Himachal Pradesh Tourism

Himachal Pradesh is famous for its Himalayan landscapes and popular hill-stations among which Shimla is a very popular tourist destination. The Kalka-Shimla Railway, a Mountain railway, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Skiing is another attraction for tourists in Shimla. Dharamshala is known for its Tibetan monasteries and Buddhist temples. Kullu, Manali, Dalhousie, Chamba valley, Lahaul, Spiti valley, Kinnaur and Kasauli are other popular travel destinations of Himachal Pradesh which are dotted with numerous natural and manmade attractions.Tourists travel to these places throughout the year. Various outdoor activities of Himachal such as- rock climbing, mountain biking, paragliding, ice-skating, and heli-skiing – also attract tourists from all around the year.

About Himachal Pradesh

Himachal Pradesh, a mountainous state in Northern India, is one of the major tourist states famous for its unending natural beauty. Spreading over an area of 55,670 km in the western Himalayas, Himachal Pradesh is bordered by Jammu and Kashmir on the north, Punjab on the west and south-west, Haryana and Uttarakhand on the south-east and by the Tibet Autonomous Region on the east. The Chenab or Chandra Bhaga, the Ravi, the Beas, the Sutlej and the Yamuna are main rivers of the region which are fed by snow and rainfall. Shimla is the capital of Himachal Pradesh state of India. The economy of the Himachal Pradesh is currently the third fastest growing economy in India which is highly dependent on hydroelectric power, tourism and agriculture. Climate of the state varies from hot and sub-humid tropical due to extreme variation in elevation.

History of Himachal Pradesh

The name of the state ‘Himachal’ is believed to be named by one of the great Sanskrit scholars of Himachal Pradesh- Acharya Diwakar Datt Sharma; it literally means- ‘In the lap of Himalayas’. Actually ‘Hima’ is a Sanskrit word that means snow. The history of the area, constituting Himachal Pradesh, dates back to the time of the Indus valley civilization (between 2250 and 1750 BCE). After independence, firstly Himachal was a union territory till 1970; it emerged as the 18th state of the Republic of India on 25 January 1971 on the basis of the State of Himachal Pradesh Act 1971.

Himachal Pradesh Travel Tips

State of Himachal Pradesh is well connected to major northern states of India including Haryana, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Jammu & Kashmir. However, it also has an international border with Tibet.

Travel to Himachal Pradesh by Air: Himachal Pradesh has three airports- Gaggal, Bhuntar and Jubbarhatti- which connect the state to Delhi and Chandigarh via regular flights. For those tourists who come outside India the best airport is Indira Gandhi International Airport from where one can take domestic flight for Himachal. Taxis and buses are also available from Delhi.

Travel to Himachal Pradesh by Rail: Himachal Pradesh has no broad gauge railway tracks because of the loft hills except for two narrow gauge rail lines between Kalka - Shimla and Pathankot - Joginder Nagar. A narrow-gauge railway track connects Kalka with the capital city, Shimla. Pathankot - Joginder Nagar is the longest railway line which connects Pathankot in Punjab to Jogindernagar in Himachal Pradesh. There are a few other railway tracks also passing through important destinations in the state.

Travel to Himachal Pradesh by Road: Himachal Pradesh has a very good road network, which connect all popular destinations of the state to the major cities of India. It is 343km from New Delhi via Chandigarh, 151km from Ambala, and 240km from Dehradun, 117km from Chandigarh. Himachal Pradesh operates deluxe buses and luxury coaches from all prime cities of North India.

Best time to visit Himachal Pradesh: Best time to visit Himachal Pradesh is between the months of April to June when weather is mild and sunny and is perfect for mountaineering.

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