A State in North India, that is located in the Western Himalayas and is well known for its immense beauty and Culture is none other than “Devbhoomi” – Himachal Pradesh. Dev Bhoomi means “The Land of Lords”, and is blessed with wonderful adventure travel locations which act as a perfect place to spend your Holidays.
It is steadily looming as a popular travel destination among adventure addicts from across the globe. Right from the spiritual trekking routes of the Himalayas to the Paragliding in Bir billing, Himachal never fails to amaze us. And in this silent vicinity of the divine, finding God is comparatively easy. There are around 12 districts in Himachal Pradesh and most of these gives you perfect opportunity to enjoy the natural beauty, historical places, wildlife and vivid flora & flora of the Himalayas. Following are the most adventurous places in Himachal that one can visit, and which are not less than any virtual bonanza.
It is one of the highest peaks of entire Shimla district and is at a distance of 70km from Shimla town. Elevated at an extreme height of nearly 11,152ft above sea level. The peak is surrounded by dense forest of conifers, oaks and maples. Hatu offers spectacular views of the surrounding mountains and also holds religious and historical significance in the Hindu religion.
If you are looking for a place less travelled, then this is the best option you have. A small trek full of rich landscape and stunning views. This place has an elevation of 9,420ft above sea level and is covered with surrounding mountains of Kufri, Mashobra and Narkanda. It would take you around 8 hours to reach the top and at the top, there is a temple of Lordess Bhimakali, who is highly worshipped by local’s.
The pass sits at top of Chanshal Peak, which at 4,520 metres (14,830 ft) is the highest peak in the Shimla district. You can access this pass from May to October as it is covered with snow for the rest of the year. This Valley also affords scenic views of the Himalayas covered with snow.
Also Read: The Valley of Flowers: Chanshal Valley
Two routes connect Shimla to Chanshal Valley:
- Shimla-Theog-Kotkhai-Kharapathar-Hatkoti-Rohru-Larot-Valley (160 Km)
- Shimla-Theog-Narkanda-Tikkar-Rohru-Larot-Valley (175 Km)
The road from Chanshal Pass will further lead you to Dodra. It is at a distance of 19km from Chanshal. Dodra and Kwar are two distinct villages 20 km apart from each other and are located in the peaceful remotest part of the state, which borders Uttrakhand. They are separated by river Rupin. Furthermore, temple’s here, are remarkable examples of local woodwork. After the heat and chaos in the big cities of the Plains, places like these make a relaxing change.
Triund is the crown jewel of Dharamshala in Kangra District. Located at the foot of the Dhauladhar ranges and is at a height of 2,828 m. It is a one-day trek approx. 10 kilometres from Macleodganj. Triund also offers jaw-dropping views of the lofty Dhauladhar ranges on one side and the gorgeous Kangra valley on the other. Best time to visit Triund is from May-September.
Kareri Lake Trek:
It is shallow, a freshwater lake south of the Dhauladhar range and approximately 9 km North West of Dharamshala. Located at an altitude of 2,934m above sea level. There is a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva on a hilltop overlooking the lake. Firstly you need to reach Triund and then you can hike further to Kareri lake from here.
Bhagsu Falls, a waterfall about 20 meters tall, is about 2km from McLeod Ganj. Nearby is Bhagsunath Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, also an attraction for tourists and Hindu pilgrims. It is a place where one can enjoy and relax in the soothing environment of the miraculous Himalayas.
Generally known as “Paragliding Capital of India”. Bir billing is located 60km from Dharamshala. In 2015 Bir Billing hosted Paragliding World cup. Not only paragliding Bir billing offers you Trekking to Himachali tribal villages, Mountain Biking, Angling and as well as Camping. This place, despite being mesmerizing, is not as crowded as Shimla and Manali and the best part is that you can visit this place All round the year!
It lies 49 km north of Mandi town and is located at a height of 2730 m above sea level. This lake is held sacred to the sage Prashar who is regarded to have meditated there. The lake has a floating island in it and till date, it is said to be unclear how deep it is. Best time to visit the lake is from May-October as for rest of the year the route remains closed due to heavy snowfall. This can be easily seen as the surrounding mountains as snow-capped.
