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Manali is a beautiful hill station at an altitude of 1926 metres, with snow clad peaks , peaceful environment, located on the northern edge of Kullu valley in India.It is a a wonderful holiday destination ideal for a family vacation, a honeymoon or any vacation.. The mighty River Beas hurtling through Manali adds a dramatic tone and you can spend hours watching the river rush by.
The Mall Road or main bazaar in Manali is the hub of activity, flooded with shops, restaurants, trekking and mountaineering outfits and wayside food stalls. The excellent combination of wooded forests, snow covered slopes, lush green valleys and the swirling waters of the mighty Beas make Manali an ideal destination for treks and mountaineering expeditions into the Solang Valley and over the Rohtang Pass into Lahaul-Spiti.
It is also the gateway to the two-day trans-Himalayan journey up to the cold desert town of Leh in Ladakh, connected by the Leh-Manali highway. Manali comes alive in winter with immense skiing and ice skating opportunities- it is often called "The Land of Snowballs and Skiing"
Manali is also very popular for it's world class charas and many travellers are lured here by the temptation to try it. But we warn you- it is illegal even in the smallest quantity and local police are not averse to arresting people for possession or sting them for bribes.
According to legend human race was revived in Manali. According to the historians the entire earth was once drowning in a flood, Rishi Manu, step off his extraterrestrial boat at Manali and helped to recreate human life. He also saved the Vedas and the seven sages from this inundation. The region was initially known as Manu-alaya or abode of Manu, and the name was later changed to Manali.
Manali - A Backpackers Paradise
Backpackers come to Manali to hang out in the peaceful villages around the main town; Adventure seeking tourists come to Manali for trekking, paragliding, rafting and skiing, honeymoon couples or families come to Manali to enjoy the cool mountain air and their first glimpse of snow.
Manali is the main jumping-off point for Ladakh, Spiti and Lahaul, Most Foreign Tourists relax in Manali for a few days before continuing the long journey into the higher mountains. Manali is a staging point for a number of treks (Beas Kund, Chandrakhani Pass) and adventurous sports such as white-water rafting, para-gliding, zorbing etc.There are daily buses and jeeps to higher altitude areas like Leh, Keylong and Kaza from June to October.
Most travellers prefer to stay in the villages of Vashisht or Old Manali, Manali’s main street is the Mall, part of the highway that runs into town. The bus and taxi stands are here and most hotels and restaurants are on alleys to the west.
Places to Visit In Manali
Rohtang Pass - One of the prime attraction for tourists is Rohtang la ( pass).Rohtang Pass is located at an altitude of 13,054 ft, 53 kms away from Manali on Manali -Leh highway in Northern India.It serves as the gateway to Lahaul and Spiti valleys in Himachal Pradesh.The name Rohtang is derived from Tibetan language meaning ‘a heap of dead bodies’ due to the number of people who lost their lives trying to cross it in the past. The Rohtang Pass is situated on the Pir Panjal Mountain Range of the Himalayas.Besides Lahaul and Spiti, Rohtang Pass also serves as the gateway to Pangi and Ladakh region. Like the Zojila Pass, Rohtang also serves as the gateway to Ladakh.
Rohtang is an adventure tourist site where it can be cold even on a summer day. It is the highest point on the Manali-Keylong road and provides a wide panoramic view of mountains rising far above clouds, which is truly breath taking. Close by is a small lake called Dassaur Lake. Beas Kund, the source of river Beas, is also nearby..............More
In winter, the road to Rothang Pass is closed.
If you are driving up, be prepared for the rough broken roads at many places, sheer blind turns and tight hairpin bends, which can be exhilarating depending on the state of your nerves. If you are hiring a vehicle then better rent a four wheel drive vehicle from Manali.
Manali Rohtang keylong Road has featured in the History Channel’s “Most Dangerous Roads” Program where ice road truckers navigated and were surprised to see the toughest roads on earth.
Beas Kund ( Rohtang Pass)
It is an igloo shaped temple near Rohtang pass, on top has a spring which is the origin of River Beas.
Hidimba Temple Manali is an ancient cave temple dedicated toHidimba Devi, who was a character in the Indian epic, Mahabharata. The temple is surrounded by a cedar forest at the foot of the Himalayas. The sanctuary is built over a huge rock jutting out of the ground, which was worshiped as an image of the deity. The structure was built in the year 1553.............More
Maa Sharvari Temple is represented as KULDEVI of the kings of Kullu in early times and is worshipped as a manifestation of Durga, and image of the goddess is also enshrined here. The divinity is popularly worshipped throughout the region during the festivals and the Goddess is transported to Kullu to visit the Lord Raghunathji during Dussehra festival. This temple is on the top of above the Shaminallah village, which is around 5 Kms from Manali, across the Beas river on the left bank on the way to Naggar Castle
Vashist Hot Water Springs ( Sulphur Springs) and Temple- Around 3 km from Manali, across the Beas river is Vashist, a small village with natural sulphur springs. Modern bathhouses, with Turkish-style showers, have the hot water piped into them for the convenience of the visitors who come here to benefit from the medicinal properties.
