McLeodganj is a small settlement/village, near Dharamshala in the Kangra Valley of Himachal Pradesh and boasts of breathtaking view of the Dhaulandhar range. The Ravi rivers presents a mesmerizing sight sauntering in the beautiful valley below. The place hosts a large population of Tibetans and is still an unexplored tourist destination.
It is home to the Namgyal Monestary which is the home to the Dalai Lama. And if you are really lucky, you can even see The Dalai Lama during one of his visits.
The narrow and steep lanes with a row of shops and houses leaves one with an intrigued impression.
There are many places to visit nearby.
- Dharamsala – It is the major city in the Kangra Valley. McLeodganj is up ahead in the suburbs. Dharamsala is also famous for the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium.
2. Bhagsugnag Falls – It is about 11kms from Dharamsala and is a fresh water spring. Bhagsugnag temple is located at the base and is a Shiv temple. The climb to the waterfall is steep but not very long. It is located in a slate quarry surrounded by pine trees.
3. Panchpulla – It is another waterfall nearby and can be easily reached by road. This one is a popular picnic spot and has a few water sports in the pond below. Completely overwhelmed with nature, the place calm and serene surrounded by mountains and trees and there are treks leading to the nearest town of Dalhousie. The water of this stream has medicinal properties. The climb is not as stiff as Bhagsugnag but it has no real steps or pathway to climb up.
4. Dal Lake – This is a small scenic lake near the Tota Rani Village and is a mid-altitude lake. The lake has a variety of fish in it. The water appears greenish. There is a Shiv temple in the vicinity. It is surrounded by trees and the mere calm of the ambience takes you in a different world.
5. Hanuman ka Tibba – This is the highest peak of the Dhaulandhar range.
We stayed at Norbu House in Mcleodganj. It was an amazing experience. It is quite close to the market main road and the Namgyal monestry. Also do try out the Tibetan recipes which are not only easy on the taste-buds but appetizing as well.
The mini Tibetan market is on the McLeodganj main road and has a good collection of artifacts, shawls, and other native craft.
Best time to visit is summer and monsoon. The roads are inaccessible during winter due to snow.