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The best of Himachal Pradesh

In the “Lap of the Himalaya”, Himachal Pradesh is a beautiful hill state in north-west region of India. Also known as “Devbhumi” meaning the ‘land of gods’, Himachal has a wide variety of exquisite apple orchards and well layered cultivated terrace farms. Not to forget the dense trans-Himalayan deserts and the dense Deodar forests. The mighty and vast mountain ranges of the Himalaya are a breathtaking view! But the beauty does not end here… It gets better with the numerous gorgeous lakes that surround this place. Some of these lakes are known for their religious significance.

So here are some of our picks for Himachal.

The Kangra Fort

The Kangra Fort is also known as ‘Nagarkot’. The fort is historically significant; its massive size and the beauty of its structure lend it an added charm. An important and the only unconquered fort in the region, it is famous for the carvings and miniature paintings, which have been restored and preserved at the Kangra museum. Apart from this, the fort also consists of various gates, shrines and a number of old palaces.

A majestic view of the magnificent fort – picture courtesy: Aleksandr Zykov, Flikr

The great Kangra Fort is one of the largest forts which are present in the Himalayas and it is also the most ancient monument of India.  A Walk through this majestic fort can give you goosebumps!  As the fort is huge and has a long narrow passage to walk around, the fort takes you back in time and gives you a feel of what ‘living life King size’ could really be all about. A must visit place for history lovers.

Mcleod Ganj

McLeod Ganj is a very popular place to study Buddhism, holistic therapies, and a wide array of other subjects. Interesting short walks around McLeod include the 2km stroll to Bhagsu and the 3km walk northeast to Dharamkot, for uplifting views south over the valley and north towards the Dhauladhar Ridge.

A popular long walk is the two-day return trip through boulder fields and rhododendron forests to Triund.  Triund has a simple rest house and you can stop overnight and stroll up to the glacier at ‘Laka Got’ before turning back to McLeod Ganj. There’s a scenic route along the gorge from the waterfall at Bhagsu. From Triund, you can trek to Indrahar La and the Chamba Valley.

A spectacular sight of “life in the hills” – picture courtesy: Questadventures, Flikr

The Tibetan museum just inside the main entry gate of the Tsuglagkhang Complex is the Tibet Museum, telling the tragic story of the Chinese occupation and the subsequent Tibetan exodus through photographs, interviews and video clips. A visit here is a must for anyone staying in McLeod Ganj.

Great Himalayan National Park

Established in 1984 it is a home to 180 species of birds and rare mammals, such as black bears, brown bears, musk deer and the ever-elusive snow leopard. This Park is a trekker’s paradise and is best visited between April-June and September-October. The Tirthan Wildlife Sanctuary and the Sainj Wildlife Sanctuary are two exotic places that come under this national park administration.

Relax with nature as you experience harnessed wildlife – picture courtesy: Parth Joshi, Flikr

There are many trails within the park and treks can be arranged, varying from two days to seven days. These treks offer something for wildlife enthusiasts as well as people interested in the cultural activities and local architecture. A major attraction is the Pin-Parvati pass trek. This trek is seven days long and the trail leads through a gorgeous alpine and sub-alpine pastures, snowfields and glacial areas before crossing the Pin Parvati pass.

Chamba Valley

Chamba is known for the elegance of its temples and for its exquisite miniatures and handicrafts. The scenery from this location is a breath taking experience.  The ‘Bhuri Singh’ museum is one the must visit locations of Chamba.  It has a wonderful collection of miniature paintings from Chamba, Kangra and Basohli schools. It also has masterpieces of wood carvings, weapons, rumals and intriguing copper-plate inscriptions.

A sight to view, a view to cherish… – picture courtesy: Wikicommons

Dalhousie is another hill to visit in Chamba valley. It is ideal for people who enjoy calm, serene and peaceful environment. This place has a variety of options to visit. From the famous Subash Baoli where one can have a splendid walk, to ‘Bakrota hills and the round’ where can experience a spectacular view of snow-clad peaks.

Our preferred choice of stay in Himachal would be Aamod Shoghi, Shimla.

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The best of Himachal Pradesh


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