The Great Himalayan National Park , Himachal Pradesh , India

 

The Great Himalayan National Park , Himachal Pradesh , India

 

OVERVIEW

The Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP) is located in the Kullu District of Himachal Pradesh, India. Initially constituted in 1984, GHNP was formally declared a National Park in 1999, covering an area of 754.4 sq kms. In 1994, two major changes were made in land use around the Park. A buffer zone of 5 km from the Park’s western boundary, covering 265.6 sq km. and including 2,300 households in 160 villages, was delineated as an Ecozone. Most of the population (about 15,000 to 16,000 people) in the Ecozone are poor and dependent on natural resources for their livelihoods.

The second change was the creation of the Sainj Wildlife Sanctuary (90 sq km) around the three villages of Shagwar, Shakti, and Marore. On the southern edge of the GHNP, another Protected Area (PA) was declared, known as Tirthan Wildlife Sanctuary. This covers 65 sq km and is without habitation. More recently, in 2010, both the Sainj and Tirthan Wildlife Sanctuaries were added to GHNP, but will not be formally incorporated until a process known as settlement of rights has occurred. Thus the initiated merger of Sainj and Tirthan Wildlife Sanctuaries with GHNP will be followed by a process of settlement to relocate inhabitants and make the area free of traditional pressures, which may take some time. The total area under Park administration (National Park, Wildlife Sanctuaries and Ecozone) is 1171 sq km, which is together referred to as the Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area (GHNPCA).

In 2010, an area of 710 sq km of the Parvati river catchment contiguous to the northern boundary of GHNP was initially notified as the Khirganga National Park, adding significant biological diversity, conservation value, and physical protection to GHNP. The boundaries of GHNP are also contiguous with the Pin Valley National Park (675 sq km) in Trans-Himalaya, the Rupi Bhabha Wildlife Sanctuary (503 sq km) in Sutlej watershed and the Kanawar Wildlife Sanctuary (61 sq km), adding additional protection and conservation value and opening up extended wildlife corridors.

ABOUT THE PARK

CLIMATE

The climate is typically the Western Himalayan temperate and alpine type. There are four distinct seasons recognized for GHNP: spring (April-June), rainy/summer (July-September), autumn (October-November) and winter (December-March). Precipitation is moderate over most of the year and abundant during monsoon from mid-June to mid-September. During winter, the precipitation is in the form of snow even in lower elevation (1,560 m) and higher elevation areas experience heavy snowfall of over 2 m depth.

Mean annual rainfall recorded at Niharni and Sainj in Sainj valley for the years 1992-1994 was 1155.7 mm and 1158.3 mm respectively. The maximum annual rainfall recorded recently was 1298 mm, which is not significantly different from the previous records. The ambient temperature varied from -10 to 40 C, January and June being the coldest and hottest months of the year respectively.

ECO-TOURISM

The Great Himalayan National Park offers the causal hiker and serious trekker a wide range of experiences in the natural wonders of the Park. Trails range from relatively easy day walks in the Ecozone to challenging week or longer treks through arduous and spectacular terrain. GHNP ranks as one of the best national parks in the world and reveals its beauty, diversity, and depth through time spent in exploration.

At GHNP, there are numerous habitats for exploration: from lush forests of oak, conifer, and bamboo, to gentle alpine meadows; from swift flowing rivers to high elevation glaciers. The terrain and geology are diverse. If one is lucky there are opportunities to observe endangered species of the Western Himalayas in their natural habitat.

 

The Ecozone is an area adjacent to the Park, which contains villages that have historically had some economic dependence on the resources of the land incorporated into the Park. The formal designation of the Park boundaries and the resulting loss of these resources has economically impacted these villages. In recognition of this adverse economic impact, various programs have, and are being, developed by the state government of Himachal Pradesh, NGO’s (non-government organizations), and the villagers themselves to create alternative sources of economic well-being.

The Ecozone offers and Kullu region offers excellent opportunities for bird watching, wildlife viewing, religious pilgrimages, cultural tours, and viewing local crafts and craft creation. There are options of rafting, climbing, fishing, attending a village festival, viewing local architecture, and sacred groves. The Park itself has two facilities for tourists: a tourist center at Sai Ropa and an Information Center at Larjee.

 

BIODIVERSITY / ANIMAL

MAMMALS

Among the large mammals, there are several species of herbivores that are characteristic of the Park: the Himalayan Goral, a small goat-antelope found in the lower forests, the Himalayan Tahr a wild goat, and the Bharal, or Blue Sheep above the tree-line. These mammals are prey for Common Leopards (in the forest zone) and Snow Leopards (above tree-line). Himalayan Black Bears inhabit the forests, while Asiatic Brown Bears are found in the alpine meadows.

Blue Sheep
Males are handsome with slate blue fur and black chests; weight about 60kgs, unlike smaller females. Prefers grassy slopes near cliffs from 3500m upwards to the limits of vegetation. Live in herds of about 5 to 20.
Blue Sheep

Blue Sheep

Himalayan Brown Bear
Usually herbivorous feeding on grass and herbs. Some become carnivorous killing sheep, gloats or ponies. Males may grow to 1.7m in length; females are smaller.
Himalayan Brown Bear

Himalayan Brown Bear

Snow Leopard
One of the most beautiful of the large cats with handsomely marked coat. Inhabits the highest inner portions of the Park contiguous with the Pin Valley National Park. Regular sightings of snow leopard are reported. First confirmed sighting in GHNP in Tirath, the headwater of Tirthan river, in July 1997
Snow Leopard

Snow Leopard

Himalayan Tahr

Himalayan Tahr

Himalayan Tahr
A wild goat which lives in the steepest precipices. May go up to 5000m altitude. Males have a distinctive, dark, shaggy ruff and a long mantle of paler hairs: they weigh up to 100 kg; females about 60 kg. Live in groups as large as 20 to 30
Musk Deer

Musk Deer

Musk Deer
Member of deer family though different appearance. Does not have any antlers. Males have backward-curving tusk-like incisors in the upper jaw. Unlike other deer, they have a gall bladder and a uniquely developed scent gland in the abdominal region which produces valuable musk. In some parts of GHNP they reach a relatively high density of 6 to 9 Musk Deer per sq. km. Rated high on the endangered species list. Hunted nearly to extinction for its musk.
At the low to middle altitude in Tirthan, Sainj and Jiwa valleys (altitude of about 2000 to 3,000m) the following animals are found:
Serow
A goat-antelope which is heavily built and of about 1m height. One of the least studied mountain animals. Solitary life in moist gorges with thick vegetation; moves with amazing speed.
Serow

Serow

Rhesus Macaque
Common monkey of northern India. The Himalayan populations are larger, with longer fur than those in the plains. Large troops live near villages and forests. Mingles with humans, creating mischief. Has heavier winter coat in winters.
Rhesus Macaque

Rhesus Macaque

Barking Deer
Also known as Muntjac or Ribfaced Deer. Adult male 50 to 75 cms high to shoulders. Antlers small with short brow-tine. Females have bristly hair in place of horns. In GHNP seen in thickly wooded hills from 1,500 to 2,500m altitude.
Barking Deer

Barking Deer

Goral
A goat-antelope with yellowish gray or brown coat suffused with black. One of the best known Himalayan animals. Very well represented in GHNP. Lives in small groups. Best seen on grassy ridges at dawn and dusk. Throat has distinct white patch. Height at shoulder is 65 to 70 cms. Horns about 13 cms. Goral prefer elevations of 1000 to 3000m.
Ghoral

Ghoral

Certain mammals in GHNP prefer a wide altitude range, including:
Himalayan Black Bear

Himalayan Black Bear

Himalayan Black Bear
Associated with mixed broad leaf and conifer forests. Adult males weigh up to 180 kgs before hibernation; head-body length of 1.6m. A creamy white V pattern marks the chest. Well adapted for tree climbing. Can become carnivorous. Villagers close to GHNP dislike this animal as it destroys their maize crop and sometimes kills cattle.
Common Leopard

Common Leopard

Common Leopard
A sleek and agile cat with a tawny, reddish yellow coat marked with small close set black rosettes. Average length is about 215 cms. Lives in forests as well as in open country. Sighted up to 3,500m.

BIODIVERSITY / PLANTS

TREES

Trees largely predominate the temperate belt of GHNP. The conifer species are widely distributed at various altitudes (e.g., blue pine, cedar, spruce, and fir) in the successive low to high altitudinal zones. Each of the upper coniferous belt has its characteristic oak which provide acorns for birds and rodents. The white-oak is associated with Pinus roxburghii and blue pine; green-oak with fir and spruce. Brown-oak mainly forms the pure community at the treeline.

Deep Dark Brown Oak Forest in Sainj Valley, 3,400 m

Deep Dark Brown Oak Forest in Sainj Valley, 3,400 m

Fir Forest in Sainj Valley

Fir Forest in Sainj Valley

Khorli Poi Birch Forest Tirthan (3,300m)

Khorli Poi Birch Forest Tirthan (3,300m)

A number of lichens and fungi occur on the oak trees which in turn provide food material for mammals and birds. Himalayan yew is most abundant in the fir forest where they give an appearance of an old forest and provide a distinct cool microclimate. Rhododendron arboreum dominates between 1500-3000 m with a tendency of preference for the lower elevation on the north side. Four species of Maple occur with a wide range of altitude from 1500-3500 m. Aesculus, alder, poplar, birch, and willows are common near the streams.

Blue Pine Forest

Blue Pine forest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rivers and Lakes – Kinnaur , Himachal Pradesh , India

Rivers and Lakes – Kinnaur , Himachal pradesh , India

 


Satluj

The Satluj-This is the principal river of Kinnaur almost dividing the district into two parts. It runs within the Himalayan mountains for about 450 kilometers and the first part of its course is west-north-west. When it enters Kinnaur, it generally takes south-westerly direction. Within the District the length is about 130 km. Its source is supposed to be at a great elevation on the southern face of the Kailash range whence it flows into the sacred lake Rawan Hard. As far as the village of Khab it is almost a razing torrent. At Khab it receives the Spiti river where the bed of stream is still above 2,589 m high from the mean sea level. The Satluj descends from about 3,050 m (the point of its entrance in the district), to 1,220 m at Chaura flowing almost the whole way between narrow cliffs and therefore, there is no open ground worth describing all along its bank.The water of the river is more or less discoloured.Cultivated fields in terraces are generally at considerable height from its banks and thus immune from the turbidity of water which largest in June, July and August. The average discharge is about 2,000 cusecs during the winter and 100,000 cusec during June-July. The tributaries of the Satluj in this district are the Spiti, the Ropa, the Taiti, the Kashang, the Mulgoon, the Yula, the Wanger, the Shorang and the Rupi on the right bank and the Tirung, the Gyanthing, the Baspa, the Duling and the Solding running on the left bank.

Spiti

It is the second major river of the district which has its source far north on the eastern slopes of the mountain ranges which run between Lahul and Spiti. The river is formed at the base of the Kunzum Range by the confluence of Kunzum La Togpo and the streams Kabzima and Pinglung. It flows eastwards till Kaurik and then turns southwards to join the Satluj river at Khab at an altitude of 2589 meters. Spiti is joined by several feeders which meet the river both at right and left banks. Chaladogpo, the Yulang, the Lipak and the Tirasang are its main tributaries. The only mentionable tributary on the left bank is Chaladogpo existing between Chango and Changriang, whereas on the right side are the yulang, the Lipak and the Tirasang.

 

Baspa

The Baspa river, the another feeder of the Satluj, rises on the north eastern declivity of the outer Dhauladhar of the Himalaya. It is a big and valuable stream, running smoothly down a famous valley. It is bounded on the south-west by the Dhaola Dhar and on the north-east by the huge Raldang peak of the Great Himalaya. The channel of the river is wide. At Chhitkul its width is roughly twenty meters, lower down, the width is from twenty-three to twenty-five meters. After coursing in a north westerly direction it falls into the Satluj at Karchham.The Baspa is next to Spiti in size and is about seventy-two km in length. Its entire course lies within the district. As compared to other rivers the Baspa is fairly turbulent and frequently changes its course thereby doing extensive damage to the cultivated fields on its bank.It receives the various streams and streamlets on both of its banks. On the left side mentionable tributaries are Zupkia, Thatang, Bering and Rukti and on the right Suthi. This is the most inhabited valley and there are now permanent bridges at many places. An outlandship fish species known as brown trout (salmo fario) is found in this river.

