Rustik Travel

Himachal Pradesh Experience

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Himachal Pradesh is located in the Northern part of India on the lap of the majestic Himalayas. True to its name ‘Himachal”, which literally means snow-laden the state is just that with its snow capped peaks and the beautiful mountainous terrains and green valleys, when turn powdery white covered in snow during the season. A popular tourism destination Himachal Pradesh enchants anyone who visits here.

You are not in the mountains. The mountains are in you.

John Muir

Overview

  • Destination: Himachal Pradesh
  • Nearest City (Airport): Kullu Manali, Kangra, Shimla
  • Best Months: Spring-Summer (April-June), Autumn (September-October). Winters for snow (December-February).
  • Duration: On request
  • Dates: On request
  • Price: On request

Experience


Himachal Pradesh’s geographical features and beauty throws up a plethora of destinations and activities for travelers of varied interest. Blessed with the mountains, rivers, green meadows, valleys, flora & fauna, fairs & festivals, and a unique culture with a bit of Buddhist influence the state has everything for those who love the outdoors and who want immerse themselves in this unique experience. Also referred to, as ‘Devbhoomi’ or ‘the land of the gods’, there is a lot of history, religion and mythology esp. from the epic Mahabharata in this place.
Following are some of the places and experiences we have listed. Based on your interests and time we could curate a personalized itinerary for you.

RELAX IN THE HILL STATIONS:
Himachal Pradesh has many beautiful hill stations one could just go and spend days there. The most prominent and popular of them all is Shimla, which incidentally capital of the state. A popular destination for families, young and old, the town that was built by the British has an amazing colonial feel along with the beautiful natural ambience.
Best Time To Visit Shimla: May to July, and November to January for snowfall.
How To Get There: Chandigarh is the nearest airport, 117 kms away. The nearest railhead is also in Kalka, 15 km away.

Apart from Shimla there are many other hill stations that will captivate you. Some of these that you could visit with your family and friends .

KULLU MANALI
Very popular with tourists, with lots of options for outdoor activities, many cafes and restaurants, access to snow (Rohtang Pass). Further you could indulge in adventure sports in the nearby Solang town, visit Manali Bird Sanctuary, and the old Hidimba temple.
Best Time To Visit: May to July, and November to January for snowfall.
How To Get There: Chandigarh is the nearest airport, 252 Kms away. The nearest railhead is also in Chandigarh, 270 Kms away. Kullu is 570 Kms from Delhi via road.

DALHOUSIE
It is the mini Switzerland of India. With breathtaking views and locales, and many nice resorts, Dalhousie is a popular destination for many esp. the honeymooners. One could take a stroll through the beautiful terrain of Dainkund Walk, Ganji Pahadi Walk and Bakrota Walk. Visit the old and historical St. John’s Church, cherish the waterfalls – Chamera falls and Satdhara falls.
Best Time To Visit: April to July.
How To Get There: The closest airport is Dharamsala which is 5 hours away. The closest railhead is Pathankot’s Chakki Bank (88 km from Dalhousie) and then take a cab which takes around 3 hours.

KASAULI
Perfect getaway from the city. You could visit the Anglican Church built during the days of the Raj, or take a stroll on the lower mall till the monkey point, which is in shape of Lord Hanuman’s foot, take the Gilbert for a beautiful hike and don’t miss the glorious sunrise and sunsets.
Best Time To Visit: April-June (Summers), November – March & December-January for snowfall.
How To Get There: The nearest airport is in Chandigarh, 70 km away. The nearest train station is Sonwara, which is 4km away. It is 293 km from New Delhi and takes about 7 hours.

