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Citys


Kullu:

The Valley of Gods, as the Kullu Valley has come to be known, if perhaps the most delightful region in the Western Himalayas. Situated on the banks of the river Beas, Kullu, the headquarters of the district, serves as a nerve centre of the valley and is the starting place for a number of treks.

Kullu, the gateway to more spectacular towns like Nagar and Manali, is tucked between two lush mountains at the southern end of the Kullu Valley. Every year in October, tourists rush for the Dussehra festival.Dussehra, a massive, vibrant festival celebrating the gods of this glorious valley.

STD Code : 01902

Kullu handicrafts and handloooms:

Kullu is famous for it's shawls, caps, gudmas, puhla, namdas, patoos and Handicrafts. Akhara bazaar is the best to shop out there. The artisans of Kullu valley preserve a rich heritage of handlooms and handicrafts. There is an amazing range of beautiful handloom and handicraft products in Kullu.

The famous Kullu Shawls are admired for their elegant beauty. Kullu Caps are widely worn by the local people and are also equally popular among tourists. Warm local Tweeds, Pattus, Muflars etc. are the other handloom products largely produced in Kullu.

Best Season: The best season to visit Kullu is from April to June and September to November. However Kullu is best to visit during it's festival of Dussehra.Every year in October, tourists and foreigners rush for Dussehra festival of this glorious valley.


Shimla :

Shimla or the "Queen of hills", as it is often called is one of India's most popular holiday resorts. The Capital of Himachal Pradesh, Shimla is named after its patron, Shamla Devi and was a tiny village until it was popularized as a hill resort by the British who established their summer capital here in 1864.

Shimla is situated in the north-west Himalayas, Shimla is the capital of Himachal Pradesh. Sprawled over 12 kms on a ridge lies Shimla, the largest hill station and erstwhile summer capital of the British in India. Descending in layers from the top of the ridge, at 2,213 metres, Shimla sprawls several hills, including the Jakhu, Prospect Hill, Observatory Hill and Summer Hilland and it is best to travel here on the slow train from Kalka populary known as "Himalayan Queen".

From the days of the British, when Queeen of hills, Shimla has now become the hub of major activities in Himachal Pradesh. Being the seat of government and a major tourist attraction in north India , Shimla has grown to bursting point. The fresh air, magnificent snow peaks and refreshing green all around make Shimla worth a visit. Shimla also is a convenient base for variety of adventure sports such as Skiing, Trekking, Fishing and Golfing etc.

STD Code : 0177

Best Season : The summers are marked by rainfalls. The nights of summers are cool and light warm cloths are required during this time. Winter are cold and chilly winds from the upper Himalayas makes the place really cold. Around Christmas or last week of December Shimla gets snow. This is the best time to visit as you can enjoy the snow.The snowfall during this time attracts many tourists and accomodation can prove to be difficult.

Today, Shimla is the capital of Himachal Pradesh and a favourite for filmmakers who wish to incorporate its scenic romanticism in their movies. Shimla is a stark example of the diversity that India offers to tourists. Shimla has been blessed with all the natural bounties which one can think of. It has got a scenic location, it is surrounded by green hills with snow capped peaks. The spectacular cool hills accompanied by the structures made during the colonial era creates an aura which is very different from other hill.


Chamba:

Perched on a flat mountain shelf, the town of Chamba is known for its ancient temples and Chaugan - a public promenade. Chamba town stands on the bank of river Ravi. It is one of the oldest princely state and dates back to the sixth century . It is well known for its splendid and beautiful architecture and also has a district headquarters.

The town was founded by Raja Sahil Varman, who shifted the capital here from Brahmaur. It remained the headquarters of the district Chamba for over 1000 years prior to Independence and was ruled by a single dynasty of maharajas. Chamba has a grassy promenade known as the Chowgan. The town is a busy trading centre for villagers from the surrounding hills.

STD Code : 018992

Best Season: The best season to visit Chamba is between March to June and between September to October.

Chamba - The Town of Temples
The small town of Chamba, in Himachal Pradesh is famous for its medieval temples. The architecture of the temples of Chamba reflects the glory of its erstwhile rulers. Some of the famous temples are Laxmi Narayan temple, Brajreshwari Devi temple, Chamunda Devi Temple, Sui Mata Temple etc. Manimahesh Lake, one of the chief pilgrimage spots in Himachal Pradesh.

