S-203, D.A.V Complex,Local Commercial-
Centre, Mayur Vihar Ph. 1, New Delhi
Dharamshala, the land of Dalai Lama, is a charming little town with elegant
bungalows. Dharamshala enjoys the unique distinction of being the chosen
home of the spiritual and temporal head of the Tibetan people.
History & Location
Dharamsala popularly known as the Scotland of India, is one of the 80 hill
stations established by the British between 1815 and 1847 and has one of the
most spectacular settings for a hill station is closest to the perennial
snow-line and is built along a spur of the Dhaula Dhar range. The town
varies in height from 1250 meters at the bazaar to 1768 meters at
McLeodganj. Dharamsala is surrounded by deodar forests and provides a superb
view of the great granite mountains that almost over chang the town.
The Namgyal Monastery with the Center of Tibetan Studies, is known as
little Lhasa and is a major attraction in McLeodganj This cathedral opposite
the Dakau Lama's residence, resembles the center of the one in Lhasa and is
a 5minute walk from the main bazaar. It contains large gilded bronzes of
Buddha, Avalokitesvara and Padmasam-bhava. Dalai Lamas often leads the
prayers when he is in residence and if you sign up at the security office an
audience with him is possible.
The Tibetan run restaurants give you an ample respite from dal, chapatti
and rice that you get in most other places. If you are fond of momos,
thukpa, and the likes, you have come to the right place. Tsongkha
Restaurant, Yak Restaurant, Snowland and Shangrila are some of the place,
which serve excellent food. A constant flow of Westerners has brought in its
wake a number of restaurants and eateries, which offer the kind of food that
is not so commonly available in India.
The Church of St. John in
The wilderness which has attractive stained glass windows. Lord Elgin, one
of the few viceroys of British occupied India, to die in office, is buried
here, according to his last wish, as it reminded him of his beloved native
The Nechung Monastery
It is situated in Lgangchen Kyishobn has Tibetan library with a good rang
of books, magazines & photo-copying facilities and a museum. The central
Tibetan Administration Offices are located here and you can also attend
lectures & classes on Tibetan culture and Buddhism.
Abode Of The Dalai Lama
Dharamshala is better known as Dalai Lama's abode and Tibet's
Government-in-exile after the Chinese invasion of Lhasa in October 1959.
Needless to say, a visit to Dharamshala would be considered irreverent
without a peek into the various monasteries dotting the hillsides. When the
Dalai Lama is in residence, he heads the prayers. For an audience with the
Dalai Lama who is also believed to be the reincarnation of Buddha, special
permission needs to be taken with a proper request in writing at the
security office near Hotel Tibet.
Tushita Meditation Center
Here, a number of classes held by monks for the beginners, as well as
advance practitioners. Tushita Meditation Center is one such outfit, which
offers clean residential accommodation as well. There are also a number of
alternate medicine doctors in the little town.
Places Around Dharamshala
Bhagsunath, three kilometers away is an easy option after momos and beer.
There is a temple, a spring and also a waterfall. Dal Lake is a major
disappointment, as it does no justice to its name. An annual fair is held
here in the month of September.
It is worthwhile walking up to Naddi, which offers a splendid view of the
Dhauladhar ranges. If you are adventurous enough, the Mountaineering
Institute can organize treks, rock climbing and rappelling. They normally
would like to do this for groups of 10 or above.
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