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Rohtang Pass is quite famous among Ladakh travelers but the unpredictable avalanche and severe climatic conditions make it scary some times. Nonetheless, it had made adventure seekers’ tour of Ladakh mind-blowing. A high mountain pass at an elevation of 3978 meters above the sea level, Rohtang is just 51 km from Manali. It is a part of the proud Pir Panjal Range of the mighty Himalayas.
It acts as the connecting link between Kullu Valley and Lahaul and Spiti Valley. Being an ancient trade route, it was well maintained by the natives. The generic name of the pass suggests that either the pass was the oldest and the most used pass. With the increase of visitors every year, the fragile mountain ecology will be in threat, environmentalists worry.
But the exciting beauty of the mountain terrains seen from the top of the pass is indescribable and flamboyant. The Indian Government started building a tunnel which is 8.5 km long to bypass Rohtang pass in order to reduce the travel time and distance to Keylong, Lahaul and Spiti and Leh.
The tunnel promises to reduce the distance by 50 km and the time by five hours between the south and north faces of Rohtang pass. Currently, the time taken to ascend and descend the pass itself is 5-6 hours.
Height: Rohtang Pass is located at an altitude of 3978 meters above the sea level in the Pir Panjal Range of the Himalayas.
Location: The pass is located about 51 kms away from Manali and you can reach the pass if you take Leh- Manali Highway.
Best time to visit: The pass will be open from the months of May to October as the snow starts melting and the paths will be cleared.
A quintessential location and a high altitude roadside bar is Zingzing situated on the road from Manali to Leh. Travelers come here to refresh with a sip of coffee or to have food to energize the body and soul to resume their journey to Leh. The multi-purpose shacks can be availed to stay overnight as well.
A space where you will love to roll a joint and smoke it up to escape from the extreme cold. Located at an altitude of 4270 meters above the sea level, the place is recognized to be the most suitable one to take rest. Peaceful ambience and the silence prevailing would leave everyone addicted to it.
The fame of ZIngzing Bar was enhanced because of Baralacha La pass also; the starting point of Baralacha La, one of the most loved passes in Ladakh is Zingzing Bar. Thus it cannot be missed during one’s journey to Leh. The temperature level at the bar will be crazily as low as -2* Celsius and as you ascend from a different temperature from the base, chances to feel altitude sickness and fluctuations in the body are quite higher.
Height: The highest roadside bar in the world is located at an elevation of 4270 meters above the sea level before the steep Baralacha La roads starts.
Location: From Manali, Zingzing Bar is situated at a distance of 193 kms and a drive of about 3 hours will take you to the bar and from Leh it is about 337 kms away.
Best time to visit: Zingzing Bar is found the most scenic during the months of December, January and February when the winter hits at its peak. For those who are searching for peace over a joint, Zingzing bar during winter would be the best option.
A story says like this; there were two lovers in mythology, Chandra and Bhaga, one is the daughter of the Moon and the other one is the son of Sun God, respectively. To do their marriage, both of them climbed to the Baralacha La and from there, they started running in opposite directions.
Both of them found Tandi as their meeting point and thus their marriage became eternal. The factor made their love shine is Baralacha La pass, a high mountain pass in Zanskar Range that connects Lahaul in Himachal Pradesh and Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir.
In ancient times, Baralacha La was considered to be the main trade route. Near the pass, there is this emerald like the lake, the Suraj Tal which is the source of Bhaga River. The pass is situated at an altitude of 16040 feet and on this plateau, the famous mountain ranges such as Pir Panjal, Zanskar and the Great Himalayas come together to meet.
One who wishes to go to Leh through Leh-Manali highway has to cross this pass which hides plenty of adventure and thrill in it.
Height: Baralacha La is the most important pass as Khardung La and it is situated at an altitude of 16040 feet above the sea level.
Location: Baralacha La is located 73 kms away from Keylong on Manali-Leh road.