Barot village was originally developed in the 1920s. Located 66km from Mandi Town. Barot valley is said to be initially developed for a hydel project over the Uhl river. This valley provides you with a number of Short treks which would give you a glimpse of the local cultural heritage of Himachal. This place can be visited at any time of the year except the monsoons.
Kinner Kailash Peak:
The Kinnaur Kailash (locally known as Kinner Kailash) is a mountain in the Kinnaur, having at an altitude of 20,000ft above sea level. It is also one of the Five Kailash peaks dedicated to Lord Shiva. The trek is around 21km long and is really tough.
At the top, there is 79ft long vertical rock, known as “Sheela” or “Shivalinga”. It is believed that this Sheela changes it colours about 7 times throughout the day. This Yatra opens for only 15 days in the month of August every year. Throughout the way, you would witness the change in vegetation from lush greenery around to the cold desert mountains.
Sangla Valley falls in Kinnaur district and is close to Tibetan border. It starts right from Karcham and ends in Chitkul village. Located in the greater Himalayan Range it offers a Scenic view of the snow capped mountains and has a milder climate than that of plains. In addition to this Sangla Valley is rich in apple orchards, apricot, Wall-nut, Cedar trees, and glacial streams with trout. The main attraction is Chitkul, Rakcham and Kamru that is ancient and a historical village.
Rupin Pass Trek:
It is another high altitude pass across the Himalayan Ranges located at an altitude of 15,250ft. above sea level. The trek starts from Dhaula in Uttrakhand and ends here in Sangla, Kinnaur. Approx trekking distance is 52km. On this trek, you will experience every type of terrain maybe its rough, snown or snowy. Further, the journey is filled with the traditional colours of the remote villages that are hidden in the mountains.
Lahaul and Spiti
Chandra Tal aka “Lake of the Moon” is located in Spiti region of the district. Situated at an altitude of 14,100ft above sea level, this lake bestows some of the most alluring views of the surrounding Himalayan ranges. This Lake can only be accessed by foot right from the month of May to October. River Chandra originates from here and later merges into River Bhaga at Tandi village in Spiti, which forms Chenab or Chandra-Bhaga.
It is Tibetan Monastery having a vast history of more than 1000 years which is situated at an altitude of 13,600ft above sea level, close to Spiti river The walls of this Monastery are covered with 14th-century conventual architectural work which attracts many travellers. It is the biggest as well as the oldest monastery of Spiti Valley and also has a religious training centre for Lamas.
Hamta Pass lies on the Pir Panjal Range in the Himalayas at the altitude of 14,010ft. Approximate trekking distance is 26km. It is a small hallway between Lahaul and Kullu valley of Himachal Pradesh. This is not a very difficult trek and good for beginners. A number of wild Flowers, medicinal herbs, waterfalls and Hanging glacier are the main characteristics of this trek.
This lake is also known as “Dal Lake” and is another high altitude lake situated at 14,000ft above sea level. It falls in the Pir Panjal range of the Himalayas. The lake is next to Manimahesh Kailash Peak and is the 3rd Kailash peak in Himachal dedicated to Lord Shiva. Approximate trekking distance to the lake is 18km from Bharmaur. This highly revered pilgrimage trek can be undertaken during the month of August to September.
This pass in one, which connects the Chamba valley and Pangi valley of Himachal Pradesh. Located at an altitude of 14,500ft above sea level and is around 127km from Chamba town. The pass is only open from June or early July to mid-October. The road is narrow and unmetalled. This pass would really give you chills and thrills down your spine because of its breathtaking beauty. If you want to see the other side of the Himalayas, then you definitely need to visit this exotic place.
Pangi is another poorly developed, rugged and remote tribal area of Himachal. The altitude of peaks of this valley varies from 8,000ft to 11,000ft above sea level. This place has started developing and has seen a boost in tourism, just after it has been connected by road via Saach Pass, which is only accessible between mid-June and October and closed for rest of the year due to heavy snowfall.
It is the highest peak in Sirmour district as well as the outer Himalayas. Located at an altitude of 12,000ft above sea level, this place holds a spiritual significance for the people of surrounding places in Shimla, Sirmour as well as Uttrakhand. Churdhar peak can be approached from many routes – from Nauradhar, Sirmour 14km and for Sarahan, Choupal 8km.
