Strategically located Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh which was a peaceful and sleepy village for several years after independence grabbed international headlines when it became the refuge of Dalai Lama, after he escaped from Tibet. The bustling town today has become a place of tourist interest for Buddhists and knowledge seekers of its ancient scriptures as there are several temples and museums here with artefacts and manuscripts that were brought here from Tibet. Famous for adventure sports in Dharamshala as much as it is for Buddhism, every year after the summer season, enthusiasts converge in the hills to explore paragliding, hiking and cycling tours. Paragliding may be exciting for some and scary for some but no one can deny the beautiful aerial view it gives of the surrounding valleys around Dharamshala. The gliders take the jump from strategic location at 2500 feet and fly across azure sky and clouds to land on a green valley.
To get a real time experience of Dharamshala’s beautiful landscape and atmosphere it is best to travel across its villages and towns. A trek to Dharamkot that houses Gaddi tribes-people will give insight into the lives of people in this part of the world and continues on to Bhagsunag temple. The Jalsu Pass trek takes tourists through an explorative trip across Dhauladhar region to enjoy its natural beauty and fascinating landscape. The trek starts from Talai and extends for four days as hikers move across Palampur, Kothrud, Paprola, Jalsu, Parai, Kharli, Surai, Nayagaon and ends at Lakha Mata Temple. The beautiful Kareri Lake trek is across green hills and colourful birds unique to the region. The trek starts from Ghera village and moves across unexplored parts of the hills to Kareri Lake that is located 40 km north of Dharamshala. Visit this abode and embark on the best adventures in Dharamshala to enjoy the time of your life.
Situated on the outskirts of Kangra, about 20 kilometers away from Dharamsala, is one of India's oldest forts. The Kangra Fort sits atop a steep rock, and its towering presence dominates the surrounding valley. The fort covers an area of about 4 kilometers, and it is guarded by ramparts and high walls.Built strategically at the confluence or meeting point of Majhi and Banganga river, Kangra Fort is one of the must-see spots in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh.Besides its unique architecture and historical importance, the fort is also known for housing three temples, namely the Lakshmi Narayan Temple, Shitlamata Temple, and Ambika Devi Temple. Several doors leads into the fort, but the main entrance goes through a courtyard that is behind two gates.The doors even have interesting names such as Ahani Darwaza, Amiri Darwaza, and Jehangiri Darwaza. Outside of the main temple gate, you will find the Andheri Darwaza. It is the fort's primary defense gate.The walls of the Andheri Darwaza are 15 feet high and the passage is 7 meters long. The gate allows only two men or one horse to pass through at a time. The narrow passage of the defense gate was designed to slow down the opposing force.Once you pass the Ahani and Amiri Darwaza, a long and narrow passageway will take you to the top section of the fort. A staircase located between Ambika Devi and Shitlamata temple will take you to the Sheesh Mahal, which is a small hall. There is also a polygonal watchtower, which provides breathtaking views of the landscape.
Kangra Fort, located on the outskirts of Kangra town, is a fort built by the Rajput family of Kangra as part of the Katoch Dynasty. The builders of this fort trace their history back to the Mahabharata making this fort the oldest recorded fort in India. It’s also the largest fort in the Himalayas. The fort is well known for its importance in medieval Indian history as it was a much sought after fort by the Mughals and succeeded in resisting a lot of Mughal sieges. The outer wall of the fort has a circumference of 4 kms and the inner chambers have a lot of artifacts from various periods, most notably the Mughal and British occupied India eras. There are temples and royal chambers inside that make for a very fun and eventful tour. Best time to visit: All throughout the year.
For those who love waterfalls, Bhagsu waterfall has to be one of the most beautiful locations in Dharamshala. Most of the tourists that visit the place make sure they spend some time here. It is peaceful, serene and gives you a nice feel of nature throughout. The place is also recommended by Lonely Planet. Location: It is at a 20 KM distance from the famous Bhagsunath temple which attracts many visitors. The town of Bhagsu is mere 2 KM from Dharamshala, which is a major town in Himachal Pradesh. Highlights: The water in itself is the highlight of the place which attracts a lot of tourists to the place. The water comes from the Dauladhar ranges which are quite cool and crystal clear. Best time to visit: The best time to visit the place is probably in the months of October-November when the days are sunny and the nights are pleasant.