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< Indian Himalayas << Himalayan Destinations >> <<Himachal Pradesh Travel >> << Chamba>>

Tourist Destination Chamba

About Chamba  - 

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 July-September.

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 the town.

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 Chamba Valley.

Old Palace -

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 Festivals  -

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 (3 hours), Dharamshala (10 hours), Khajjiar (1 hours), Dalhousie (3 hours), and to Pathankot (6 hours) is very good.

Nearby Chamba

Shimla

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.

McLeod Gunj or Dharamshala

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.

Kullu Valley

Scenically pretty 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.

Chamba

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

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 sport lovers.

Sarchu

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.

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