Nako Lake

This beautiful lake is high altitude lake located in the Pooh sub-division of district Kinnaur. The lake is surrounded by willow and polar trees. There is a small village on the bank of this lake – and the village seems to be half buried by the lake’s borders. On the water’s northern side, are four Buddhist temples with stucco images and murals. Near Nako is a footprint-like impression ascribed to the saint Padmasambhava. It freezes in winter and people enjoy skating on this lake.

Culture and Belief – Kinnaur , Himachal pradesh , India

Culture and Belief – Kinnaur , Himachal pradesh , India

 


The People

The present day the Kinnauras do not constitute a homogenous group and display significant territorial and ethnic diversity. For a better understanding of ethnic and cultural distribution, the Kinnaur District may be classified into three territorial units.

Lower Kinnaur comprise area between Chora at the boundary of the Kinnaur District with Rampur Bushahr and Kalpa including Nichar and Sangla valleys. The people of Lower Kinnaur are primarily of the Mediterranean physical type. It is difficult to distinguish them from the people residing in the adjoining Shimla District with whom they have some affinity. The people of lower Kinnaur are mostly Hindus though the ethno-historical factors have resulted in some Buddhist influence.

The middle Kinnaur is the area between Kalpa and Kanam including Moorang tehsil.

The people of middle Kinnaur are of mixed racial strain. Some have marked Mongoloid and others marked Mediterranean features. In some cases there is an admixture of the above two in varying degrees. The inhabitants are Buddhist as well as Hindus. Many people have faith in both the religions. The upper Kinnaur comprises of remaining north-eastern part of the district i.e. the area between Pooh and Hangrang valley extending upto international border with Tibet.


The predominant physical type of upper Kinnaur in the Mongoloid though a few persons with Mediterrean features are also seen in the area around Pooh. Some persons show the blending of Mediterrean and Mongoloid elements in varying degrees. However the people of Hangrang valley are almost universally Mongoloids. They mostly follow Mahayana Buddhist religion.
The Kinnaur society is divided into two broad occupational groups- peasants and the artisans possibly of diverse ethnic origin. These groups are represented by Kanets (Rajputs) and Scheduled Castes.

The Kanets comprise the main cultivating community of the area and use honorific surname Negi. Among the Kanets there are three grades. In the first grade Kanets there are as many as fifty sub-castes, in the second grades there are seventeen sub-castes and in the third grade who work as potter have three sub-castes. Waza Kanets belong to the third grade and are considered inferior among Kanets.

The Scheduled castes include Chamangs and Domangs. Chamangs traditionally make and wove clothes. The Domangs are primarily blacksmiths. There is a third caste called ores. The main profession of Ores is carpentry. In social status the Ores are equal to Domangs. Among the Scheduled castes blacksmiths and carpenters i.e. Domangs and Ores considered themselves superior to Kolis or Chamangs.

Dress

The people of district dress mostly woolen clothes. There clothing is well suited to the climate and is artistic too in its own distinctive way.

Head dress: of men and women is a round woolen cap called thepang in the local dialect. It is generally of light grey or of white colour with a colour velvet band on the outer fold. Band of green colour is most liked. Crimson blue, yellow etc. may also be worn.
Men wear woolen shirts called chamn Kurti made of woolen cloth and tailored in the village. Another type of dress which the men wear is Chhuba. It is long woolen coat somewhat resembling an Achkan. A sleeveless woolen jacket worn outside the Chhuba. Men wear woolen churidhar pajama.

Women wrap up a woolen shawl like garment called dohru. The first wrap of dohru is on the back with embridered border displayed throughout its length up to the heels. Darker shades of colours are preferred for dohru. Besides beautiful coloured shawls are also worn by them over their shoulders. Choli a sort of full sleeves blouse is worn by the women. Some of them have decorative lining also. However, now a days wearing of cotton/synthetic salwar, kameez, pants and shirts have become popular among the young Kinnauras.


The traditional footwear worn by the Kinnauras were made of wool and goat hair with sole of goat hide. However, with the passage of the time the indigenous shoes have almost disappeared and wearing of readymade shoes is in vogue.

Houses and Equipment

The housing pattern of upper Kinnaur is different from that of lower Kinnaur.

In the lower Kinnaur the houses are two storeyed and built of stone and wood. These are either slated roofs or having flat roofs made of layers of bhojpatra (tree bark) covered with earth. The door are often folding and open inwards.

In upper Kinnaur the houses are usually built of stone. These are flat roofed and covered with earth. They are ill-built on account of the scarcity of wood. The houses are two storeyed and doors are small. The ground floor is used as cattle shed and upper storey for living purposes. The size and plinth area of the house depends upon the site available for construction. The houses are white washed in lower as well as upper Kinnaur. Besides these traditional houses, now RCC houses built in modern designs are also coming up.


Usually the households have some wooden chest for keeping grain and dried fruits. In addition most of the houses have separate wooden grain storage structures locally called ‘Kathar’. Khayarcha is a mat used for sitting purposes, which is made of goats hair. Pakpa which is skin of sheep or goat or some wild animal as often placed on khayarcha for sitting. Traditionally the people used to use utensils made of brass, bronze and aluminum. However, now a days with the increased outside contact they are fast adopting the china crockery and utensils made of stainless steel.

Food Habits

The staple food is wheat, ogla, phafra and barley which are local produce. Besides these kankani, cheena, maize, chollair and bathu are also taken. The principal pulses consumed are peas, black peas, mash and rajmash. The vegetables usually consumed are cabbage, turnips, peas, beans, pumpkin, potato, lady finger and tomato besides some locally available wild green vegetables leaves. They relish rice too which is imported from the plains. Taking a salted tea called cha in the morning and evening is very popular among the Kannauras which is usually taken along with sattu made of parched barley flour.

Cha

They are non-vegetarian and relish goat and ram’s meat. Taking of alcoholic drinks in their day to day life and also on the ceremonial or festive occasions is quite common among them. Alcohol is distilled at the household level. It is made out of fruits like grapes, apple, pear etc. grown locally and of barley. The Kannauras are very fond of music, dance and singing.

Lifestyle

Generally, Kinner houses have storerooms for keeping grain and dried fruits, and separate wooden grain-storage structures, called kathar. Pakpa, a piece of sheepskin or yakskin, is often placed on the khayarcha mat.

Traditionally Kinners use utensils made of brass and bronze. Modern influences have included the introduction of Chinese crockery, and utensils made of stainless steel and aluminium.

Clothes are mainly of wool. The thepang, a grey woollen cap, is worn with a white velvet band. The Tibetan chhuba, a long woollen coat

Cha

which resembles an achkan, is worn as well, with a sleeveless woollen jacket.While men wear woollen churidhar pajamas, and tailored woollen shirts such as the chamn kurti, the women wrap themselves up in a dohru. The first wrap of the dohru is based on the back, with embroidered borders displayed throughout its length, which stretches to the heels. Darker shades of colours are preferred for the Dohru, although other beautifully coloured shawls may be worn, usually draped over the shoulders. A choli, another type of full sleeved blouse worn by women, may serve as a decorative lining as well.

The Kinners are classified mainly into two castes: lower and upper caste. Again both of these categories are divided into sub classes. The caste system is more prevalent in the Lower and Middle Kinnaur regions.

Religion

As stated above, the people of lower Kinnaur are mostly Hindus, though some references of Buddhism is also evident. Their most important gods and goddess are Durga or Chandi, Bhairon, Usha or Ukha, Narayan, Vishnu, Badrinath and Bhimakali. The Chamang and Domang in addition have their favourite deities such as Nag Devta. Besides each village has its presiding deity. The inhabitants of middle Kinnaur are Buddhist as well as Hindu. In the northern area Buddhist influence is stronger. The important deity of middle Kinnaur are Chandi,Gauri Shankar, Kansa and Narayanjee. There are some monasteries besides the temples. The village god at Kanam worshipped by people of Buddhist faith is Dabla who has certain features associated with the earlier Bon religion. The image of Dabla is installed alongwith those of Buddha and Guru Rinpoche (Padma Sambhava) in one of the monasteries at Kanam.

The religion of upper Kinnaur is mostly Buddhism, having the institution of Lamaism. They mostly follow Mahayan Buddhism religion. Almost every village has a monastery with Lamas and jomos, who are recruited from amongst the Rajput (Kanet) only. A major part of the district is inhabited by people professing Lama religion. Though venerated by the inhabitants of Nichar and Sangla tehsils, Lama faith does not have a strong hold in these areas.

 


There are Buddhist temples in many of the villages of these areas yet the followers of this faith do not form a significant group. In Kalpa, Moorang and Pooh tehsils Lama are consulted and their services utilised in performance of many religious ceremonies. In Nichar and Sangla people do not necessarily consult Lamas on these occasions. In the absence of Brahman priests the people perform ceremonies themselves

Monasticism

Kanet boys, who learn the Tibetan scriptures and are well versed in Buddhist doctrines, are called Lamas. Similarly the Kanet girls, who do not marry, but devote their time to the study of Tibetan scriptures are called Zomos or Jomos. They live in nunneries. The two principal nunneries are at Kanam and Sunnam and in these a great numbers of Zomos live. Besides this, almost every village had few Zomos. The Lamas live in the monasteries and are looked upon as very holy.

 

 In fact they are the priests of all the Kanets.There are several monasteries of these Lamas in Kanam, Sunnam and other villages. Lamas are either Gyolong or Celibate like the Brahmchari or Dugpu, who marry but never shave. The head Lama is consulted with regard to important undertaking

Language

A number of dialects are spoken by the inhabitants of district Kinnaur which came under ‘Kinnauri’ or ‘Kanauri’. According to classification of languages made by the Linguistic Survey of India, ‘Kanauri’ comes under Tibet-Chinese Family of Languages. It has further been classified as language belonging to Western Sub-Group of Pronominalized Himalayan Group belonging to Tibeto-Himalayan Branch under Tibeto-Burnab Sub-Family (Census of India 1961, Vol. 1 India, Part II-C(ii). Languages Tables.P.CL.XVI). In Shimla Hill States Gazetteer, 1910, there is mention of three dialects spoken in Kinnaur. These are Hindi, Kinnauri and English Also there are as many as nine different dialects used by various sections in district Kinnaur.

The villagers on the Tibetan Border speak Tibetan dialects of western Tibet. The extent of spoken Tibetan is limited to the village of Nesang, Kunu and Charang adjoining Tibet. Jangram dialect is spoken in Jangi, Lippa and Asrang villages of Moorang tehsil. The Shumceho dialect is spoken in the villages of Kanam, Labrang, Spilo, Shyaso and Rushkalang of Pooh tehsil. A Kinnauri-Jangram mixture is the language used in Rakchham and Chhitkul villages of Sangla tehsil. The Scheduled castes speak a language which is closer to that of certain parts of the adjoining districts of Kinnaur. Besides these dialects the educated people of Kinnaur can speak Hindi also. Both men and women, specially in Sangla and Kalpa valley can speak English in addition to their mother tongue and Hindi.

Fairs and Festivals – Kinnaur , Himachal Pradesh , India

Fairs and Festivals – Kinnaur , Himachal Pradesh , India

 

Sazo

This festival is observed in the month of January. On this day the people take their bath in the natural springs and few even go to Satluj river for bathing if they happen to live near the river. Poltus, rice, pulses, vegetables, meat, halva, chilta and pug are the principal dishes prepared on this occasion. In the morning the family god is worshiped with the food except meat. The hearth is also worshiped near Noon time, the deity is brought out and worshiped with wine and halwa A fold dance is held. Thereafter the deity is believed to have gone to Kinner Kailash.

Phagul or Suskar

It is celebrated in the month of February/March. In this festival the sprit of Kanda (Peaks) called Kali is mainly worshiped, the festivals lasts about a fornight and is celebrated all over Kinnaur. Each day of the festival is called by different names and several peculiar functions are held each day. On the last day a feast is prepared and people worship kali on the roof of the houses and then partake of the food. It is believed that after the function and festival are celebrated with full zeal Kali the spirit feels happy and blesses the villagers with prosperity and plenty in the coming years.

