Dharchula is a town and a nagar panchayat in Pithoragarh district in the northern state of Uttarakhand, India. Dharchula is a major trading centre for the trans-Himalayan trade routes since medieval times. Situated at an elevation of 915 m above sea level, Dharchula is surrounded by Himalayan Peaks.
The snow clad Panchachuli peaks located on the west of Dharchula separate it from the Johar valley and om parvat in East which it share with Nepal. Dharchula is situated on the bank of river Kali which originates from a place called kalapani , as it separates and form border between India and Nepal. The hill station gets its name from ‘Darchyo’ and ‘la’; Darchyo is a white coloured traditional holy flag and la is an honorific term in Runglo. Thus got its name Darchyola later the word changed with time as Dharchula in India and Darchula in Nepal. Hence both of the region have the same name but different sounds in India and Nepal (Dharchula in India and Darchula in Nepal, but have same meaning). It is situated in a valley, on the banks of the Kali River.
Dharchula lies about 83 km (52 mi) north of Pithoragarh, along the route of the Kailash-Mansarovar pilgrimage tour. The name of the town originate from the Runglo words for Darchyo (White colored Holy Flag erected outside every house of local community traditionally) and la (an honorific term in local language) because earlier only the darchyo / white flags were visible when seen from far away.
Nepal has a district with a similar name, Darchula District, across the river Mahakali, which acts as the natural border between India and Nepal over a long stretch. People of the two towns have similar traditions, culture, and lifestyle, and can move across the border without a passport or visa. The area has a mixture of Kumaouni and Rung language, traditions and culture.
Important Places, Landmarks and Events
Narayan Ashram is situated at an elevation of 2734 m. above sea level. It can be reached from Pithoragarh via Ogla (44 km from Pithoragarh), Jauljibi (77 km), Dharchula (94 km), Tawaghat (108 km). Jauljibi is the place where Dhauliganga and Kaliganga meet.
The ashram was established by Sri Narayan Swami in 1936. It can accommodate maximum 40 persons at a time. During winter season the ashram remains closed due to heavy snowfall. And rainy season may cause damage to the road. Ashram keeps on conducting various social – spiritual activities for the members so the visitors are strictly advised to convey about their plan to the ashram well in advance.
Mansarovar Lake lies at 4,590 m above mean sea level. The lake freezes in winter and melts only in the spring. The Sutlej River, the (Brahmaputra River), the Indus River, and the Karnali River all trace their sources to its close vicinity.
Like Mount Kailash, Lake Mansarovar is a place of pilgrimage, attracting religious people from India, Tibet and the neighboring countries. Bathing in the Manasa Sarovar and drinking its water is believed to cleanse all sins. Pilgrimage tours are organized regularly, especially from India, the most famous of which is the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra which takes place every year. Pilgrims come to take ceremonial bathes in the cleansing waters of the lake.
The Kali River originates from the Greater Himalayas at Kalapaani at an altitude of 3,600 m, in the Pithoragarh District of Uttarakhand, India. The river is named after the Goddess Kali whose temple is situated in Kalapaani near the Lipu-Lekh pass at the border between India and Tibet. On its upper course, this river forms India’s continuous eastern boundary with Nepal.
Uttarakhand is a land of rivers and mountains and thus holds a lot of potential for hydro electric power generation. A similar such initiative has resulted in the creation of the Chirkila dam on river Kali at Chirkila, a place 20 km ahead of Dharchula. The dam has a capacity of producing 1500 kW of energy. The dam is adjoined by a beautiful lake stretching up to 1 km in length. If news are to be believed, water sports may soon be started in the area by the Uttrakhand Government.
(Adi Kailash or Little Kailash or Jowolingkhang Peak or Baba Kailash or Chhota Kailash is an ancient holy Hindu mountain in the Himalayan mountain range, lying in the Tehsil Dharchula, Pithoragarh district of Uttarakhand, India, near Sinla pass. Its appearance is distinctly similar to Mount Kailash in Tibet. The ‘Om Parvat’ is closer to the Lipulekh Pass near Nabi Dangh…on the way to Tibet… its snow deposition pattern gives the impression of the Hindu sacred syllable ‘AUM’ (ॐ) written on it. This majestic letter ॐ clearly stands out when the snow starts melting at the end of the winter season. The Jowolingkhang lake or the Parvati Lake, like Lake Mansarovar, are sacred to the Hindus. Just opposite to the peak of Chota Kailash or Adi Kailash, lies the mountain Parwati Mukut (Parvati’s Crown).
India-Nepal and India-Sino border
The town is a sensitive area as it shares its borders with both Nepal and China. However, the area has always remained peaceful place and an excellent example of good inter-cultural ties between the nations.
|Visa requirements||Visa in not needed for Indian citizens. Everyone else need a visa.|
|Country name||India (Bharat)|