At a distance of 85 Km from Mandi, Janjehli is one of the virgin tourist places, where tourists find serene beauty of nature. It is also a paradise for hikers, offering treks up to a height of 3,300 metres. After covering 32 Km by a motorable road up to Gohar and rest of the journey is on foot. In the midst of thick forests, a forest (15 Km from Gohar) is Bajahi. There is a beautiful and well furnished rest house to stay overnight; from here Janjehli is a scant 20 Km away through bridle path. The famous unique temple of Shikari Devi is about 15 Km from Janjehli. In this valley tourists can also visit Kamrunag temple and sacred lake there.
Karsog valley in the Mandi district is famous for apple orchards and dense forests. In the Karsog area Kamaksha Devi and Mahunag are the famous temples. Karsog is situated at a distance of 125 Km from Mandi and is also accessible from Shimla (100 Km) via Tattapani. The place Tattapani is famous for hot water springs on the side of Satluj River.
The large hydro-electric project in Jogindernagar is a living tribute to man he has harnessed and tamed the wild and roaring river for his betterment. Here an electric trolley takes the visitor up the steep, rocky face of 2,500 metres-high (8,202 ft) mountain and drops sharply on the other side to Barot, where the reservoir is located.
The railway line goes up to the power station, the water rushing down from the reservoir at Barot in the Uhl river through penstock pipes going down nearly a thousand metres(3,280 ft). For tourists who go up to Barot by the trolley there is a comfortable rest house of the Electricity department. Barot is a beautiful place, 40 Km from Jogindernagar via Ghatasani. A trout breeding centre, makes it a wonderful place for angling. Barot has all the ingredients of a retreat. Jhatingri, 5 Km from Ghatasani on Barot road is another beautiful visitable place. Bassi power station is five Km from Jogindernagar and next to it, is Machindar where fishing is not permitted as it is considered a sacred spot, but it is a popular as a feeding spot for fish.
About 25 Km from Mandi, 14 Km from Ner Chowk is the Rewalsar lake, famous for its floating islands of reed. It is believed that all of them can be moved by prayer or breeze. The place is held sacred by Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhist alike. Legend has it that the great teacher and "tantric", Padmasambhava used his enormous powers to take flight to Tibet from Rewalsar. Also known as Guru Rimpoche, the precious Master, it was under Padmasambhava's influence that Mahayana Buddhism took root in Tibet and at Rewalsar waters, his spirit is said to reside in the tiny island of floating reed that drift over the waters. There are three Buddhist monasteries at Rewalsar.
Commemorating the month-long stay of Guru Gobind Singh in 1738, Rewalsar has a Gurudwara that was built in 1930 by Raja Joginder Sen of Mandi. Rewalsar has three Hindu temple which are dedicated to Lord Krishna, Lord Shiva and sage Lomas. The Lake of Kunt Bhayo (1750 m above sea level) lies above Rewalsar, which is also visitable and there are also six other lakes of legend. These are associated with the escape of the Pandava's from the burning palace episode from the epic Mahabharata.
Famous for its temples, 26 Km from Mandi towards Shimla and at a height of 1,174 metres on the raised edge of a fertile valley, the beautiful town of Sundernagar is known for its shady walks amidst towering trees. On top of a hill and visited by thousands of devotees every year, is the Sukhdev Vatika and temple of Mahamaya.
The biggest hydro-electric project in all Asia, the Beas-Sutlej project, irrigating nearly one-fourth of the northern plains of India has brought unprecedented prosperity to Sudernagar. The Beas-Sutlej link colony is the biggest colony in Himachal Pradesh.
This Lake lies 45 Km north of Mandi, with a three storied pagoda like temple dedicated to the sage Parashar. The Lake is located at an height of 2,730 m above sea level. With deep blue waters, the Lake is held sacred to the sage Parashar and he is regarded to have meditated here. Framed by snow-capped peaks and looking down on fast flowing river Beas, the lake can be approached via Drang. Every year in the month of June, famous traditional fair is held here. Several camping sites are also located here and it is the base for numerous easy & hard treks.
Chandertal lake alias the moon lake is a crescent-shaped basin, surrounded by the gigantic Himalayan Mountains on all the sides. The lake is located in Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh at an elevation of 14100 ft. Earlier, the lake was the resting point for the traders and voyagers who used to come from Tibet or Ladakh. The Chandertal Lake is accessible only during the summer months i.e. June, July, August and September, and for the rest of the year the lake remains frozen. One will get awestruck when they will see that the color of the lake keeps on changing with the color of the sky. The shimmering lake is flanked by the green-carpeted Chandra Baga mountain range.
As per the legends, it is the spot from where Lord Indra took the eldest Pandava brother, Yudhishtra in his human form to Swarga, in his chariot. People of the neighbouring villages believe that the lake is often visited by fairies at midnight.
