Nestled in between the snow-capped slopes of the Pir Panjal and the Dhauladhar ranges, Manali is one of the most popular hill stations in Himachal Pradhesh, India. With jaw-dropping views, lush green forests, sprawling meadows carpeted with flowers, gushing blue streams, a perpetual fairy-tale like mist lingering in the air, and a persistent fragrance of pines and freshness – Manali has been blessed with extraordinary scenic beauty. From museums to temples, from quaint little hippie villages to bustling upscale streets, river adventures to trekking trails, Manali has every reason to be the tourist magnet it is, all year round.
Best time to visit Manali is between Oct – Feb.
This is the time when you can find snow everywhere
We visited around July and it was full of greenery.
You can call and check with
Taxi operators union Manali for best cab rates:
(01902)252450, 252205, 252120, 252926
Taking bike is also an option, if you can manage
riding in high range roads and finding places:
Himalayan Moto Spirit :
Sanju : 7833942090, 8213608306
FOOD INFO :
If you would like to have authentic and tasty south Indian food,
you can visit:
Southern Souls Cafe, Opposite Hadimba Auto Parking,
Hadimba Road, Near Manali, Mall Road, Manali, Himachal Pradesh
We tried dhosha, sambar sadham & Paniyaram, all were really good .
Kranthi(owner)was really helpful and welcoming person.
He can speak Tamil, Malayalam, Telungu, Hindi and English.
SHOPPING INFO :
Mall road is good for shopping. You won’t get the similar good quality
items/collection in Kasol, Tosh, Mcloenganj etc.
If you would like to shop for general items like statues of gods,
dream chants etc for reasonable prices you can visit a small shop in the
ground floor(after getting down the steps, right side)
of DRAGON SHOPPING COMPLEX, near Bank Of Baroda ATM, Mall road.
Here are the places we covered during Manali->Naggar->Kullu
Hidimba Devi Temple :
- Hidimba temple is a unique shrine dedicated to Hidimba Devi
- Hidimbi (also known as Bhutandevi) or Hidimba(a) is the wife of the Pandava Bhima and mother of Ghatotkacha in the Mahābhārata. She meets Bhima in the 9th sub-parva (Hidimva-vadha Parva) of the Adi Parva. Hidimba is also referred to as Pallavi.
- Surrounded by gorgeous cedar forests, this beautiful shrine is built on a rock which is believed to be in the image of the goddess herself.
- The construction style of the temple is entirely different from that of any of the other temples, with its wooden doorways, walls, and cone-shaped roof.
- The Hidimba temple was built in 1553, but the legend of this place dates back to the Hindu epic Mahabharata.
- It consists of four wooden storeys. The interior of the temple is maintained at its original earthen glory much in keeping with undisturbed natural beauty that surrounds the temple. The walls are decorated only with stone and mud impressions and figurines of goddesses and animals etc. The doors are made of intricately carved wood, and the roof is clad in metal.
Siyali Mahadev Temple :
- It is known as one of the oldest temples of Lord Shiva in the region and is frequently visited by devotees of Lord Shiva. The temple is also incredibly famous for its architectural beauty
- The Shivalinga is said to be existing since ancient times. Several important poojas are performed at this temple. There is another smaller temple built behind the Siyali Mahadev Temple. According to a legend, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati appeared on earth from a tree trunk where the smaller temple is now built. One can contact the priest if they wish to perform such poojas here.
Vashisht Temple :
- While most temples will leave you spiritually rejuvenated, there are a few where you can take a dip into hot water springs and baths, which leave you refreshed and maybe even healthier.
- Situated 6 km away from Manali, these are natural hot springs accompanied by beautiful sandstone temples. The government has made arrangements for separate bathing areas for men and women.
- The water in these natural springs contains medicinal properties that are believed to cure skin diseases. This area is surrounded by hundreds of small shops from where you can buy souvenirs and religious merchandise.
- Try to visit Jogini waterfalls which is about 3 kilometres away from the bustling town of Manali and around 2 kilometres away from Vashisht Temple. Tourists have to trek ahead from the temple to reach Jogini Waterfall. The walk up to the waterfall goes through pine trees and orchard.
Gadhan Thekchhokling Gompa Monastery :
- One of the most famous monasteries situated in north India.
- The icon, statues and the colorful paintings on the walls add to the beauty of the monastery.