Baisakhi or Beesh

It is celebrated in the month of April. The villagers prepare food like Poltu, Halwa and Keyshid. The image of the goddess is brought out of the temple and a fair is held in the Santang. It is an occasion to get together and to dance and drink. This festival marks the end of winter season also. New woolen clothes are worn from the wool spun during the winter.

Dakhraini

This festival is celebrated in the month of the July. On this day a feast is served. The deity is brought out and the villagers dance before her. Zongor and loskar flowers are brought from the kand peak and their garlands are offered to the goddess. After this these flowers are distributed among the villagers. One or two members from the family where death might have occurred before this festival go to the peak of the hill and ofter some food and fruits to shepherd in memory of the departed soul. A white flag on which some Buddhist mantras are written is fixes there as a sort of prayer for the peace of departed soul.

Flaich Ukhayang

It is a festival of flowers celebrated in the month of September. This festival is celebrated through the Kinnaur District on different dates. Generally people celebrate it on the hill peaks near their villages. The village deity led by band is carried to the place of in procession. One he-goat is sacrificed. A fair is held throughout the day. Flowers of shuloo which have been brought from peaks for this purpose are woven into garlands. At the end of the fair these garlands are offered to the deity. Immediately after that the people accompany the goddess to the village adorned with flowers. The people sing and dance on the return journey.

Losar

Loser is celebrated in the month of December to welcome the new year. On this day in the morning a special preparation of parched barley mixed with butter milk is taken by all the family members and they put on garlands of chilgoza visits to the neighbours and friends are reciprocated and greetings of losuma tashi meaning happy new year are exchanged. While the elderly person betow their losuma shalkid or blessings. Two or three days before the losar festival khepa is observed. On this day it is customary to fetch small branches of a throny bush and place it on the doors. It is meant to ward off evil spirits. On the next day these throny twigs are removed and thrown far away from the village and a feast follows in the night.

Tribal Festival
Tribal Festival is being celebrated since 1994 from 30 October to 2nd November every year at District Headquarter Reckong Peo and this festival has been declared as State Level festival and has been celebrated since 1987 under different names like Janjatiya Utsav, Phulaich Utsav and also as Tribal Festival. This festival not only depicts the panorama of rich culture heritage of district but also provides an opportunity to the local people to sell/exhibit their horticulture/agriculture produce, handicraft and artifacts. Besides the Kinnauri culture groups, participants from other districts/states also present and perform culture programmes symbolising national integration and brotherhood

Himachal Pradesh Sightseeing Places , India

Himachal Pradesh Sightseeing Places , India 

 

CHAIL – Paradise for hikers

Chail, an awesome hill station in Himachal bewitches you with its temples, palaces, natural beauty and landscape and a number of tourist attractions such as the renowned Chail Cricket Ground, the highest cricket ground in the world, Sidh Baba Ka Mandir, Maharaja’s Palace, Chail Wildlife Sanctuary, etc. that together make it a worth visiting place

So finally you have come on the close decision of packing your bags to visit some of the fascinated places where there is no one between you and nature. Well, a great decision to forget office pressure and domestic tensions for some time. But, the main question is that where to go. If you are confused about the selection of right and picturesque place, you have a better place to make your dream come true to come close to Mother Nature in the state of Himachal Pradesh. Be the part of Chail tourism and you will feel the presence of Mother Nature. Chail, the most amazing and picturesque Chail hill stations in Himachal Pradesh has been the ever shining star in India tourism. Located at the distance of around 45 km from Shimla, the beautiful tourist destination attracts tourists from all over the country and worldwide.

This beautiful hill station that once used to be a simple and serene village today stands as a paradigm of beauty and serenity. The region is drenched in the most colorful hues of tranquility and material peace that go hand in hand. Chail is what calls every one a true paradise for travelers. The hill-station is nothing less than the Promised Land that every voyager longs for and wishes to visit.

Tourist Places in Chail Showing You the Real Picture of Chail Tourism

As far as tourist attraction and tourist places in Chail are concerned, they are abundant in number. Some of the picturesque places include Sidhi Baba kaMandir, Maharaja’s Palace, Chail wildlife sanctuary and cricket grounds are names a few that are famous to visit in hill station. It was the summer capital of king of Patiala named Maharaja Bhupendra Singh Ji. Later, the British Army Commander-in-Chief, Lord Kitchener sent Maharaja in Chail as his exile in the year of 1891.

Just like most of the famous attractions, Sidh Baba Ka Mandir is another highlight of Chail that every traveler must visit once. Another famous attraction here is the cricket ground that stands at a height of 2144 meter above sea level. The region is also home to some of the most varied species of flora & fauna like Ghoral, Khalij, Sambhar, Jungle Fowl, Cheer Pheasants and so on. The region is outnumbered with numerous trees and lush greenery that offers the most pleasant sight to every traveler.

Visiting Tourist Places in Chail is Easy and Accessible by Air, Rail and Road

Shimla is very close to Chail at the distance of 45 kms. The capital city of Himachal Pradesh – Shimla has a domestic airport where there are regular flights from Delhi and other cities. Chandigarh is also another main airport at the distance of 120 km from Chail. You can take taxi from Shimla or other cities of Himachal Pradesh along with Chandigarh, Ambala and Delhi. Regular buses are also run by Himachal Roadways to Chail from Shimla, Dharmshala, Solan and other cities.

 

 

CHAMBA – It’s magnificent scenery

 

Chamba’s charm is gets enriched with the lively River Ravi and Chamba’s art, culture, museums, temples as well as natural attractions are more than enough to let you glued to it. One can behold the arresting Dhgauladhar Ranges or can visit the Chaurasi Temple Complex or the famous Champavati Temple. People fond of historical findings can head towards the Bhuri Singh Museum…

Mother Nature has gifted some parts of India with her true beauty that lies in everything. Himachal Pradesh – the home of snow, sky-touching mountain ranges, deep dense valleys, greenery and crystal clear water rivers, is also one of them. The small yet beautiful hill state in Northern Part of India is blessed with natural beauty that lies in Pine, Deodar, Apple and different other orchards and forest ranges, deep valleys, snow-capped mountain ranges, monasteries, rivers and a lot more. As far as Himachal Pradesh is concerned, it is a home to different world-famous hill stations. Among all the beautiful hill stations, the popularity graph of Chamba tourism is always found on ever increasing. Having been on the forefront in Himachal tourism map, Chamba Sightseeing is sure to attract honeymooners, nature tour lovers, adventure tour enthusiasts and those who want to spend some days in serenity.

Chamba is one of the beautiful hill stations in Himachal Pradesh at an altitude of around 1000 meter above sea level. The beautiful town and hill station is located on the South Bank of River Ravi. From every point like crest of mountains, from the bank river and other places, you will visit amazing beauty and the real image of Chamba tourism. In addition, there are also a number of tourist places in Chamba that draw the attention of tourists and persuade them to visit the attractions again and again. According to historical records available, it was an ancient Pahari capital that was established by King SahilVerma of Chamba in 920 A.D.

King gave the small town or capital name Chamba on the name of her daughter Champawati. Moreover, he also built a temple after her daughter’s name. Still, you will see her statue in the temple. In other words, she is worshipped in the temple as Goddess Chamba where devotees from different parts of Himahcal Pradesh come to pay homage to her. Talking about places to visit in Chamba, they are in abundant and give enough reasons to stay for more days. In the real way, Chamba Sightseeing is showing you the real image of Chamba tourism.

Tourists Places in Chamba Must See Destination That Keep Tourists Mesmerized

Dhauladhar Range, PirPanjal Range, Zanskar Range are the main three mountain ranges that give a pleasing and amazing view to the hill station and add more spark in Chamba Sightseeing. Bhuri Singh Museum is one of the ancient museums in Himachal Pradesh that shows you the ancient artifacts. In addition, Minjar Fair is also famous to explore in Chamba. Chamba Devi temple is a must see tourist place in Chamba. Moreover, Chaurasi Temple is also another popular temple that is dedicated to Lord Ganesh, Goddess Lakshmi Devi. Bharmour town is also another popular place to visit in and around Chamba.

How to Reach?

The beautiful hill station is at the distance of 116 km from Pathankot in Punjab, which is a main Railway junction. Delhi is at the distance of 580 km from Chamba for tourists who come by air. Gaggal airport in Kangra is also another main airport where there are regular flights from Delhi.

 

DALHOUSIE – A gateway to the primeval Chamba Hill State  OR A place of Scenic Beauty

 

Dalhouse appears to be extremely charming due to the existence of Kathlog, Balun, Porteyn, Moti Tibba and Bakrota hills. The hill station is ideal for honeymooners, who can explore it by visiting the spots such as the Laxmi Narayan Temple, Satdhara Springs, various churches, picnic spot named as Dalhousie Panchpula, Kalatop, etc. and add an extra glitter to their honeymoon and holidays…

Getting bored due to hectic schedule at workstation? Looking for some rehabilitation activities to rejuvenate your mind and body? Or do you want to spend time in the environment where no one comes between you and serenity? Well, in India you have a plenty of options, but choosing the right one matters a lot. If you are on the verge of choosing which place is perfect for you, then here the name of Dalhousie would be the right one. Being one of the picturesque hill stations in the state of Himachal Pradesh, Dalhousie tourism has a magical charisma that is for sure to keep tourists spell bound. There are a number of places to visit in Dalhousie that will fill your life with new hopes, new energy and positiveness.

As far as Dalhousie Sightseeing is concerned, it will keep you spell bound. Just stand on the crest of any hill or explore the panoramic view from chopper or plane, you will be speechless. Greenery and dotted small houses, deep dense forest ranges, snow-capped mountain ranges and western edge of Dhauladhar mountain range of Himalayas will persuade you to visit tourist places in Dalhousie again and again. Located at different altitudes (6000 to 9000 feet or 2700 meter) above sea level, it is an ever-rising star in the Himachal tourism map where Mother Nature never sleeps.

Talking about the tourist places in Dalhousie, they are abundant in number. Panchpula waters, for instance is one fo the fascinating lake here that is perfect for water sports. On the other hand, the beauty of mesmerizing scenic landscape, area of karelanu and the natural springs of Karelanu will take you to the land of greenery and picturesque beauty.

In addition, some of the amazing and naturally rich tourist places to visit in Dalhousie include Bakrota Hills, Village Lohali, Gandhi Chowk, Sadar Bazar, Panchpula, Tibetan Market, Khajjar and the list goes on. Small and sloppy streets, roads, deep dense valleys, and the panoramic view with the presence of serenity also add more spark in the popularity of Dalhousie tourism and make it a must see hill station in the state of Himachal Pradesh. If you stay for a few more days (two or three days or more), then visit other popular tourist places in Dalhousie that include Kalatop, DakshinaMurti, Shivkul, Norwood Paramdham, Laxmi Narayan Temple, St. Francis Church, Radha Swami SatsangBhawan, St john’s Church, and the list goes on. Handicraft centers also make Dalhousie tourism shine on the global tourism map. For handmade chapels, woolen clothes, dolls, shawls and mats, it is the only destination in Himachal Pradesh.

Needless to say, Dalhousie sightseeing will keep you mesmerized for a long time and persuades you to visit the hill station again and again. Access to the beautiful hill station is also easy as it is very close to Pathankot that is the main railway junction in the state of Punjab. Chandigarh, Ambala, Shimla, etc are also the nearest cities and tourist destinations to visit Dalhousie sightseeing. So what you are waiting for, pack your bags to take a flight or train to visit tourist places in Dalhousie.

 

Dharamshala – Home in exile of the Dalia Lama

Dharamshala presents you with all the amazing charm of a hill resort. Dotted with awesome spots such as the St. John’s Church, Dal Lake, Kangra Art Museum, Namgyal Monastery, Nurpur Fort, Maharana Pratap wildlife Sanctuary, Chamund Devi Temple, etc., Dharamshal is there to fascinate you completely. No tourist can afford to miss out on exploring Dharamshala…

Your planning for the next holidays is on cards; but confused where to go. Grand wedding celebration is over, now, it’s time to book the tickets for honeymoon or get an affordable yet luxurious honeymoon package for a place where you, your darling and the serenity come close to each other. You want to feel the presence of Mother Nature, but still not decided which place would be suitable for you. Such questions often come in mind and sometimes confuse you, when you plan to spend out the time in luxury for the rejuvenation of your body. But, you search ends here; you have a better place full of natural beauty to explore the true beauty of Mother Nature. The Northern Indian State – Himachal Pradesh is filled with hill stations that are globally famous and develop a unique image of Himachal Tourism on the global tourism map. Dharamshala tourism is also one of them.

