Manali

Overview

Blessed with some of the most spectacular and beautiful landscapes anywhere, it is a travellers paradise -lofty snow peaks, deep gorges, lush green valleys, fast flowing rivers, enchanting mountain lakes, flower bedecked meadows, beautiful temples and monasteries steeped in time. May it be for relaxing, sightseeing, trekking, mountaineering, fishing, para-gliding, skiing, ice skating and golf, Himachal has it all...Come Explore Himachal with himachaltourist...

The valley of gods, as the Kullu valley has come to be known, is perhaps the most delightful region in the western Himalayas. The ancient Hindus regarded it as the furthest limit of human habitation - Kulantapitha, and its original name finds mention in the epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata as well as Vishnu Purana. 

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. Running north to south, the main river valley is only 80 km long and 2 km at its broadest, yet a fairly wide area is open to the visitors to enjoy the spectacle of variegated mountain scenery. 

In the spring Kullu is at its most colourful with pink blossoms and white flowers while the higher slopes are aglow with gorgeous rhododendrons. With utumn, clear blue skies return and fields and forests alike show wonderful tints of crimson and ochre. By December, there is no greenery except the majestic pines and cedars in the forests. In winter the hillsides are flanked in white. 

Situated on the banks of the Beas, Kullu, the headquarters of the district, serves as a nerve centre of the valley and is the starting place for a number of treks. The deodar-fringed grassy maidan, Dhalpur, is a stage for many colourful fairs. 

 

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Attractions and Places to Visit

Solang Valley

When heading to Manali for a vacation, two absolutely essential destinations in the itinerary are Rohtang and Solang. 14 kilometers on the north west of the main town of Manali, Solang is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Himachal Pradesh. Situated on the way to Rohtang from Manali, every year the valley welcomes tourists in huge numbers. A favorite for adventure enthusiasts, Parachuting to paragliding, horse riding to driving mini open jeeps specially available for tourists of all age groups, Solang has it all. During winters, as the valley is covered with snow, skiing is a popular sport here, with training institutes and trainers located in the valley to supervise skiers and train beginners. As the snow melts, skiing is taken over by zorbing. Another popular attraction of the valley, taking advantage of the slopes of the valley, you are likely to spot a huge transparent ball with mostly two people inside it rolling down the slope during summers, it is as much fun as it looks like. One of the most vibrant and enjoyable places in Manali, there is no way one can possibly miss this valley, while here.

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Rohtang Pass, Himachal Pradesh, India

Located at a distance of just 51 kilometers from the main town, Rohtang Pass can be reached only by road. The way up the hills is a treat to the eyes. As the vehicle climbs higher on the Manali- Keylong road, the beauty of the landscape around will leave you awestruck. To just curl up on your seat in the car as it begins to chill with every increasing metre on the altitude scale and gaze outside at the mesmerizing beauty of nature is absolute bliss. The pass is an experience of nature in one of its rawest forms possible, amongst mountain peaks covered with snow, breathtaking view and magnificent and sprawling landscapes and views.

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Hadimba Temple

Hadimba temple, away from the hustle and bustle of city life, is a peaceful place surrounded by towering deodar trees. The temple is dedicated to Hidimba, the wife of Bhima, one of the five Pandava prince from the great Indian epic Mahabharata. The main attraction of the temple is the three day Hidimba Devi Festival, which attracts devotees from all over the world and features colourful folk dance performances. Also known as the Dhoongri Temple for being located inside the Dhoongri forest, The temple is built over a huge rock jutting out of the ground. The temple has a four-tiered, Pagoda shaped roof and its doorway is engraved with legendary figures and symbols. Inside the temple, there is a 3 inch tall brass image representing goddess Hadimba Devi. There's also a shrine which is dedicated to Ghatotkacha, the son of Bhima and Hadimba, located about 70 metres from the temple. One can buy some beautiful, warm Himachali shawls from the nearby market. Also, the temple is located mere 2.5 kms away from Manali, a beautiful hill station.

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Kullu

This sister town to Manali too, is a hill station of dreamy landscapes and sceneries, a hub of adventure activities as well as home to a number of sacred temples and shrines. A trip to Kullu is almost synonymous to a visit to Manali, and both are almost always covered by tourists in a single trip.  From some of the most festive temples such as the Raghunath temple to ancient temples with legends around them, such as the Bijli Mahadev Temple, the temples in Kullu are both significant centers of religion and spirituality as well as are located amongst some of the best sceneries and hills of the town.  Another popular attraction here is the Pandoh Dam which offers quite a spectacular view to it visitors. Other than this, just like Manali, one can enjoy a number of activities in Kullu. These include trekking, river rafting, mountaineering,. river rafting, trekking, mountaineering and even trout fishing. Kullu is also used as the base town to reach Manikaran, Malana, Bhunter and Rohtang Pass.

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Gayatri Temple

Situated 7 km away from Manali, the Gayatri temple houses an idol of Goddess Gayatri, made of marble. This temple has some splendid architecture styles, is constructed with a stunning artistic finesse and with some of the most intricate woodwork. There are a few more temples around the area, such as a Shikara style Shiva temple, that one can visit.

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Nehru Kund

Nehru Kund gets its name from the first Prime minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru who is said to have had water from the natural spring, when he used to stay in Manali. One still finds here some cold and pristine water running here and a breath-taking scenery of mountains and valleys all around.

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Van Vihar

Van Vihar is a simple favorite of both tourists as well as locals. This is a municipal garden located on the Mall Road and has a pond for boating surrounded by tall deodar trees watching over. Visit for some relaxed and enjoyable time amongst awe-inspiring Deodar trees and boating around the simple pond.

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Manali Sanctuary

A wildlife sanctuary in the state of Himachal Pradesh, it has a path from Manali log huts and Dhungri temple passes through dense Deodar, Kail, Horse chestnut, Walnut and Maple forests. Musk deer, Monal and Brown bear, Leopard and Snow leopard are some of the common animals seen here. It is an uncommon tourist attraction in Manali. Especially for people who go there to enjoy the beautiful weather. But trust me, The wildlife sanctuary is going to be a good relief for you if you are visiting Manali. It is easily one of the most beautiful sanctuaries.Birds are the biggest attraction for visitors. The sanctuary is home to Monal, Tree Creepers, Chakor, Kokla, Kingfisher, Snow Pigeon, etc. It plays home to several species of migratory birds during summer.

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