Key Points
  • Ideal Duration: 2-4 days
  • Best Time: Oct-Jun
  • Nearest Airport: Kangra Airport

Formerly known as Bhagsu, Dharamshala is a district headquarters of Kangra district in Himachal Pradesh. The place is surrounded by cedar trees that give it a spectacular character. The name of the town is derived from the two Sanskrit words- Dharm meaning religion and Shala meaning school. If you look at the loose meaning in English of Dharamshala, is indicated as a spiritual dwelling. The common people refer to Dharamshala as a rest-house or shelter for spiritual pilgrims. The place is a well-known tourist spot and has a great historical background of Tibetan settlements. The residence of Dalai Lama is found in Dharamshala, hence his imprints in the form of culture and heritage can be seen everywhere in the town. Dharamshala is popular for its variety of tea culture and has a major supply of green tea, black tea, white tea, oolong tea, etc.


The 14th Dalai Lama established the Tibetan exile administration in the northern hill-station known as Mussoorie in 1959. McLeod Ganj known as the home of Dalai Lama belongs to Dharmashala and is known worldwide. In 1960, the Central Tibetan Administration was moved to Dharamshala and it became the center of Tibetan exile in India. The presence of Dalai Lama in the following area made the place popular for Indian as well as tourists to explore his teachings.


The place is the second capital of Himachal Pradesh which makes it seem obvious to find its culture depicted in Dharamshala. People belong to Tibetan, Buddhist or Hindu religion. They speak Pahari, Dongri, Hindi, Punjabi, etc. Since the climate in Dharamshala is cool almost throughout the year, people wear warm clothes. The Himachali cuisine is mostly seen in the area which includes roti, vegetables gravy, dal and variety of spices in the dishes.


Dharmashala is a hub of entertainment, knowledge and spectacular culture that imbibes into the individual making him fall in love with it. The cool, pleasing climate of Dharmashala makes it a favorite spot for most Indians as well as international tourists who visit the place. Dharamshala has the most eye-catching beds of numbers of tea farms and gardens. You must add this to the top of your bucket-list while visiting the place. Moreover, young children would admire the knowledge they gain about tea-culture. Apart from this, Dharamshala has a lot more to explore, not only for kids but also for the people of all ages. These include different monasteries, churches, library, museum, etc. It also has loads of exciting and adventurous activities that can be done on the nearby hill-top like the Dhauladhar range of Dharamshala.


  • Library of Tibetan Works and Activities
  • Dharamshala Cricket Stadium
  • St. John Church
  • Dharamshala International Film Festival
  • War Memorial
  • Gyuto Monastery
  • Dal Lake
  • Tea Garden
  • Triund
  • Jwala Devi Temple

Places in Dharamshala

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