Being an indispensable part of Himachal Pradesh, Dharamshala Sightseeing is sure to keep tourists, especially honeymooners, nature tour lovers and adventure tour enthusiasts spell bound. Surrounded by lush greenery, cool climate, deep dense forest ranges, snow-capped mountain ranges, monasteries, and crystal clear water sources like springs, fountains, rivers and lakes, Dharamshala tourism brings new energy, new hopes and pleasing experience to your life. The beautiful hill station in the state of Himachal Pradesh is on different altitudes ranging from 1300 meter to 1700 meter. McLeodGanj is the main town that adds more spark in the popularity of Dharamshala tourism. A picturesque and eye-catching slope spread in an area of 8 km is Dharamshala that is also counted as the main hub of Tibet culture and Buddhism. There are a number of places to visit in Dharamshala that will keep nature tour enthusiasts and honeymooners spell bound.

Tourist Places in Dharamshala – Choices Are Unlimited as the places to Visit in Dharamshala Are Abundant

Book Dharamshala tours for some more days as the entire hill station and its surrounding areas are full of natural beauty, golf courses, cricket stadium (the only one International cricket stadium in Himachal Pradesh) and a numebr of prehistoric to contemporary monuments. Chamunda Devi temple, Norbulinka institute, Nurpur Fort, St John’s Church in Wilderness Dall Lake, e and MaharanaPratapSagar or Wild life sanctuary, are names a few that will be perfect time-spending destinations in the hill station. In addition, Kangra Art Museum, war memorial and Namgyal monastery are also must see tourist places in Dharamshala to explore.

Access to Sightseeing in Dharamshala

Visiting tourist places in Dharamshala is without any doubt the right option of coming close to Mother Nature. Reaching to the popular hill station in Himachal Pradesh is also easy as it is at the distance of 95 km from Pathankot that is nearest rail junction to Dharamshala in the state of Punjab. Another narrow gauge line that joins Jogindernagar to Pathankot is also the right option of enjoying natural beauty of the valley. The narrow gauge line goes to Kangra from where Dharamshala is at the distance of around 17 km. Chandigarh, Jammu, Shimla and New Delhi are different airports to reach to the beautiful hill station.

 

Kangra – Dev Bhumi ( the valley of Gods )

Kangra is marked with the stunning views of the Dhauladhar Hills and the picturesque Kangra Valley. The place is marked with an array of attractions including the Jwalaji Temple surprising you with the natural flames emerging from the rocks, Brajesshwari devi Temple, etc. Adventure freaks can enjoy sports like rock climbing, fishing, trekking, mountaineering, etc., giving you a thrilling experience…

One of the most beautiful hill stations of Himachal Pradesh, Kangra is renowned in history for being the capital city of the Chand dynasty. Being one of the most scenic valleys of the lower Himalayas, sheltered by the moving Dhauldhar hills, Kangra offers various adventure sports like trekking, rock climbing, mountaineering and fishing to the fun seekers.

Kangra is very famous for an historic temple namely Jwalaji Temple. Located 34 kms in the south of Kangra, the temple is dedicated to Goddess Jwalaji. A miracle in itself, it is perhaps the only temple in India where natural flames come out from nine different rocks in the temple.

Abundant historical evidences state the importance of this temple dating back to the reign of Mughal Emperor Akbar. The emperor under the influence of his royalty tried to test the prowess of the Goddess. He tried enormous ways to extinguish the flames but in vain. At the end, bowing to the Goddess, he tried to please her with a Golden Chhatra. But the Goddess did not accept it and the Chhatra fell on the ground turning into a colossal metal, the compositions of which are yet unknown.

Brajeshwari Devi Temple is another tourist attraction at Kangra. This Temple is a witness to the devastation by Mahmud of Ghazni in 1009. In 1905, Kangra was destroyed by an earthquake. Rebuilt in 1920, Kangra still is a legendary pilgrimage centre of Himachal Pradesh. Kangra also has a legendry fort belonging to King Kotch. The fort is situated at a considerable height overlooking Ganga and Manjhi rivers.

Access to Kangra

Kangra is easily accessible from rest of the country. It is well connected by rail, road and air. The nearest airport is Gaggal airport which is at 13 kms from Kangra. Other important airports of major cities like Jammu 200 kms, Amritsar 208 kms and Chandigarh 255 kms are well connected from Kangra.

The nearest broad gauge railhead is at Pathankot which is 90 km from Kangra. A narrow gauge railway line between Pathankot and Jogindernagar passes via Kangra, 17 kms from Dharamshala.

Apart from rail and air, Kangra is also well connected by road. This town is easily accessible from major cities of the region.

 

Palampur – Tea capital of North India

Palampur is rich with its tea gardens and has the beauty of the Dhauladhar Hills. Here, you find valleys, mountains, lush greenery and attractions including Mata Bundla Temple, Newgal Park, Saurab Kaliya Ban Vihar, St. John’s Church, Neugal Khad, etc., that together form the wonders to be explored in Palampur………..

Entire Himachal Pradesh is full of lush green forest ranges, valleys, snow covered mountain ranges and rich flora and fauna. Palampur Himachal Pradesh is also one of those beautiful places that attract people from all parts of the country and even from other parts of the world. Every year, thousands of honeymooners, nature lovers and couples prefer to explore the rich beauty of the small hill station yet beautiful city. Deriving the beautiful name from the popular word “Palum” that means plenty of water or abundant water. The most amazing city is located at the altitude of 1220 meters near Dhauladhar range just 35 km from Dharamshala.

As far as the history of Palampur tourism is concerned, it was unknown until the superintendent of biotechnological gardens, Mr Dr. Jameson who are also known to be the revolution person of Tea Plantation from Almpra in the year of 1849. According to history, this tea plantation was also considered as the main point that attracted European Tea Estate owners. And since then the place is known to be the tea capital of North India that is surrounded by tea gardens. In addition to the tea plantation, the estate and Palampur is also famous for ancient architectural wonders. And it is due to the fact of the influx of tourist and tea estate owners from Europe who developed their residential and commercial buildings.

Before the arrival of Europeans, it was the kingdom of Sikhs, the most stunning hill stations of Jalandhar. Today, Palampur has become the major tourist attraction and hill station in the state of Himachal Pradesh. Today, the place and its surrounding area is full of major attractions that keep tourists mesmerized for a long time and persuade them to come here again and again. Talking about attractions in Palampur deeply, then Newgal Park is one of the main places to explore in Palampur that comes in the way of Mata Bundla Temple. In addition to this, Neugal Khad or Small River and Sourab Kaliya Ban Vihar are also worthwhile to explore in the city and hill station. In addition to this, St John Church is also an attractive place in Palampur. It was rebuilt in 1929 that is very close to the Government College.

The popular hill station of Palampur is very close to all the major hill stations and cities of Himachal Pradesh. Palampur is also very close to Gaggal airport in Kangra that is only 37 m from Palampur. However, it is well connected via rail and road to all the major cities of the country. Phathankot is the very close railway station to the hill station of Palampur. Moreover, Moranda is only four km from the hill station of Palampur. Moreover, Palampur is also well connected to Dharamshala ( 40 kms), Kangra (40 kms) Kullu (165 kms), Mandi (96 kms) and Shimla (259 kms).

In addition to this, there are also a number of hotels, resorts, lodges and other accommodation options here. There are also a number of restaurants and other local Dhabas where you can enjoy the best food of Himachal Pradesh. So what you are waiting for, come to Palampur and enjoy the natural beauty here.

 

 

Kinnaur – Land of Fairytales

 

Kinnaur enchants you with vineyards, valleys, orchards, snow covered mountain and their peaks, as well as various fruits such as apples, apricots, pine nuts, almonds, etc. Rivers such as Spiti, Baspa and Satluj add to the richness of Kinnaur and make it serene. One can visit the Recong Peo temple or can forget oneself amidst the Oak, Chestnut, Mangolia, Alder as well as Birch forests…

In fact, entire sate of Himachal Pradesh has been gifted with natural beauty, snow-covered mountain ranges and lush green forest ranges. But the attraction and the charisma of Kinnaur are unexplainable. Kinnaur is one o the most beautiful hill stations and district of himacal Pradesh that is known for lush green valleys, orchards, vineyards, snow capped peaks and cold desert mountains and all those you have wished to have at a beautiful and naturally rich place.

Located at the distance of 250 kms from the state capital Shimla and well connected via national highway number 22, Kinnaur is also a rich region in the state that is known as the land for growing fruits like Apple, almonds, peaches, pine nut, apricots and the list goes on.

Kinnaur tourism is also famous for local wine named Anguri that is formulated by fruits and certain grains. Naturally rich and full of lush green forest ranges of Oak, Chestnut, Maple, Birch, Alder, Mangolia, etc., Kinnaur is all time favorite hill station among honeymooners and those who love to explore the real natural beauty in their own way. In addition to this, there are also a number of adventure tour spots where tourists, especially adventure tour enthusiasts can enjoy the adventure sports in their own way.

Rivers are also the main attractions here that make it a one stop destination for river rafting. Sutlej, Spiti, Baspa River, etc, are some of the main rivers that covered the Kinaaur area and make it most rich region for fruits and crops in the state of Himachal Pradesh. Sutlej River also divides Kinnaur in two parts. On the other hand, the Spiti River is the second most important river of the Region that is also the main water sources of the country.

Talking about the attractions in Kinnaur, the entire state is full of attractions like temples. One of the most visited temples in Kinnaur is Recong Peo that is renowned for its Gompa, where His Holiness the Dalai Lama accomplished a ‘Kalchakra’ ceremony in 1992. Positioned at an altitude of 1,899 meters, another popular attraction is Karchham that is famous tourist spot for its picturesque view that also is a convergence point of the Satluj and Baspa rivers.

Needless to say, it is one of the most beautiful places to explore in the state of Himachal Pradesh. Now, there are also a number of luxury hotels, resorts and a number of other accommodation options here. In this way, accommodating here is not a major issue. Moreover, there are also a number of restaurants and other food options in Kinnaur where you will also get an opportunity to enjoy local foods. So what you are waiting for, come and explore the real beauty of Kinnaur in Himachal Pradesh.

 

Lahual &  Spiti – Little Tibet

 

Lahual and Spiti showcase a number of heritage spots and primitive places. Here, you come across monasteries, lakes, valleys, rivers, gorges, mountains, temples, etc. that make the place completely arresting. One can explore the royal heritages of Gondla or can have the sacred essence of the Guru Ghantal Monastery. This makes Lahul and Spiti one of the best Himachal Pradesh tourist spots…

Earlier Lahaul and Spiti were two different districts of the State of Himachal Pradesh, Kardang was the capital of Lahul and Dankar the capital of Spiti. Finally the two districts were merged and found status of a district in 1960.

The district is popular for its heritages and ancient places. Snow covered peaks, deep gorges, lush green valleys, speedy flowing rivers, attracting mountain lakes, striking temples and monasteries are the main tourist attractions in Lahaul and Spiti. This district also can be visited for relaxing, sightseeing, trekking, mountaineering, fishing, para-gliding, skiing, ice skating and golfing.

Tibetan antelope, Tibetan argali, Kiangs, musk deer, and snow leopards are the rare animals which can be viewed in Lahaul and Spiti. Popular as the oldest monastery in the Lahaul valley, Guru Ghantal monastery is a wooden structure with pyramidal roof. The annual festival of Ghantal is celebrated in mid June with high spirit.

Keylong is a one of the most tourist attractions in Lahaul and Spiti valley. This place is a district headquarters of Lahaul and Spiti. Gondla is another tourist attraction near Lahaul and Spiti. This region offers some royal heritages. In Gondla, the eight storeyed house of the thakur of Gondla is a popular heritage to visit. This monument called the Gondla Castle or fort was constructed in the 17th century.

Access to Lahaul & Spiti Valleys

Lahaul and Spiti is well connected through rail, road and air network. Lahaul and Spiti is well connected from major cities of state like Manali, Pangi & Leh and so on. From here, buses and taxis are available to reach Lahaul and Spiti.

