Himachal TourismHimachal Pradesh
Himachal Tours

Dharamshala

General Information
Location : 185-km From Shimla, Himachal Pradesh
Established Between : 1852
Main Attractions : Kangra Art Museum , St. John's Church , McLeodganj
Best Time To Visit : Mid-May to Mid-October.

Dharamshala over looks the plains and is surrounded by dense pine trees and Deodar forests. A nearby snowline with numerous streams and cool healthy atmosphere makes the surroundings very attractive. A busy bazaar town, Dharamshala 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. The Kangra 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.

Today, Dharamshala 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.

Places of Interest in Dharamshala

Kangra Art Museum :
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 Dharamshala to commemorate the post independence war heroes of Himachal Pradesh. A web of narrow paths and landscaped lawns lead towards this monument.

St. John's Church :

One of the most poignant memories of the British Raj is the church of St. John , situated in the wilderness. This charmingly dressed stone church is located just 8-kms from Dharamshala on the way to McLeod Ganj. Under the shade of Doedar branches, a memorial has been made over the body of the British Viceroy, Lord Elgin who died at Dharamshala in 1863.

Norbulinka Institute :

Just 4-kms from Dharamshala, Norbulinka was established to preserve and teach the ancient Tibetan arts. The shady paths, wooden bridges, small streams tiny water falls make this place look like heaven. Here one can watch the wooden carvings and the tangka paintings, golsithing and embroidery being done. The nunnery close to the institute is a place where women are taught the advanced levels of Buddhist philosophy.

Nearby Attractions from Dharamshala

Macleodganj :
Originally home of the semi-nomadic Gaddi tribe, McLeodganj is today the residence of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama. This mid 19th century place was developed as a British Garrison. The place was developed as an important administrative point for the whole Kangra valley. Today the place has developed as headquarters of the exiled Tibetan Government. The impressive monastery has larger than life size images of Buddha, Padmasambhava and Avaloketeshwara.

Kareri :
Set amidst a sylvan surrounding is a rest house, located in the cool depths of the pine grove. Surrounded by green open meadows and forests of tall oak & pine at a height of 3250m is situated the picturesque Kareri Lake, which is just 13-km from the rest house and 22- kms from Dharamshala.

Masrur :
Fifteen richly carved monolithic rock temples sculpted in the splendid style of the Kailash temple at Ellora and dating back to the 8th century are to be found at Masrur, just 15-kms south of Kangra. Images of Lord Ram, Goddess Sita and Lakhsman can be found in the sanctum of the main temple.

Triund :
Triund is a popular picnic spot at an height of 2827 m. The area is on the foothills of Dhauladhar range and is 17-kms from Dharamshala. The snow line starts at Ilaqua, which is five kms from Triund. The breathtaking views of the mountains and the valleys makes Triund an ideal picnic spot and trekking spot.

Adventure Sports in Dharamshala

Trekking & Rock Climbing :
Dharamshala is one of the most popular starting points for treks and Rock climbing over the ridges of the Dhauladhar range. There are tailor-made treks in the Kangra valley around Dharamshala and adjoining places. The trekking season starts from May and goes on to October. The most frequented route from Dharamshala to the Chamba valley, over the Indradhar Pass (4,350m), is arduous trek but the most novice trekkers can manage to complete it within five days.

There are many easy walks of small treks around Mcleodganj and Dharamshala such as Toral Pass (4,575m) that start from Tang Narwana (1,150m), which is 10-km from Dharamshala. A 2-km stroll takes one to Bhagsu, then a little further a 3-km walk will bring the trekkers to Dharamkot. If one wishes to go on a longer walk then he can walk 8-km to Triund. The snow line of Ilaqa Got is just a 5-km walk.

There are many easy walks of small treks around Mcleodganj and Dharamshala such as Toral Pass (4,575m) that start from Tang Narwana (1,150m), which is 10-km from Dharamshala. A 2-km stroll takes one to Bhagsu, then a little further a 3-km walk will bring the trekkers to Dharamkot. If one wishes to go on a longer walk then he can walk 8-km to Triund. The snow line of Ilaqa Got is just a 5-km walk.

Angling & Fishing :
The area around Dharamshala is rich in small rivers and streams, which give ample opportunity for angle fishing. The 20-km stretch of the river Beas between Nadaun and the Pong Dam offers ample of opportunities in angling for Mahaseer.

How To Get There

Air :
Dharamshala 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 Dharamshala.

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.

DISTANCE FROM MAJOR CITIES

» Dalhousie : 92-km
» Mandi : 115-km
» Kullu : 183-km
» Shimla : 185-km
» Manali : 223-km
» Chandigarh : 225-km