|» Location :
|» Tourist Attractions :
||Kangra Art Museum, St. John's Church, McLeodganj
|» Discovered In :
|» Best Time To Visit :
||Mid-May to Mid-October.
against the backdrop of the dramatic Dhauladhar mountains, Dharamsala is
perched on the high slopes in the upper reaches of Kangra Valley.
The town is divided into two distinct and widely separated sections, Upper
and Lower Dharamsala, which differ almost a thousand metres in height.
Dharamsala has become the synonymous to the Tibetan government in exile and
the home of Tibetan leader Dalai Lama. Even if the Tibetan community
dominates the town, still it has retained the colonial lifestyle and British
fervour. Dharamsala over looks the plains and is
surrounded by dense pine trees and Deodar forests.
snowline with numerous streams and cool healthy atmosphere makes the
surroundings very attractive. Dharamsala is a busy bazaar town and has
established itself as the travellers base camp, who come to explore the
nearby mountains. The Kotwali Bazaar provides the entire colour and
characteristic of a small town, which is mixed with the simple life style.
The colourful temple and Gompas, which reflect the
culture of Tibet, adds attraction for the visitor.
museum gives an overview of the rich past of the region and on the other
hand there are institutes that have been established to preserve the Tibetan
art, cultures and traditions.
Kangra Art Museum :
Major Attractions of Dharamsala
This treasure trove of
the Kangra valley's arts, crafts, and rich past, displays artifacts that
date back to the 5th century. The museum also includes a gallery of Kangra's
famous miniature paintings and a representative collection of sculptures,
pottery, and anthropological items. War Memorial :
Set amidst the pine groves is a war memorial, built on the entry point
of the to Dharamsala to commemorate the post independence war heroes of
Himachal Pradesh. A web of narrow paths and landscaped lawns lead towards
Mcleod Ganj :
A number of residential buildings,
restaurants, antique and curio shops, together with famous Tibetan
institutions have lent importance to McLeod Ganj. The Budha temple is
situated opposite to the present abode of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama and
is worth a visit.
The Tibetan Institute of performing Arts(TIPA) is
1km. walk from McLeod Ganj and preserves a number of musical dance and
theatrical traditions of Tibet. There is also a Tibetan handicraft centre
situated at McLeod Ganj and a Sunday market is organized at about 10 minutes
walk from here. Chamunda Devi Temple :
from Dharamsala is the famous temple of Chamunda Devi. It is an enchanting
spot with glorious views of the mountains, the Baner Khud, Pathiar and Lahla
forests. 15-km from Dharamshala a tiny village of Dadh on Palampur road is
the famous temple dedicated to Goddess Chamunda Devi. Jwalamukhi
Dedicated to the "Goddess Of Light", the temple is
one of the most popular Hindu temples in northern India. There is no idol of
any kind the flame is considered as a manifestation of the goddess. An
eternally burning and shining blue flame emanates from the rock sanctum and
is fed by the priests with the offerings of devotees.
St.John's Church :
The church of St. John's in the wilderness lies on a
motorable road between McLeod Ganj and Forsythe Ganj 8kms. from Lower
Dharamshala. It has a monument of Lord Elgin, one of the Viceroys of India,
who died in Dharamshala and was buried here in 1863.
Places to Stay in Dharamsala
Dharamsala's accommodation options include HPTDC's hotels,
private hotels, guest houses, PWD and Forest rest houses, which are located
in and around the place and are available at resonable prices.
Dharamsala offers mainly the handicraft items, which
are manufactured by the local artisans.
Shopping in Dharamsala
The Kotwali Bazaar is one
of the main shopping areas in the town. The main attraction of the town is
Tibetan carpets. These carpets are delicately woven and are decorated with
vivid colours. The Motifs on these carpets are either inspired from nature
or from the monuments or carry a description of some folk story of the
Tibetan cultural heritage.
Over all, these carpets carry a totally
different style and attraction from their counterparts in Kashmir or the
Persian carpets. Further the local handicrafts are also available in the
market. Tibetan Textile can be purchased from the office of Tibetan
handicrafts. One can always bargain items like the traditional hat, the
Chubas, the traditional wear for the Tibetan women, bags, trousers etc.
As Dharamsala is located in the Himalayas, the
climate is very pleasant during the summers but in winters the cold is very
Climate of Dharamsala
Temperature can drop below the freezing point during the
winters and heavy woollen clothes are required. During the summers the
weather is mild and light woolens and cottons are recommended. The best time
to visit the place is during the summers when the cold has shed its biting
teeth and there is plenty of Sunshine. But avoid coming here during the
monsoon months, as there is a danger of landslides.
How to Get there
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 Dharamsala. 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 Dharamsala.