Lahaul and Spiti can be reached from shimla via Kinnaur because; Shimla is well connected through rail, road and air from rest of the state. Lahaul and Spiti can also be reached by Manali via Rohtang Pass because; Manali is connected by rail, road and air.

 

 

Tourism in Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh, India

 

Kinnaur :

photo : Kinnaur rakchham villageKinnaur is located in the North-Eastern part of Himachal Pradesh. Kinnaur shares its Eastern boundary with Tibet. The Zanskar mountains form the international frontier betweenKinnaur and TibetKinnaur is a tribal area of Himachal Pradesh in true style. The breathtaking Sangla valley offers the visitors the breathtaking view of captivating lush green orchards in the lap of majestic mountains covered with pure and dazzling white snow. The district has a number of valleys varying in altitude from 1000 metres to 4000 metres. The main of them are - The Satluj valley, The Hangrang or Spiti valleyThe Ropa or Shiasu valleyThe Baspa or Sangla valley and the Tidong valley. Among these, theSatluj valley is the largest river valley of the district and traverses for about 140 km. in the region.

Tourism in Kinnaur

photo : Kinnaur and Satluj RiverThe gushing rivers of Kinnaur abound in Trout, the angler’s prize catch, their waters have over the centuries chiseled beautiful gorges across this picturesque land and nurtured one of the most unique societies on there banks. In the lush land live the descendants of the Kinners, the demi gods of the Hindu pantheon, whose deeds have been immortalized in epics and the poems of ancient Sanskrit poets. It is no wonder that a local tradition maintains that Kinnaur with all its beauty fell from the clouds as a gift from the gods.

photo : Para-gliding at KinnaurTourism in Kinnaur offers a completely different kind of experience in true tribal sense.Kinnaur has some of the most beautiful valleys on earth full of deep gorges, rivers and breathtaking landscapes. It is like a fairy landTourism in Kinnaur offers numerousfamous places i.e. Sangla, Rakchham, Kalpa, Kothi, Nako, Recong Peo, Chitkul, Chango, Morang, Lippa, Nichar, Karchham etc. Many of these places are natural paradises. TheSangla Valley is a breathtakingly beautiful valley.

photo : KothiAs in a typical religious place in Himachal, a number of fairs and festivals are celebrated in Kinnaur every year i.e. Lavi fair, Phul Yatra fair, Sazo festival, Phagul or Shuskal festival, Beash, Dakhraini festival, Phulech festival, Lossar festival and Tribal festival. There are a number of beautiful temples in Kinnaur i.e. Chandika temple, Chango temple, Durga temple, Charang temple and Mathi temple.

photo : Nako village and lakeThere is a beautiful Nako lake situated in the Nako village. The location of the village is striking. Tourism in Kinnaur offers a number of wildlife sanctuaries to explore i.e. Lippa Asrang sanctuary, Rakchham Chitkul sanctuary, Rupi Bhaba sanctuary. These wildlife sactuaries are heavens for any wild life lover. Kinnaur is easily accessible from Shimla via Rampur. The road from Rampur to Kinnaur is a thrilling experience.

The supreme natural beauty full of deep gorges, rivers and beautiful landscapes is the prime feature of tourism in Kinnaur which sets it apart from other tourist places of Himachal. It is the prime destination of Tribal Voyage in Himachal and one of the finest places in Himachal to explore.

Kinnaur Access Routes

Delhi to Kinnaur :

Delhi to Kinnaur
this access route leads via Sonipat – Karnal- Kurukshetra – Ambala – Chandigarh – Solan – Shimla – Rampur – Kinnaur

Delhi to Kinnaur
this access route leads via Sonipat – Karnal- Kurukshetra – Ambala – Ludhiana – Jallander – Pathankot – Jassur – Nurpur – Gaggal – Kangra – Hamirpur – Bilaspur – Shimla – Rampur – Kinnaur

Delhi to Kinnaur
this access route leads via Sonipat – Karnal – Kurukshetra – Ambala – Chandigarh – Ropar – Nangal – Una – Talwara – Jassur – Nurpur – Gaggal – Kangra – Hamirpur – Bilaspur – Shimla – Rampur – Kinnaur

Shimla to Kinnaur :

Shimla to Kinnaur
this access route leads via Shimla – Rampur – Kinnaur

Chandigarh to Kinnaur :

Chandigarh to Kinnaur
this access route leads via Solan – Shimla – Rampur – Kinnaur

Chandigarh to Kinnaur
this access route leads via Ropar – Nangal – Una – Talwara – Jassur – Nurpur – Gaggal – Kangra – Hamirpur – Bilaspur – Shimla – Rampur – Kinnaur

Air Route :

There is no direct flight to Kinnaur and the nearest Airport is Shimla which can be reached from Delhi. Shimla Airport is at Jubbarhatti, 23 kms from city and is connected to Chandigarh, Kullu, Delhi. It has daily flights from Delhi and Kullu. On Tuesday and Thursday Jagson Airlines flies Delhi-Shimla-Kullu-Gaggal and return. Archana and KCV fly between Delhi and Shimla on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Train Route :

There is no Rail service to Kinnaur and the nearest Railway Station at Shimla is connected by a narrow gauge line from Kalka (96Km.)

Important Info :

With drive to kinnaur very adventerous, care is to be taken while driving. Long suspension bridges connect two bank of the Satluj river at many places. The road condition after the flash floods in August,2000 is not the best. With blocks in some places in winters and rainy seasons it is always advisable to get information about the road condition and then start the journey in these months. The other route from Manali-Kaza-Recong peo remains closed in most part of the winters and springs.

Kinnaur Quick Facts

Location
Kinnaur is situated 77°45′ and 79°00’35” East Longitudes and between 31°55’50” and 32°05’15” North Latitudes. Kinnaur shares its Eastern boundary with Tibet. On the South and South Eastern sides, it has Uttar Kashi district of Uttar Pradesh. On the Western side lies the Shimla district and on the North and North-West is situated Lahaul and Spiti.

Headquarter
Recong Peo ( altitude 2,760 meters ) – former HQ. was Kalpa ( altitude 2,770 meters )

Altitude
varies from 2,550 metres to 6,791 meters.

Important Distances
One can travel in a taxi or jeep on National Highway 22 for the entire journey from Kalka to Kinnaur. Some of the parts of journey can be done by long route buses run by HRTC. Distance from Shimla to Kalpa is 244 km., Delhi 590 km., Kullu 267 km.

Area
10,820 sq. km.

STD Codes
+91-1785 or 01785

Local Codes
Pooh 951785, Moorang 951785, Sangla 951786, Bhawanagar 951786

Police Assistance
+91-1785-222210

Fire Station
+91-1785-222219

Ambulance
+91-1785-222319

DFO Forest Department
+91-1785-223358

Climate
The summer temperatures range between 6° C and 25° C, while the winter temperatures usually remain between -1° C and 0° C. Days from April-Oct are warm, early morning & evenings being colder, light woolens May-July and heavy woolens in rest of the season.

Population
Total population of Chamba is 78,334 (according to Census 2001)

Best time to visit
You’d enjoy the Summer months in Kinnaur because of warm temperatures.

Kinnaur Famous Places

photo : Sangla Mountains ViewSangla :
( 2,680 metres ) It is an important village of the Baspa valley situated on the right bank of Baspa river is built on a slope with houses rising one above other with gigantic ‘Kinner Kailash’ peak ( 6,500 meters ) towering from behind is also famous for ‘Kamru Fort’. This fort was the place where so many Rajas of Kinnaur were crowned. The entire place is adorned by soothing saffon fields and alpine meadows.

photo : Rakchham VillageRakchham :
( 2,900 metres ) Its name has been derived from ‘Rak’ a stone and ‘Chham’ a bridge. The location of the village is striking. It is located on the right bank of the Baspa river. It is said that in the earlier time there was a natural stone bridge over the Baspa river hence the name of the village.

photo : Kalpa VillageKalpa :
( 2,670 metres ) It is one of the main villages of the district connected by link road 14 km. from Powari beyond Rekong Peo. Looming in front of Kalpa is an imressive view of ‘Kinner Kailash’ directly across the Satluj river. This mountain changes colors several times a day with a change of weather conditions or may be as destined by Lord Shiva his eternal abode. ‘Parvati Kund’ is located on the top of Kinner Kailash. The ancient villages of Pangi, Moorang and Kanum are situated close to Kalpa.

photo : Temple at KothiKothi :
It is also called Koshtampi. It is little below Kalpa proper and it is overshadowed by Kinner Kailash peak. Goddess ‘Shuwang Chandika’ temple is a famous one in the village. The village with its attractive temple, gracious willows, green fields, fruit trees makes an altogether a beautiful landscape.

photo : Nako Village and LakeNako :
( 3,662 meters ) It is the highest village in the valley and the existence of lake formed out of the masses of ice and snow above adds to beauty of the village. Situated about 2 kms. above the Hangrang valley road and is 103 kms. from Kalpa on the western direction of the huge mountain of Pargial. Local village deity is Deodum and another Lagang temple with several idols exist here. There is a staying hut for visitors.

photo : Circuit House at Recong PeoRecong Peo :
Reckong Peo is situated at an altitude of 2670 m from the sea level, located 235 km from Shimla. It is the District Headquarter having a panoramic view of Kinner Kailash. Kinner Kailash mountain is regarded as one of the mythical homes of Lord Shiva, here is a 79 feet high rock formation that resembles Sivalinga. This Sivalinga changes the colour as the day passes. Also visible on the stretch is the peak of Raldang (5499 m). Reckong Peo has many hotels and rest houses. There is a Buddhist Monasteries in the Reckong Peo.

photo : Chitkul RoadChitkul :
(3,450 meters) This is the last and highest village in the Baspa valley in district Kinnaur. It is situated on the right bank of Baspa river. This is the last and highest village in the Baspa valley. 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. The goddess has a mouthpiece.

Chango :
(3,058 meters) It is in Kinnaur district and is a collection of four hamlets in pargana ‘Shuwa’ sub-tehsil Hangrang, on the left bank of Spiti river. It is encircled on every side by high hills which is a witness to the presence of a former lake. This village is under the influence of Buddhism, but there are some local Hindu deities too namely ‘Gyalba’ – ‘Dabla’ and ‘Yalsa’.

Morang :
( 2,591 metres ) This village is situated 39 kms. away from Kalpa on the left bank of river Satluj. The location is very beautiful and approach to this picturesque village is through apricot orchards. The local deity is Urmig and there are three structures dedicated to the deity each existing in Thwaring, Garmang and Shilling. Generally these are empty as the ark of the deity remains in the fort. On a sacred day the ark is taken to the above named places. The ark has got 18 ‘mukh’, made of silver, gold and brass. The 18 mukh represents the 18 days of the great epic Mahabharat.

Lippa :
(2,745 meters) It is in Kinnaur, situated near the left bank of Taiti stream. Three Buddhist monasteries are there, which are dedicated to Galdang, Chhoiker Dunguir and Kangyar. The place is also famous for Ibex found in the nearby forest.

Nichar :
( 2,150 metres ) This village is situated between Taranda & Wangtu on the left bank of Satluj about 5 kms. above Wangtu. The scenery is enchanting. Ghoral , antelopes, black & red bears are seen sometimes in higher ranges.

Karchham :
( 1,900 metres ) The confluence of Satluj and Baspa rivers marks the location of Karchham on Hindustan-Tibet road. It is a beautiful place.

Kinnaur Famous Temples

photo : Chandika TempleChandika Temple at Kothi :
A handsome temple dedicated to goddess Chandika, more especially designated as Shuwang Chandika has spread the fame of village Kothi in greater part of the district.The local people hold the goddess in great reverence and consider her to be one of the most powerful goddess. For want of social contact by the local people with their more advanced and brahmin ridden brethren they have evolved their own peculiar procedure of ritual and worship to this presiding deity. There is an image of gold, seated in an ark. It is danced up and down by four persons at the time of worship.

photo : Chango TempleChango Temple :
Chango has three temples. In lower Chango, the red walls of Rinchen Zangpo temple stand out atop a little promontorybut contain little of note. Nearby, the village temple, in more regular use as a place of worship, has a large prayer wheel, clay idols and contemporary wall paintings. A large image of Avalokiteshwara, crudely carved in stone, lies on the path between these two shrines. It was found in some out of the way and the monks decided to place it in a temple but the combined strength of many men was insufficient to lift the stone. Then the present location was though. The temple in upper Chango is the best kept but of relatively recent vintage. Close by, a new prayer hall, library and guest rooms are nearing completion.

