One of the most famous tourist destinations of India, Shimla located in Himachal Pradesh is a beautiful hill station. Also known as Simla, your travel to this place will be one event of your life that you shall never forget. This beautiful hill station derives its name from "Goddess Shyamla", who is supposed to be an avatar of Goddess Kali. This lovely hill station was discovered by the British who immediately fell in love with this place. In fact, they went to the extent of declaring Shimla as their summer capital. Shimla abounds in natural bounty and looks picture perfect. The small hill station amidst the lofty snow-clad Himalayan ranges, surrounded by lakes and lush green pastures look as though an artist has painted them. The unique thing about Shimla is that it still retains its colonial charm and this creates an ambience that is not found anywhere else in India. Shimla is one tourist destination that can be visited any time during the year. Summers are warm with cool and pleasant evenings while winters are bone chilling and the temperatures can fall below zero. But this difference is what makes Shimla all the more special!
The beautiful Narkanda hill station is situated at an altitude of around 2700 meters and offers a stunning view of the lofty ranges of Himalayas. Narkanda hill station is at a distance of 60 kilometers from Shimla. It is an ideal getaway for people who seek to relax in an undisturbed and tranquil location, far away from the bustling city life. The place is famous for its apple and peach plantations. The dense forests are always successful in attracting tourists who enjoy each and every moment walking in the dense thickets of the slopes. There are many places near Narkanda that are worth the visit. Situated at a height of 2000 feet above Shimla is the Hatu Peak. It can be reached in an hour by trekking. You can also visit the Hatu Mata Temple that is located over here. The Hatu Peak is famous for its skiing activities and hiking and is teaming with adventure seekers during winters when it snows, making the place look like a white wonderland.
The Gods were generous when they have gave Sarahan its settings. Located halfway up a high mountain side, the road to Sarahan winds past flowering Pine trees that give way to stately Oaks. Dozens of small streams rush past. The fields and orchards that surround the small villages with their slate roofed houses, compose pictures of pastoral perfection. Above Sarahan, a many deodar trees rides the slopes and higher still, encircling the Bashal peak, are trees of smooth birch and variety of wild flowers and rare medicinal herbs. This sparsely populated tract is steeped in ancient legends and here is the famous Bhimakali Temple regarded as one of the Fifty One sacred Shaktipeethhs. The temple's unusual architecture and wealth of carvings have made it a resplendent example of what is loosely called the Indo-Tibetan style. Deep down the alley flows the River Sutlej and across lies the snow-clad Shrikhand Peak.
Kangra Valley is the most populous district of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh, India. Dharamshala is the administrative headquarters of the district. It is home of Masroor Rock Cut Temple, also known as Himalayan Pyramids and wonder of the world for being likely contender for the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Dharamshala, the district headquarters, is also the headquarters of the Tibetan government-in-exile, headed by the His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
Dharamshala is a city in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. Surrounded by cedar forests on the edge of the Himalayas, this hillside city is home to the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government-in-exile. The Thekchen Chöling Temple Complex is a spiritual center for Tibetan Buddhism, while the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives houses thousands of precious manuscripts. Lower Dharamsala comprises a largely Indian community, while a Tibetan enclave lives uphill in the suburb of McLeod Ganj. Near the Dalai Lama's main temple, Tsuglagkhang, is a Buddhist monastery known as Namgyal Gompa. The Tibet Museum provides a historical overview of Tibet's occupation. Cultural establishments include the Norbulingka Institute, a haven for traditional Tibetan arts and crafts, and the Tibetan Institute for Performing Arts, which preserves Tibetan opera, music and dance. The city also offers trekking trails leading across the mountains to Triund, the upper Ravi Valley and beyond.
Chitkul is the last and highest village in the Baspa valley. It is situated on the right bank of the Baspa River. There is a road along the left bank from Karchham. There are three temples of local goddess Mathi, the main one said to have been constructed about 500 years ago by a resident of Garhwal. The square ark of the goddess, is made of walnut wood and is covered with clothes and surmounted by a tuft of yak tail. Two poles called Bayanga are inserted into it by means of which it is carried.
