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10 Best Things to Do in Dharamshala & McLeodganj

Dharamshala Cricket Stadium

Lying near the mighty Dhauladhar Range & heavy coniferous forests, Dharamshala is one of the apparent travel choices when spending vacations in hill stations in India. Located in Kangra Valley in Himachal Pradesh at the height of 1457 m above sea level, Dharamshala is not only a place to visit for its exquisite natural beauty but also to explore the Tibetan & Kangra culture, serving as the home of spiritual leader Dalai Lama. If you plan to spend your vacations in this lovely hill station, let us brief you on the 10 best things to do in Dharamshala. 

Stocked with natural beauty, this beautiful gem in Himachal has all the reasons to attract tourists from all over India. It is dotted with many attractions, including lakes & waterfalls. This hilly destination also stocks monasteries, temples, vintage forts, & museums. Tourists have no problem visiting this hill town as it is well connected with all nearby towns & cities via railways, roadways, & airways. The nearest commuting options for air or rail travel include Kangra Airport & Pathankot Junction. 

Regarding road connectivity, Dharamshala can be easily reached by booking a cab or boarding a state bus plying from Shimla, Amritsar, Pathankot, Jalandhar, & other nearby places. Now, coming to this hilly region of Dharamshala for holidays must be open to more than just exploring its scenic natural beauty. It is dotted with other tourist attraction spots to be explored. 

10 Best Things To Do In Dharamshala

1. Sightseeing

Dharamshala is a famous hill station to spend your holidays in any season, whether in summer or winter. Nestled in the Himalayan valley, the cool breeze & climate will make you feel at ease, forgetting all the stress & noisy atmosphere of the city. When embarking on the journey to Dharamshala, we suggest you visit the winsome tea garden & experience healing energy amidst its healthy atmosphere. There are hotels in Dharamshala you can refer to for your comfy staycation. 

2. Paragliding

Quench your desire by flying in the air via paragliding, one of the popular adventure sports, during your visit to Dharamshala for the weekend holidays. The sport involves gliding without any firm support system. The concept has been derived a lot from the hot air balloon. Many travel agencies facilitate this adventure sport service to its visitors. The natural hilly terrain makes it possible to explore such activities. Summers are the best time to enjoy the paragliding sport.

3. Camping

After sightseeing & paragliding, tourists can also explore camping in the hilly terrains of Dharamshala. The clear sky & fresh air make it all possible to make camping a worthwhile experience. If you find the need for camping equipment, there are many shops to get it. The ideal time to explore camping in Dharamshala is during the summer or spring season.

4. Trekking

Trekking is also one of the best things to do in Kareri Lake in Dharamshala. It is around 40 kilometres from the north of the latter hill station. The lake is encircled with green vegetation & snow-capped mountains, defining its natural beauty. To reach here, you must begin your trekking journey from Ghera village. 

You won’t have difficulty commuting as regular buses run from Dharamshala to Ghera. It will take just 8 to 9 hrs to reach Kareri Lake. You will find many camping places in Kareri to spend the night with your close friends or partner. Visit Kareri Lake during the summers, as the trek is not rough. 

5. Experience peace at Gyuto Monastery

Among all the umpteen memories you collect during your visit to Dharamshala, it must also include experiencing peace at Gyuto Monastery, which is 9 km from the southeast region of Dharamshala. Being a well-known Buddhist monastery, it follows strict disciplinary principles of the Gelug Order & ethics to fulfil spiritual awakening. This is an ideal place to sit, relax, & meditate peacefully. You can visit here anytime. 

6. Take blessings of Jwalamukhi Devi

If you love visiting temples & sacred places, Jwalamukhi Devi temple must be on your travel bucket list on your visit to Dharamshala. This famous temple is 55 km from the hilly town of Kangra district & is nestled in Jwalamukhi town. According to historical facts, the foundation of this temple was laid by Raja Bhumi Chand Katoch. As the name suggests, the temple is associated with Jwala devi, a manifestation of Devi Parvati, Durga, or Kali, whatever you call it. 

A unique fact about this temple is that, unlike most temples where you see idols of Hindu gods & goddesses to worship, there is no such idol in Jwalamukhi temple. It lives up to its name, Jwala, a fire that emanates from the rocks via fissures in the ground. Hence, the Goddess is worshipped in this form. The temple is among the 52 Shakti Peethas, according to Hindu mythology & is an esteemed holy site for most pilgrims who visit here throughout the year. 

7. Watching waterfall

If you don’t miss any chance to watch the spectacular view of cascading waterfalls falling from elevated heights, then you must explore Bhagsu Waterfall near Dharamshala. It is very close to the famous Lord Shiva temple, which shares a similar name, Bhagsu Nag Temple. 

The 30 feet drop of Bhagsu waterfall is an incredible sight to behold in monsoon season. With a 20-minute hiking distance from the Shiva temple, you will love to dip in its pristine water & experience peace & calmness among its lush greenery backdrop. 

8. Indulge your senses in Buddhist hymns

Mani Lhakhang Stupa is a pleasing Stupa that stocks a gold-plated Buddha statue in his key lotus position. The prayer wheels that denote good luck when spun hold visitors’ attention. During the evenings, you must concentrate on Buddhist hymns sung by monks. Once you visit this place, you will indeed decide to revisit it. It is open for all seasons throughout the year. 

9. HPCA Stadium: An ideal spot for cricket fans

At 1457m in the lap of scenic mountains in Dharamshala is HPCA Stadium, famous for Ranji Trophy matches. Being situated at a higher altitude brings difficulty in International cricket matches due to disruption caused by snow or heavy rains. This can cause problems when travelling. So visit here when the weather is appropriate throughout the year & enjoy the live cricket matches.

10. Visiting the famous Shiva temple

If you are an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva, then you won’t wait to visit Aghanjar Mahadev Temple in Dharamshala. The temple has a touch with mythological history at the time of Mahabharat. It is said that Arjun, one of the iconic heroes of the Mahabharat war, got a boon from Lord Mahadev, who blessed him with victory. Besides praying to Shiva, you will love to see a fantastic stream flowing in its domain & the large stones that amplify the beauty of this divine spot. 

Where To Stay

To make your journey more accessible & convenient, we suggest you book jüSTa Birding Resort & Spa in Dharamshala. This 5-star hotel excels in hospitality services, providing all the modern amenities to its visitors, ranging from well-furnished guest rooms, private patio space for external viewing, & watching paragliding adventure sports from the base nearer to the resort. 

This luxury resort lives up to its name, where you can watch birds flocking high in the sky visible from the resort. With the display of the heritage charm of Himachal Pradesh with its splendid architectural beauty in the interiors & lush green backdrops, this resort is indeed a synonym to luxury, making its guests experience an opulent stay, whether for luxury or business motives. 

Conclusion

So these are the top 10 list of best things to do in Dharamshala during your vacations. On visiting this hill station, explore the Dharamsala War Memorial to commemorate those soldiers who sacrificed their lives for the country post-independence. So pack your bags & prepare to embark on a beautiful journey to Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh.

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