Ten Offbeat Tourist Destinations in Himachal Pradesh

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Kalpa in Kinnaur district. Pic by Sanjeev Nayyar 2001

Just in case your regular guide, has taken you to the usual touristy destinations, this piece tells you about ten off beat tourists destinations in Himachal. Read on ------

 

TIRTHAN VALLEY Kullu

One of the best places to trek, Tirthan valley is slowly becoming a favourite amongst trekkers.  Untouched by regular tourists the place is serene and gives you peace of mind. Homestay is the best option. Spend a couple of days discovering and enjoying the culture and traditions of the area. 

The Valley is a four day trek. Route is Mandi-Gushaini-Rolla-Trithan and back to Manali. 

Jalori 

 

JALORI JOT Kullu

At a distance of 74 kms from Kullu and height of 3,000 metres it offers a spectacular view of the Kinnaur and Dhauladhar ranges. It is a small place and one of the yet to be discovered places in Himachal. 

The bumpy roads and steep pass make it an adventurous ride. Best time to visit April to November. Other months difficult to access due to extreme weather conditions. 

Barot 

 

BAROT Shimla

It is a small village near Shimla. It is best known for camping near riversides and its home stay. There are facilities for paragliding and bit billing. The place is a must visit for peace lovers who love to stroll down the valley sipping chai and letting the natural blissful air pamper their skin. 

Best time to visit is during autumn season & winters. 

BHABHA PASS - High-Altitude Crossover Trek in Spiti Valley

If you are an adrenaline junkie and thirsty for heights, Bhabha Pass is your destination. Its altitude goes up to 4,800 metres. Undiscovered by many the place is very scenic with mountains on all sides. The view from the pass is breadth taking. It is a once in a life time experience. 

If not done already, make sure Bhabha pass is in your bucket list. It is an eight day trek from Manali and back. 

MAGIC VALLEY - hill station in Kullu

Also known as Waichin it is the road less taken by many travellers. What makes it interesting is how you reach the valley. With mystic roads and a great many waterfalls, one needs to really pave their way to the valley. One has to trek all the way.

It is located four kms above Malana (found in the north- east side of Kullu Village) and at an altitude of approximately 9,000 feet. 

Due to low population there are not many hotels and homestays hence, the only viable option is to stay in tents. It is an extraordinary place for camping. You are sure to have a good time. Best time to visit is September. 

Kalpa

With a breadth taking landscape and endless greenery, this village in Kinnaur district is extraordinary. It is known its pine forests and apple orchid. Close to Kalpa is a temple of Chandika. For the devout there are numerous Buddhist and Hindu temples across Kalpa. The view from these temples is invariably out of a painting. It is a must visit for wanderers who love mountains and natural beauty. Do visit apple orchards and taste garden fresh apples. 

Kalpa is about four-five hours from Narkhanda. On the road to Sangla take a right turn, cross the Sutlej to reach Kalpa. You can also reach Kalpa from Spiti Valley.

Chitkul - Last Inhabited Village near the Indo-China Border

Right at the Indo- Tibetan border, Chitkul is one of the last places in India. Quite simply Chitkul is an end to all the Indian roads. It is under an hour’s drive from Sangla. 

The mustard fields and river Baspa running alongside makes it something out a Bollywood movie.  It is advised to buckle up as the weather here can change suddenly. People worship Buddha and Shiva. Wooden houses are converted into hotels. Spend a day here if not more. Friends from Mumbai who visited loved Chitkul.

PANGMO AND MORANG Spiti valley

It is a top offbeat place in Spiti Valley ie situated at an altitude of 4587 meters. The drive of 196 kms from Manali is lovely.

 

Ladies live a life of a djomo (female monk) at the nunneries of Pangmo and Morang. According to this Times of India article, “The gompa at Komic is called the Tangyud Monastery has the distinction of being one of the most elevated monasteries in the world connected with a motorable road at 4587 meters. There are some amazing stories behind the establishment of this monastery, and some are actually believed to be true as narrated by the monks. It is a tantric monastery and females are not allowed to enter the main temple.”

 

The best part is cell phones do not work here. You are by yourself, cut-off from the world and oxygen levels are low. What better place to look within and meditate.

 

Shoja 

Shoja - Offbeat Traveller Destinations around Manali

Shoja is known for its Serolaska Lake and sunsets. One can stroll around the lake or have a chilling bath at a waterfall there. It is perfect for a romantic getaway. 

It is about 100 kms from Manali. Even though it is open round the year best time to visit is between March and November. 

Gushaini Kullu

For wanderers looking to chill around camping and fishing sites, Gushaini offers various water and land sports starting from river rafting to rock climbing and more. If you wish to spend quality time with family and friends Gushaini is the place.

Gushaini is a two hour drive from Kullu and at a distance of 60 kms. One can visit round the year.

 If it's your first visit include some of these places in your schedule. If not you have compelling reasons to visit Himachal Pradesh again.

Author Sunny Deval is a veteran travel guest blogger and founder of Himachal Tourist Places blog. He loves to explore new travel destinations worldwide where he meets new people and taste the local cuisine. Sunny believes that travelling is good for the body, mind and soul.

 

To see albums on Himachal Pradesh

1 Spiti Valley

2 Lahaul Valley

3 Hadimba Temple Manali

4 Manikaran

5 Khhang Shilling Trek

6 Kalpa Sangla Valley