Best time to visit: The months of April to October are the best months to visit Baralacha La pass as the roads will be open because the snow melts. If you are going from Manali to Leh, then it is advisable that cross the pass before noon due to the melting of snow and creation of streams on the road
As a part of the adventure itineraries travelers follow on their tour of Ladakh, they will choose to halt in Jispa, a mesmerizing village 20 km north of Keylong and 7 km south of Darcha along the most explored Leh-Manali Highway and on the banks of Bhaga River. At a height of 3200 meters, Jipsa is located and it is the major village in Lahaul district.
In the backdrop, the lofty Himalayan Mountains create alluring images. There are 78 households in the village and the population is calculated as 332 including 235 males and 97 females. Travelers take a stopover here to stay one night during their travel to Leh. There are camping grounds and many other stay options. The village is occupied with a helipad, post office and a monastery.
The small houses shimmering in the multiple colours of nature would leave everyone stunned. Jispa is simply adorned by the rugged mountain terrains in the background and the village seems so small when you see it from a distance as the towering Himalayas play the dominant role.
Height: Jispa is located at an altitude of 3200 meters above sea level.
Location: Jispa Village is a main stop for Leh travelers and it is located 120 kms away from Manali. Keylong is in the north of Jispa about 20 km away and Darch is in the south about 7 km away. You can come to Jispa if you take the Manali-Leh Highway. The nearest airport to Jispa is Kullu that is situated at a distance of 180 kms.
Best time to visit: The peak tourist season is starting in May and continues till October. After that, the roads will be covered by heavy snowflakes.
Darcha is a recurring name when you pack your bags for Padum trek as it is the base camp for the moderate yet adventurous trek in the Lahaul region. Darcha is a small village on the bank of Bhaga River in Lahaul in Spiti Lahaul District in Himachal Pradesh situated at an elevation of 3360 meters. In the northernmost part of Himachal Pradesh along the Leh-Manali Highway is Darcha, a secluded permanent settlement.
Many have described the village as a “lonely cluster of dry stone huts and dingy tent camps”. The total population of the village is 298 among which 152 are men and 146 are women. Travelers going to Leh from Manali take an overnight stay at Darchu. The river nearby causes nature to be soft and calm especially at night so that the travelers would find better sleep during their tiresome journey.
The popular Padum trek ends at Darcha and there are many stalls and shops on the street to just relax and have food. The village is surrounded by Naggar Tehsil, Spiti Tehsil, Bharmour Teshil. The nearby cities to the village are Keylong, Dharamshala, Mandi, and Chamba. There is a check-point set up by the police to check the passport of all passing people and vehicles.
Height: Sarchu is located at an elevation of 3360 meters above sea level.
Location: Darch is on the border of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir. The nearest railway station is Shimla Railway station only that is 174 km away. Buses and jeeps would be available in plenty to reach Darcha.
Best time to go: Anytime is suitable to visit Darcha but during winter the cold climatic conditions may pose difficulty to stay there.
Located atop the Kullu Valley, the Solang Valley is ideal for adventure sports such as parachuting, skating, zorbing and paragliding. The slopes of this valley also provide ski lovers an ideal destination to enjoy this activity on a trip to Manali. During the summer months, the snow on these slopes evaporates, resulting in ideal ground for zorbing, where a person hurls down a slope in an indestructible bouncy ball.
Solang Valley is definitely a playground for people looking to lose themselves in an assortment of exciting activities. Be it a honeymoon vacation or a family outing, a thrilling and engaging experience is guaranteed.
Also known as the ‘Pool of Gods’, Bhrigu Lake is a majestic an picturesque water body that is located at a distance of about 43km from the town of Manali. Each year, the lake attracts thousands of trekkers and visitors who come here to appreciate the serene, crystal clear blue pools of the lake as a part of their itinerary to visit Manali tourist places.
Rising to a height of about 14,100ft it is located on the eastern courses of the Rohtang Pass. One of the many glacial lakes of the Kullu Valley, it makes up for being a perfect weekend outing on your next trip to Manali.
The lake is bordered by snowy peaks of the Himalayas on all sides and is a moderate to difficult trekking escapade. Also nearby is the Nehru Kund, which is a natural water spring that is fed by the waters of the Bhrigu Lake and is truly picturesque.