- A few minutes of meditation is highly advisable to get a glimpse into the peaceful lives of the Buddhist monks.
Where to Stay?? Best budget stay options in Manali??
We stayed in a budget home stay : Spring House Manali. It was around 1000-1500 per day and the experience was good. They will make homely food as per your order.It is around 2-3 km from manali center. Autos will charge from 150-200. If you want to be away from noice and rush, you can opt such home stays for a peaceful stay.
Home stay owner agreed to take us for sight seeing, as he also had some work at Kullu. This was a good option as it was cheaper and comfortable as you already know the person. Book Here for best rates
If you would like to stay at the center, check out rooms near to mall road. You can search from maps and choose the comfortable locations and stays.
Naggar is on the way from Manali to Kullu (We have to take a diversion from the main road)
- Main attraction is castle, Naggar fort, which has now been converted into a heritage hotel and tends to be the most popular tourist spot here
The castle also houses Nicholas Roerich Art Gallery, which was once the Russian artist’s residence. One can browse through a number of rare artworks, the artists’ private rooms and collectibles.
- An equally rare side of architecture is seen in the Tripura Sundri Temple, which is a pagoda shaped wooden temple and the Jagatipatt temple which has alternate slabs of deodar timber, making it earthquake resistant.
- Also visit the Gauri Shankar temple which has some fascinating stone carvings and a medieval influence on its architecture.
Apart from this in Manali, you can consider visiting the below and plan your schedule accordingly:
- Solang Valley (Snow season)
- Rohtang pass (Snow season)
- Hampta Pass Trek https://wellplannedtrip.com/hampta-pass/
- Beas Kund trek
- Paragliding (You can find many booking points on the routes )
- Try Skying during snow season
- Chandratal Baralacha trek
- Manu temple (Manu temple is said to be the only temple of Manu in India, who is believed to be the creator of human race)
- Nehru Kund (Jawaharlal Nehru who is said to have had water from the natural spring, when he used to stay in Manali)
- Van Vihar (his is a municipal garden located on the Mall Road and has a pond for boating surrounded by tall deodar trees watching over.)
- Bhrigu Lake
- Jana Waterfall
- Museum of Himachal Culture & Folk Art
- Club House located in Old Manali is a retreat that offers several facilities and recreational activities for tourists. You can find river crossing near to the entrance.
- Jagatsukh – picturesque village, and the capital of Kullu locates about 7 kilometres away from the town of Manali. It is famous for its scenic natural landscape and the ancient Jagatsukh Temples which are religiously important shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva and Goddess Sandhya Devi
After Naggar, we headed to Kullu. Once you reach Kullu, you can find lot of points for River rafting. We stopped at one and got the rates for around 2200-2400 for 2 persons.As there was no rush we were lucky to get a complete boat for ourselves. We requested our driver to wait at the rafting end point and joined him after rafting. We have to leave all the items and luggage in the car as it will get wet. So, please make sure the driver is trust worthy.
After rafting, we got completely drenched. Hotel Kullu Valley we booked was near by and the stay and good + comfortable.
Next day, we headed to Bhuntar in local bus and rented a bike (Bajaj Aventure) for our Manikaaran-Kasol-Tosh trip. Bike was smooth and in good condition.
You can find many bike rentals in Bhuntar. They will take around 2000 cash as deposit and return it once you return the bike.
We had lunch from the temple. The atmosphere was good and there were lot of people from Punjab. Its a sacred place for Sikhs.
By evening, we rode back to Bhuntar and then to our hotel Kullu Valley in Bus. Hotel Kullu valley people were kind enough to give us a room to just freshen up after the bike journey.
After dinner, we boarded bus to Mcleodganj from Kullu. Bus stop was walk-able and a person from hotel also accompanied us as it was night time.
What is the best way to reach Manali from Bangalore? How to reach Manali from Delhi?
Best way to reach Manali from Bangalore is :
Bangalore -> Delhi flight
Delhi -> Manali : Overnight Bus.
Which is the best bus to book from Delhi to Manali ? Which bus service is best from Delhi to Manali? What are the best bus services between Delhi and Manali?
- Best option is to book Himachal transport bus Himusta AC Volvo. Journey was comfortable and there was not much delays.
- Please be aware, with private buses, there could be unexpected delays due to the luggage loading and unloading.
- Please note that there are no sleeper buses available in this route, because of the terrain nature.