With the backdrop of the enchanting Dhauladhar Mountains, Dharamsala is perched on high slopes in the upper reaches of Kangra Valley. The breathtaking town is divided into two distinct and widely separated sections, Upper and Lower Dharamsala, which are apart by almost a thousand meters in height. The town is the seat of the Tibetan government in exile and home to the Dalai Lama. It, therefore, has an unmistakable Buddhist ambience while also having managed to retain a distinct colonial flavour from the pre-independence era.

Dense pine trees and Deodar forests define the landscape of Dharmshala along with the white, pristine snowline. The place is studded with numerous streams and a cool, healthy atmosphere makes the surroundings very attractive and serene.

Dharamsala is a busy bazaar town and has established itself as a base camp for travellers exploring the nearby mountains. The Kotwali Bazaar is a vibrant mix of colour and characteristic of a small town, providing a glimpse of the simple yet pleasant lifestyle of the locals. The colourful temples and Gompas, which reflect the culture of Tibet, are also attractive.

Prime Attractions in Dharamsala

Kangra Art Museum:

A rich treasure chest of the Kangra Valley’s arts, crafts, and rich past, the museum displays artefacts that date back to the 5th century. A gallery of Kangra’s famous miniature paintings, a representative collection of sculptures, pottery, and anthropological items are the major attractions here.

War Memorial:

Set amidst pine groves, the war memorial is built on the entry point of the Dharamsala and commemorates the post-independence war heroes of Himachal Pradesh.

dalllake-Dharamsalast john's church

Dall Lake:

Surrounded by high and green Deodar trees is the lake, which fills a mountain bowl. Situated 11 km away from the town, this lake is easily approachable by road and makes for a wonderful, tranquil picnic spot.

St. John’s Church:

One of the most poignant memories of the British Raj is the church of St. John, situated in the wilderness. The church is en route McLeod Ganj, barely 8 km away from Dharmshala. Under the shade of Doedar branches, a memorial has been made over the body of the British Viceroy, Lord Elgin who died at Dharamsala in 1863.

Bhagsunath Temple:

The ancient temple of Bhagsunath is just 11 km away from Dharmshala. There are many fresh water springs close to the temple, which are considered sacred by the Hindus. The majestic Bhagsu falls is just ½ km away from the temple.

Kunal Pathri:

A flat walk of 3 km from Kotwali Bazaar will lead you to rock temples of Kunal Pathari. The temple is dedicated to the local Goddess and the legend of the temple dates back to centuries.

lama-bhagsu-waterfall dharamkot


11 km from Dharamsala, located on the crest of a hill lies this attractive picnic spot, which presents a panoramic view of the Kangra valley and Dauladhar ranges.

Norbulinka Institute:

It’s an institute dedicated to preservation and teaching of ancient Tibetan arts. The shady paths, wooden bridges, small streams tiny waterfalls bestow a heavenly look to this place. The visitors love to behold the wooden carvings and the tangka paintings, golsithing and embroidery being done.

Chinmaya Tapovan:

About 10 km from the town of Dharmshala is the tranquil ashram setup by great Gita exponent Swami Chinmayananda. River Bindu Saras flows by, enhancing its beauty. The ashram includes a 9m high image of Hanuman, a Ram temple, a meditation hall, a school and a health & recreation centre.


13 kms away from Palampur, lies this dwelling place of artist S. Sobha Singh. It houses a gallery of some of his major works and a pottery center.

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