Festivals: The Minjar Festival is held each year in late July / early August. This festival marks the harvesting of the annual maize crop. It culminates with a procession to River Ravi and throwing of the silk tassels or Minjars, worn by men and women into the river. The Sui Festival is held in March- April. Sui Mata was a Chamba princess who gave her life for her people. Besides these all other major Indian festivals are also celebrated with great enthusiasm.


Manali:

For a lavish display of natural scenery, it is one of the principal snow places of the Kullu region. And Manali is at an altitude of beauty and gateway to Lahaul and Spiti. Manali is a major resort beyond Kullu in the Kullu Valley. Set amidst lovely forests of towering cedars, circled by snowy peaks and the unending roar of the Beas as a constant companion, Manali also offers unparalleled opportunities for trekking, rock climbing, angling, and winter sport.

With literally hundreds of guesthouses, hotels and resorts.Among resorts Quality Inn Apple Country and snow valley resort are quite famous. It's one of the most popular places in the country for honeymooning Indian couples. Legend has it that Manu stepped off a boat in Manali to recreate human life after floods had devastated the world as Manali means 'Home of Manu'.

STD Code : 01902

Festivals: Doongri Festival is dedicated to Goddess Hadimba is held in May. A fair held in Doongri Forest in honour of the Goddess.

Best Season: In winter, the temperature can drop to below freezing point. Summer temperatures are mild. The best season to visit Manali is from April to mid-July, mid-sep to mid-nov.


Mandi:

Mandi, which means 'market', is quite a good place to break the journey between Shimla and the Kullu Valley - a far better option to stay than Bilaspur. In Mandi, there are some cheap hotels, you will stumble across some of the 81 Hindu temples in the area, and can take a day trip to a nearby lake or two. At less than 800m above sea level, Mandi is considerably hotter than other regional areas.

Near Mandi the Beas Valley is broad. The area under fruit in Mandi is about 15% of the total area under fruits in Himachal Pradesh. Mandi raw silk has acquired wide fame but the salt mines at Drang and Guma are the special features of the economy. In the central part of Himachal Pradesh, along the left bank of the river Beas in the foot hills of Shivalik ranges, Mandi at a height of 760 metres (2,495 ft) entails a rich heritage of culture, of both historical and theoligical significance.

STD Code : 01905

Best Season: Since the place is located at a lower altitude of 750m as compared to other regional places, it is less colder in winters than other places. So, visitors can come both in summers and winters.

Festivals :Shivratri is one of the most interesting festivals in Himachal Pradesh. It lasts for a week and deities from all over Mandi district are brought here. Large number of people have darshan at the Bhutnath Temple. The Festival, Tso-Pema, is particularly important in the year of Monkey, which falls every 12 years.


Dalhousie:

Dalhousie, nestling in the outer slopes of Dhaulandhar range, is a beautiful hill station. It is known for its bracing climate and picturesque scenery. This beautiful hill station in the Chamba district of Himachal Pradesh is located at the altitude of 2036 Meters and surrounded by lush green forest of deodar and pine wood.

This place was established in 1854 by the British Empire in India as a summer retreat for its troops and bureaucrats. The town was named after Lord Dalhousie who was the British Viceroy in India at that time. Dalhousie which is located on the western edge of the Dhauladhar mountain range of the Himalayas, is built on and around five hills. Dalhousie is surrounded by the beautiful scenery of snow-capped peaks. The Ravi river flows nearby and has a large 750 Mw. hydro-electric station and dam. Scottish and Victorian architecture is prevalent in the bungalows and churches in the town. Dalhousie is the gateway to the Chamba Valley.

STD Code : 01899

The Climate of Dalhousie: In Summers the temperature is max 26.5 degrees C and min 15.5 degrees C And in Winter the temperature is max10 degrees C and min 1 degrees C The best time to visit is in the summer, and the peak tourist season is from May to September.


