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Tourist Places To Visit In Kullu
Sandwiched between the Lower Himalayan ranges and the Great Himalayan ranges, Kullu is packed with loads of tourist places to visit. Formed by the Beas River, the valley, covered with pine trees and deodar is one of the most spectacular places to visit in the region. Ranging from temples to National Parks, Kullu has it all; and to any visitor travelling to Kullu, the place will surely be mesmerizing.
Located at around 22 km from Kullu, the Bijli Mahadev temple is one of the most visited and famous places in the region. There are plenty of mythical folklore spun around the temple; the most famous among them is that lightning strikes the Shiva Lingam in the temple and shatters it into many pieces and that the priest furbishes it back into shape with adhesive. The temple is also famous for its 60 ft high pole which gleams like a needle on a bright sunny day. Located on a higher plane than the valley, the temple also provides for a nice spot to enjoy panoramic views of the Parvati and the Kullu valley.
Popularly known as ‘Lake of the Gods,’ and fittingly so, the Bhrigu Lake is among the most visited destinations in the Kullu region. Located in the midst of snow-capped mountains at an altitude of about 4200 m, the lake allows for one of the most fascinating views of the valley. With the quiet in the air and the mist and the clouds brushing your hair, the lake is truly paradisiacal and is a must-see.
Located at about 40 odd kilometres from Kullu, Manikaran lies on the banks of River Parvati. The major attractions in Manikaran are its hot springs. While at some spots, the water can be very hot, there are plenty of spots to take a relaxing dip. Manikaran is also very popular for its folklore and mythology. It is said that Lord Shiva once visited the famous Kulant Pith and stayed there for a while making it a hotspot amongst pilgrims. It is also said that Guru Nanak ji had asked one of his disciples to lift a rock and that is what gave way for the hot springs. Alongside the mythology of the place there is also a geothermal experimental plant in the region for research towards renewable energy sources.
The Great Himalayan National Park
Now recognised as one among UNESCO’s World heritage sites, the national park, established in 1984 is among one of the best places to visit when in Kullu. The park is home to numerous fauna with over 375 species and also numerous species of flora. With creatures like the Blue Sheep, the Himalayan Brown Bear, the Himalayan Tahr and the Snow Leopard, the park is a fantasy come-true for wildlife enthusiasts. The park is also quite famous for its trekking possibilities and camping. With every step, new landscapes uncover themselves in this ever-so magical place.
The Rupi Palace
Believed to be the residence of the erstwhile royal family of Kullu, the Rupi palace (also known as the Sultanpur Palace) is among the famous places in Kullu. Although rebuilt after the original palace was destroyed the palace represents both pahari and colonial architecture. The palace also houses many miniature paintings in the Kullu style, characterized by the lack human subjects. This palace, located about 500 m from the bus station, is accessible by foot.
Dhakpo Shedrupling Monastery
Located in the village of Kais, at about 12 km from Kullu, the Dhakpo Shedrupling Monastery is also known as the Kais Monastery. Inaugurated by his Holiness the Dalai Lama in 2005, the monastery is popular among pilgrims and people who want some time away from the bustling city. The monastery is representative of the Indo-Tibetan architecture and houses a huge Buddha statue. With the serene landscape and the divinity of the monastery, your stress vanishes. The monastery also provides for a picturesque view of the Baes River.
Raghunath Ji Temple
With the reputation of being one of the oldest temples in Himachal Pradesh, the Raghunath Ji temple is one of the most visited places in Kullu. Located close to the Rupi palace, the temple has close ties with the palace. The Raghunath ji temple is dedicated to Lord Ram and hence the name Raghunath (another name for Lord Ram). The temple was built in the 17th century by Raja Jagat Singh with a mix of pyramidal and Himanchali style architecture. The temple covers the whole of the peak region of the hillock and is quite big. There are plenty of stories that revolve around the temple that could interest visitors. It is believed that the king built the temple to atone for his many sins and the idol is believed to have been brought from Ayodhya.