Situated in the bosom of the
middle Himalaya, Chamba has preserved its identity inviolate through a period
when the plains of India were ravaged by fanatical hoarders from Afghanistan and
Central Asia. Remoteness has enabled it's people to retain their cultural,
social and religious structure.
Meru Varman, who is said to have come from
Rajasthan, established his kingdom in the mid-6th century at Brahampura.
Chamba is located in the northwestern part of the state of Himachal Pradesh in
the northern region of India. The town lies on the River Ravi, in a valley
between two mountain ridges. Chamba is 56 km from Dalhousie via Khajjiar. The
weather in Chamba is alpine. Summers (April-June) are mild and winters are cold
(November-February). It experiences southwestern monsoon rains in
Sightseeing in Chamba
Laxmi Narayan Temple
The town has noble specimens of temples constructed in a mixture
of Shikara style and hill architecture. The main tourist attraction of Chamba is
the Laxmi Narayan Temple is. The architecture of the six temples in this complex
is an example of the Hindu shikhara style of architecture. However, the local
flavor is distinct and makes the carvings on these temples unique. Three temples
are dedicated to Lord Vishnu, and another three to Lord Shiva. The temple was
built in the 10th century AD and was renovated in the 16th century.
The Laxmi Narayan Temple complex also has some fine sculptures of
residing deities, which include figures of Lord Vishnu, Goddess Laxmi (Goddess
of wealth), Narasimha (Lion form of Lord Vishnu) and Lord Krishna. Hari Har
temple has an exquisite image of Chaturmukh (the Four-Headed). Bansi Gopal
Temple, Sri Brijneshwari Temple and Chamunda Devi temple are also worth a visit.
A small shrine dedicated to the memory of Rani Suhi stands on a hill overlooking
Bhuri Singh Museum
Situated on the NW side of the Chaugan, is a veritable storehouse
of miniature painting of the Kangra and Basholi school of Art, as well as a mass
of ancient scripts and epigraphically material on the history and culture of
The Rangmahal or the Old
Palace is another important place to visit and houses the Himachal Emporium,
from where travelers can buy handicraft items. The Bhuri Singh Museum has a good
collection of artifacts belonging to this region. Of particular importance is
the collection of traditional miniature paintings. St Andrew's Church and Gandhi
Gate are also worth visiting. Other temples to visit in Chamba are the Radha
Krishna Temple, the Sitaram Temple and the Champavati Temple.
Chamba's many festivals make
this area a special place to visit. The Sui Mata festival is held for four days
in March/April every year in memory of Princess Sui, who gave her life to
protect the people of Chamba. Women in Chamba revere her and her image is
carried from the Old Palace (Rangmahal) to her small shrine accompanied by
singing and dancing. The Minjar festival is celebrated in late July/early August
every year. The origin of this festival goes back to the 10th century AD. This
festival marks the harvesting of the annual maize crop. It culminates with a
procession to River Ravi and throwing of the silk tassels or Minjars
(representing sheaves of maize), worn by men and women into the river.
How to Reach in Chamba -
Chamba does not
have an airport nor a railway station. The bus station in Chamba is located near
the Chowgan. The bus service from Chamba to Bharmaur (3½ hours), Dharamshala (10
hours), Khajjiar (1½ hours), Dalhousie (3 hours), and to Pathankot (6 hours) is
Take a trip on the toy
train to experience the decrepit grandeur of the the Raj in this
pleasant hill station. Shimla was once par of the Nepalease king-dom and
called Shyamla, another name for the goddess Kali, but Shimla never
gained any fame until it was 'discovered' by the British in 1819. Three
years later, the first 'British' house was erected, and in 1864 Shimla
became the summer capital of India.
Home of the Dalai Lama,
this is the place to head for Tibetan culture (and chocolate cake).
While Dharamshala is synonymous with the Tibetan Government in Exile,
the actual headquarters is about 4km above Dharamshala at Gangchen
Kyishong, and most travelers hang out at McLeod Gunj, stung along a high
ridge 10km above Dharamshala.
Dharamshala itself is
of little interest to travelers, although Kotwali Bazaar, at the foot of
the roads leading up to McLeod Gunj, is an interesting and colorful
market, and you can visit the Kanga Art Museum.
valley and adventure playground. Kullu was once known as Kullanthapitha
- the end of the habitable world. Beyond rose the forbidding heights of
the Greater Himalaya, and by the banks of the shining river Beas, lay
the fabled Silver Valley.
A beautiful town with
ancient Hindu temples hidden in winding backstreets. Situated in the
bosom of the middle Himalaya, Chamba has preserved its identity
inviolate through a period when the plains of India were ravaged by
fanatical hoarders from Afghanistan and Central Asia.
Manali situated in the
north Indian hill state of Himachal Pradesh. Situated at the Northern
end of the Kullu valley with its spectacular views of the snowcapped
peaks and wooded slopes, the Beas rushing along its rocky course amid
grassy wild flowered meadows, is ideal for honeymooners and adventure
The picturesque town
of Sarchu is located at the height of 4253 meters and 105 km from
keylong. This is the last point on the Himachal Pradesh - Ladakh border
that offers splendid views of snow capped mountains. The unspoiled
natural beauty of Sarchu offers a perfect ambience to spend some time
away from the hustle and bustle of city life.
"Tourist Places and Adventure in Himachal Pradesh"
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