Dharamsala:

Dharamshala stands on a spur of the Dhauladhar range amidst magnificient deodar and pine forests, tea gardens and beautiful hills. It is also known as 'The Lhasa in India'. Dharamsalais one of the main towns of Kangra valley. It is located in the backdrop of snow clad peaks of Dahuladhar mountains. With dense pine and deodhar forests, numerous streams, cool healthy air,attractive surroundings and the nearby snowline, Dharamsala has everything for a perfect holiday. It is full of life and yet peaceful. A perfect destination, away from hustles and buckles of the cities.

Dharamsala varies in altitude from 1250m to 1980m. So its practically divided into two parts viz. Upper Dharamsala and Lower Dharamsala. Lower part is a busy commercial centre while Upper part, with the suburbs of Mcleodganj and Forsytheganj still retains the British flavour and colonial lifestyle. When China invaded Tibet in 1959, the Tibetian exodus began and they first went to Dharamshala then shifted their colony to Mecleodganj. Since 1959 it has bacame temporary headqurter of the Dalai Lama and often called as the Little Lhasa in India.

STD Code : 01892

Best Season :The best season to visit the town is between March to June and September to October.

Pathankot is 85 kms and is nearest railhead for Dharamsala. Till Pathankot there are trains from all over the country and from here it is a three hour journey to Dharamsala by road. The roads are good and one drive from Chandigarh or Delhi to this place. There are regular bus services from Shimla to Dharamsala. From Manali too bus services are available to this place.

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Kinnaur, Lahaul and Spiti :

Located in the dizzy heights of the Himalayas, with passes that remain closed for six months, Kinnaur, Spiti and Lahaul were till now, a forbidden land. Now this area has been opened for the daring and adventurous who can discover what had been hidden from the world for centuries. From the riotous green of the Sangla Valley- filled with orchards of apricots, peaches, apples and Chilgoza pine forests, to the magnificent desolation of the Hangrang Valley, Mother Nature's portrait is everchanging in Kinnaur. This land lying on the ancient trade route between India and Tibet, ringed by the majestic mountains of the Himalayan and Dhauladhar range is a land of plenty.

Adjoining the Pangi valley is Lahaul valley where most of the people believe in Buddhism .Spiti is the sub division of Lahaul and follow the same religion. Hence both these valleys are having some important and known Monasteries .Like temples here too the villagers have small gompas in almost every village.The people are charming, friendly and hospitable with their The two twin valleys Lahaul & Spiti in the north eastern corner of Himachal ,protected by distance ,is a region of nature at its wildest which has lent it much enchantment.The threshold of the Lahaul plateau is nourished by Chandra & Bhaga rivers.

Dry and very cold ,it is surrounded by high mountain on all sides, the great Himalayan in the north ,the Pir Panjal to the south and the Spiti Chandra watershed to the east. From Lahaul, the Himalayas can be seen in all their mighty splendour. The barren landscape and sparse vegetation lends a magnificent charm to this otherwise bleak country. With their slant Mongol eyes, prominent cheek bones and cheerful smiles, the people give visitors an enthusiastic welcome. The place got its name from RAHUL, the son of Buddha.

Eastern Valleys : From kinnaur side the road goes along the Spiti river at an average height of 3500 meters. The first valley is along Gui Nallah (stream) which join Lingti valley in North. Lingti is the one of the longest and largest valley of the Spiti. It is about 50 to 60 km long and Gyah Peak (6794m) is located at its north eastern head. Further head. Further ahead of Kaza there are valleys along Shilla nallah and Parlungbi nallah. This nallah goes to Prangla(5600m) and Takling La (5500m).

Western valleys : They join Kinnaur and Kullu. Pin river flows from south-west opposite to Lingti river through pin valley. This valley gives an entrance to the Spiti valley. Teri khango(4865m) leads to the Pin valley from Bhabha valley of Kinnaur. The Manirang La (5520m)connects Ropa Valley of Kinnaur to Pin valley. Slightly to the West Pin Parbati Pass(5319m) leads to Parbati valley of Kullu. North of Pin valley are Parahio, Ratang and Gyundi valleys.

STD Code : 019002

Climate: Extremely cold during winter and difficult to approach, temperature drops well below even -20 degrees, cold during summer.

Best Season : June to October.

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