Perched on the Dhauladhar range in the foothills of Himalayas, Dharamshala is a popular destination among travellers from all around the world. The town bustles with energy by accommodating 35,000 people from different spheres of the world. It is truly a global village given the diversity of people from everywhere who either live there, have come there to study, meditate or contribute to the Tibetan causes. While some travellers visit this town just to enjoy the scenic views, people who spend a good amount of time in this place are transformed by the experiences they have there. There many homestays and hotels in Dharamshala that you can choose from as per your budget.
While most travellers return home with a more positive and happy perspective of life and their surroundings, there are some people who stay back there for months and years together, lost in the beauty of the surroundings and warmth of people. The Tibetan culture and Indian spiritual traditions are in abundance over here that one can never get enough of it.
St. John in the Wilderness Church
Located, on the way to Mcleodganj, in Himachal Pradesh, this church has great prominence in the place. It is a neo-gothic church built in 1852 in dedication to John the Baptist. Apart from gaining its importance of being the oldest structure in Dharamshala, it is also well known for being built in dense wood and thus is also popularly known as “St. John in the Wilderness”. Lord Erdgin’s final resting place, a governor general and a viceroy of India during the British rule, is also located over here. A church with the same name is located in Nainital, Uttarakhand.
Dal lake and Nadi
Lying in the southern region of Dharamshala, the Dal Lake lies between deodar trees and hills. It is often the starting point for trekking and excursions, to enjoy beautiful views of the Lake. A small sized Shiva temple is also situated on the banks of this lake. Every September, this place hosts a lively fair visited by many. There are many hotels in Dharamshala which are close by to Dal lake so you can enjoy the view of the lake and relax.
The tea gardens in Dharamshala, though the smallest in the country, are neatly organized in arrays across the Kangra Valley. The quality of the tea from this region is excellent and is available for purchase in dozens of local stores across Mcleodganj and Dharamshala.
Jwalamukhi Devi Temple
Located in the Shivalik mountain range, this temple is said to be a sacred place for the Hindus and is one of the 51 shakthipeetha’s in the country. This temple is dedicated to goddess Jwalamukhi who is considered the flaming mouth deity. The story behind this temple is that Emperor Akbar paid a visit to the temple and attempted to put an end to the flame in the temple, however he failed to do that. Thereafter, he accepted the power of the Goddess. He also presented the temple with an Umbrella of Gold. Before leaving the temple, he turned back only to see the gold umbrella turning into copper.
A short and less challenging trek, Triund is 9 km away from Mcleodganj. At a height of 2850 m, a magnificent view of the Moon Peak-Indira Pass can be seen. The entire spot is tranquillity at its best and is an ideal spot for picnics.
Tsuglagkhang, Mcleodganj, Dharamsala
This place gains its popularity for being home to the Great Dalai Lama. It is a huge complex which has various stupas, temples, monasteries, a bookstore and even an eatery. Apart from tourists, this attracts flocks of devotees all through the year. Other than the residence of Dalai Lama, every other part of the complex is accessible by tourists. If you are lucky enough, you may even get to meet His Holiness.
Bhagsu falls, Dharamsala
Located only 2km from Mcleodganj, Bhagsu Falls is nestled amidst lush greenery and nature untouched by human intervention. It is a must visit for tourist who are travelling here and will have you mesmerised by its grandeur. Spread over a vast expanse of land, this place takes nearly 4-5 hours to explore completely. Trekking is a common activity in this region. This place hosts various cafes and eateries where tourists are seen taking a break and buying refreshments. The Shiva cafe is very famous for its snacks and also offers Hookah. A divergent right before the falls, takes you to this cafe after a flight of stairs to climb.
Namgyal Monastery, Mcleodganj, Dharamsala
Situated within the Tsuglagkhang complex, the Namgyal Monastery overlooks the beautiful mountain ranges of Dhauladhar. Among various other shrines and temples, this complex also has the Holiness, Dalai Lama, residing here every now and then. Apart from the place of residence of the spiritual leader, tourists are free to explore all other areas in the Monastery.
There many home stays and hotels in Dharamshala that you can choose from as per your budget and enjoy your stay in this serene, scenic and peaceful hill station in India.