Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Simla - Sarahan - Sangla - Kalpa


At 2205 Meters, the Capital city of Himachal Pradesh, Simla is one of the beautiful hill station with her Oak, Pine, Far, and Deodars. It was the summer capital of India from 1864 to to 1939. That is why the buildings of British time are still present here.

Simla is divided into upper middle and lower mall. each of them are connected by elevator. Vehicles are forbidden in the upper mall. If you want to go to upper mall avail the elevator from the cart road and walk around the mall. Upper mall is very attractive to the tourist due to its well decorated shops, beautiful houses of British architecture, yummy restaurants.

Places to visit in Simla are Christ Church, built at Neo Gothic architecture. Near to this is another place, Geiti Theatre. From beside the church go up to see the Jakhu hills.

Choura Ground, State Museum, Institute of advance studies, Glen, and anandel race course are the other places worth visiting. Visit Chadwik Falls. Sankat mochan temple. all these places are within 10 Km of Simla and are easily accessible.

Al little away from Simla there are some beautiful spots. It will take one day to visit Chail 43 Kms. The road is via wild flower hall and Kufri. At winter Kufri is full of snow. You can even take part in ski!

Naldera and Taptapani are two places you can visit from Simla if you spend one day. Naldera is 26 Kms from Simla is at an altitude of 2044 Meters. World's oldest Golf course is here. 24 kms from here at an altitude of 680 Meters, Taptapani, a place of hot fountain.

If you have 2 more days at Simla go and enjoy the Pabbar valley.115 Km from Simla at 2673 Meters the road is going to Rohru near Pabbar river via Khara Pathhar. You can stay at HTDC guest house either at Kharapathhar, or Rohru.

Where to Stay at Simla?

Simla is full of hotels for all category of tourists of different budgets. So choose according to your budget. You can also book online. Take care not to be in the hands of cheap agents near the Railway Station.

Simla to Sarahan:

Kinnar comes first in the list in terms of beautiful places in Himachal Pradesh. After enjoying the architecture of British era and modern life styles in Simla, when you see the natural landscapes of Kinnar and meet with the down to earth people there, your mind with be filled with different kind of joy and fulfillment.

Take NH 22 from Simla. Cross Kufri, Fund, Narakanda to reach Rampur, 132 Kms from Simla, past capital of Rajput state Bushahar, beside the bank of Shatadru river. Opposite bus stand Padam Palace built in 1919 AD is a place you must see. In its architecture artistic mix of stone and wood is wonderful to see. In the market place another place you may see is Laxminarayan temple. In November in Rampur popular Lavi Fair is held. Those who want to go Manali from Simla, from here they reach Manali via Jalori pass.


From Rampur 23 Kms is Geori, From here leave the NH 22 and drive up in a road to Sarahan, 17 kms from here. At an altitude of 2165 Meters the main attraction of Sarahan is Bhimkali temple. It is a three storey temple. Architecture is more like a Pagoda. The mixture of Hindu and Buddhist art has made this temple an unique piece of art. In the top floor there is an idol of Bhimkali devi. Just beside the temple you can see the palace of Bushahar kings.
walk about 1/2 Km up from here to reach Sarahan Bird Sanctuary, a famous spot, known nationally and internationally. It is a breeding centre for two beautiful Himalayan birds, Monal and Tragopan.

From this sanctuary you can see two most beautiful peaks Srikhand Mahadev, and Gisu Pisu. Being at top you can have the glimpse of whole Sarahan from here.

Where to stay at Sarahan?

HTDC Hotel Sree Khand (+911782 274234) 1000 - 2500 INR for DB room
Hotel sagarika (+91782 42999) 500 -600 INR for DB room

Sarahan to Sangla:

Come down to Geori to be on NH 22 and you are on your way to Sangla. 6 Kms from Geori, from Badhal, Kinnar district starts. Shatadru river will accompany you from here. After a while of drive you will see the breath taking view of Kinnar Kailash Peak. the road from Tapri to Karcham is not good, but the scenic beauty of the road will make you ignore all the difficulties of the road for sure. Karcham is the meting place (Sangam) of shatadru and Baspa river. It is not natural nowadays, as a hydro electric power plant is running there. Leave NH 22 from here to a road on your right and drive 18 kms to reach Sangla, your destination.


It is a wonderful valley at 2680 Meters at the bank of Baspa river. it is 94 kms from Sarahan and 232 kms from Simla. At first you should see the Kamru Fort. You have to climb about one Kms from the motor able road at New Sangla through the Kamru village. Apple orchards on both sides of your route will welcome you. At the end of the village it is a 5 storey tower like structure, a place where kings of Bushahar empire used to stay. The fort is mostly made of wood. A temple of Devi Kamakshya is there inside the fort. You can have a bird's eye view of whole Sangla valley and Baspa river from this fort.

Three more temples Badrinath, Annapurna and Berinag are also worth visiting. See the breeding centre of trout fish at Baspa river.

If you don't see Chitkul, 26 Kms from Sangla valley, your travel will be incomplete. Travel along the bank of blue Baspa to reach the last village before the Tibet border Chitkul. On the way you will cross a beautiful village Rakcham. Mastarang is another wonderful valley surrounded by beautiful mountains comes on your way, just 6 km before Chitkul. If you manage to stay one night in a camp here, it can be your life time experience. Tibet border is only 30 kms from Chutkul. From Chitkul, 3460 metrs, you can see the gorgeous peaks all around.

Where to stay at Sangla?

Hotel Devbhumi Regency (+9101786 243030) INR 700 -800 DB room.
Camp resort near Chitkul (+9194182 09558) INR 1200 per tent per day.


After enjoying the Sangla Valley, your next destination will be Kalpa, another famous and beautiful place. It is 51 Kms drive from Sangla from Karcham point to Puari on NH 22 and then leaving the highway drive up on you left to reach Kalpa via Rekongpio. Rekongpio is a district town of Kinnar. Mohabodhi Gompha is a place you can see here. Kalpa is 13 Kms from Rekongpio.
From Puari NH 22 goes to Spiti, another travel circuit. You can add the two if time permits.

At 2960 Meters, covered with far and Deodars, from Kalpa you can almost touch the Kinnar Kailash mountain (6050 Meters). It is so close from here! From anywhere in Kalpa you can see the Kailash and enjoy the changes in its colour throughout the day. An awesome 79 Ft Shivlinga made of granite is there at the base of the mountain. Kalpa is full of apple orchards. Hu Bu Lanker Gompha, and Narayan nagini temple you can see by walking. The two near by villages, Rokhi and Pangi is worth visting to experience the village life of Kinnar.

Where to stay at Kalpa?

HTDC Hotel Kinnar Kailash (+911786 226159) INR 1500 - 4000 for DB room per day
Hotel Shivalik ( +911786 226158, +919816404793) INR 500 -900 for DB ; TB room per day.

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