunt and here perhaps, lies the origin of the name “Shikari Devi”. The goddess is worshipped in the form of a stone image. Interestingly, the temple which is said to have been in existence since the time of the Pandavas, has no roof, for local legend has it, that all attempts to build one have been unsuccessful.
- Sunken Garden : Beginning life as a pond several hundred years ago, the sunken garden now features a stupa, clocktower, and greenspace with benches. Its defining feature is that it’s about three stories below ground level and is ringed by a multi-level market. (updated Dec 2018 |
- Tattapani : 155 km from Mandi. It is a deep scenic valley surrounded by high hills, Tattapani is famous for its hot sulphur springs – noted for therapeutic powers. 4 km from Tattapani is a Shiva Gufa which has created a lot of anxiety among local populace and researchers.
- Prashar Lake : 50 km from Mandi at an altitude of 2730 m. The deep blue water at this beautiful lake is held sacred to the sage Prashar. Experience the serenity and breathtaking views of Dhauladhar mountains. There is a motorable road till the lake but vehicles do not play in winter when its snows there. A 7.5-km moderate difficult trek amid the forest can be taken by adventure enthusiasts.
For those who seek adventure a not so popular trekking destination Janjehli is 67 km away. It offers trekking up to 3300 m to shikari mata peak. It has several others trek routes but the place suffers due to apathy of government. Nonetheless the whole valley offers you some exhilarating views of unspoilt nature and sprawling apple orchards. Dense forests of Himalayan cedar and blue pines really present a treat to eyes as well as health. Shikari mata sanctury has myriad varieties of flora and fauna. Alpine oaks, spruce, fur and several other medicinal plants are found in plenty there. Wild animals like black bear, musk deer and leopard live here in their natural habitat. Various types of birds including the rare monal are at galore in protected sanctury of Shikari mata. Janjehli is connected by road to Mandi and buses and taxis are a conveniently available and a guest house of Forest department is available for those who want to stay overnight there and a trekkers hostel is under construction.
Rohanda (2100 m) and Karsog valley (1800 m) are other beautiful places nearby on Mandi–Shimla road which are pretty popular among motorcycling clubs. Orchard resorts (2200 m) near Rohanda and Mamleshwar hotel at Chindi (1860 m) are quite good on this route.
Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh
Spiti Valley is a cold desert mountain valley located high in the Himalayas in the north-eastern part of the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. The name “Spiti” means “The middle land”, i.e. the land between Tibet and India.
Local population follow Vajrayana Buddhism similar to that found in the nearby Tibet and Ladakh regions. The valley and surrounding region is one of the least populated regions in India and is the gateway to the northernmost reaches of the nation. Along the northern route from Manali, Himachal Pradesh or Keylong via the Rohtang Pass or Kunzum Pass respectively, the valley lies in the North Eastern section of the Indian state Himachal Pradesh, and forms part of the Lahaul and Spiti district. The sub-divisional headquarters (capital) is Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, is situated along the Spiti River at an elevation of about 12,500 feet (3,800 m) above mean sea level.
Lahaul and Spiti district is surrounded by high mountain ranges. The Rohtang Pass, at 13,054 feet (3,979 m), separates Lahul and Spiti from the Kullu Valley. Lahul and Spiti are cut off from each other by the higher Kunzum Pass, at 15,059 feet (4,590 m). A road connects the two divisions, but is cut off frequently in winter and spring due to heavy snow. The valley is likewise cut off from the north up to eight months of the year by heavy snowfalls and thick icing conditions. A southern route to India proper is periodically closed for brief periods in the winter storms of November through June, but road access is usually restored a few days after storms end via Shimla and the Sutlej in the Kinnaur district.
- Chandra Taal Lake
- Key Monastery
- Hikkim Village
- Komic Village
- Langza Village
- Lhalung Monastery
- Tabo Caves
- Tabo Monastery
- Kunzum Pass
- Chicham Bridge
Kasol, Himachal Pradesh
Kasol is a hamlet in the district kullu of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. It is situated in Parvati Valley, on the banks of the Parvati River, on the way between Bhuntar and Manikaran. It is located 30 km from Bhuntar and 3.5 km from Manikaran. Kasol is the Himalayan hotspot for backpackers and acts as a base for nearby treks to Malana and Kheerganga. It is called Mini Israel of India due to a high percentage of Israeli tourists here.
Tosh, Himachal Pradesh
Tosh village is in Himachal Pradesh state of India. It is located at about 2,400 metres (7,900 feet) in elevation on a hill near Kasol in the Parvati Valley, surrounded by mountains. The main occupation of the people in Parvati valley is Tourism. Apple orchards are also a big source of income for the local people. Wooden houses in the village are excellent example of architecture of Mountain people. Tosh is economical than its neighbor town Kasol. The guest houses and the hotels are available both at the entrance and far end of the village. Alongside the village is the Parvati River, which begins at the Mantalai Glacier within Parvati Valley, which is a feeder valley for the Parvati Valley. The peaks surrounding the glacier include Papasura, White Sail, Angduri, Pinnacle, and Devachan. The village is reached by taking a bus from Bhuntar to Kasol, and a one and half hour car ride to the area along Manikaran and Barshaini Roads and then a one-hour hike. It is described as a “traditional village turned hippie colony”.