The trekking route to Bhrigu Lake starts either at
the village of Gulaba or Vasishth Temple, either ways it perches you up at a
height of almost 14000ft right on the second day, making it one of the most
captivating treks of the Pir Panjal Ranges.
Locals of the village believe that this lake has been blessed by the
sages and Gods which is why, it never freezes over completely even in the times
of harsh winters.
Distance from Manali: 18 Kms
How to get there: Follow the Kullu-Naggar-Manali Road through the village of Gulaba
Best time to Visit: May to June
Type of destination: Trekking and religious
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Traveller Tales From Manali
19 February 2019
"One of the cheapest and best sightseeing around the internet, perfect guide cum driver who knows all the ways and points , well guides with all the tradition over there , on time pickup and will take ...
20 March 2019
"We loved each and every moment of the stay inside the camp. Raj Bhai the trekking guide is so friendly and warm person. the adventures and activities are all hastle free and memorable. anything and ev...
28 May 2017
"The best view comes after the hardest climb." - This cannot be more true. Few months ago, two of my friends and I were just looking for a small vacation break and wanted to visit the North region of ...
19 October 2014
I was expecting a simple trek, but this seemed to be a dicey and challenging one. Most of my co-trekkers seemed to enjoy this and the overall service was good. We got enough time to explore Nagar town....
22 April 2019
"Awesome experience. Absolutely adorable guide. very patient with the complete family and kept encouraging till we made to the Meadows. more than 1000ft climb and we took our time to stay there and the...
01 August 2018
First of all, the rooms agency has allocated us are super, except that camp in sarchu accommodation was awesome, I would suggest you not to choose tempo package in this trip as it is not at all worth i...
15 July 2019
"heck of a package .... absolutely amazing under such price point....the camping ...trekking...jogni fall...river crossing....rafting...the meals... everything was top notch and the hospitality was the...
12 April 2019
Camp host, Raju and Pavan are both very good people. Camp was peaceful with simple yet delicious food and good activities as planned.
04 July 2019
"The trek was an amazing journey crossing over tree lines, meadows, snow covered mountain. Also the guide & food given on journey was healthy. I would recommend Him trek for any other trekking in Himac...
More Things to do in Manali
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What You Should Know More About Things To Do in Manali
Manali is a godsend to tourists from all over the world as they flock to this popular hill station almost the entire year round. Manali, located in the Kullu Valley is a place filled with an amazing variety of flora and fauna, a place scattered with locations that provide stunning views that remain etched in your mind for a lifetime. Manali is heavenly and very rightfully located in the Valley of the Gods. Manali is perfect for any type of tourists as it has a lot to offer in terms of sightseeing, adventure sports, shelter, spiritual pilgrimage along with many other things. Some of the best things to do in Manali are –
Manali provides an array of options for the adventure lovers. From paragliding to white water rafting, Manali has a diverse option of adventure activities to satisfy the quench for the adventure of an adrenaline junkie. Manali’s location in the valley gives it a perfect opportunity to facilitate all sorts of adventure sports activities and the local government and private organizations capitalize on that by setting up such facilities. The adventure activities one can do in Manali include-
Manali has some of the most scenic trekking routes in the entire country. The amazing view of the mountains and the valley makes the trek completely worthwhile. The challenges of the rocky terrains are very exciting and inviting for professional trekkers and mountaineers, who flock to Manali for trekking every year. There are easy trekking routes for amateur trekkers as well as challenging and difficult routes for the professionals. Some of the most adventurous treks in Manali are-
Manali is very popular with tourists for its scenic trekking routes. So naturally, camping is a very popular activity here. One can camp beside the Beas river or in the hills for a scenic and unique view of Manali and its surroundings. Camping in Manali lets one enjoy a stunning view of the mountains and the lush, green valleys around here. The best time to go camping in Manali is from mid-July to the first week of October before the winter sets in. Some of the popular camping sites are-
Other than skiing, snowboarding is also a popular thing to do in the snowy mountains of Rohtang Pass and Solang Valley. Rohtang Pass is the only region in India where one can snowboard all year round as it remains snowy the entire year. There are week-long snowboarding camps that cost INR 12000. The different areas providing snowboarding facilities are-
A good way to spend some quality family time is to go for a leisurely boating ride while enjoying the pleasant view of the surroundings. Van Vihar in Manali is a municipal garden that has a large pond which has boating facilities. It is popular with the tourists as well as the locals. People come here to spend some relax time by boating amongst awe-inspiring Deodar trees. The cost of entry in Van Vihar is INR 5 per person and boating costs an additional INR 30 per person for a 15-minute ride.
