Himachal Pradesh is a northern state of India, bordered by Jammu and Kashmir to the north, Punjab to the west, Haryana and Uttarakhand to the South, and China to the east. It is known as a ‘travellers’ paradise’ with lofty snow peaks, deep gorges, lush green valleys, fast-flowing rivers, enchanting mountain lakes, flower-bedecked meadows, beautiful temples and monasteries.
Most attractive tourist spots in Himachal Pradesh
Shimla was one of a string of hill stations that the British established to escape from the scorching heat of the plains. The ridge on which it is located was first occupied by the British troops in the early part of the 19th century during the Anglo-Gurkha war. The salubrious climate, easy accessibility and numerous attractions of Shimla have made it one of the most popular hill stations in northern India. The notable places to see and enjoy in Shimla are the Mall that runs along the top of the ridge, and a busy shopping old colonial buildings, souvenir shops and restaurants, the lovely Summer Hill and the Chadwick Falls.
Kulu and Manali are blessed with some of the most spectacular and beautiful landscapes. Kulu is also known as the ‘valley of the gods’. Like a slender delicate-hued fern glistening in the morning dew, the valley spreads out its charm on either side of the upper reaches of the river Beas. In the spring Kulu its most colourful with pink and white flowers, while the higher slopes are aglow with gorgeous rhododendrons. Manali has beautiful spots to visit. Kothi rest house is highly suitable for tourists. Below Kothi, for more than a kilometre, runs the river Beas through a deep gorge.
Salang Valley is a splendid valley between Manali and Kothi which offers views of the glaciers and snow-capped mountain peaks.
Rohtang Pass at an altitude of 4,112 metres offers a wide-spread panorama of mountain scenery. The Beas river rises near the crest of Rohtang from a block of mica-schist. The pass normally opens for traffic after mid-June and officially closed in November.
Dalhousie and Khajjiar are favourite places for tourists. The British governor-general Lord Dalhousie visited this area around the middle of the 19th century for a quiet retreat and chose this charming spot. Thereafter the attractive hill-town was named after him.
Kangra Valley is one of the most picturesque valleys of lower Himalayas. The valley, sheltered by the sublime Dhauladhar range, is green and luxuriant. It is full of Buddhist air whereas ancient Hindu temples like those of Bajreshwari Devi, Chamunda Devi, Baijnath Shiva, and Jwala Devi dot the countryside.
Kinnaur Valley is a favourite tourist spot at an altitude ranging between 2,320-6,816 metres.
Kalpa Valley is surrounded by a snowy peak for almost the whole year. One gets a clear view of the sacred Kinner Kailash peak as well as its sister peaks. Kalpa was used to be a favourite haunt of Lord Dalhousie.
Sangla Valley has been named after a beautiful and populous village Sangla. It is situated on the right bank of Baspa river. It is also known as Baspa Valley since the Baspa river flows through this area. The natural scenery all around and the snow view are picturesque and charming.
Narkanda offers a spectacular view of higher snow ranges. An uphill trek (8 km) through deodar woods leads to Hadu Peak — famous for Hatu Mata Temple — now connected with a motorable road.
Fagu is a tiny village aside a saddle-like mountain along Hindustan Tibet Road. A rare range of views is visible from here, which includes vivid dales and snowclad peaks. The picturesque countryside is dotted with clusters of villages, fruit gardens and nearby terraced fields. Fog characterises the hillside landscape endowed with romantic ambience.
Thus Himachal Pradesh offers the tourists ample scope for relaxing, ‘sightseeing, trekking, mountaineering, paragliding, skiing, golf and others — whatever a tourist likes.