CHAIL
Close to Shimla, Chail is a relatively small and quiet hill station, which incidentally also has the world’s highest cricket ground, along the magnificent Chail Palace, the lovely heritage hotel. Chail is a hiker’s paradise with so many beautiful trails all around and in the hail Wildlife Sanctuary as well.
Best Time To Visit: May-June, September-October.
How To Get There: Chail is well connected by road. The nearest airport is Shimla Airport (62 km) followed by Chandigarh Airport (117 km). The nearest railway station is Kalka Railway Station (80 km)

BILASPUR
Close to Shimla lies this beautiful town of Bilaspur, which is also India’s first planned hill station famous for the artificial lake Gobind Sagar Lake on Sutlej River.
Best Time To Visit: May-June, September-October.
How To Get There: Well connected by road. The nearest airport is Shimla Airport (115 km) followed by Chandigarh Airport (148 km). The nearest railway station is Kalka Railway Station (138 km).

SOLAN
Located on the Punjab-Himachal border, Solan is a perfect getaway from the city. Apart from the majestic views all around, it has ancient temples, monasteries and one of the oldest breweries in the country. Also referred to as a city of red gold, as it produces bulk quantities of tomatoes.
Best Time To Visit: Throughout the year.
How To Get There: Well connected by road. The nearest airport is Shimla Airport (55 km) followed by Chandigarh Airport (77 km). The nearest railway station is Kalka Railway Station (40 km).

GO OFFBEAT:
Following are some of the offbeat hill stations that are not so crowded and perfect for solo traveling and hiking.

PARWANOO
A beautiful town in the midst of the mountains. There are fruit orchards, timber trail and cable car ride.
Best Time To Visit: March-May, October-November
How To Get There: Well connected by road. The nearest airport is Chandigarh Airport (55 km). The nearest railway station is Kalka Railway Station (4 km).

NAHAN
Just about 250 km from Delhi is this quaint hill station Nahan, nestled in the Shivalik range of mountains overlooking the lush green fields. It is one of the unexplored places of Himachal Pradesh.
Best Time To Visit: April-June, September-December
Places to Visit: Rani Tal Lake, Jaitak Fort.
How To Get There: Barara, which is 60 km from Nahan is the nearest railway station from Nahan and one can reach Nahan from Delhi in about 5 hours by train. Chandigarh is the nearest airport from Nahan (85 km away).

PALAMPUR
A true offbeat destination, Palampur is famous for its tea garden that adds to the scenic beauty of the place. The place has a zoo also that is very popular with the kids. It’s a great place to hike while exploring the local picturesque villages.
Best Time To Visit: Throughout the year.
How To Get There: Well connected by road. The nearest airport is Gaggal Airport, Dharamshala (37 km away). The nearest railway station is Pathankot Railway Station (112 km away).

CHAMBA
Chamba is a small quaint town known for its stunning beauty and views of Pir Panjal, Zanskar and Dhaladhar ranges. The town is also famous for its temples and caves.
Khajjiar: Located in the Chamba district is this gorgeous valley of Khajjiar. It is gem of a place still away from the prying eyes of the tourists. Apart from its beauty it is known for the Khajji Nag Temple, apple orchards, and the mesmerizing views of Mount Kailash believed to be the abode of Lord Shiva.
Best Time To Visit: October to June.
Places to Visit: Bhuri Singh Museum, Champavati Temple, Sui Mata Temple.
How To Get There: Well connected by road. The nearest airport is Gaggal Airport, Dharamshala (129 km away). The nearest railway station is Pathankot Railway Station (117 km away).

SANGLA
The Sangla valley in the Kinnaur district is a picturesque place bound by dense green forests and snow capped mountains. It is part of the popular Kinnaur-Spiti road trip. Details in the following link.

Kinnaur & Spiti Road Trip


Best Time To Visit: April-June, September-December.
Places to Visit: Sangla Meadow, Kamru Fort, Chitkul.
How To Get There: Sangla is best reached by road. From Shimla its 223 km away.

NAGGAR
Naggar is a picturesque town in Kullu. Proximity to Manali makes it popular for many offbeat travelers to stay here instead of going to Manali, before heading out for trekking or camping. The place is also home to a popular folk art museum and a hot spring that lure visitors from near and far to this serene place. For sightseeing there is Naggar Castle, Uruswati Himalayan Folk Art-Museum, Gauri Shankar Temple.
Best Time To Visit: April-June, September-December
How To Get There: You can reach Manali by air or by road and then drive to Naggar, which is 21 km away.

