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DHARAMSHALA

Location : 185 kms From Shimla, Himachal Pradesh
District : Kangra District
Altitude : 4,550 ft Above Sea Level
Major Highlight : Kangra Art Museum, St. John's Church

Dharamshala Town
Beautous Town of Dharamshala


FACT FILE
To See : Monasteries, St. John's Church, War Memorial, Norbulingka – 16 kms, The Shrine of Bhagsunath – 11 kms, Tatwani & Machhrial (Hot Water Springs) – 25 kms.
Also Known as : Little Lhasa .
Best Time To Visit : Mid-May to Mid-October.
Famous Monasteries : Namgyal Monastery, Geludpa Monastery, Nechung Mmonastery
Not to be Missed : Learning the Ancient Art of Yoga and Meditation in the Various Centres located 12 kms from Dharamshala.
Shop From : Kotwali Bazaar in Lower Dharamshala - Wool to Woollens, Locally – Woven Kullu and Kinnauri Shawls, Scarves and Socks.
Adventure Options : Trekking, Rock Climbing, Angling, Fishing, Long and Short Walks.
Popular Trails : Day Trek From Dharamsala to the Chamba Valley, over the Indradhar Pass (4350m).
10 kms long trek to through the Toral Pass (4,575m).
4 day Trek across Bhimghasutri Pass.
5 Day Trek Dharamsala Across Bleni Pass (3710m) in the Milder Ranges of Northwest.
2 kms long walk to Bhagsung - 3 kms to Dharamkot – 8 kms to Triund – 5 kms to Snow Line of Ilaqa Got.
Must Enjoy : Picnicking among the Cools of the Hot Water Spring at Tatwani & Machhrial – Located 25 kms Away.
Must Visit : Namgyal Monastery – The Home of the 14th Dalai Lama. Thousnads of Devotees Floch Here Evey Year.
Staying Options : Chonor House, hotel Bhagsu, Glennmore Cottages, Clouds End Villa.
Getting Around : Bhagsung – 12 kms, Dharamkot – 14 kms.
Important Distances : Dalhousie – 92 kms, Mandi – 115 kms, Kullu – 183 kms, Shimla – 185 kms, Manali – 223 kms, Chandigarh – 225 kms, Delhi – 511 kms.
Getting There : Air - Dharamsala can be Approached by air from Delhi and the Nearest Airport is at Gaggla, just 13-km away from the Town.
Rail - Pathankot is 85-km and is the Nearest Railhead for Dharamshala. Trains from all over the Country make a Stop Over at Pathankot and from here it is a Three – Hour Journey to Dharamsala.
Road - From Manali too Bus Services are Available to this place. One can Drive from Delhi via Chandigarh , Kiratpur, Bilaspur and it's an 8-hours Journey. From Delhi and Shimla , luxury buses ply to Dharamshala.

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Water Fall
Bhagsu Falls in Upper Dharamshala


Dharamshala : A Little of England and Tibet Mixed With Himachal Culture

Travel to Himachal Pradesh and come to Dharamshala, where the winds of change are rushing to shatter its quiet calm. The term Dharamashala means 'The Holy Refuge' and this scenic town is roosted in the Kangra valley and belongs to the group of the 80 hills that were developed by the British to help them fight the dust and sweltering sun.

This home of the present Dalai Lama is a scenic hill station located at an altitude of 4,550 ft above sea level, this small petite beauty is located at a very convenient distance from the Kangra valley and the beauteous McLeodganj. Divided into two parts as Upper Dharamshala and Lower Dharamshala, here you will see hills, bungalows, churches, monasteries and cantonment. Surrounded by the mighty Dhauladhar mountains, Dharamshala has an incomparable distinction of being the chosen home of the spiritual and temporal head of the Tibetan people.

Dharamsala over looks the plains and is surrounded by dense pine trees and Deodar forests. A nearby snow line with numerous streams and cool healthy atmosphere makes the surroundings very attractive. Spend a vacation in this cocktail of Tibetan and Kangra culture with a tinge of colonial origin, that makes this destination, the sweetheart favorite of the tourists. Enjoy a holiday that you had always dreamt of, but had never endeavored.

