Himachal Pradesh, as the name indicates, is an abode of snow in the western Himalayas. Located in northern India, Himachal Pradesh is a state which comprises beautiful tourist destinations with lofty mountains, abundant greeneries, splendid waterfalls and valleys. Himachal, also known as “Dev Bhoomi” or the Land of Gods, is a traveller’s delight with its exquisite chain of snow-capped mountains ranging from 450 metres to 6500 metres above the sea level.
The splendidness of the Himalayas woos tourists of diverse tastes from across the world. From trekking, rafting, paragliding, skiing, to sightseeing and refreshing holidays, Himachal offers numerous attractions to travellers in different hill stations of the state. It is also the home of Dalai Lama and spectacular Buddhist monasteries are also popular tourist attractions of the state. Shimla, the capital of the state, is one of the most popular hill resorts buzzing with tourists all-round the year. Manali, Kullu, Dharamshala, Kasauli, Dalhousie, Manikaran, etc. are some of the sought-after tourist destinations of Himachal Pradesh. However, there are quite some offbeat destinations which are awe-inspiring for backpackers who would love to travel in tranquillity. Let us look at some of them:
Barot is a beautiful valley, located in the Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh. Extending on both sides of the river Uhl, it is a hill station offering leisure, trekking, angling, paragliding and wildlife sanctuary. The nearest railway station is Pathankot at a distance of 150 km. The closest airport is Gaggal (Dharamshala), 110 km from Barot. There are also buses and cabs to reach Barot by road.
image Courtesy: travelbirbilling.com
Spiti, also known as the cold desert mountain, lies between Tibet and India. It is accessible for tourists for only 250 days a year as heavy snowfall literally disjoints the valley from the rest of India. However, a paradise for adventure lovers, Spiti offers breath-taking views of the Himalayas. Though it is sparsely populated, the hospitality of the people of Spiti, makes it an experience of a lifetime. Travellers can reach Spiti on road via Kinnaur from Shimla on a 412 km difficult stretch.
Image Courtesy: thrillophilia.com
Barog is a charming hill-station, lying on the Kalka-Shimla toy train route. Located in the Solan district, a stop-over in Barog is an experience worth remembering. Barog also offers camping zone for travellers. A mere 60km drive from Chandigarh, this place is a fantastic weekend getaway for families.
Image Courtesy: gocaribou.com
Churdhar Peak is a trekking destination for backpackers. It is the highest peak in the outer Himalayas. The shortest route to reach the peak is the 7km long trek from Nohradhar. The amazing views during the trek make the place a must visit for adventure lovers. The entire area is a part of the forest sanctuary and one may come across a Musk Deer or Monal during the trek. On the peak there a giant statue of Lord Shiva and on reaching there one would definitely be overwhelmed with nature’s enthralling view.
Image Courtesy: nomadicclouds.com
Chanshal is a mountain range in the district of Shimla that separates the Dodra Kawar Valley from the Rohru area. The Chanshal Pass connects these two places and has an elevation of 4520 metres. The pass is open for travellers from May to October every year. For the remaining year, heavy snowfall makes it inaccessible for visitors. The destination is best suited for adventure lovers, photographers and trekkers. The steep and narrow road makes travel quite difficult, but one would definitely relish the captivating view of the entire tour.
Image Courtesy: vargiskhan.com
Dharamkot, a small hill-station in the Kangra district of Himachal is a perfect getaway from the maddening city crowds. Located at a distance of 9 km from McLeodGanj, it is also called the yoga village where several foreigners look for a serene life in the heart of nature. Travellers enjoy treks to Illaqua, Triund and Idrahar Pass in the Himalayas from Dharamkot.
Image Courtesy: global-gallivanting.com
Shoghi, merely 13 km from Shimla, is a perfect getaway for people looking for tranquillity in the lap of nature. Visitors can enjoy nature’s beauty in abundance and in peace at Shoghi. It is accessible by road as well as the toy train on Shimla Kalka route.
Image Courtesy: urbanrabbit.in
Chitkul is the last inhabited village on the India-China border. Located at a distance of 28 km from Sangla, Chitkul attracts travellers on account of its picturesque landscape with the Bapsa river on one side and the snow-clad mountains on the other. The place is not accessible during the winters and the residents also move down to lower regions. Chitkul is also famous for one of the best and expensive potatoes in the world.
Image Courtesy: tripadvisor.in