Durga / shakti Temple :
There is a Durga temple at Ropa also known as the Chandika temple. Chandika had apportioned to herself this semi-arid tract when she divided Kinnaur amongst her brothers and sisters. Her temple at Ropa, a new structure with a reinforced cement concrete frame, is an artitectural malapropism.

Charang Temple :
Just beyond Charang is a temple of the eleventh century known as Rangrik Tungma complex. The temple takes its name from the goddess Rangrik Tungma and her small metal image, astride a horse is the oldest at the temple. In all likelihood Rangrik Tungma must have been a pre-Buddhist deity, absorbed into the pantheon of the later religion. Two other bronze statues appear to be of considerable value; a Maitreya seated with legs pendant, in bhadrasana and a Buddha in bhumisparsha mudra. The walls of the main hall are linked with clay idols, in the same style as the mandala in the dukhang at Tabo.

Mathi Temple :
This temple is located at Chitkul. Mathi is the local goddess of the people of chhitkul having three temples the main one said to have been constructed about five hundred 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.

Kinnaur Famous Lakes

photo : Nako LakeNako Lake :
This beautiful is located in the Pooh sub-division of district Kinnaur. The lake is surrounded by willow and polar trees. There is a small village on the bank of this lake – and the village seems to be half buried by the lake’s borders. On the water’s northern side, are four Buddhist temples with stucco images and murals. Near Nako is a footprint-like impression ascribed to the saint Padmasambhava. It freezes in winter and people enjoy skating on this lake.

Nako : It is the highest village in the valley and the existence of lake formed out of the masses of ice and snow above adds to beauty of the village. Situated about 2 kms. above the Hangrang valley road and is 103 kms. from Kalpa on the western direction of the huge mountain of Pargial. Local village deity is Deodum and another Lagang temple with several idols exist here. There is a staying hut for visitors.

Kinnaur Wild Life Sanctuaries

photo : IbexLippa Asrang Sanctuary :

Altitude : varies from 4000 meters to 5022 meters.
Annual Rainfall : mean annual rainfall is 226.3 mm.
Temperature : temprature varies from -10 to 15°C.
Area : 3,090 hectares ( 30.90 sq. km. ).
Location : nearest town is Morang.
Approaches : Kinnaur to Morang to inside sanctuary.

It was first notified as a sanctuary in 1962 and re-notified on 27th March 1974. This sanctuary is located on the high altitude area and one of the few in India from where the yak has been reported, though it may well be feral. Musk Deer and Ibex are also present. The area is largely flat, like a huge plateau, and a part of it is barren cold desert.

Flora
Forest types include lower western Himalayan temperate forest, upper western Himalayan temperate forest, Kharsu Oak forests, dry broad leaved and coniferous forest, dry coniferous forest, dry alpine scrub and dwarf juniper scrub.

Fauna ( Mammals )
Himalayan Black Bear, Brown Bear, Musk Deer, Goral, Ibex, Leopard, blue Sheep and Yak. Species believed to be locally threatened are Musk deer, Leopard, Goral, brown Bear, Ibex, Monal and Himalayan snowcock.

photo : Musk DeerRakchaam Chitkul Sanctuary :

Altitude : varies from 3200 meters to 5486 meters.
Annual Snowfall : mean annual rainfall is 1130 mm.
Annual Rainfall : mean annual rainfall is 463.9 mm.
Temperature : temprature varies from -10 to 15°C.
Area : 3,411 hectares ( 34.11 sq. km. ).
Location : nearest town is Kalpa.
Approaches : Kinnaur to Kalpa to inside sanctuary.

It was first notified as a sanctuary in 1962 and re-notified on 27th March 1974. This sanctuary is located at high altitude and is a good habitat for the endangered Musk deer. Govind Pashu Vihar sanctuary in Uttar Pradesh falls adjacent to its southern boundary, and little beyond the eastern boundary of the sanctuary lies the Tibetan Plateau of China.

Flora
Forest types include lower western Himalayan temperate forest, upper western Himalayan temperate forest, dry broad leaved coniferous, dry temperate coniferous and dry alpine scrub.

Fauna ( Mammals )
Himalayan Black Bear, Brown Bear, Musk deer, Goral, Leopard and blue Sheep

Fauna ( Fish )
Brown Trout.

photo : Snow LeopardRupi Bhaba Sanctuary :

Altitude : varies from 909 meters to 5650 meters.
Annual Snowfall : mean annual rainfall is 300 mm.
Annual Rainfall : mean annual rainfall is 45 mm.
Temperature : temprature varies from -10 to 20°C.
Location : nearest town is Rampur Bushahr.
Approaches : Shimla to Rampur Bushahr to inside sanctuary or Kinnaur to Rampur Bushahr to inside sanctuary.

It was first notified as a sanctuary on 28th March 1982 and re-notified on 30th June 1982. A remarkably wide variation in altitudes supports a large diversity of habitats and wild life in this catchment area of the Satluj river. The Great Himalayan and pin Valley National Parks are located on its western and northern boundaries, respectively.

Flora
Forest types include lower western Himalayan temperate, Kharsu Oak, dry broad leaved coniferous, dry temperate coniferous and Alpine pastures.

Fauna ( Mammals )
Himalayan Black Bear, Brown Bear, barking and Musk Deer, red Fox, Goral, Ibex, Leopard, Snow Leopard, Serow, blue Sheep and Himalayan Tahr.

Kinnaur Fairs and Festivals

Fairs in Kinnaur

Lavi Fair :
This fair is held in the month of October or November every at Rampur Bushahr. In ancient, Tibet and Kinnaur had good trade relations and Lavi fair is the outcome of business interest of both sides. People from other areas in general and tribal belt in particular participate in this fair with horses, mules, pashminas, colts, yaks, chilgoza, namdas, pattis, woollens, raw semi-finished wool and other dry fruits produced in the state are brought for selling. It is three hundred years old fair and also a state fair.4 During day time, hectic trade activities are witnessed all over the town. At night, folks dances and music around small bonfires are organised. It continues for three days.

Phul Yatra Fair :
It denotes the start of a closing season in this snow bound valley. Offerings are made to local goddess, in whose honour it is celebrated. The tribal people enjoy, dance, sing and drink in gay mood forgetting everything else for the time being. In Kinnaur and Lahaul-Spiti some annuar fairs are held which have left deep impression on the community life of the tribals. One of the main features of these fairs is folk dance. Mask dance and lion dance are also very famous.

Festivals in Kinnaur

Sazo or Sajo Festival :
This festival is observed in the month of January. On this day the people take their bath in the natural springs and few even go to Satluj river for bathing if they happen to live near the river. Poltus, rice, pulses, vegetables, meat, halva, chilta and pug are the principal dishes prepared on this occasion. In the morning the family god is worshiped with the food except meat. The hearth is also worshiped near Noon time, the deity is brought out and worshiped with wine and halwa A fold dance is held. Thereafter the deity is believed to have gone to Kinner Kailash.

Phagul or Shuskal Festival :
It is celebrated in the month of February/March. In this festival the sprit of Kanda (Peaks) called Kali is mainly worshiped, the festivals lasts about a fornight and is celebrated all over Kinnaur. Each day of the festival is called by different names and several peculiar functions are held each day. On the last day a feast is prepared and people worship kali on the roof of the houses and then partake of the food. It is believed that after the function and festival are celebrated with full zeal Kali the spirit feels happy and blesses the villagers with prosperity and plenty in the coming years.

Baisakhi or Beash :
It is celebrated in the month of April. The villagers prepare food like Poltu, Halwa and Keyshid. The image of the goddess is brought out of the temple and a fair is held in the Santang. It is an occasion to get together and to dance and drink. This festival marks the end of winter season also. New woolen clothes are worn from the wool spun during the winter.

photo : Dakhraini FestivalDakhraini Festival :
This festival is celebrated in the month of the July. On this day a feast is served. The deity is brought out and the villagers dance before her. Zongor and loskar flowers are brought from the kand peak and their garlands are offered to the goddess. After this these flowers are distributed among the villagers. One or two members from the family where death might have occurred before this festival go to the peak of the hill and ofter some food and fruits to shepherd in memory of the departed soul. A white flag on which some Buddhist mantras are written is fixes there as a sort of prayer for the peace of departed soul.

Phulech Festival :
Celebrated only in Kinnaur region in the month of Bhadon or in the beginning of Asauj. People from each household proceed towards hilltops to collect flowers, which are offered to village deity and afterwards these flower garlands are distributed among the people. Priest makes forecasts about crops and changes in seasons etc. Priest’s words are taken for granted by local people.

Lossar :
Loser is celebrated in the month of December to welcome the new year. On this day in the morning a special preparation of parched barley mixed with butter milk is taken by all the family members and they put on garlands of chilgoza visits to the neighbours and friends are reciprocated and greetings of losuma tashi meaning happy new year are exchanged. While the elderly person betow their losuma shalkid or blessings. Two or three days before the losar festival khepa is observed. On this day it is customary to fetch small branches of a throny bush and place it on the doors. It is meant to ward off evil spirits. On the next day these throny twigs are removed and thrown far away from the village and a feast follows in the night.

Tribal Festival :
Tribal Festival is being celebrated since 1994 from 30 October to 2nd November every year at District Headquarter Reckong Peo and this festival has been declared as State Level festival and has been celebrated since 1987 under different names like Janjatiya Utsav, Phulaich Utsav and also as Tribal Festival. This festival not only depicts the panorama of rich culture heritage of district but also provides an opportunity to the local people to sell/exhibit their horticulture/agriculture produce, handicraft and artifacts. Besides the Kinnauri culture groups, participants from other districts/states also present and perform culture programmes symbolising national integration and brotherhood.

Himalayan Marathon

 

 

 

The 4th Himalayan Running And Living XC Marathon

 

Date : 24′th April 2015

Time : 6:30 AM
RULES

Your entry is not transferable to other people and is not cancelable. You must wear your race bib as issued, pinned on front Participants must be over 18 years of age

 

Please note – those who register at the expo at Banjara Camps may not get some items of the race kit or a medal at the finish line since these items will have already been orderedThose who are running the full/half marathon are automatically registered for the 10km/5km runs respectively as these are pre requisite acclimatization runs for these participants.
Also book yourself for the post race party dinner on the 24th of April @ Rs500pp. Children 5 and under free and 6-12 half rates.
Bib and race packet pick up is at the marathon expo at 9am – 4pm on April 20th at Banjara Camp at Batseri Village, Sangla, Kinnaur District. You have to make it in person.

The runs are organised by runners for runners.
Experience the thrill of a lifetime as you cross the finish line. The course is tough – so altitude acclimatization is key. with Sports Drinks, Water, Ambulance and Medical Care. Our The Half Marathon will remain open for 3.5 hours and the full marathon for 7.5 hours.

An attractive medal, certificate with timing for each finisher of the Full and Half Marathon and a medal and certificate for every finisher of the 5 km and 10km runs.

The race number pick up for all races will happen at Banjara Camp at Batseri Village on April 20th between 9am and 4pm. You need to be there in person as part of the strict acclimatization requirement. Do not take the half or full marathon lightly – this is both at altitude and a long steady climb and you need to be in peak condition for this. We suggest that you team up with another for doing the marathon and the half marathon as a relay if needed. The costs, procedures etc all remain the same per person whether you are running in a relay or as a single person.

Plan to be at the start at least 30 minutes before the start of your race. Get as many of your family and friends to join you on this amazing holiday experience and those who are not running can cheer you.

The Medical Care will be available, But this is a very remote location and you need to be your own best judge first- we want you safe and injury free with treatment close at hand if required. Please rest and ask for aid if you ever do feel dizzy or unsteady or have your heart pounding.

Hydration is available at several points along the way but you will be carrying a water bottle for the same for the half and full marathon which will be provided in the running kit.