Jeep Safaris in Manali takes you to some of the most thrilling experiences by going through several mountains. The jeep safaris are generally multi-day long and the popular routes are Manali to Leh and Manali to Ladakh. Mountains are a unique ecosystem. Mountains are majestic and have their own charm and captivating grandeur. The Jeep safaris provide the right way to be able to explore the beautiful mountains and terrains around Manali.
Manali is a paradise for those looking for a spiritual retreat. The peace and quiet of this place help one delve deep into their chi and explore their spirituality, their body and mind, and their religion. It provides a perfect environment for some self-exploration. Being a place where Tibetan refugees took shelter, Manali has become an important place for Buddhists to gather and worship which is signified by the presence of gompas around here. There are also many temples like the Hidimba Devi Temple or the Manu Temple which the Hindus consider very holy and important and flock from different parts of the country to visit.
Canyoning is a relatively new sport that is a cross between rappelling and caving into waterfalls. Canyoning is basically exploring a canyon using various techniques like walking, rappelling, swimming and climbing. The rocky terrains of the Himalayas mean Manali has the perfect locations for canyoning. Canyoning lets you explore areas that were otherwise inaccessible. One can follow the natural routes taken by the pure, crystalline water and explore the spectacular and beautiful waterfalls in the Kullu Valley.
Manali valley has a lot of rivers and waterfalls. The canyon is situated in Vashist on the Caroni river. Canyoning is safe is done with proper gear and protection with professional guidance.
Zorbing is a recreational sport where someone is put inside a transparent plastic ball or orb and they roll down a hill or a gentle slope, but it can also be done on a level surface. Zorbing began in New Zealand but has become popular all over the world. Solang Valley in Manali offers zorbing activities. The cost of zorbing here is around INR 350 per person.
River rafting is the most popular water sport in Manali. The challenging water of the Beas provides a challenge to the experienced rafters from all around the world, while the lower rapids of Beas are safe for amateur rafters to try this amazing water sport. Rafting is done nearly throughout the year in Manali by the tourists who seek some cheap thrill and adventure. Rafting is organized by private operators mostly, who provide safety equipment and a professional trainer to help out. The best sites for rafting are-
Paragliding is one of the most popular adventures sports around the world, and Manal is no exception to that. The adventure sports hub of Solang Valley offers an array of adventure sports facilities, out of which paragliding is one as well. Paragliding in Manali offers a bird’s-eye view of the picturesque terrains and the valley, the beauty of which leave the tourists awestruck. It offers a memorable experience and a terrific adrenaline rush for the adventure lovers. Paragliding can cost you anywhere from INR 1500 to INR 4000 depending on the duration of the flight and offers.
The places to experience paragliding are-
Skiing is quite a popular activity in Manali with skiing enthusiasts visiting it from all over the country. The slopes of Rohtang Pass and Solang Valley offer perfect skiing conditions for amateurs to learn and professionals to test their skills. With the help of a professional trainer, an adventure lover will have the time of their life here. There are some safety precautions to check like one must get themselves medically checked to test if they are fit for skiing or get themselves checked for altitude sickness. Good footwear is a must for skiing to avoid frostbite. The best places for skiing in Manali is the Rohtang Pass and Solang Valley, which costs INR 300 per hour per person.
Fishing is a popular activity in England, the British, seeing the perfect conditions for fishing in Manali, introduced brown and rainbow trout to the streams here. The trout population grew massively in number due to the perfect ecological conditions and rich oxygenated water. Soon, angling became a popular activity with the Indians as well. It is now a very popular tourist activity in Manali. The streams around Manali are a haven for anglers, containing brown and rainbow trout, considered to be the best sports fish in the world.