From here you can easily get a panoramic view of the Himalayas which makes you satisfied and overwhelmed by the earth’s spectacular beauty. This trek also falls under snow belt area and is only open from May to October.
Karol Ka Tibba:
Karol peak is the highest hill around Solan Town. This peak is located at an altitude of 6,200ft above sea level. At the top, there is a temple dedicated to Goddess Kali and in the midway, there is also an ancient cave, which is believed to be built by the Pandava’s during there exile. This cave is one of the longest and oldest caves in the Himalayas.
Kullu and Manali
This is one of the sacred temples dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is located at an altitude of about 2,450m in the Kullu Valley. Located at a distance of 22 km from Kullu across the Beas river, it can be approached by a rewarding trek of 3 km. A panoramic view of Kullu and Parvati valley can be seen from the temple. In this temple of lightning (Bijli), it is said that the tall staff attracts the divine blessings in the form of lightning.
Kasol is also known as “Mini Isreal of India”.Located in Parvati Valley, on the banks of Parvati River. It is at a distance of 32km from Bhunter and 5km from Manikaran Sahib. The weather here is peaceful throughout the year and receives a fair amount of snowfall from late December to February.
KheerGanga is a serene meadow in the Parvati Valley situated at 2960 m where Lord Shiva is said to have meditated for 3000 years. There is a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and a Hot water spring and many believe that the water here has sacred healing properties. The trek is 12km long and is full of thrilling Adventure. You may also like Kheerganga: A Mystical Trail in the Himalayas
Great Himalayan National Park:
It is one of India’s National Park, located in Kullu region and is spread over an area of 1,171 km2 at an altitude of between 1500 and 6000 m. In June 2014, the Great Himalayan National Park became part of the UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Site. GHNP is habitat for numerous species of Flora and Fauna. There are various treks in this national park like Rangthar trek, Rolla trek, Raktisar trek and the Pin Parvati trek.
Shrikhand Mahadev is known for Lord Shiva and it is one of the Five Kailash peaks where devotees go in order to attain salvation. It is also one of the toughest pilgrimages in India.
The trek A Gateway to Heaven: Shrikhand Mahadev Yatra which holds a religious significance among the Hindus because of the huge “SHIVA LINGAM”, which is located at an altitude of 16,900ft above the sea level. Total track distance is around 32km. At the top, you would even get goosebumps as the bird’s-eye view of the Parvati valley is fantastic and the views of the surrounding White Snow Peaks are also outstanding.
This waterfall can be reached after a short trekking of nearly 4km from the Vashisht temple in Manali. The stream that forms this waterfall later fuses into the river Beas. Throughout the trek, you will come across many dazzling villages aligned with overwhelming views of the valley. It is one of the best travel attractions around Manali.
Located 14 km northwest of the resort town Manali on the way to Rohtang Pass. This place is well known for the adventure sports like parachuting, paragliding, skating and zorbing in summers and the same changes into Skiing paradise in the winters. From here one can easily get views of the snow-capped mountain peaks and alluring glaciers
Beas Kund Trek:
One of the most renowned treks in Himachal Pradesh. Located at an altitude of 12,000ft, this trek is 18km long. This trek will lead you to Beas Kund which is a high altitude alpine lake which is a place of historical significance. The trek starts from the Salong Nala in Manali and will take you through views of some of the amazing peaks of the Dhauladhar range. The sterile beauty is the origin of the Beas river will leave you astounded.
It is a high mountain pass located at an elevation of 13,050ft on the eastern Pir Panjal Range of the Himalayas at around 51km from Manali. RohtangLa connects two most beautiful valleys of Himachal Pradesh, the Kullu Valley with the Lahaul and Spiti Valleys. The pass is open from May to November. This pass also has a well-deserved reputation for being dangerous because of unpredictable snowstorms and blizzards.
Check: An Ultimate Road Trip to Leh Ladakh.
So, you may visit any corner of Himachal, you will never be disappointed. In short, its already May and is the best time to pack your bags and advance on your trip to Himachal Pradesh. Do share your adventure travel stories with us in the comment section below. For more travel tips and experiences follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Linkedin.