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Running Distance Start Time Description Expected Finish Time Registration Fee
(12.36% Service Tax Extra)
24′th Apr 2015, 06:30 AM Registration includes the 10km run for acclimatization on Apr 22nd. Rs. 5500+ till Feb 1st, 6000+ till Mar 2nd when registrations close. 7500 all inclusive for the 2-3 spot registrations at Sangla on20th April. Bib and race packet pick up is at the marathon expo at 9 am – 4pm on Mon Apr 20th at Batseri Village, Sangla, Kinnaur District. You have to make it in person. Rs. 5500.00
24′th Apr 2015, 06:30 AM Registration includes the 5km run for acclimatization on Apr 22nd. Rs. 4500+ till Feb 1st, 5000+ till Mar 2nd when registrations close. 7000 all inclusive for the 2-3 spot registrations at Sangla on20th April. Bib and race packet pick up is at the marathon expo at 9 am – 4pm on Mon Apr 20th at Batseri Village, Sangla, Kinnaur District. You have to make it in person Rs. 4500.00
22′nd Apr 2015, 08:00 AM Registration Rs. 2300+ till Feb 1st, and 2600+ till Mar 2nd when registrations close. 3500 all inclusive for the 2-3 spot registrations at Sangla on20th April. Bib and race packet pick up is at the marathon expo at 9 am – 4pm on Mon Apr 20th at  Batseri Village, Sangla, Kinnaur District. You have to make it in person. Rs. 2300.00
22′nd Apr 2015, 08:00 AM Registration Rs. 1800+ till Feb 1st, and 2100+ till Mar 2nd when registrations close. 3000 all inclusive for the 2-3 spot registrations at Sangla on20th April. Bib and race packet pick up is at the marathon expo at 9 am – 4pm on Mon Apr 20th at  Batseri Village, Sangla, Kinnaur District. You have to make it in person. Rs. 1800.00 

 

himachal pradesh destinations

HIMACHAL PRADESH DESTINATIONS

If you like anything and everything about snow, you may be inspired by the meaning of the word Himachal. ‘The land of snows’, the meaning, is adequate to give you an idea of what to expect here. Himachal Pradesh is located in the western Himalayas. Surrounded by majestic mountains, out of which some still challenge mankind to conquer them, the beauty of the land is beyond imagination. Simla, one of the most captivating hill stations, is the capital of the state. Given below are some of the best himachal pradesh destinations.

KALPA (himachal pradesh destinations)

Kalpa is a small town in the Sutlej river valley, above Recong Peo in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, Northern India, in the Indian Himalaya. Inhabited by Kinnauri people and famous for its apple orchards. Apples are a major cash-crop for the region. The local inhabitants follow a syncretism of Hinduism and Buddhism, and many temples in Kalpa are dedicated to both Hindu and Buddhist gods and goddesses.

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

 

CHITKUL (himachal pradesh destinations)

Chitkul (Chittkul) is a village in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh. It is the last inhabited village near the Indo-China border. The Indian road ends here. During winters, the place mostly remains covered with the snow and the inhabitants move to lower regions of Himachal. Potatoes grown at Chittkul are one of the best in the world and are very costly

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

 

SANGLA VALLEY (himachal pradesh destinations)

Sangla Valley or the Baspa Valley starts at Karcham and ends at Chitkul. Sangla is the major town in the valley with having petrol pump, Bank ATMs, Post Office, Restaurants, Bar, mid range hotels and shops. The valley is surrounded by forested slopes and offers views of the high mountains. Its location in the greater Himalayan range gives it a milder climate than the plains. Until 1989 outsiders could not enter the valley without a special permit from the Government of India, due to its strategic position on the Indo-Tibet/China border.The Baspa River flows in the Sangla Valley which is rich in apple orchards, apricot, Wall-nut, Cedar trees, and glacial streams with trout.[citation needed] The main villages in the valley villages include Chitkul, Rakcham, Batseri, Themgarang, Kamru, and Sapni. The nearby Baspa hydel-project has been completed in 2009. Besides the natural beauty of Great Himalaya Kamru Fort, Mata Devi Temple & Bearing Nag Temples are the main attractions of the Valley.

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

 

RAKCHAM (himachal pradesh destinations)

While traveling from Sangla to Chitkul you will sure come across this breathtaking valley on the banks of River Baspa comfortably hidden away from the modern world . Nestled between mighty snow covered peaks and a lush green landscape, Rakcham or Rakchham is heaven on earth

Rakcham is at an altitude of 2900 meters approx 10,000 ft above sea level. It is a relatively unknown place, located midway between Sangla and Chitkul – the last Indian village before the Tibet Border. The beauty of this small village with a population of 800 is heavenly – please check the gallery pages to get some understanding.

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

NAKO (himachal pradesh destinations)

Nako is a village in the Himalayas of northern India. It is located in Kinnaur district in Himachal Pradesh. The area is known for its lake, Nako Lake which forms part of the border of the village. Nako Monastery is located in the village as well as several other Buddhist temples. Located high on a hillside (about 3600m above sea level), it receives tourists during the summer months.

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

 

TABO (himachal pradesh destinations)

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. His Holiness the Dalai Lama has expressed his desire to retire to Tabo, since he maintains that the Tabo 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.

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

 

KAZA (himachal pradesh destinations)

The town of Kaza, Kaze or Kaja is the subdivisional headquarters of the remote Spiti Valley in the Lahaul and Spiti district of the state of Himachal Pradesh in the Western Himalayas of India. Spiti, which is a part of the Lahaul and Spiti district of Himachal, is a high altitude or cold desert having close similarities to the neighbouring Tibet and Ladakh regions in terms of terrain, climate and the Buddhist culture. Kaza, situated along the Spiti River river at an elevation of 3,650 metres (11,980 ft) above mean sea level, is the largest township and commercial center of the valley .

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

SHIMLA (himachal pradesh destinations)

The former summer capital of the British in India, and the present capital of Himachal Pradesh, Shimla has been blessed with all the natural bounties which one can think of. It has got a scenic location, it is surrounded by green hills with snow capped peaks. The spectacular cool hills accompanied by the structures made during the colonial era creates an aura which is very different from other hill.

Bulging at its seams with unprecedented expansion, Shimla retains its colonial heritage, with grand old buildings, among them are the stately Viceregal Lodge, charming iron lamp posts and Anglo-Saxon names. The Mall,
packed with shops and eateries, is the centre of attraction of the town, and Scandal Point, associated with the former Maharaja of Patiala’s escapades, offers a view of distant snow clad peaks.

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

 

MANALI (himachal pradesh destinations)

Manali  is a hill station nestled in the mountains of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh near the northern end of the Kullu Valley, at an altitude of 2,050 m (6,726 ft) in the Beas River Valley. It is located in the Kullu district, about 270 km (168 mi) north of the state capital, Shimla. The small town, with a population of 8,096,[1] is the beginning of an ancient trade route to Ladakh and from there over the Karakoram Pass on to Yarkand and Khotan in the Tarim Basin. It has become a tourist attraction in recent years.

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

 

DALHOUSIE (himachal pradesh destinations)

Dalhousie is a hill station in Himachal Pradesh, established in 1854 by the British Empire in India as a summer retreat for its troops and bureaucrats.

It is built on and around five hills, Kathalagh, Potreyn, Terah, Bakrota and Bhangora. Located on the western edge of the Dhauladhar mountain range of the Himalayas, it is surrounded by snow-capped peaks. Dalhousie is situated between 6,000 and 9,000 feet (2,700 m) above sea level. The best time to visit is in the summer, and the peak tourist season is from May to September. Scottish and Victorian architecture is prevalent in the bungalows and churches in the town.

Dalhousie is a gateway to the ancient Chamba Hill State, now Chamba District of the state of Himachal Pradesh of India. This hill region is a repository of ancient Hindu culture, art, temples, and handicrafts preserved under the longest-running single dynasty since the mid-6th century. Chamba is the hub of this culture. Bharmour, the ancient capital of this kingdom, is home to the Gaddi and Gujjar tribes and has 84 ancient temples dating from the 7th–10th century AD.

(himachal pradesh destinations)

(himachal pradesh destinations)

 

CHAMBA (himachal pradesh destinations)

Chamba  is an ancient town in the Chamba district in the state of Himachal Pradesh, in northern India. According to the 2001 Indian census, Chamba has a population of 20,312 people. Located at an altitude of 996 metres (3,268 ft) above mean sea level, the town is situated on the banks of the Ravi River (a major tributary of the Trans-Himalayan Indus River), at its confluence with the Sal River.

Though historical records date the history of the Chamba region to the Kolian tribes in the 2nd century BC, the area was formally ruled by the Maru dynasty, starting with the Raju Maru from around 500 AD, ruling from the ancient capital of Bharmour, which is located 75 kilometres (47 mi) from the town of Chamba. In 920, Raja Sahil Varman (or Raja Sahil Verma) shifted the capital of the kingdom to Chamba, following the specific request of his daughter Champavati (Chamba was named after her). From the time of Raju Maru, 67 Rajas of this dynasty have ruled over Chamba until it finally merged with the Indian Union in April 1948, although Chamba was under British suzerainty from 1846 to this time.

Tribal Circuit of Himachal Pradesh

Tribal Circuit of Himachal Pradesh

Tribal Circuit is located in the magnificent and beautiful State of Himachal Pradesh. You can enjoy the scenic landscape of river valleys, snow capped peaks, high passes, icy lakes, and have a look at the glaciers. The place is full of temples and you might come across priests, monasteries, lamas, and yaks.

Some of the places that are included in this circuit are Shimla, Sangla, Kalpa, Tabo, Dhankar, Kaza, and Pin Valley and others.

Tribal Circuit

Kinnaird

Located in Himachal Pradesh, it is known to be the land of beauty, where everything you see will mesmerize you. The beautiful mountain terrain, remarkable valley, orchard farms, and cold desert mountains are some of the things that will have enchanting affect on you. This place is also quite well known for flora and fauna, which is nowhere else. There are quite a few valleys that have always attracted tourists from all over the country.

Kalpa

Kalpa is another place in this circuit located at the height of 2578 meters above sea level. Here the tourists can enjoy the view of magnificent peaks and mountains. Every site is beautiful and will steal your heart. Recong Peo, Kothi, Riba and Sangla valley are some of the interesting places that are worth visiting here.

Shimla

Shimla is a beautiful hill town that is located at the height of 2788 meters above sea level. It has been quite famous since British era. There are many beautiful hotels, valleys, and tourists places that are worth visiting here. Due to pleasant climate, it is still the most favorite destinations’ of the country. It is usually chosen by honeymooners and picnickers. The Kinner Kailash range and other mountain ranges make it more memorable. One of the spectacular scenes that you can never miss here is the one where the sun rays touch the peak of snow capped mountains. The closest airport to this place is like 267 kilometers away from this place. Apart from that you can always hire private taxis and also board State transport to reach this place. You can also reach this place via Kalpa –Manali or Rohtang Pass route. The winters here are extremely cold, so the perfect time to visit the place is in the beginning of the year.

Kaza

This peaceful and beautiful place is located at the height of 3600 meters above the sea level. Also it is located on the banks of the famous River Spiti. The name has been given by both India and Tibet, due to the tie up between both of them.  It is one of the coldest regions, so you need to be very careful while planning to visit this place. The place is surrounded by beautiful mountains and peaks that makes it all more interesting and worth visiting. The valleys, snow covered mountain peaks, and green valley all are beautiful and attract people always. Since ancient times, this place is believed to be a place where Gods and Goddesses resided. The beauty of the place and its majestic scenic beauty authenticate this version. Some of the places that are close to it are Manali, Kulu, and Shimla. So you can plan an extended holiday and visit all these places at the same time. The climate here is extremely cold during winters, and barely gets any rainfall. The region gets water from melting snow, and during winter the temperature sometimes goes down the freezing point. So if you are planning to visit this place take along with you good warm clothes that will keep you secured. Some of the interesting places that are worth visiting here are Tabo, Key Gomap, Dhankar, and Chander Tal Lake. This lake is known to be one of the most beautiful lakes in whole Himachal Pradesh.

Keylong

This is another place that is located at height of 2250 meters. The place is quite exciting and has good numbers of mountains, peaks, and valleys that look beautiful throughout the season.  This place can be easily reached through roadways and it is quite close to Manali, which is 115 kms away from this place. It can be reached by air also whereby the nearest airport is located 175 Km away at Bhuntar. This place experiences heavy snow fall during June and thus the Rohtang pass remains close during this time.

