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

A hill-station located to the suburbs of Dharmashala, Mcleod Ganj is a famous tourist attraction of Himachal Pradesh. It has got its nick-name with the love of Tibetan inhabitants as ‘Little Lhasa’ or ‘Dhasa’. The majority of the population found in McLeod Ganj belongs to the Tibetan community. The interesting name of the city is derived from the Lieutenant of Punjab, Sir Donald Friell Mcleod who has a great contribution in developing educational institutes in Punjab. Ganj is a Hindi word which means ‘neighborhood’. This spot is a favorite tourist attraction due to its scenic beauty and cool pleasing environment. The place is well-known to the world as the origin of the Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama. It also has a significant influence on the Tibetan and British that makes the place special.


After the second Anglo-Sikh War in 1850, the area was annexed by the British. Soon a subsidiary cantonment for troops stationed at Kangra was developed by the slope of Dhauladar which was an empty land known to be rest house or Dharmashala in Hindi. This led to the name of the new cantonment as Dharmashala. During the summers the British use to spent time and refresh themselves at this town as it was considered as a hill-station. The British moved its two regiments to Dharamshala as the Kangra headquarters became overcrowded. And gradually, the Dharmashala became an important administrative capital of Kangra district with its two civilian settlements McLeod Ganj and Forsyth Ganj.


As the place originated Dalai Lama and his teaching, efforts are made to preserve and perceive the culture. The Tibetan culture is clearly reflected in the habitation of the people living in McLeod Ganj. Their motto of life is quoted as, ‘Struggle to preserve their way of life against the oppressive forces of the world’. There is a museum in the town that is well-known to sustain the culture of Dalai Lama and his principles. The aim of the museum is to spread the awareness of the history of the Tibetan occupation and the exodus that Tibetan resistance against Chinese oppression has finally led to.


McLeod Ganj provides you a hub of cultural exposure, devotion, fun and exploring breath-taking scenic beauty. Visit the temples, monasteries churches nearby allowing your mind to step towards peace or start an exciting journey to hike or trek to the various hills available at the place. You can also spend hours shopping in McLeod Ganj as it consists of a variety of unseen, noteworthy articles and crafts that denotes Tibetan and Buddhist culture.


  • Tsuglagkhang Complex- It is the place where Dalai Lama resides and attracts devotees and tourists from all around the world.
  • Tibetan Museum- The museum is located inside the Tsuglagkhang complex and is the preserving the Tibetan Culture from years.
  • Dal Lake-The lake is located just 3 km from Mcleodganj and is surrounded with deodar trees.
  • Minkiani Pass- This beautiful pass will be reached while trekking from Dharmashala to Chamba.
  • Church of St. John in the wilderness
  • Bhagsu Falls
  • Namgyal Monastery
  • Triund
  • Dharamkot
  • Bhagsunag Temple

Places in Mcleodganj

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