A Complete Guide to Chamba Valley : An Unexposed Gem of Northern India

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Chamba, the land of antiquity, art, and scenic beauty, is a wonder in itself for every tourist. Also known as Ravi valley is quite unexposed. But now the means of communication have made inroads into the interior parts of this valley.

Chamba’s serene beauty makes it the ideal holiday retreat. The land of mystic serenity, enchanting vistas, refreshing air, lofty mountain passes, and slopes, provides ample opportunities to nature lovers. The place and adjoining areas have an immense scope of leisure pursuits. The waters, hills, plateaus and the snowline, which can be sighted from any of the buildings and the main square, make a spectacle that can become an inspiration for many painters and poets.

 

Best time to visit Chamba Valley

The ideal time to visit Chamba Valley is Mid-May to Mid-October.

 

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How to reach Chamba Valley:-

By Air: The nearest airport is at Gaggal in Kangra valley, 180 km from Chamba.

By Rail: Chamba town is 122-km from Pathankot, the nearest broad gauge railhead, which is linked by direct trains to Amritsar, Delhi, Bombay, and Calcutta.

By Road: Well connected by road.

Places to Visit  in Chamba Valley

Maharaja’s Palace

This palace belongs to the erstwhile rulers of Chamba and the most outstanding buildings in the town. Of these, Rang Mahal or ‘the Painted Palace’, with towers on either side, is undoubtedly the most interesting one. There is one room in the building, the walls of which are painted with murals depicting episodes from the Ramayana and the Mahabharata.

Champawati Temple

Close to the royal palace at Chamba, there is a stone Sikhara temple dedicated to Goddess Champavati. Tradition holds that the town of Chamba was named after her.

Chaurashi Temple

The main temples of Lakshmi Devi, Ganesh and Manimahesh and Nar Sing in Bharmour are known as Chaurashi temples.

Kalatope Khajjiar Sanctuary

It’s possible to trek 30-km from Dalhousie to Chamba along the eastbound road from Gandhi Chowk. A short but steep ascent leads to the Kalatope wildlife sanctuary, from which one can walk into a pleasant track.

Lakshmi Narayan Temple

To the north of the palace at Chamba, there is a group of six stone Sikhara temples arranged in a row from north to south. Three of these temples are dedicated to Vishnu and three to Shiva. The northernmost is that of the Lakshmi- Narayana- the principal temple of Chamba.

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Lama Dal

Held Sacred to Lord Shiva, this lake lies amidst bare rock. ‘Lamba Dal means “the long lake”.

Markula Devi Temple

‘Markual’ or ‘Marul’-ancient Markul is a small village in Chamba-Lahaul at the junction of ‘Miyar Nala’ with the Chandrabhaga.

Bhuri Singh Museum

Bhuri Singh Museum was opened on 14th September 1908 and is named after Raja Bhuri Singh who ruled Chamba from 1904 to 1919. This museum is very near to Chamba’s Chaugan.

Pangi Valley

Pangi Valley in the upper part of Chamba District is a remote world in itself. This hidden valley located between Pir Panjal and the Greater Himalayan Zanskar ranges is cut off from the rest of the world.

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Parbati Valley

Hemmed in by giant pinnacled mountain peaks, the Parbati valley twists west from the glaciers and snowfields on the Spiti border. Picturesque hamlets perch precariously on its sides, amid lush terraces and old growth pine forests.

Rang Mahal

In Chamba, situated the beautiful Rang Mahal Palace, which was built by Raja Umed Singh in the mid 18th century. The palace walls here are lined with exquisite examples of wall paintings in the Punjab Hills style, all of which depict the life and times of Lord Krishna.

Shakti Temple

The villages of Chatrari possess a famous Devi temple, founded by Meruvarman about A. D. 700 and the oldest one in area.

Chamba

Chamba valley is also known as Ravi valley. The scenery is of a picturesque and varied character presenting many delightful sights.

Chamba Minjiar Mela

The famous Minjiar fair was started in 935 AD when the Raja of Chamba defeated the ruler of “Trigarta,” now known as Kangra. On his return, a celebration was held, and he was greeted by people with sherfs of paddy and maze.

Chamera Lake

In district Chamba, this is the famous reservoir of the Chamera dam is built over the river Ravi, offering numerous water sports facilities to the visitors.

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Chaugan

This public promenade situated in the heart of the town is a grassy maidan less than one kilometer in length and about seventy-five metres wide is a busy local trading centre for villagers from the surrounding hills. Each year Chaugan is the site for the ‘Minjar’ procession, a fair that lasts a week and comprises of a large number of sports and cultural activities.

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Gaddis

The Gaddis are famous shepherds who move their flocks of sheep from lower pastures in winter to higher ones after snow melt. To them, the Dhauladhars is not just a mountain range but like their mother.

 

Ghadhasaru Lake

Ghadhasaru Lake lies in the Churah tehsil of Chamba and is 24-km from Tissa, at an altitude of 3,470m.

Katasani Devi Temple

Another popular temple of the Chamba district, it is about 30-km from the town near Baira Siul Project. This calm and peaceful spot is ideal for picnic lovers and one can witness a full view of the valley from its premises.

Killar

Located in the deep narrow gauge of the Chenab River, Killar can be reached through the Sach Pass and is also known as a Trekker’s Paradise.

Narayana Temple

The Narayana temple at Udaipur is situated nearly 5-km below Chamba. There are two other images of white marble, flanking Narayana, which represent Raja Uday Singh and his brother Lachhman Singh.

The Chamba Rumal

The other craft of Chamba is its unique embroidery style. The Chamba ‘rumal’ or handkerchief about 2 to 6 feet in length is an important part of a Chamba bride’s trousseau. This handkerchief is also known as ‘Kashida’. The embroidery is the same on both sides and the threads used are silken and colorful.

Itinerary for Chamba Valley:-

Day 1: Pathankot – Dalhousie

On arrival pick you from Pathankot / Chakki bank Railway station and & then start towards Dalhousie -arrive, Dalhousie -check in hotel- night stay at Hotel.

Day 2: Dalhousie – Khajjiar – Bharmour

After Breakfast we shall leave for the local sightseeing of Dalhousie, The Mall Dalhousie, GPO Dalhousie, Subhash Chownk Dalhousie, Panjphulla Dalhousie, Tibetan Market Dalhousie, A nature walk of “Garam Sarak” Hot Road and “Thandi Sarak” Cold Road and then proceeds towards “Khajjiar” known as Mini Switzerland of Himachal Pradesh. Then travel to the hotel in Bharmour for night stay.

Day 3: Bharmour – Bharmani Mata

After Breakfast shall leave for Chaurasi Temples Complex and the only temple of “Dharamraj – Yama” there which is the only one temple in India and there is a story about the temple that after the death when soul travels to the end destination they have to stops here in this temple for settling the accounts which he had did in his life, so recommended to visit this temple once in his life. After visit Chaurasi Temple we shall leave for Bharmani Mata temple, return back in the evening. Overnight at hotel in Bharmour View at Bharmour.

Day 4: Bharmour – Chamba – Pathankot

After Breakfast Shall Depart for Chamba, There we will visit the Museum of Chamba & Laxmi Narayan Temple and shall proceed towards Pathankot Railway Station for Dropping.

 

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