Wildlife in Himachal Pradesh – Hotel Apple Pie

Wildlife in Himachal Pradesh

 

Situated in the western part of the Himalayas is the state of Himachal Pradesh. This beautiful state which is adorned with exalted snowy-mountains, meandering rivers and streams, superb biodiversity and absorbing ethnic diversity. Owing to its diverse topography, climate and vegetation, the land witnesses an immense variety of flora and fauna. The forests of Himachal Pradesh located at different altitudes are home to numerous species such as Snow leopard, Black bear, Himalayan ibex, Brown bear, Serow , Himalayan tahr, Musk deer etc. To protect the wildlife of Himachal Pradesh, the government has established a number of protected areas. The national parks and wildlife sanctuary protect the rich bio-diversity of the state is thus home to numerous rare and endangered species of fauna. So if you are an animal-lover, then Himachal Pradesh Wildlife will surely enthrall you with its most diverse colors.

Moreover, the flora of the region consists of cedar, pine, fir, birch, oak, spruce, grasses, ferns, alder, wild flowers and rhododendron. The avi-fauna of the region comprises pheasants, partridges, patient kites etc. The famous sanctuaries in Himachal Pradesh are Chail Sanctuary, Churdhar Sanctuary, Daranghati Sanctuary, Kalatop Khajjiar Sanctuary, Kanwar Sanctuary, Maharana Pratap Sagar Sanctuary, Majathal Sanctuary, Manali Sanctuary, Simbalbara Sanctuary. The national parks in Himachal Pradesh are Nature Park Gopalpur, Nature Park Kufri, Nature Park Manali, Great Himalayan National Park and Pin Valley National Park.

So plan a visit to any one of these and have a look at the rich wildlife. There is no denying to the fact that  wildlife in Himachal pradesh has contributed a lot in flourishing tourism. People love to visit the sanctuaries in Himachal Pradesh that are mapped in different parts of the state.

Wildlife Sanctuaries in Himachal Pradesh

Chail Wildlife Sanctuary

One of the famous hill stations in the state of Himachal Pradesh, Chail is a top destination among travelers. Wildlife lovers enjoy their visit to the famous Chail Sanctuary which is located amidst dense forest cover and lush green environs…..If folks are to be believed then Himachal Pradesh is truly a wonderland for travelers. The state has always attracted vacationers to its impeccable locations and sites. Chail Wildlife Sanctuary is one such destination where you will find the nature at its best. Located at a distance of 49 km from the capital of Himachal Pradesh, Chail mesmerizes every tourist with its very first sight. The Chail Hill station is one of the topmost pick for a perfect holiday in the laps of Mother Nature. Sightseeing in Chail takes you to some of the most astonishing sights that will startle you with its unequalled beauty.

Chail hill station offers a perfect time to rejuvenate oneself amidst the lush green forests, snow-covered mountains and meadows outnumbered wild flowers. A tour to the Chail wildlife sanctuary is the feast to every animal-lovers eye. Here one can see some of the rare and endangered species namely Sambar, Goral and Cheer Pheasants, Barking deer and Kalijin. Moreover, one can find Rhesus Macaque, Indian Muntjac, Leopard, Crested Porcupine, Himalayan Black Bear, Wild Boar, Black-naped hare and common Langur among the large mammals.

Apart from its animals and birds, the Chir Pheasant breeding farm is an important attraction site at the Sanctuary. In 1988, the Chir Pheasant breeding and rehabilitation programme was started so as to preserve them from being getting extinct. Besides being largely covered with grasslands, the forests have a dense cover of Oak and Pine that fill the air with their scented aroma. Thereafter, you can head on to some other tourist attractions that are a must for Chail sightseeing such as the Chail Palace, Sidh Baba ka Mandir, Cricket Ground, Kali ka Tibba and Chail Gurudwara.

To make your trip to Chail more fascinating and a perfect example of luxury and comfort you can head on to the nearby hotels and resorts that offer lodging facilities in the region. Moreover, you can also opt to their world-class amenities that too within the most affordable prices.

 

Himalayan National Park

Spread across an area of 1,171 sq. km, Himalayan National Park is one of the famous sites of interest in Kullu, Himachal Pradesh. The park is home to numerous species of rare and endangered species of wildlife. Situated at an altitude of 1500-1600 meters, the Himalayan National Park is a notable place worth a visit during your Himachal Tour…

Every trip to Himchal Pradesh is incomplete without a visit to the great Himalayan National Park. Located in the region of Kullu, the park is spread across an area of 1,171 sq km, at an altitude of 1600 m above sea level. This park is dwelled with rich diversity of flora and fauna. Apart from this, four major rivers that originate from the glaciers in the Park that are a vital source of water to the rural and urban centers the nearby region. This beautiful park has a great significance in the Himachal tourism sector. Every tourist who steps down on this land makes sure to pay a visit to the great Himalayan national park. The park is home to numerous rare and endangered species of animals, reptiles, birds and mammals. This in itself explains the richness of the park in terms of the natural bio-diversity.

At a trek of about 35 to 45 km in the Park’s valleys one can see the habitat of animals such as the blue sheep, snow leopard, Himalayan brown bear, Himalayan thar and musk deer. The best season to visit the park is autumn during the months of September to November when the seasonal migration of the animals to lower altitudes starts. The Himalayan national park, Himachal also inherits a vast diversity of plants owing to its undisturbed habitats and high altitude range. One can witness interminable vegetation in the park from pines, spruces, horse chestnuts, alpine herbs and junipers.

The park is protected under strict guidelines of Wildlife Protection Act of 1972 and hence hunting of any form is not countenanced within the premises. The active efforts of the Himachal Pradesh government & forest department have enabled this park to get recognition the Indian National Park system.

So if you wish to visit Himachal Pradesh then make sure to make a stop at the great Himalayan national park. You will surely fall in love with its rich bio-diversity and natural beauty.

 

Manali Wildlife Sanctuary

Situated in the tranquil and serene environs of Manali, the Manali Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the noteworthy attractions in Himachal Pradesh. This sanctuary is inhabited by a rich diversity of flora and fauna…

Established in the year 1984, the Manali Wildlife Sanctuary is a notable attraction in the Kullu district. Spread across an area of 31.8 sq. km this wildlife sanctuary lies within the altitudinal range of 2,273 to 5,173 m. The entire sanctuary has a rich diversity of flora and fauna that amazes every traveler to this region. Manali is one of the top destinations for vacationing and is loved for its matchless splendor and beauty. Every year this place is flocked with honeymooners, couples, nature lovers and adventure freaks. While those who love to be surrounded with the most peaceful air of the region love the serenity of the place, those who desire for some escapades indulge into skiing, mountaineering, para-gliding etc.

Here one can find some rare species of birds and animals, scenic landscape and an overflowing tributary of the river Beas (Manalsu Nullah). Visitants can duplicate their pleasure by indulging into activities such as trekking, nature trails, bird watching and wildlife viewing during their Manali sightseeing tour. The flora of the sanctuary comprises Walnut, Kail, Deodar trees, Horse Chestnut, Maple trees to name a few. The list of the animals and mammals species at the sanctuary includes Musk deer, Himalayan Black Bear, Monal and Brown Bear, Himalayan Palm Civet, Goral, Indian Hare, , Barking Deer, Flying Fox, etc. Apart from theses, the Manali Wildlife Sanctuary is home to Stripped Hyena, Serow, Leopard, Himalayan Yellow Throated Marten, Himalayan Tahr, Kashmir Flying Squirrel and many more.

To make your tour to Manali more exciting the region has some notable attractions that are the love of every traveler to this land. To make your sightseeing in Manali more exhilarating, pay a visit to Rohtang pass, Hidimba Devi Temple, Tibetan monastery, Jagatsukh, Kothi, Arjun Gufa, Club House and Nehru Kund.

Apart from these aforementioned attractions, Vashisht, Marhi, Rohla Falls, Solang Valley and Mountaineering Institute are the other attractions worth a call. To make your stay in Manali a perfect blend of luxury and comfort the region has numerous Budget Hotels in Manali that provide world-class services within affordable prices to the guests.

Pong Lake Sanctuary

Spread across an area of 9,675 square km, the Pong Lake sanctuary is situated in the Kangradistrict and is at a distance of 65 km from Dharamshala. The best time to visit this sanctuary is from October to February, when the beauty of the environs mesmerizes with its very first look…

Himachal Pradesh has always startled travelers with its boundless beauty and natural splendor. The snow-covered mountains, peaked hills, lush-green forests, scented air and widespread meadows add up to the beauty of the state. Such is the charm of this place that travelers love to come back here again and again and are yet served with something new on their next visit. The state has in its laps numerous attractions that astonish travelers. One of such attractions is the Pong Dam which was constructed in the year 1976 by damming up the Beas River.

The Pong Dam Lake is the largest standing water body in Himachal Pradesh. Lying between the outer Shivalik and DaulaDhar, this lake holds utmost significance in the chapter of Himachal Tourism guide. Located around this lake is a wildlife sanctuary known as the pong lake wildlife sanctuary. The sanctuary with limited submerged aquatic vegetation is visited by tourists who love to unveil different faces of nature. The level of the Pong Lake hovers between the ranges of 335 m to 436 m.

Pong Dam Lake Sanctuary situated in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh, the sanctuary is spread across an area of 9675 sq. km . Home to numerous rare and endangered species of flora, fauna and avi-fauna, the sanctuary is a notable attraction sight in Himachal Pradesh. Animals like Sambar, Barking Deer, Wild Bear, Nilgai, Clawless Otter and Leopards comprise the fauna of the sanctuary. Whereas, the avi-fauna varieties include black-necked grebes, large cormorants, Indian shag, black stork, red-necked grebes, eastern grey heron etc. Apart from these animals, pintails, egrets, Brahminy ducks, sarus, Indian moorhens and Indian purple moorhens are the other species at the sanctuary.

Moreover, during your visit to the Pong Lake Sanctuary you can come across some of the reptiles such as Common Cobra, Python and Common Monitor along with some fishes namely Mallip, Soal and Mahseer.

So what are you waiting for? Pay a visit to this diverse land that is blessed with a rich natural bio-diversity.

Simbalbara Wildlife Sanctuary

he Simbalbara Sanctuary is a renowned name in the list of wildlife sites in Himachal Pradesh. Located in the Paonta Valley, Sirmaur district, this sanctuary is home to Spotted Deer, Goral, Chittal, Sambhar and numerous other animals…

There is no denying to the fact that Himachal Pradesh is blessed with a rich natural bio-diversity and beauty. The snow-clad mountains, lush green valleys and rambling rivers accompanied with numerous species of plants and animals inhabit this land. To protect the rare and endangered varieties of flora and fauna, the state government has established numerous wildlife sanctuaries all over the state of Himachal Pradesh. The Simbalbara Wildlife Sanctuary located in the Sirmour District (Paonta Valley) is one such habitat for the creation of nature. Simbalbara sanctuary has a dense Sal forests with grassy glades that adds up to its beauty. Located on the lower hill of Shivalik ranges in Indian Himalayas,Simbalbara sanctuary is the abode of animals such as Goral, Sambhar, Chittal, Spotted dear and other distinguishable ones.

The keen efforts of the Travel & Tourism department of the state have led to the preservation of the sanctuary and that too in its natural form. A trek around the sanctuary takes tourists to some of the most magnificent sights that will amaze them. The surrounding tall trees and far-away mountains add up to the pleasure of the excursionists. For the comfort of the travelers, the government of Himachal Pradesh has built a rest house nearby the sanctuary which is equipped with all the requisite facilities and amenities. Apart from relaxing out at the rest-house, you can gather some Simbalbara wildlife sanctuary information from the people at the place.

The best time to visit Simbalbara Sanctuary is between the months of October and February. One can easily reach out to this place via road through Nahan, Paonta Sahib and other major cities of Himachal Pradesh. Moreover, you can boards a Private taxi or opt for a state government bus service that is available from Sirmaur district. For nature lovers, Simbalbara sanctuary has all in store to suffice their passion. And don’t forget to take your camera for who knows what you may come across. Such is the beauty of this place that you will make numerous clicks throughout the trek to the Simbalbara Wildlife Sanctuary.