Nako is situated above 3 kms above the Hangrang valley road and is 119 kms from Kalpa on the western direction of the huge mountains of Pargial. This is the highest village in the valley and the existence of lake formed out of the masses of the ice and snow above adds beauty to the village. The lake is fringed with willows and populars. Yaks, kine, horses and asses are reared here in abundance. Local village deity is Deodum and another Lagang Temple with several idols exists here. There is a staying hut for visitors. There are small, but significant Buddhist temples and a rock is regarded to have the imprints of the saint Padmasambhava. This is the base for the trek to Pargial Peak and is en-route to the Thashigang monastery, where an image is said to grow hair.
Kalpa is situated at an altitude of 2759 m from the sea level, on the old Hindustan Tibet Road at a distance of 260 km from Shimla. Earlier it was the District Headquarter of Kinnaur. It is 14 kms. and half an hour's drive from District Headquarter Reckong Peo. It has all the characteristics of a heritage village. Kalpa came into prominence in the wake of British Governor General Lord Dalhousie's visit in th 19th century. The Narayan-Nagani temple is an exemplary of local craftsmanship. There are couple of Buddhist monasteries at Kalpa including the Hu-Bu-Ian-Car Gompa, said to be founded it by Rinchensang-Po (950-1055AD). Kalpa is dramatically located close to the foot of 6050 meter high Kinner Kailash. This is the legendary winter home of Shiva. This is a spectacular sight early in the morning as the rising sun touches the snowy peaks with crimson and gold light.
Sangla is a populous village, situated on the right bank of the Baspa river, is famous for its high fertile soil, at an elevation of 2621 m above the sea level and falls at a distance of 17 km from Karcham. It is built on a slope with the house rising one above the other; the scene being closed by the gigantic Raldang peaks towering behind. The forest scenery all-arround and the eternal snow peaks are picturesque. Journey from Karcham onwards is enjoyable and adventurous throughout the valley. The natural scenery all arround and the eternal snow view are picturesque and charming. It is located in the famous Baspa valley. The whole of the Baspa valley is one of the prettiest valleys mainly due to its flat terrain and green vegetation on the slopes which are not very steep.
LAHAUL & SPITI
Tabo is a small town in the Lahaul and Spiti district on the banks of the Spiti River in Himachal Pradesh, India. The town lies on the road between Rekong Peo and Kaza (alternative spelling: Kaja), the sub-divisional headquarters of Spiti. The town surrounds a Buddhist monastery which, according to legend, is said to be over a thousand years old. The Dalai Lama has expressed his desire to retire to Tabo, since he maintains that theTabo Monastery is one of the holiest. In 1996, HH the Dalai Lama conducted the Kalachakra initiation ceremony in Tabo, which coincided with the millennium anniversary celebrations of the Tabo monastery. The ceremony was attended by thousands of Buddhists from across the world. Tabo Monastery's spiritual head is Tsenshap Serkong Rinpoche.
Kaza is 210 Km from Kalpa, 47 km from Tabo. The headquarters of Spiti sub-district, Kaza lies on the bank of river Spiti. In earlier times, it was the capital of Nono, the Chief of Spiti. Kaza has a Buddhist Monastery and also a Hindu temple. Kaza mainly serves as a tourist base for Spiti valley and one can visit places like the Ki Moneastery, Kibber and Komic village, Nako, Pin valley, Kunzum Pass and Chandratal Lake from here. Kaza and its nearby village has good accommodation and other facilities like Petrol/Diesel pumps. It also has a market for daily necessities.
Kibber is one of the most beautiful villages that you can see in Spiti and is located around 16 km away from Kaza town. Located at a height of 4270 m, the village till recent claimed the status of being the highest village in the world connected by motorable road. The road to Kibber village crosses one of the most popular monasteries in the region—Key Monastery. A number of boards welcome you at the entrance of the village, which has around 60-70 houses on multiple levels. Each house is painted in white with blue and black outline on doors and windows. Like every village, Kibber also has its own monastery, but unlike others, it has a wildlife sanctuary that is inhabited by many animals. The sanctuary is also known for rare medicinal plants.