History Has its Own Page for Dharamshala

If the history of Dalhousie was supposed to be written on paper, then the name of British governer general Lord Elgin, should be written with a glittery golden pen. This valley saw its official origin in the year 1849, when it was used as a site to accommodate the regiments that were raised in these mountains. By 1855, under the British, this town developed as small yet flourishing hill station. It was under Lord Elgin, Viceroy of British India, to whom this town is indebted. He fell in love with the landscape and did a lot to uplift it. Even after his death, this Deodar hilled continued to flourish as a quiet health resort for the "sahibs" and "memsahibs" of British India. It was the coming of the Dalai Lama, that this sleepy town became an active head for Buddhism. Therefore it goes without saying that Buddhism is the centre of cultural life in Dharamsala.

Hitherto, this land has not seen the end to its fairy story. Today, streams of Tibetan refugees from all over the world flock to McLeod Gunj to receive blessings and teachings from His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

Upper Dharamshala
Trekking Route For Reaching Upper Dharamshala


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Dharamshal Attractions – Hubbubs That Lure You to Little Tibet

Among the primed Deodar and Pine covered hillocks, where nature has used its brush to add the colorful strokes of life, there is no dearth of attractions. This Indian hill settlement is a traveler;s delight, where in the lower part is the Kotwali Bazaar, while the upper part for the town is more residential. Elegant bungalows and the cantonment greets the tourist. This is a place where short walks are the best way to explore the lush and greens of Dharamshala. Enjoy a trip to Himachal Pradesh to see the most famous attractions of Dharamshala.

Fame finds it way to the Namgyal Monastery near Dharamshala, where resides the 14th Dalai Lama. Thousands of people beat their path to visit this monastery, which has been the centre of Buddhist pilgrim for the past four decades. A visit to the this monastery, posing in the Center of Tibetan Studies is nothing but mandatory. 'Tsuglagkhang', opposite the Dalai Lama's residence, will remind you of Lhasa as it contains large gilded bronzes of the Buddha, Avalokiteswara and Padmasambhava. Other monasteries that you cannot miss is Geludpa Monastery, that adjoins the Dalai Lama's monastery. Here you should see the giant statue of Buddha, Thankas and other ritual and consecrated subjects. The Nechung Monastery in Lgangchen Kyishobn has Tibetan libnrary lwith a good rang of books, magazines & photo-copying facilities and a museum.

While in Dharamshala you should enjoy shopping in Kotwali Bazaar. This joint along with array of shops, little cafes and eating outlets makes it an attraction in its own. While here you cannot miss checking the Kangra Art Museum that has wonderful collection of miniatures, arts, crafts, and rich past, displays artifacts that date back to the 5th century. This treasure trove also displays collection of sculptures, pottery, and anthropological items.

You should pay homage to Himachali war heroes in War Memorial lying near the museum. Get off at upper Dharamshala and pass through the deep wooded Forsytheganj that has eye catching bungalows. Here you should visit the St. John's Church, that holds the Viceroy Lord Elgin's Memorial. This church has some beautiful stained glasses that mustn't be missed.

Move towards the Sidhpur to Norbulingka, lying at a distance of 16 kms. This halt will reveal to you the preservation of Tibetan arts and crafts in a centre that will demand a day's trip, and its worth it. Set in the style of a Japenese garden, Norbulingka has a temple, souvenir shop and Losel Dolls Museum and a beautiful cafe, Norling. There are also metal and wood workshops where you can see people indulged in crafting.

The Shrine of Bhagsunath, just 11-km from the town center of Dharamsala is the ancient temple of Bhagsunath. There are many fresh hot water springs close to the temple, which are considered sacred by the Hindus. The most important ones are the Tatwani & Machhrial. Surrounded by the high and green Deodar trees is the lake, which fills a mountain bowl. This is Dal Lake, Situated 11 kms away from the town and is an enchanting picnic spot.

Just at a distance of 12 kms from Dharamshala is an oasis of mediation calm. Several meditation centres have mushroomed here due to the calm and scenic ambiance. You should try the Vipassana or Tushita Meditation Centres. For Yoga lessons, head for the Iyengar Himalayan Yoga center.

Distinguishing Adventure Options in Dharamshala

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Take up adventure tours of Dharamshala during the months of October to May, when the rucksacks are packed for the most thrilling adventures – Trekking and Rock Climbing. The most popular trek route will Dharamsala to the Chamba valley, over the Indradhar Pass (4350m). This might appear a very grueling trek but the most nascent can pull off it within five days. Indulge in a 10 kms long trek to through the Toral Pass (4,575m) that will cover, distinctively British Forsytheganj. From here the scenic town of McLeodgang is only a stone's throw away.