HIKE & TREK:
The mountainous terrain of Himachal Pradesh with abundant natural beauty is a delight for hikers and trekkers. From day hikes to multiple days of trekking and camping is done in various routes. We have quite a few multi-day treks that we organize that you could find in the website.

For short duration or single day treks we recommend the following:

TRIUND TREK
Located on the Dhauladhar Range at an elevation of 2850 meters, Triund Hill trek is quite an amazing experience. The place involves some of the breathtaking views of the Gallu Devi Temple, Shri Kunal Pathri Devi Temple, Shiva Cafe, and Bhagsu Waterfalls. Starting from McLeodganj or Dharamkot, the trek can be completed in a single day or one could camp overnight on the top and come down the following day.
Best Time To Visit: April-June, October-November

TREKS FROM KASOL
Around 30 km from Bhuntar Airport, Kullu lies the beautiful town of Kasol in the Parvati hills. Also known as the little Israel of India due to the presence of many foreign travelers esp. from Israel thronging this hill station.
Kasol is the starting point for many popular treks such as Trek in the Parvati valley such as Kheerganga (source of hot water spring), Tosh, Manikaran and Malana (an ancient village where the inhabitant’s are believed to be the descendants of Alexander the Great’s army).
Best Time To Visit: April-June, October-November

TIRTHAN VALLEY
The Tirthan Valley is a beautiful destination. Located 3 km from the Himalayan National Park, this place is full of adventure activities – all the while being a nature lover’s paradise. This valley, which includes the larger Himalayas, with its snow-capped peaks and views of the Tirthan River, is best known for its fishing and the surprising influx of foreigners. A great place to trek and explore the beauty.
Best Time To Visit: April-June, October-November

PARAGLIDING IN BIR BILLING:
Bir Billing is the Mecca of paragliding. It is rated as one of the most picturesque and popular sites for paragliding in the world. Apart from paragliding one could also visit the Buddhist monasteries in Bhattu, Choggan and Chauntra Bhattu colony located in forest. There is also a beautifully carved 13th century temple dedicated to Lord Shiva just around 10 km away.
Best Time To Visit: April-June, October-November
How To Get There: You can reach there by road. The nearest airport is Gaggal Airport, Dharamshala (68 km away). The nearest railway station is Pathankot Railway Station (142 km away).

SKIING AND SNOWBOARDING:
Come winter and the adventurous head to Himachal Pradesh esp. those who are into winter sports. The state has multiple options for skiing and snowboarding. The popular ones are:

SOLANG VALLEY
The Solang Valley is a popular destination for paragliding, horse riding or mini-jeeps especially designed for tourists of all ages. During the winter months, the Solang Valley is covered in snow. Skiing is a popular sport here, with training institutes and trainers in the valley looking after skiers and beginners.
Best Time To Visit: December-February
How To Get There: You can reach there by road. It is just 14 km from Manali. The nearest airport is Bhuntar Airport, Kullu (62 km away).

KUFRI
Kufri is another destination for those into winter sports. In the winters skiing and snowboarding are very popular here on the snowy slopes.
Best Time To Visit: December-February
How To Get There: You can reach there by road. It is just 10 km from Shimla. The nearest airport is Shimla Airport (34 km away). The nearest railway station is in Kalka (101 km away).

HELI-SKIING AT HANUMAN TIBBA
For the adventurous there is Heli-Skiing at Hanuman Tibba in December. Heli-skiing in the snow is extremely thrilling and tough as well. A helicopter is used for the downhill process.
Best Time To Visit: January-February

EXPERIENCE THE TIBETAN CULTURE:
Himachal Pradesh has a strong Tibetan and Buddhist influence. The reason being the Tibetan settlement there in Dharamshala. In fact, just 6 km away is the small town of McLeodganj, which is the seat of His Holiness Dalai Lama. The place emanates a unique mix of Indo-Tibetan culture as reflected in markets, food and clothes. Situated amidst the scenic Himalayas is a plus.
Best Time To Visit: April-June, September-October. November-January for snowfall.
Things To Do: Visit various monasteries, the Kangra Art Museum, the Dalai Lama Temple Complex and see the magnificent tea plantation on the foothills of Kangra valley. Visit the Bhagsunath Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva and enjoy the Bhagsu waterfalls. Explore the Tibetan markets and indulge in local delicacies.
How To Get There: You can reach there by road. There is also an airport in Dharamshala. The nearest railway station is in Pathankot (85 km away).

