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Manali

On the banks of the Beas river, surrounded by the majestic Pir Panjal, Parvati, and Bara Bhangal mountain ranges, lies Manali - one of the most popular hill resorts in India. Manali is also the gateway to the exotic Lahaul and Spiti valleys.

40 km from Kullu, Manali is situated near the north end of the Kullu valley on the National Highway leading to Leh. The tempestuous Beas river rages through the town on one side and local villages, conifer forests and apple orchards flank the other side.  Manali’s cool atmosphere provides a much-desired refuge for residents and visitors in the hot North Indian summer.

To its North, South and West is an amphitheatre of mountain peaks and ridges that provide a bold relief against the skyline. Lower down the landscapes is marked by vivid green valleys and a network of traditional villages.

The bustling town of Manali is located close to the vast Himalayan snowline.  Manali offers the perfect mix of serenity and excitement. One can just laze around doing nothing, or experience the most thrilling adventure sports activities such as river rafting, rock climbing, trekking, fishing, and skiing. It serves as the most popular base for trekkers and motorists heading to the regions of Bara-Bhangal, Lahaul, Spiti Valley and Zanskar. It is also a gateway to the exotic remote region of Ladakh.

In ancient times, the valley was sparsely populated by nomadic tribes.  Later shepherds from the Kangra valley settled here and started engaging in agriculture.

The British were responsible for introducing apples and trout which were not native to Manali. To this day apples, plums and pears remain the best source of income for the majority of this region’s agriculture-dependant villages.

Old Manali:

Manali is divided into two parts, the Town and Old Manali. The town throbs with activity in its new hotels, shops and markets full of loads of tourists.  In contrast, the actual charm of Manali lies in the old part of Manali across Manalsu Nala.  With its rustic old buildings with tiled roofs amid a still-unspoiled Himalayan village, this place has developed its identity into a multi-cultural mixture entertaining both domestic and western travellers.  In the evenings, this is the best place to visit for food and entertainment. Manali has a small resident foreign population attracted to it by its natural beauty. These immigrants have established restaurants serving Italian and other European foods and run curio shops.

Mythologically, Manali has been mentioned in the epic ‘Mahabharata’. Its name literally means ‘the abode of Manu’ (the great Indian law-maker). According to the Legend, the sage Manu recreated life here after the earth was destroyed in a massive flood. Similar to Noah’s Ark, Manu built an vessel in which he hoped to survive the great flood. When the flood water subsided, his ark rested at a place which he named Manali after himself. An ancient temple dedicated to the sage Manu can be found in the old town.  One has to cross a slippery stone path to reach the temple.

Travellers visiting Manali can obtain a glimpse of the ethnic life of villagers by visiting the quiet hamlets surrounding the town. Manali also has a sizeable Tibetan population, and there are 3 Tibetan Buddhist monasteries. These monasteries place Manali on the itinerary of pilgrims, and lend a unique charm to its cultural heritage.

Hidimba Temple
Built in 1553, this temple is dedicated to Hidimba, the wife of Bhima, who was one of the 5 Pandavas (5 sons of Pandu). It is also known as Dhoongri Temple, as it is located in the forest of Dhoongri Van Vihar. It has a unique four-storied Pagoda-style roof. The temple has footprints of the Goddess. Its 400-year-old exquisitely carved doorway is adorned with mythological figures. The Goddess Hidimba is worshipped by the Kullu royal family.
Manu Temple
Located in old Manali, it is the only temple in India dedicated to the sage Manu.
Gadhan Thekchoking Gompa
Built by Tibetan refugees in 1969, the Gopma is located at the end of the mall. An example of Tibetan architecture, it is covered in bright frescoes. Tibetan weavers here sell carpets and other handicrafts.
Himalayan Nyingamapa Gompa
This Gompa houses a huge gold-faced statue of Lord Buddha. It is located near the market and its architecture is modern.
Vashisth
This place is famous for its hot water springs and is dedicated to sage Vashishth; Vashisth has old temples and traditional timber wood houses. One of Manali's main attractions, this is a place to luxuriate in hot mineral baths. Water from the natural hot sulphur springs is piped into baths, including private deluxe ones. Many people believe that this water has medicinal properties.
Solang valley
14 km northwest of Manali on the way to Rohtang Pass is Solang Valley, well known for its summer and winter sport activities. The activities offered are parachuting, paragliding and zorbing during summer and skiing in winter.
Rohtang Pass
This is the highest point on the Manali-Keylong road, at an altitude of 3977m above sea level, where it can get cold even on a summer day. The pass provides a wide panoramic view of the surrounding mountains. The pass is a highly recommended day trip.
Kullu pattern shawls and caps, exclusive to this region, can be bought from the old market. The Tibetan market features carpets, antiques and souvenir shops.
Try some of the delicious local fruit wine available at a very reasonable rate.
Manali offers a wide variety of cuisine, due to the presence of several local ethnicities, as well as the Western residents.
Winter Carnival:  Manali celebrates a five day long winter festival in the month of January. It is celebrated at Manu Kala Kendra and includes active participation by various regional cultural groups.
Nearby places Train stations Airports
CHANDIGARH 298 Km 04H 49m
BHUNTAR 52 Km 00H 51m
Chandigarh 293 Km 04H 45m
Pathankot
Nearby major cities
Name Distance Duration
20 Km 00H 22m
36 Km 00H 32m
41 Km 00H 41m
96 Km 01H 32m
99 Km
20 Km 00H 22m
36 Km 00H 32m
41 Km 00H 41m
96 Km 01H 32m
99 Km
The Great Himalayan National Park is a fascinating destination. Situated in the Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh, the pristine nature here is speckled with snow capped Himalayan peaks, glaciers, alpine meadows and coniferous forests that attract trekkers, bird watchers and nature lovers from across the globe.
284 Km 04H 42m
546 Km 09H 09m
India's capital Delhi is the hub of the country, a modern international metropolis. However the twin cities of Old and New Delhi represent two contrasting culture and aesthetics of Mughal and British sensibilities. Delhi is embedded with an astonishing array of forts, tombs, mosques and government buildings constructed over the past 1,000 years, three of those declared as UNESCO World Heritage Mounments, i.e. Qutub Minar, Humanyun's Tomb and Red Fort(Lal Quila).. For enthusiasts of architecture
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Weather
Season Min. Temp. Max. Temp.
Summer 10 °C 25 °C
Winter -7 °C 10 °C
Summers are cool and pleasentpleasant. Winters are very cold. Heavy snowfall is observed during winters.
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