McLeod Ganj, Himachal Pradesh
McLeod Ganj (also spelt McLeodGanj or McLeodganj) is a suburb of Dharamshala in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh, India. It is known as “Little Lhasa” or “Dhasa” (a short form of Dharamshala used mainly by Tibetans) because of its large population of Tibetans. The Tibetan government-in-exile is headquartered in McLeod Ganj.
The most important Buddhist site in the town is Tsuglagkhang or Tsuglag Khang, the Dalai Lama’s temple. It has statues of Shakyamuni, Avalokitesvara, and a statue of Padmasambhava (Guru Rinpoche).
Other Buddhist and Tibetan sites in McLeod Ganj include the Namgyal Monastery, the Siddhartha, Gompa Dip Tse-Chok Ling (a small monastery), the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, Gangchen Kyishong (called Gangkyi for short by Tibetans and the premises of the Tibetan government-in-exile), Mani Lakhang Stupa, Nechung Monastery, and Norbulingka Institute, which is 8 kilometres away. The 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, lives near Dharamshala, in Gyuto monastery in Sidhbari.
St. John in the Wilderness
An Anglican church located in the forest near Forsyth Ganj. The neo-Gothic stone building was constructed in 1852. The site also has an old graveyard and a memorial to the British Viceroy Lord Elgin. The church is also noted for its Belgian stained-glass windows, donated by Lady Elgin.
A small lake about 3 km from McLeod Ganj, next to one of the Tibetan Children’s Villages schools. An annual fair is held there in August or September, attended mainly by the Gaddi Community. There is a small spring and an old temple near the lake. Above Dal lake is Naddi Village.
Bhagsu Falls, a waterfall about 20 meters tall, is about two kilometers from McLeod Ganj. There is a cafeteria next to the falls and the area serves as a picnic spot for tourists. Nearby is Bhagsunath Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, also an attraction for tourists and Hindu pilgrims. The Shiva Cafe can be reached by crossing these falls and climbing further.
Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh
Dharamshala (also spelled Dharamsala) is the district headquarters of Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh, India. Kangra District was part of the British province of Punjab. The administrative headquarters of the district were initially at Kangra, but were moved to Dharamshala in 1855. Dharamshala is 18 km (11 mi) from Kangra.
Dharamshala has been selected as one of the hundred Indian cities to be developed as a smart city under PM Narendra Modi’s flagship Smart Cities Mission. On 19 January 2017, Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh declared Dharamshala as the second capital of Himachal Pradesh state, making Himachal Pradesh the third state of India with two capitals after Jammu and Kashmir and Maharastra.
Dharamshala International Cricket Stadium (HPCA)
Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium (HPCAS) is a cricket stadium of international reputation, which serves as the home ground to the Himachal Pradesh state cricket team and for the IPL team Kings XI Punjab to a limited extent. By virtue of its natural backdrop, it is one of the most attractive cricket stadiums in the world. It is also one of the highest altitude Cricket Stadiums in the world. In addition to Ranji matches, some international matches are held here. The first One day International held at the ground was played between India and England on Sunday, 27 January 2013 which England won by 7 wickets. In May 2011, a match between Kings XI Punjab and Chennai Superkings was held here which was attended by the Dalai Lama.
The snow-capped mountains can be easily viewed throughout the year. An additional feature is the Dharamshala College nearby which is surrounded by pine trees on one side.
Bir Billing, Himachal Pradesh
Bir is a village located in the west of Joginder Nagar Valley in the state of Himachal Pradesh in northern India.
Bir is a noted centre for ecotourism, spiritual studies, and meditation.
Bir is also home to a Tibetan refugee settlement with several Buddhist monasteries and a large stupa.
The Bir-Billing area is a popular site for paraglider pilots, both Indians and visitors from all over the world. The flying season is from September to October, with some flying also done in November. The village continues to host periodic international competitions and events.
The paragliding launch site is in the meadow at Billing (14 km north of Bir), at an elevation of 2400 metres, while the landing site and most tourist accommodations are in the village of Chowgan (also spelled Chaugan), on the southern edge of Bir.
Triund, Himachal Pradesh
Triund is a small hill station in the Kangra district in the state of Himachal Pradesh, India. Triund is a part of Dharamkot. Triund is at the foot of the Dhauladhar ranges and is at a height of 2,828 m.
Triund is a large land of beautiful green grass. One can see the mighty Dhauladhar range. The ridge elevation is between 2,810 and 2,875 metres. It is a one-day trek approx. 10 kilometres (one way) from Mcleod Ganj bus stand and under 6-8 kilometres (one way) from Galu Devi temple near Dharamkot. The trail is rocky and cut in steps at some places. From Galu Devi temple there is an unambiguous byway which goes through a beautiful forest of oak and Deodar trees.
Triund Campsite is a base camp and acclimatisation point for trekkers climbing to the Indrahar pass in the Mt. Dhauladhar. For trekkers the view of the evening sky from Triund is a good enough reason to pitch a tent here for the night. The length of the trek makes it apt for a weekend getaway.
Triund is inaccessible in January and February due to heavy snowfall. The best time for the trekking is from March till May in the first part of the year and from September till December in the second half of the year. It is Rainy in June and July but still trekking is possible the meadow is lush green presenting out of this world.