One can try Angling in Beas River, Manalsu Nala in Old Manali, Haripur Nali, and the BaragrainNala.
The river crossing is an adventure sport where one tries to cross a river suspended from a rope stretching from one side of the river to the other. This sport requires utmost safety precautions, safety gears and professional trainer other than which it must not be attempted at all. The river crossing is a great source of thrill for the tourists and it is practiced in Bhang and Aleo.
Rock climbing is very popular with the tourists in Manali who want an adrenaline rush and to keep themselves fit and healthy. The Himalayan terrain is present here in Manali which offers great opportunities for rock climbing activities. The scenery around these areas is beautiful and magnificent offering a view of the six thousand metre long mountain peaks and monasteries. The best time for rock climbing is when the snow melts and it not practised after December when the winter sets in. Some of the best destinations for rock climbing in Manali are-
Rappelling is a rock climbing sport that is safe for anyone and fit for anyone with a usual body strength. Manali offers excellent terrain for the rappelling which includes Aleo, Shuru, Nehru Kund and Kothi. There are many locations in the places mentioned where rappelling is organized around Manali in the months of March to December with proper safety equipment and a qualified instructor.
Solang Valley is the most popular destination in Manali for all sorts of adventure sports. It is where you can enjoy a magnificent cable car ride of 1.5 kilometres with a vertical elevation of 500 metres. The ride gives a stunning view of the hills and the Solang Valley. The stopping point of the ride is a snow-covered stunning hilltop which gives a scenic view of the entire valley. The cost for a ride is INR 500.
The Beas River is the most popular kayaking location in Manali. Other than the Beas, the Sutlej, Chenab, Zanskari are other rivers where kayaking is possible. Manali waters of the Beas is best suited for experienced kayakers while a trip to the lower streams of the Beas would be suitable for rookies to kayak. The Beas river gives one the most chills and a thrilling kayaking experience making it a must visit for professional kayakers from all over the globe.
Kayaking arrangements including boat and safety gears are arranged by local operators from INR 2000 to 4000 depending on the duration and length of the kayaking tour.
The Vashisht Village, 6 kilometres from Manali, is a spiritual retreat that makes you spiritually rejuvenated, not only because of its temples but also because of its hot sulphur baths. There are separate bathing areas for men and women and the water is known for its medicinal properties, often healing skin problems. It is open all days of the week from 8 AM to 9 PM.
A visit to the Rohtang Pass is a must in the itinerary of any visitor to Manali. It is located at a distance of just 51 km from Manali and can only be reached by road. The beauty of the hills and landscape as the vehicle climbs to the Pass will leave one spellbound. Rohtang Pass remains closed from November to May due to heavy snowfall. It is filled with tourists once it opens in June again. Make sure you have the special permit required to go to Rohtang from before, either booked online or offline. Carry woollens as temperature there is below 0 degrees.
There are many places in Manali where one can shop locally produced things for personal use and souvenirs. Some of them are -
Mall Road – The Mall Road is considered the heart of the town, and it functions as the focal point of Manali. Mall Road is close to all places of interest and is buzzing with activity throughout the day, making it a perfect place for street shopping. From shawls, rugs, gloves, woollen garments to Tibetan handicrafts, books, Mall Road has something for everyone.
Tibetan Market – Perfect place to pick up some Tibetan handicrafts and souvenirs
Old Manali Market – A small shopping area in the village of Old Manali, lined with a cobblestoned pathway
Manali is popular with the spiritual tourists who come here, searching for a spiritual retreat, to spend some time exploring their spirituality and religion, and the peace and quiet here is just the environment for that. The presence of several temples and monasteries mean Manali is like a holy pilgrimage to many tourists.
Manali was a place where many refugees from Tibet came for shelter after fleeing their country. They settled down here and made several beautiful gompas or Buddhist monasteries all around Manali. Some of the Gompas are –
Manali is also known for several of its popular temples, some of them which are-