GO MOUNTAIN CLIMBING:
Himachal Pradesh is a haven for trekkers and high-altitude climbers. With many peaks easy to challenging ones in the state, during the season (Spring or Autumn), there are climbing expeditions attempting to summit. Some of these are Friendship peak, Hanuman Tibba, Deo Tibba, Mt. Shitidhar, Mt. Yunam, Jagatsukh, Mt. Khanamo and many more. There are skilled mountaineers and guides in the state that we work with to form expedition teams.
Some of the itineraries in the website are based on request we would organize an expedition for a peak not mentioned here.

EXPLORE THE COLD DESERT:
The Spiti Valley is an altogether different terrain for those who have visited other parts of Himachal Pradesh, which are green with perennial rivers flowing through. The Spiti Valley is a cold desert and is sparsely populated. The remoteness and harshness of the region has kept in check the number of tourists to this place and thus ensuring that the pristine Buddhist culture has remained intact. The best way to explore this region is to take a road trip from Shimla to Manali passing through Kinnaur and Spiti along the way visiting the monasteries – Key, Tabo, sending a postcard from he highest post office in the world at Hikkim, spend time at the high-altitude town of Kaza and camp at the beautiful Chandratal Lake.
The details are in the following link.

Kinnaur & Spiti Road Trip

During the winters (December-February), we organize Snow Leopard expeditions as well. This elusive animal, which lives here, is usually visible during this time as it comes down from the mountains during winters. Reach out to us for details.

PARTICIPATE IN THE FESTIVALS:
Himachal Pradesh with its diverse cultures has many festivals. The Buddhist festivals of Losar and others is widely celebrated. Another colourful one is the
Kullu Dussehra, which is a one-week long festival celebrated in October every year. This festival commences on the tenth day of Dussehra and continues for the next seven days. These festivals are a unique way to experience the the local culture.

TINGLE YOUR TASTE BUDS:
When you are there eat like a local. Relish some of the authentic Himachali Cuisine in Shimla and other places. If you are on a trek, do ask your local guide for the recommendations where to have the local cuisine. Indulge in some Tibetan delicacies in Dharamshala and McLeodganj.

EXPLORE THE GREAT HIMALAYAN NATIONAL PARK:
Spread in an area of 754 sq km, the Great Himalayan National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Sites located in Kullu. The region is covered with high alpine peaks, green meadows, and dense forests and it also includes several mountain glaciers and rivers. The National Park houses abundant vegetation and more than 375 species of animals. Explore the park hiking or take a jungle safari.

Apart from these there are other notable places to visit in Himachal Pradesh such as Mashobra, Chitkul, Shogh, Tirthan Valley, Narkanda, Barot, Kalpa, Tattapani, Shoja, Manikaran Sahib, Nalagarh, Arki, Sarchu, Rumsu, Paonta Sahib, Keylong, Losar and Lahaul Valley.

Inclusions

Inclusions

  • Airport transfers.
  • Transport (Innova AC or similar car) for the specified duration of the trip.
  • Fuel costs, driver’s allowance and stay, parking & toll charges.
  • Hotel accommodation in hotels and resorts with breakfast.
  • Other inclusions as per the experience/trip and/or specifically requested.

Exclusions

  • Entry tickets (incl. camera charges) to monuments, temples, parks etc.
  • Meals, water and beverages unless specified.
  • Guide Services.
  • Personal expenses.
  • Any Airfare.
  • Tips.
  • Insurance.
  • GST.
  • Any item that is not mentioned in inclusions.

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