There is no exaggeration when I say that Dalhousie, also known as ‘summer retreat of the country’ made me meet God in heaven. Yes, not literally but poetically so. Every reader will have similar emotions after visiting this mesmeric hill station which is named after the British Governor General ‘Lord Dalhousie’.
Built on five hills, Kathalagh, Potreyn, Terah, Bhangora and Bakrota, this virgin beauty is surrounded by snow-capped peaks encircling the divine and little-known slice of paradise. Dalhousie is a pylon of ancient Hindu culture, art temples and handicrafts preserved under the longest running single dynasty since the mid 6th century.
Make plenty of time to choose from the places of picturesque natural beauty, intriguing preserved history, adventurous sports and a sumptuous variety of food. Here is a bunch of handpicked destinations for you, so strap those seat belts and take off for Dalhousie.
While taking a trip to Dalhousie via Khajjiar and Chamba, Chamera is an enchanting and peaceful stopover. It is dotted with pine-covered forests and grassy meadows.
Dotted with waterfalls, this natural beauty will surely take your breath away. Trekking from Panchpula to Dainkund is pleasing and adventure lovers who want to explore the untouched paths. A monument has been built in memory of famous freedom fighter ‘Sardar Ajit Singh’ in Panchpula. The prodigious dexterity of this memorial is a great allurement to the tourists.
3. Khajjiar: mini Switzerland of India
Approximately 24 km from Dalhousie, Khajjiar has lush green meadows fringed with thick pine forests. Khajjiar Lake is a small lake surrounded by the dense growth of weed called ‘Vacha’.
If you want to bring in a bit of heritage then you must visit Khajjiar Temple which showcases the images of Pandavas and the Kauravas. The shrine of the temple has been carved with wood and this synagogue is dedicated to snakes.
4. St. Patrick’s Church
The quiet solitariness in the church will make one think about life and nature around us. Visit this church on a Sunday as the authorities conduct a weekly service attended by tourists in huge number.
District Headquarter of Dalhousie and Khajjiar, Chamba’s famous museum unfolds its past and has divine temples on hilltops.
6. Satdhara Falls
So, what makes this particular place so wildly popular?
The Satdhara Falls derives its name from the seven enticing springs that flow from a height of 2,036 meters passing the imperial mountains of Chamba Valley. So for all the peace lovers your search ends here in such an alluring environment.
7. Kalatop Wildlife Reserve
‘Where the wild things are’
Home to the Himalayan bear, this reserve is the perfect retreat for wildlife enthusiasts. Apart from its huge range of wild animals the streams of water passing through this sanctuary flow into river Ravi.
8. Rang Mahal
Embellished with a large number of vivid wall paintings portraying the life of Lord Krishna, The Rang Mahal attracts the tourists every year.Do grab a souvenir from the Himachal Emporium inside the Mahal where everything from handmade handkerchiefs to shawls made in woolen looms is available.
Do grab a souvenir from the Himachal Emporium inside the Mahal where everything from handmade handkerchiefs to shawls made in woolen looms is available.
Are you interested in Kullu shawls and Tibetan carpets? The market offers you a variety of Kullu shawls and elaborately woven carpets and woolens.
Dalhousie offers most lip-smacking dishes at minimal prices at the local dhabas. Himachal cuisine centers around chapatti, dal, vegetables, gravy and their many more renditions. You would also find a prominence of fruits here. Dalhousie is a combination of rustic Indian cuisine and colonial flavors.
Pleasant walks off the main road into the forested slopes with bright coloured modern Buddhist rock paintings, striking mountains and dwindling waterfalls would surely make for a memorable travel experience.
Text by Saumya Jain