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Dharamshala has a spectacular getting along a spur of the dhauladhar range, varying height from 1250 meters at the “lower town “bazaar to 1768 meters at the pleasanter Mcleodganj. t is this “upper” end more attractive part of town that attracts the bulk of visitors. Surrounded by forests of chirpines , rhododendron and Himalayan Oak ,is it set against a back drop of high peaks on three sides ,with superb views over the Kangra valley and shivaliks ,and of the great granite mountains that almost overhang the town.
Dharamsala is known for its scenic beauty, calmness and serenity. It has high pine trees, tea gardens and timber yielding trees.
An earthquake once wrecked Dharamsala in 1905. Since 1960, it became temporary headquarters of the Dalai Lama and has risen to international repute as " The little Lhasa in India".
Tibetan environment has been created in the high altitude, and more than 3000 Tibetans have made Dharamsala their temporary home, living mostly in Mcleod Ganj. To add to its beauty, there is an artificial stream flowing, gleaming with gold fish.
Tibetans took shelter in India in 1959. In the wake of Dalai Lama’s flight from Tibet, 85000 Tibetans were devastated. Their spiritual leader hasn’t given up the hope of a free Tibet, but to keep the Tibetan art alive, efforts have been made to preserve them. Tibet’s unique form of Thongka painting, woodcarving, metal –crafts and music are very famous. Tibetan works and archive are preserved in the library at Dharamsala where Buddhist monks from distant refugee camps come to study ancient manuscripts.
Major Attractions In Dharamsala
Tibet has lent importance to Mcleod Ganj. The Buddha temple is situated opposite the present abode of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama. This place is well worth a visit and around it is situated Tibetan monasteries and nunnery. A number of residential buildings, restaurants, antique and curio shops are present. There is an annual 10-day fair opera in Dharamsala, which takes place on the second saturday of April.
It is a very beautiful place to visit in the afternoon. This memorial is built near the entry point to Dharamsala. It was built to commemorate the memory of those who fought in defense of the motherland. People offer prayers at this memorial place.
It is 17km from Dharamsala and lies at the foot of the snow clad Dhauladhar at a height of 2827 m. It is a popular picnic and trekking spot.
Lord Eligin's Memorial (1860)
It is a world famous church built in the memory of lord Elgin, the Scottish working peer and eighth Viceroy. In 1896, he took vacations from official Shimla. He was not able to finish his four-year term and died in Dharamsala. Before his death he had given instructions to be buried in the Church of St. John. Inside the church is the monument of this Viceroy.
The picturesque Dal Lake is about 11km from Dharamsala. It is surrounded by fir trees. There is an annual fair in Sept. and is largely attended by Gaddis and other hill men.
The shrine of Bhagsunath is famous for its ancient temple. It is 11km from lower town. Slate quarries are found here. There is a tank and spring which are considered sacred by the Hindus.
By Air Nearest airport 12km away at Gaggal.
By Rail The convenient rail head is at Pathankot at a distance of 90km .
By Road Dharamsala is directly linked by all road with Pathankot , Mandi , Kangra, Palampur .
When to Visit March-June, Sept- Nov
Lamas In Dharamsala
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