Flashpacking in and around India can introduce you to the most cultural oriented places thriving with rich tradition and heritage.
Sitting in the laps of Himalayas, the world’s highest mountain ranges is an emblem of tranquillity and manifests a poetic vision you must not miss. Himachal Pradesh is a mountainous state situated in the western Himalayas. A destination with charm of its own and is the most sort after destination for any avid traveller or backpackers. Himachal is noted for its profuse natural magnificence, mighty mountains, picturesque landscapes and lush oasis. Its amazing salubrious weather and ethereal quality is enough to attract many tourists from all over the world and the verdant valleys still preserve the elegance of the British colonial era making it an idyllic destination that can help you create timeless memories.
With the backcloth of shimmering trees and the silence of the woods, Himachal is a place succumbed to chilly hill stations and lush green valleys framing it as one of the most ‘’photogenic’’ place in India.
To reach Himachal now, multiple options are provided with easiest and fastest means of communication. If you want to travel via air, there are three main airports in the state: Jubbarhatti Airport near Shimla, Bhuntar Airport near Kullu and Gaggal Airport near Kangra.
Although if you don’t want to miss any part of this paradise then you must travel via road. Buses are available from almost all the major cities and the roads are well connected.
Your journey to the most happening place with a lot of travel and adventurous sports should not overlook these places;
SHIMLA: This ‘’queen of hills’’ is an epitome of billowing meadows and snow capped mountains. Its pleasant summers and frosty winters will captivate your attention and nature lovers will fall in love with it all over again. Once a summer capital of the British Empire, it is now the state capital of Himachal. Shimla is a city bounded by the hills, the best places to visit here are the mall road, the ridge road and historical landmarks like the Christ church, built in neo-gothic style and its intricate work is an art to praise. Roads to Shimla are well-connected with the major cities of North India. Yet another enthralling site is the Kalka-Shimla railway, which is a riveting poetic delight.
SOLAN AND KASAULI: Solan is located between Chandigarh and Shimla, en route the Kalka-Shimla national highway. It is acknowledged for it’s ample production of mushrooms and tomatoes and for that it is distinguished as ‘’the mushroom city of India’’ and ‘’city of red gold’’ respectively. Whilst exploring Solan, Kasauli becomes a major attraction of the city. You will witness the colonial aura that this quiet town still preserves.
KULLU MANALI: A true traveller will never miss this place whilst touring Himachal. Kullu valley frames a vast landscape with Beas River’s streams splashing through it. The bountiful valley is also known as the ‘’valley of Gods’’, as it contains many temples and shrines. Kullu is a major halt point for tourists is Manali.
Manali is situated at the end of the valley and is connected to Rohtang Pass, which also acts as a gateway to Leh. Manali has everything to offer, from religious chants to thrilling sports like zorbing, parachuting, paragliding and skating. Hadimba temple is also one of the most visited places in Manali, it is a historical marvel and a stroll in and around the temple is a mark of tranquillity and peace. Built in 1984, the Great Himalayan national park is a domain of some of the most distinctive flora and fauna you’ll ever see, it is also a great place to camp and witness the alluring nature’s miracles. Rohtang pass provides the most panoramic and picturesque view of the Himalayas and it really is a dare devil’s work to explore this pass.
DALHOUSIE: Welcome to the ‘’Switzerland of India’’. This one of its kind hillstation is located in the Chamba District. Its breathtaking view of multiple rainbows’ spectrum, snow blanketed mountains and its well-preserved heritage of the colonial era is a signature of nature’s purity and delight. It is a home to some of the oldest Churches in the world that are still preserved with their prestige finery.
KANGRA: With a backdrop of chilly weather, blossoming flowers and tea gardens, this city is known for its ‘’Tibetan touch’’. It is a land of various temples, historical monuments and gushing streams of rivers and lakes, most famous for Dal Lake. A place of paramount vitality here is ‘’Dharamsala’’, it is also known as ‘’the little lhasa in India’’ in tribute to his holiness Dalai Lama.
These places frame a quintessential view of the quaint scenery, where even enjoying a cup of tea feels like heaven. Mcleodganj, which is 9km drive away from Dharamsala is another hotspot, along with places like Naddi, Palampur and Dharamkot. Kangra is photogenic in its own way with diverse greenery haven.
CHAIL: This is the most exotic hillstation in Himachal, only 45kms away from the city life of Shimla. It is noted for the Chail palace, which now is a resort however, it still upholds its architecture grandeur and huge lawns with a touch of pastoral foliage. Chail builds up the excitement further as it also has the world’s highest cricket and polo ground.
KEYLONG (LAHAUL AND SPITI): These untouched and exquisitely secluded valleys cuts through the Manali-leh highway and it is a well admired spot for those who crave for more adventure and want to explore more challenging activities. This city brings to light the Tibetan culture, featuring the most grand and unique Gompas and Monasteries. It underlines the rugged and veiled beauty of the hills.
Enveloped in the shadows of the Great Himalayas, Himachal has a lot to offer and to this day stands as an idyllic destination for the people of India to beat the scorching heat of summers.
Choose your dates wisely to enjoy this utopia.