Places to visit in Chamba

Chamba offers a variety of scenic beauty to the tourist. It touches the fringe of the Shivaliks and has the three well defined snowy ranges, the Dhauladhar constituting the outer Himalayas, the Pir Panjal or the mid Himalayas and the Zanskar range or the inner Himalayas. The river Ravi associated with melodic folk songs flows at the feet of Chamba town. Its cultural heritage, an iota of it displayed in Bhuri Singh Museam, its dances, Dandaras and Gurai, its folk paintings done in embroidery, its ‘chukh’ –  a pickle of chillies- and its ‘chappals’ –  all have that special Chamba appeal. Dalhousie, a tiny town, with the colonial charm and modernity contrasts with the ancient traditions and folkish lives of the people in the rest of Chamba but the natural ambience of the District merges the two well.

Chowgan: A grassy lawn than one km in length and about seventy five meters wide around which the town is spread.

Bhuri Singh Museum: Raja Bhuri Singh ruled Chamba between 1904 and 1919. This museum has been named after his and displays rare artifacts that reflect the rich culture of Chamba.

Hari Rai Temple : A Vishnu temple at Chowgan’s gate is known by the name of Hari Rai and dates back to the second half of the 11th century. The artistic excellence of this Chaturmukhi Vishu is worth appreciating.

The laxmi Narayan Group of Temples: This Group is renowned for its finely executed classical forms. It has six main shikhar style temples and several smaller shrines.

Chamunda Temple : An ancient temple, it provides a panoramic view of Chamba town. It is good picnic spot.

Church of Chamba: It is more than one hundred years old. Constructed in dressed –stone structure with lance windows, the building attracts the attention.

Rang Mahal: The palace has the mix of British colonial and Ssaracen styles. Has superb wall paintings.

Akhand Chandi Palace: The Government College is there in this imposing building. The original craftsmanship is attractive.

Saho: This has a temple dedicated to Chandra Shekhara manifestation of Lord Shiv.

Chatrari: King Meruverman fulfilled his vow, after defeating the enemy, by getting constructed a Shakti Devi temple at the height of 996m. It has capturing wood carvings and an attractive metallic idol of Devi, 54 inch in height, constructed by an artist by the name of Gugga in the 8th century. Visit to the temple and picnicking afterwards is rewarding.

Bharmour: If Chamba is counted in the history of the North-western Indian art and craft, then Bharmour is its exhibition ground. Learned agree that the wooden architecture and the metallic idols of Bharmour temples depict the exquisiteness of craft of Hinduism that developed in the hill in the medieval period. Exemplary shrines are those of Lakshna Devi, Narshigh Dev and Lord Ganesh.

Manimahesh: Herre is a lake, 28km from Bharmour, dedicated to Lord Shiva and his consort Parvati. Every year in August/ September a yatra (pilgrimage) is conducted to the lake (4183m).

Pangi Valley: At 2438m and higher, this valley is held between the Pir Panjal ranges and the Greater Himalaya. Its sub divisional headquarters are at Kilar valley. The temple of Mindhal Devi, Sach Pass opening several trek routes, side valley like. Saichu,  Hunan and Sural Nallah are worth visiting.

Dalhousie: It is 56kmvia Banikhet and 43km via Khajjiar from Chamba. Named after Lord Dalhousie, the British Governor General of the nineteenth century, it was popular with the British Army personnel in 1860’s. Dalhousie abounds in natural beauty and has a variety of architecture buildings.

Panchpulla: It means five bridges. It is a picturesque spot with water following under the five small bridges. A samadhiof Sardar Ajit Singh , uncle of Bhagat Singh, adds to its importance. A small fresh water spring Satdhara is close by.

Bara Patthar: It is 4km from Dalhousie enroute Kalatope. In the village Ahla here, there is a templeof Bhulwani Mata.

Kalatope: It is a picnic spot and wildlife sanctuary 10km from Dalhousie and offers a fine view of the country side.

Subhash Baoli: Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose spent a large portion of 1937 contemplating here. A nice secluded place.

Bakrota Hills: Visit for a brisk walk around the hills and have a view of snow clad peaks. It is 5km from Dalhousie.

Dain Kund: It is 10km from Dalhousie. On a clear day, the three rivers Beas,  Ravi and Chenab are visible from this peak.

Khajjiar: “India’s Switzerland”, the saucer shaped plateau of Khajjiar is connected to Dalhousie by road. The glade surrounded by pine and devdar forest has the charm of a lake in its midst. There is an old temple at Khajjiar dedicated to Khajji Nag and some believe that is was built in the 12th century. The Nag that is worshipped here has a human form. The stone idol has a mace in on hand and khanda, double dagger in the other. Five wooden life size statues of the Pandavas were installed in the temple in the 16th century.

Source: Department of Tourism & Civil Aviation, Himachal Pradesh