Manali is a popular tourist spot in Himachal Pradesh. The snow-covered mountains, the pleasant weather, the numerous sight-seeing places, and the various adventure activities such as paragliding and mountaineering make Manali a great escape from mundane life. Apart from being a great holiday venue for families, it is also a much-sought honeymoon destination for newlyweds. This hill station is also growing as a great place to work remotely during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Besides, Manali, which is located in the Kullu Valley, acts as the gateway to Leh in Ladakh, and hence, many travelers visit the resort town before resuming their journey again. The summer months – March to June - are the best time to visit Manali as the weather is at its best, and various adventure activities are in full swing. So, here are the best places to visit Manali.
No Kullu Manali trip package can be complete without a visit to the Rohtang Pass. The pass, located about 50 km from Manali, is open for a few months only during the summer – April to October – and so, you must plan your trip accordingly. Rohtang Pass is situated 4000 meters above sea level and makes an unforgettable experience when you drive through it with white snow on the two sides. It is located on the Pir Panjal Range and connects Kullu Valley with Lahaul Valley and Spiti Valley. The challenging terrain of the Rohtang Pass makes a great adventure ride for bikers. It is also home to many adventure activities such as skiing, paragliding, and mountaineering. You will need a permit to visit Rohtang Pass. The permit is issued on each vehicle and not per person. You can also apply for the permit online. The pass had become even more popular after a song from the Bollywood movie ‘Jab We Met' was shot here.
The best time to visit the Solang Valley is the winter months as the valley would be fully covered in snow, and you can enjoy the real beauty of Manali. Located at 8400 above sea level, the Solang Valley is home to many adventure sports such as skiing, mountaineering, paragliding, zorbing, quad biking, and snowmobiling. There is also the cable car that you can hop on to catch the beautiful Solang Valley in all its beauty. The summer months also see a lot of tourists visit Solang Valley. However, the tourists would then have to be content with sparse but enough snow to throw at one another and have a gala time. Besides, adventure sports such as skiing would still be available in the summer months. So, you can visit the Solang Valley throughout the year. Unlike Rohtang Pass, there is no permit required to visit the Solang Valley.
The Hadimba Temple in Manali sees many tourists and travelers queue up to pay their respects to Hidimbi Devi, who was the wife of Bheema, one of the Pandavas in Mahabharata. It is also known as the Hidimba Devi Temple and Dhungari Temple. The temple is surrounded by a cedar forest named Dhungiri Van Vihar. It was built in 1553 CE by Maharaja Bahadur Singh. There is another temple dedicated to Ghatotkacha, Hidimbi Devi's son, that is found in the vicinity. It is claimed that Hidimbi Devi married Bheema after the latter killed the powerful Hidimba, who was the brother of Hidimbi Devi when the Pandavas were serving their exile in Manali. This temple boasts wooden carvings with a cone-shaped brass structure at the top. It has wooden doors, with carvings of Goddess Durga, animals, and scenes from Lord's Krishna's life embossed on it. A stone, which has the imprint of the goddess' feet, is worshipped inside the temple.
The Vashist Hot Water Spring is one of the major attractions of the Kullu Manali trip package. Located 3 km from Manali, the hot water spring in the Vashisht Village is known to have healing properties. The water is about 40 to 50 degrees Celsius which is warm enough to take a dip. There are separate enclosures for males and females to enter the Vashist Hot Water Spring. Legends claim that the hot spring was created by Lakshman for rishi Vashistha. Another legend claims rishi Vashistha tried to drown himself in the hot spring after the death of his kin in the Kurukshetra war. The spring located in the virgin valleys of the Vashisht Village is open on all days from 7 am to 10 pm. There is also an ancient shrine nearby with wooden carvings and paintings that can also be visited apart from the hot water spring.
Also Read: Places to Visit in Kanyal, Manali
A visit to Manali is not complete without a visit to the many Tibetan monasteries across the hill station. In fact, visiting the Tibetan monasteries should be part of your Kullu Manali trip package. The Manali Gompa in the Old Manali Road is a must-visit monastery in Manali as it offers a great serene and calm environment, with warm spiritual vibes across it. This monastery has a roof built in Pagoda style and shows the various important moments or events of Buddhism across its wall in distinct colors. It is open on all days, except Sunday, from 6 am to 6 pm. The Himalayan Nyingmapa Buddhist Temple is another must-visit monastery in Manali, offering great spiritual vibes to calm your nerves. Its pagoda-style architecture is a great attraction and houses Buddha's idol and wall painting. It is located near Manali Main Road, is open on all days from 6 am to 7 pm.
Assagao is home to many beautiful Goan/Portuguese heritage homes in Goa. Some of which have been converted int boutiques, cafes, art stores, etc. We shall ride through the entire stretch, taking in the architecture, culture and history, past the tree-covered lanes, spot popular restaurants and shops in between, experience the way locals snack,