Manali Hill Station
Manila hill station is the major crowd puller in Himachal Pradesh. It is sitting at a height of 2050 metres above the sea level cosily nestled in the valley of the Beas River. It is under Kullu district and 280 km from the state capital, Shimla. It is named after the famous Hindu Sage and lawgiver Manu. Its name connotes the abode of Manu. There is an ancient temple dedicated to Sage Manu in Kullu district, which is the only one in entire India. It is also called the 'Valley of the Gods.'
Manali is popular among honeymooners and other tourists from India and abroad. It is the most visited hill station of Himachal Pradesh. Be it a first timer or a regular visitor, tourists just love to be here. It offers such sceneries to people that after coming here they take home an unforgettable experience. The joy of tourists knows no boundary looking at the dense-green landscapes, the azure mountain peaks half-covered with snows rising as if determined to touch the sky, and the beautiful streams starting from the mountains and meandering through the rocks and the plains. All these wonderful features refresh you from within.
Die-hard fans of adventure tourism find Manali hill station a paradise that never ceases to charm. Everything about adventure your mind has ever craved for is available here. If you want to take your excitement to an extreme level, you can go rafting in the Beas River. If you love to skid in the snow, there is Rohtaang Pass. If you are hungry for more adventure, then the entire region is a second home for hiking and trekking. If you have had enough of adrenalin rush and need to calm it down, then there are temples and monasteries to offer all the spiritual strength and peace of mind.
Places to See
Rohtang Pass is the place one would always dream to be in. This location offers all the possible joy life could ever get. You can go hiking, trekking, paragliding and skiing. Enjoying the snow is also possible here during the summer which depends on the weather at the Himalayan peaks. In fact, sudden and unpredictable snowfall has become a special feature of this place. The pass is also an ideal gateway to the nearby scenic destinations. It is rather a pathway to Spiti and Lahaul from Kullu. Riding mountain bike on the snow is very exciting indulgence here. Reaching to Rohtaang Pass is possible in a motor since it is the highest motorable road in the world. One just needs to take permission from the Indian Army for personal safety as well as travelling.
The Naggar Castle
The Naggar Castle is in Naggar town closer to Shimla. It is popular because of its unique construction. Raja Sindh Singh had it built in 1460. Wood and stone are beautifully blended in the construction of the castle. The design of the structure is rare to see since it is a combination of Himalayan and Western architecture style. The glorious Beas River at the side of the monument is another charming feature.
The castle has an art gallery. The paintings on display are of the famous Russian painter, Nicholas Reorich. The beauty of the monument is been captured as a background in a movie song of the blockbuster 'Jab we Met.' It was originally a residence of the Raja, but now the Himachal Pradesh Tourism Department Corporation has converted it into a rest house.
Arjun Gufa (Cave)
Arjun Gufa is in Prini village, which is 5 km from Manali. It is next to the left banks of the River Beas. It is believed that Arjun, the Pandava brother, once performed penance in this cave in order to receive Pashupata Ashtra, a weapon from Lord Indra. Adhering to that belief, this cave has been given a name of Arjun. Besides its connection with the epic of Mahabharata, one must visit it for tranquility and natural beauty.
The Tibetan monasteries is Manali have added colours to the hill station. The vibrant colours of the monasteries have enlivened the Manali hill stations offering a beautiful contrast. The Tibetan people who have migrated to Shimla in large numbers set up these monasteries. Besides the attractive design and eye-cathing colours, the monasteries are also famous for the handicrafts made by the residents. The carpets, hats and various other objects have worked as a source of living to the people.
There is a school set up here to promote and keep alive the Tibetan art and culture. The Lamas run the school. The distinctive fragrance of the Tibetan incense sticks in the monasteries engulfs the surrounding with a spiritual divinity. The Gandhan Thekchoking Gompa is built in 1969 and is most famous. The colourful frescoes and Tibetan architecture are soothing to eyes. Lord Buddha is presiding in the monastery in his perennial charm.
Hadimba Devi Temple
Hadimba Devi Temple is dedicated to Hadimba or Hidamba, who was the wife of Bhim, the strongest among the five Pandava brothers. It was built in 1553 by Maharaja Bahudur Singh. The construction of the temple is in pagoda-style. Fine woodcarvings are done on the walls of the temple and the entrance. An annual festival in honour of Hadimba Devi is a famous festival in Manali.
How to Reach Manali
Manali is just 50 km from Bhuntar Airport, which is connected to Delhi and other cities. Taxis are easily available from the Bhuntar airport to Manali.
There are two ways to reach Manali by train. You can either opt for the narrow gauge rail route and get down at Joginder Nagar Railway Station, which is 50 km from Manali, or reach Chandigarh by train and proceed further by a taxi or a bus.
With bus services provided by the Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation, reaching Manili via road has become convenient.
Manali hill station is acclaimed as the queen of the Himachal Pradesh. A trip to this hill station is the best gift you can give to your spouse, family or friends.
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