The most arduous route will be the five to six day trek across Bhimghasutri Pass (4580) in the north. Covering near-vertical rocky ascents, sharp cliffs and dangerous gorges, this will be a delightful experience. An easier four or five day trek from Dharamsala crosses Bleni Pass (3710m) in the milder ranges of the northwest, weaving through the alpine pastures, woods and passing through few streams, before terminating at Dunali, on the Chamba road.

You should enjoy small and easy walks from the other miniscule destinations, but they promise great surprises. Take a 2 kms long walk to Bhagsung where you will see a spring and a temple. From here further 3 kms distance will leave you to Dharamkot, that has very fine views. If not tired, then you should always move further towards Triund, which is 8 kms away. Once you are here do not miss walking 5 more kilometers to see the snow line of Ilaqa Got, where there is a Forest Rest House.
Trekker's have indisputable a heavenly time, but all those who want to ease out can always make way to river Beas between Nadaun and the Pong Dam. Get your angling gears ready as here you can bask a chance to fish for Mahaseer.

Shopping in Dharamshala
Tibetan Adornments Being Displayed for Sale


Exhaust the Shopping Charms in Dharamshala

Shopping is one delectation that you should not miss in Dharamshala. The rightful blend of Tibetan and Kangra culture has given the perfect shade to the local handicrafts of the town. Shopping areas in the town are located essentially in the lower part called as Kotwali Bazaar. Catering mostly to the local population, this is the only shopping destination having number of higgledy – piggledy shops that embrace the on both sides, with little cafes where you can enjoy a warm cup of tea while the oniomaniac's exhaust the bazaar's charms.

In the long arrays of shops here you will find everything from wool to woollens, including the locally – woven Kullu and Kinnauri shawls, scarves and socks.

Reach Dharamshala As you Fall in Love With the Calm Town

Dharamsala, due to its location in the Himalayas, is very pleasant during the summers but winters can be treacherous. During the months of March to June, the weather is mild-mannered and light woolens and cottons should be worn. The best time to visit the place is during March to October when the biting teeth of the waves have eroded and plenty of Sunshine kisses the plains. Well all those who want to experience the atrocious landslides then monsoons is the time for you.

Reaching Dharamshala is not at all a difficult job. Its proximity from the Kangra valley and McLeodGanj, make is easily accessible. If planning to come to Dharamshala by air then it can be easily approached from Delhi. The nearest Airport is at Gaggla, just 13-km away from the town.

You should enjoy small and easy walks from the other miniscule destinations, but they promise great surprises. Take a 2 kms long walk to BhagsungThe most convenient railway station to Dharamsala is Pathankot, however the closest one is Kangra Mandir railway station, which is 21 kilometres from Dharamsala. The rail journey takes up approximately 10 ½ hours. For all those who are planning to take the road route, will have to part with 11 hours. However, roadways is the best way to enjoy the landscape. Take the route of NH 1 to Ambala; NH 21 to Kiratpur via Chandigarh; state highways to Dharamshala and McLeodGanj via Una and Kangra.

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Chardham Yatra
Journey Through Goa Cruise

Top 5 Reasons To Visit Dharamshala


Dharamshala

Enjoy a Little Kangra and Tibet Culture
Come to the land of Dharamshala that offers it tourists unthinkable options. Among hillocks covered the Pine and Deodar trees, drive or fly to this panoramic land. This town gives you a chance to breathe some beauty in your souls. So do not wait but head towards this ambrosial destination that has tremendous cultural offerings.


Light a Candle in the Dalai Lama's Realm
Come home to the place where the patron of peace and sanctity – Dalai Lama resides. The Namgyal Monastery, is the famous monastery that serves as the abode of Dalai Lama. Besides this, there are other monasteries too that will bring you closer to the scared religion called Buddhism.


Attraction to Spring Up Your Senses
The small yet fervent land of Dharamshala offers its tourist the chance to enjoy all the attractions in one go. There are museums, temples, churches, picnic spots and a lot of natural beauty. Savour the joy of bathing in hot water spring and do not miss paying respect to the shrine and memorials dotted all over the town.


Think Adventure – Come to Dharamshala
Are you a trekker? Or Climber? Or love Angling and Fishing? Or just want to spend some leisure time walking – come to Dharamshala. This town offers trails and climbs that will satisfy an experienced adventurer while excite a nascent. Fishing and angling in the Beas is another experience you will love.


Shop in the Lower Dharamshala
Take some souvenirs back home. After all do you not want to remember the holistic refuge for times to come. From Kotwali Bazaar buy some exclusive wollens and even the famous Kullu and Kinnauri shawl that have been woven by the locals. Other must carry homes will be the scarves, socks and wooden masks.


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