While visiting Dharamshala, it feels like one has visited to a country dwelled by Tibetans. But the soul and the soil are truly welcoming. Located in Western Himachal region, Dharamshala is a prominent name in Buddhist tour to the state, as the home of Dalai Lama and all the Tibetans in exile. It is a well-known centre for studying Buddhism, its sutras, tantras, and major texts related to this. And now it has emerged as one of the major visited sites in Himachal Pradesh attracting scholars, pilgrims and tourists alike.
In the upper Dharamshala, Mcleodganj is the actual residence of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The famous monastery known as Namgyal Gompa has larger than life images of the Buddha, Padmasambhava and Avalokiteshwara along with the golden prayer wheels. In order to understand the culture of residents at Dharamshala, a visit to Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts is a must do activity in the region.
The hillside town of Dharamsala, stretches along the Dhauladhar mountain range in the upper reaches of the scenic Kangra district, amidst magnificent deodar, conifer and pine forests, tea gardens and mist-soaked hills. Since 1960, when it became the temporary headquarters of the Dalai Lama, it has been attracting seekers of spiritual enlightenment from all over the world. Dharamsala is divided into two distinct parts - Lower Dharamsala, and Upper Dharamsala with places like McLeod Ganj and Forsyth Ganj, which bear witness to the history of this area. The place is an excellent base for scenic walks and treks into the Dhauladhar range. A cricket stadium of international reputation serves as the home ground to the Himachal Pradesh state cricket team and for other international cricket matches, like the IPL. Because of its natural backdrop, it is one of the most quaint and attractive cricket stadiums in the world. Best time to visit is from March till October.
Located in the Kangra valley and set against the Dhauladar mountain range, Dharamsala literally takes your breath away as a destination. It's cool climate, tea plantations and the most amazing pine and deodar forests mingled with bamboo trees, seen against snow covered mountain peaks, are a treat for sore eyes. If you're a tea lover then the spring flush of this region's tea is delightful.
The nearest airport is in Gaggal (Dharamsala) (13 Km). However, Amritsar and Chandigarh are the convenient airports connected by various airlines from different cities in India.
Pathankot is the nearest railhead, connected with major cities in India. A narrow gauge train runs from Pathankot to Kangra. Dharamsala is 17 km from here by road.
Dharamsala is connected by motorable roads and good highways to different cities across India. It also has excellent connections by state run buses and more luxurious private ones.
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