Vaishisht, also boasts a pair of old stone temples, opposite each other above the main square. Dedicated to the local patron saint Vashista, the smaller of the two opens on to a partially covered courtyard, and is adorned with elaborate woodcarvings. Those lining the interior of the shrine, blackened by years of oil-lamp and incense smoke, are particularly fine.
The temple tanks are underground hot-water/sulfur springs.
Cautions for Vashista temple Visitors
Be wary of hanging up your trousers or bags on the hooks provided, pickpocketing is a daily occurrence. Hand over your wallet to a trusted person for safekeeping before you enter the springs for a bath.
Solang Valley is a beautiful valley with enchanting views of snow capped mountains, thick conifer forest, lush green meadows and a meandering river. It is host to a spectrum of adventure activities. The valley is also blessed with a natural ice Shivling which forms in winter and remains till late summer at Anjani Mahadev. The winter skiing festival is organised here as well as training in skiing is imparted at this place.
Solang Valley is also known as Snow Point, is 13 km northwest of Manali and famous for its 300-meter ski li.
The Ski Lift ticket is Rs. 400 per head. It is a picturesque spot and offers splendid views of glaciers and the snow-capped mountains.
Rahala waterfalls ( Before the Rohtang pass Climb) is an aftereffect of the dribbling of water from precipitous rocks and imposing glaciers. It exhibits the exceptional beauty of the environment around. The entire area is bounded with the thick deodar forest, and lofty birch trees, which creates an unspoiled and pungent atmosphere. The amazing spectacle of a cascade in the backdrop of magnificent snow clad mountain peaks is really worthy for a watch and offers a wonderful experience that one cannot forget for a lifetime.
Rozy Falls ( Enroute to Rohtang pass) On the way to Rohtang amazing water fall worth seeing. this water fall looks amazing between the high hills.
Buddhist Monasteries- Manali is known for its shiny gompas or Buddhist monasteries. It is maintained by donations from the local community and by sale of hand-woven carpets in the temple workshop.
Himalayan Nyinmapa Buddhist Temple:- Contains a two-storey statue of Sakyamuni, the historical Buddha.
Gelukpa Cultural Society Gompa:- This Gompa has a prayer room crammed with statues of bodhisattvas, revered lamas and Buddhist deities. There’s also a small workshop producing Tibetan carpets.
Old Manali- At a distance of 3 km northwest of Manali is Old Manali, famous for its orchards and old guesthouses. There is ruined fort here by the name of Manaligarh. There is also the Manu Maharishi Temple, dedicated to sage Manu.
Gauri Shankar Temple at DASHAL village(700 mtrs. from Sarsai )on the main left bank Kullu Manali Highway.It is a 12th century protected monument.Also see lush green apple orchards,play with water stream out there
Naggar is also an important Destination near Manali, Naggar is famous for The Castle, Roerich House and Art gallery are places to see.
Moonlight dinner on the balcony of Hotel Castle restaurant is worth experiencing, with the lovely sight of twinkling lights below in the Beas valley. Bijli Mahadev temple, about 20 kms from Naggar, is also worth visiting.
Zana Falls- 15 Kms from Naggar and 35 Kms from Manali, at Zana Village, Zana beautiful Water Fall is worth visiting. The valley provides amazing views. There is one water fall on the road side and two other water falls which are not much explored by tourists and are amazing. Moreover Traditional Himachali food is available here at small hut like shops.
The Manali Gompa was built in 1960. It is one of the most important places for Buddhists. Buddhists come to this place from Ladakh, Tibet, Spiti, Lahaul and Kinnaur. Manali Gompa is world famous for a large statue of Buddha and for its wall paintings.
Kothi is located at the bottom of Rohtang Pass. It is a beautiful and photographic village where tourists can capture different thrilling views of the deep gorge through which the Beas swiftly runs. This is anamazing place to experience the natural beauty of high altitude mountain. It's an idyllic village, which boasts of a superb view of the deep gorge, and the Beas river rushing through it. Sixteen kms from Manali, at an altitude of 2500 m, Kothi is the last village towards Rohtang Pass.
Nehru Kund is located at the distance of around 6 km from Manali. It is one of the natural springs of natural water in India. Nehru Kund is named after the late Prime Minister Jawar Lal Nehru. Nehru used to drink water from this Kund, while his journey to Manali.
Nehru Kund is on the Manali-Keylong road, about 6 kms from Manali. It is understood that a landslide has wiped out this spring.