Palampur Hill Station
Some places in India have inherited such great heritages due to their topography from the beginning of creation that even after completing a big time cycle, they still exude the same grace. Sometimes, we feel envious about the people who have been staying in those beautiful places since generations. When you visit Palampur, you will have the same kind of feelings. For the town is such a pleasant and engaging landscape that the idea of owning a piece of a plot would definitely touch your heart.
The wondrous town of Palampur is lovingly embraced by the nature. It is 4125 ft. lying on a higher slope of the Kangra Valley in Himachal Pradesh. It is ideally located at such a place where the plains merge with the hills. The majestic Dhauladhar Mountains are standing at the back of the town and are visible from any part of the town. Several streams, rivulets and brooks that pass through the town from the mountains have handed out bountiful supply of water throughout all the seasons. This natural gift is also reflecting in its name since 'pulum' in local language means plenty of water.
The galore of water has extensively contributed in filling the town with lots of greenery. Besides, the height, superb climate and the fertile soil have proven a blessing for tea plantations. That is why it is 'The Tea Capital of North India.' In addition, the nature has also added in the infiltration of the pine forests in the town. All these features provide a unique and attractive contrast of greenery on one side and the impressive mountains the top of which is usually covered with snow on the other side.
Palampur, with all due respects is a majestic hill station oozing with scenic beauty. Every place in the town is a virtual treat to the eyes. Even a casual walk through the town is nothing less than an excitement. It is like the nature follows you wherever you go. In fact, there are endless interesting places suitable for trekking and hang gliding. Just looking out through the window or a balcony of your hotel room will make you hungry to go on a walk. Then no matter what age you are, stopping yourself would become impossible.
Places to See
The Bainnath Temple was built in 1204 AD according to the inscriptions found on the stone slab of the temple. The first to construct the temple were two merchants. Later, it got renovated in the 19th century by King Sansar Chand. It is the only temple in Himachal Pradesh built in Orissan architecture style. Lord Shiva is hailed here as Vaidynath (Lord of Physician).
The temple is well maintained with courtyard, and a garden surrounded by wall compound. It has a shikhara like other Hindu temples. The spire is of conical shape. The main sanctum is entered through a small hall of 20 sq. ft. supported by four pillars. The pillars are standing on an elevated platform of 1.5 to 2 ft. high. After entering the front hall, there is another room where devotees wait until their turn to offer prayer and meditation. The main sanctum is right in the centre of the inner chamber.
The Taragarh Palace is a magnificent mansion built amidst the picturesque location of the Kangra Valley. It is 3300 ft. in the foothills of the Dhauladhar Mountains. It was built in 1930 and was called Alhilal. When the royal family of Jammu and Kashmir acquired it in 1951, it was named after Maharani Tara Devi.
Bir and Billing
Bir and Billing are two beautiful hamlets located at 35 km and 49 km from Palampur. Bir is known for Buddhist monasteries, hang gliding and Tibetan handicrafts. It is a paradise for tourist interested in hand gliding. It is encircled by tea gardens and low hills serving as a platform for aero sports. Billing has the best site in the world for aero sports. It became famous after an international hang gliding rally was organized here. Both the villages can be accessed by roads in a jeep.
Just 2 km from Palampur is the Neugal Khad which offers a fine location for a picnic. There is a cafe built by the tourism department from where the Dhauladhar Mountain ranges can be viewed. The place overlooks the beautiful valleys. The rivers and steam in the rainy season flow out of their capacity making a roaring noise in the surroundings.
If you love walking, you will surely enjoy the 2 km stretch from Palampur to reach the Bundla stream. This steam is a wide chasm spread to over 100 metres. Though it flows incessantly throughout the year, the rainy season is when it takes a gigantic shape and carries heavy stones and boulders along with it making a deafening sound.
Bundla Tea Estate
The sprawling Bundla Tea estate is a magnificent tea garden just 2 km from Palamput covering not only one hamlet but three – Bundla, Aima and Lohna Panchayat. It is also the route to the Neugal Cafe. The beauty of the tea estate is soaring in the monsoon season.
Shobha Singh's Art Gallery
This galley is 13 km from Palampur in Andhretta. It is named after the famous artist Shobha Singh and exhibits all her artistic works. The gallery has a massive collection of arts and paintings. Some of the most noted and famous artwork the gallery displays are the Sohni-Mahiwal painting which was created in the 1940s. The painting of Guru Nanak Dev is also an impressive piece of art.
Saurabh Van Vihar
This park is recently added in order to boost the tourism industry of the state. It is built over an area of 13 hectares at the bank of the Neugal Khad. It is 4 km from Palampur in Kwat village. It is dedicated to martyr Lt. Saurabh Kalia, who gave away his life saving the country in the Kargil War in 1999. It is maintained by a society found by the Himachal Pradesh Forest Department. To entertain tourists in a natural way, the park has picnic sheds, children playground, water bodies, jogging treks, open-air theatre, and plenty of species of medicinal herbs.
How to Reach Palampur
Gaggal Airport is the nearest airport to Palampur which is 40 km. The flights' schedules are subjected to the climate conditions. Hence, most of them get cancelled during the winter because of low visibility.
Pathankot is the last broad gauge railway station that is closer to Palampur. The distances between these two towns are 112 km. However, train from Pathonkot runs on a narrow gauge for Palampur that takes around 7 hours to cover the distance.
Himachal Road Transport Corporation offers bus services for Palampur from other cities and town.
Palampur hill station is known for its numbers of tea gardens, orchards and paddy fields. The town also has some ancient temples and colonial buildings. The congenial combination of greenery and plenty of water has made the hill station perfect for repose.
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