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Introduction

Dharamsala is a city and the district headquarters of the Kangra district in the northern regions of India in the state of Himachal Pradesh. Dharamshala came into being in 1849, when it was selected as a site to accommodate a native regiment that was being raised in the town. Dharamshala originally formed a subsidiary cantonment for the troops stationed at Kangra was fully occupied by its garrison and there was insufficient space for the civil station , a search for an alternate location was made. The ideal location for the cantonment was found at the slopes of the Dhauladhar, upon which stood an old Hindu sanctuary or 'Dharamshala' the name adopted for the town. Dharamshala stands at the foot of Dhauladhar and has a magnificent view of snowy peaks, deodar and pine forests, tea gardens and beautiful hills. The snow line is perhaps more easily accessible at Dharamshala than any other hill station in India. Dharamshala flourished as a quiet health resort. It is divided into two distinct parts. Lower Dharamshala has civil offices and business establishments with courts. Kotwali bazar and Upper Dharamshala comprise of places with names which bear witness to its history like McLeod Ganj and Forsythe Ganj. Since 1960, when it became a temporary headquarter of His Holiness The Dalai Lama, Dharamshala has risen to international fame as "The Little Lhasa in India".

Area 29 sq km
Altitude 1250 to 1550 metres above sea level
Temperature Summer-Min.-16.0C,Max.-34.0 C Winter,Min.-4.0C,Max.-20.0C
Language Hindi, Punjabi, English and Pahari
STD Code 01892
Rainfall 290 cm to 380 cm average yearly.Second highest rainfall in the country.
Best Time to Visit Round the year

Dharamshala MapOther cities map


How to get there

  1. Air :-The nearest airport at Gaggal is 14 km away after which it is accessible by road.
  2. Rail:-Pathankot is the nearest broad gauge railway terminal to Dharamshala. From Pathankot there is a narrow gauge railway line up to Kangra (94 km) and from here Dharamshala is 17 km by road.
  3. Road:- Direct and regular bus service from Delhi (520 km), Chandigarh (250 km), Jammu (210 km), Shimla (238 km), Chamba (192 km) and Manali (265 km).

Places to Visit

Mcleod Ganj Bhagsunag Fall St. John's Church Dharamkot
War Memorial Kunal Pathari Tsuglagkhang  

Excursion

Dal Lake Triund Jwalamukhi Chamunda Devi Temple
Kareri Kangra Valley    

Shopping

Kotwali Bazar, a general shopping area, and McLeod Ganj for Tibetan handicrafts.

Accommodation

White Heaven Estate Asia Health Resorts Grace Cottage Hotel Palace Heights
Chinar lodge Anand Palace Royal Palace Resort Spring Valley