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Soaked in old world charm, the picturesque town of Chamba, ensconced in the verdant valley of the gushing River Ravi, in Himachal Pradesh, is a natural paradise. From pristine lakes, scenic waterfalls to the snow-capped Dhauladhar mountains and lush forests, Chamba is a tranquil retreat. Dotted with several ancient temples that echo with legends and myths, the town is a prominent spiritual centre and invites devotees from all over the region. Its numerous walking trails and waterfronts present ripe opportunities for adventure enthusiasts who can indulge in trekking, hiking, river rafting and camping. The rich history of Chamba is reflected in its various traditional arts and crafts like handkerchiefs, Pahari paintings, cast metalware and shawls.
Dating back to the 6th century, Chamba is known as the land of Lord Shiva and the Kailash Parvat (mountain). Set amidst the Shivalik hills, Chamba is said to have been founded by Raja Sahil Varman, of the princely Chamba state, after he conquered the Rani Valley from Ranas and Thakurs in the first half of the 10th century. He also moved his capital to Chamba from Bharmour. According to Kalhana, the Kashmiri poet, who is often regarded as the first historian of the country and mentions about the place in his work, Rajatarangini, the original name of the town was Champa. As Champavati, the daughter of Sahil Varman, is worshipped as a goddess in Chamba, he built a temple for her. The temple, thereafter, became the family temple of the rulers of Chamba. More popularly known as Chameshni, Champavati is also said to be guarding the fragrant champaka trees that adorn the region. The town holds two popular fairs, Minjar Mela and Suhi Mata Mela that last several days. While the former is held on the second Sunday of the Shravana month or August and celebrates the victory of the Raja of Chamba over the ruler of Trigarta (now known as Kangra), Suhi Mata Mela is celebrated in the months of March or April.
Constructed by Raja Sahil Varman, believed to be the founder of modern Chamba...
One of the most important spiritual sites in the region, Chamunda Devi Temple...