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Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh
Dharamsala Also known as little Tibet of India, Dharamsala is beautifully set against the backdrop of Dhauladhar Mountains. This hill station in the Kangra Valley was set up in 1855 by the British in the late 17th century. It was one of the 80 hill resorts developed by the British to beat the heat and dust of the northern plains.

Dharamsala means the ‘holy refuge’ and is the queen of the Kangra Valley. It is the residence of the Dalai Lama and his followers, who have settled in Dharamsala. It is the center of Tibetan Buddhism, which attracts a number of tourists and celebrities to Dharamsala. The famous actor Richard Gere is one of the few celebrities, who visit Dharamsala from time to time.

Dharamsala is divided into Lower Dharamsala and Upper Dharamsala. The Dalai Temple and official residence of His Highness (Dalai Lama) is located in the Upper Dharamsala, which is also known as McLeodganj. A large Tibetan community also lives here in exile. Lower Dharamsala (the commercial hub), is 9 km away by road down the hill from McLeodganj.

McLeodganj is steeped in Tibetan culture. It is completely different and way apart from Lower Dharamsala. A traveller to McLeodganj gets mesmerized by the chanting of the hymns along with the tinkling of the prayer wheels in various monasteries located here.

Some of the popular places of tourist attractions in McLeodganj include the Tsuglagkhang Complex and the Tibet Museum, the temple at Bhagsu, the Bhagsu Waterfall, the Church of St John and the museums in Gyanchen Kyishong. One can visit all the places of tourist interest in McLeodganj in two days at leisure. One day can be spent exploring Lower Dharamsala, which has Kangra Museum.  A trip to the temples of Jwalamukhi, Kangra and Chamunda can easily be made from Dharamsala, if you have more days to spend in the Kangra Valley.

March to October is the best time to visit Dharamsala. One may find HPTDC buses to Dharamsala from Delhi, Chandigarh, Pathankot, Manali, Dehradun and other destinations in Himachal Pradesh. The HPTDC bus service is the best option from Delhi as the buses leave from and arrive at their offices at Chandralok Building. Pathankot is the nearest railway station to Dharamsala.  Taxis and buses are also available from Pathankot to Dharamsala.

Whether you visit Dharamsala on honeymoon, weekend break or group tour or just on complete holiday, there are various hotels in Dharamsala that provide all kinds of facilities. Hotels in Dharamsala range from basic budget hotels and resorts to high end luxury hotels.

General Information

Location : Himachal Pradesh.
Best Time : Mid-May to Mid-October.
Main Attractions : Kangra Art Museum, St. John's Church.


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