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Viva Holidays Tours & Travels Pvt. Ltd. Home >> Cities in India > North India Cities > Dharamsala

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Viva Holidays Tours & Travels Pvt. Ltd. Dharamsala
Dharamsala, popularly known as the ‘Queen of the Hills’, is divided into lower and upper towns with a difference of 457m(1500ft.) between them. The mountains enfold 3 sides of the town and the valley stretches to the south. There is a beautiful resort of Dharamsala, which stands on the spur of the Dharamsala range.
Dharamsala is known for its scenic beauty, calmness and serenity. It has high pine trees, tea gardens and timber yielding trees. Dharamsala is now the seat of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama. After the Chinese conquest of his country, Dharamsala is evocative of the imperial days in places like Mcleod Ganj and Forsythe Ganj. Dharamsala is the headquarters of the Kangra district. It became the capital in 1852 and is 125 years old.

An earthquake once wrecked Dharamsala in 1905. Since 1960, it became temporary headquarters of the Dalai Lama and has risen to international repute as " The little Lhasa in India". After the Indo-Chinese and Indo-Pak wars, the govt. erected war memorials of jawans and officers belonging to Kangra, who died in the war. Tibetan environment has been created in the high altitude, and more than 3000 Tibetans have made Dharamsala their temporary home, living mostly in Mcleod Ganj.

To add to its beauty, there is an artificial stream flowing, gleaming with gold fish. Tibetans took shelter in India in 1959. In the wake of Dalai Lama’s flight from Tibet, 85000 Tibetans were devastated. Their spiritual leader hasn’t given up the hope of a free Tibet, but to keep the Tibetan art alive, efforts have been made to preserve them. Tibet’s unique form of Thongka painting, woodcarving, metal –crafts and music are very famous. Tibetan works and archive are preserved in the library at Dharamsala where Buddhist monks from distant refugee camps come to study ancient manuscripts.

Places to see
Mcleod Ganj:
Tibet has lent importance to Mcleod Ganj. The Buddha temple is situated opposite the present abode of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama. This place is well worth a visit and around it is situated Tibetan monasteries and nunnery. A number of residential buildings, restaurants, antique and curio shops are present. There is an annual 10-day fair opera in Dharamsala, which takes place on the second saturday of April.

War Memorial:
It is a very beautiful place to visit in the afternoon. This memorial is built near the entry point to Dharamsala. It was built to commemorate the memory of those who fought in defense of the motherland. People offer prayers at this memorial place.

It is 17km from Dharamsala and lies at the foot of the snow clad Dhauladhar at a height of 2827 m. It is a popular picnic and trekking spot.

Kunnal Pathri:
Just 3-km level walk from Kotwali Bazaar, is a rock temple of the local goddess at Kunnal Pathri spots.

Lord Eligin's Memorial:
It is a world famous church built in the memory of lord Elgin, the Scottish working peer and eighth Viceroy. In 1896, he took vacations from official Shimla. He was not able to finish his four-year term and died in Dharamsala. Before his death he had given instructions to be buried in the Church of St. John. Inside the church is the monument of this Viceroy.

Dal lake:
The picturesque Dal Lake is about 11km from Dharamsala. It is surrounded by fir trees. There is an annual fair in Sept. and is largely attended by Gaddis and other hillmen.

The Shrine of Bhagasunath:
The shrine of Bhagasunath is famous for its ancient temple. It is 11km from lower town. Slate quarries are found here. There is a tank and spring which are considered sacred by the Hindus.

Chamunda Devi:
Chamunda Devi is the famous temple dedicated to the Goddess Chamunda Devi. It is situated in the village of Dadh, 15 km from Dharamsala. One can have a glorious view of Dhauladhar on 3 sides and the Baner Khud, Pathiar and Lahla forest.

Adventure Sports in Dharamshala
Nature has blessed Dharamshala with a varied landscape that offers immense opportunities for adventure sports such as trekking and rock climbing. The treks along the Dauladhar mountain ranges are the best and most favored by trekkers of all classes from the beginners to the pros. The trekking season generally begins in March and continues till the advent of the monsoon season. A number of lakes and fresh water streams situated around Dharamshala offer exciting opportunities of angling and fishing. Fishing in Dharamshala can be a unique experience with snow covered mountain peaks in the backdrop and a pleasant climate for company.

Popular Shopping Centres in Dharamshala
Things to take home from Dharamshala include hand made handicrafts items manufactured by local artisans. Other attractions include Tibetan carpets that have scenes from local lores painted in vivid colors etched on them. Crafted silver jewellery and hand woven woolen clothes are other popular buys.

How to Reach There
By Air : Gaggal airport is situated just 13 km from Dharamshala. Jagson Airlines operates regular flights between Delhi and Dharamshala, however, the operations are subject to weather conditions.

By Rail : A narrow gauge railway station is situated at Kangra while the nearest broad gauge rail line is located at Pathankot. Kangra is conveniently connected with Dharamshala through regularly operational local buses. A good option of travel would be to travel to Pathankot and change for Kangra from there. Train timings and schedules can be checked from the official site of Indian railways, visit

By Road : Good roads connect Dharamshala with all the other stations of Kangra valley. State transport department operates regular buses between Dharamshala and other major Indian cities including Delhi.


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