Chandertal Lake is a treat for all the trekkers and adventure enthusiast as it is the starting line of the famous, Batal - Chandratal Lake-Baralacha Pass trek (the moon trek) which takes them to the cool forest, valleys, undiscovered monasteries, etc. Chandertal lake is one the famous and the least explored lake of Himachal Pradesh, without any doubt. The lake is flanked by gigantic mountains which turn into a bed of wildflowers during winters.
Quaint and clam, Dal lake is filled with greenish water. The lake is shielded by the rugged mountains and luscious forest of deodar trees. On the bank of the Dal lake, tourists can see the famous Shiva temple. Dal lake is mostly visited by tourist during the month of September as a fair is organized on the bank of the lake which is attended by the people of the Gaddi tribe in a large number. The fair is celebrated to mark the presence of Lord Shiva. Dal lake is a perfect site to laze around with picnic baskets as one can enjoy boating and many other activities. Flanked by lush greenery and blooming trees, the placid Dal Lake is counted amongst the major tourist attractions of McLeod Ganj.
Gobind Sagar Lake
Gobind Sagar lake is a man made reservoir built in 1976; its source is the hydel dam at Bhakra. One of the world's highest gravity dams, the Bhakra dam is perched at an elevation of 225.5 m above its lowest foundations. Its reservoir - the Gobind Sagar - is 90 kms long and encompasses an area of approximately 170 sq kms. The dam was dedicated to nation by late Pt. Jwahar Lal Nehru on November 20th, 1963. The eye catching Gobing Sagar lake is famous for sightseeing, adventure activities, recreational fun, etc. The lake is a treat for nature lovers and adventure junkies.
Gobing Sagar lake is an embodiment of true Himalayan beauty. Nestled amidst the Himalayan range, the lush green mountain adds greatly to its beauty. Gobing Sagar lake is one of most visited tourists spots and well known for its flora & fauna along with fishes of different species. In 1962, the lake was recognized as the 'waterfowl refuge.' Even today, the Gobind sagar lake is home to many species of birds and animals like Panther, Wolf, Chausinga, Sambar, Hyena, Sloth bear, Nilgai, Chinkara and wild boar. Fishing is a regular activity in the reservoir which is home to fifty species and sub-species of fishes namely Tor Putitora (Mahasheer), Labeo Dero (Gid), Mystus Seenghala (Singhara) and mirror carp.
The water level keeps on fluctuating at Gobind Sagar lake. One can enjoy multiple sports activities in the reservoir like swimming, surfing, water-skiing, kayaking, rowing, canoeing, and white water river rafting. All the water sports organized here are regulated by the Himachal Pradesh tourism and are under the strict vigilance of Department of Tourism and Civil Aviation.
In the shadow of the snow-covered Himalayas, Khajjiar Lake is the most spectacular of lakes. Surrounded by cedar forest, the lake is located at an elevation of 1920 m. The small water streams of the Himalaya act as a source for the Khajjiar Lake. One can also visit the Khajinag temple which features fine wood carvings and a gold dome. The lake is a popular tourist spot of Khajjiar where people can enjoy numerous recreational activities or can enjoy the beauty of the landscape. The site is perfect to spend some moments of solitude far away from the hustle and bustle of the modern crowd. It offers peace and tranquillity to the visitors.
Khajjiar Lake holds a strong association with the legends. The lake is a paradise which makes one realize that there is no place like it in the whole world. On a clear and sunny day, tourist can enjoy the amazing view of Mount Kailash from the Khajjiar Lake. The main attraction of the lake is the floating island which is actually a cluster of grass and weed growing on the surface of the lake.
Khajjiar is surrounded by saucer shaped meadows; beyond the pasture land there is a dense pine forest surrounded by high mountains, and fringed by gigantic deodars. The amazing sight of the stunning landscapes coupled with the shimmering lake, makes a visit to Khajjiar lake a must visit spectacle.
If tourists want to witness the most refined lake in Himachal Pradesh, then they should pay a visit to the Manimahesh Lake. Manimahesh Lake is commonly known as the Dal Lake, and is nestled at an elevation of 4080 m on the Pir Panjal Range of the Himalayas. The peak of Manimahesh Kailash is regarded as one of the mythical abodes of Shiva. One can see the traces and stories of the pious lake in many mythological. Manimahesh lake is revered by the people of Gaddi tribe and Hindus. People of Gaddi tribe know the lake as 'Shiv Bhumi' (Land of Shiva). The lake is a popular Hindu pilgrimage site that is dedicated to Lord Shiva and it is believed that the mighty peak is the abode of the Hindu deity.
Legends say that the lake was created by Lord Shiva after he married Goddess Parvati. As per another account, it is also claimed that Lord Shiva performed penance here for seven hundred years, and the water started flowing from his tangled hair which later took the form of a lake. The lake is in the shape of the saucer and is divided into 2 major parts. The larger part is known as 'Shiv Karotri' (the bathing place of Lord Shiva); meanwhile the lower part is dedicated to Goddess Parvati, 'Gauri Kund' (the bathing place of Parvati).
The literal meaning of the Manimahesh is jewel (Mani), which can be found on Lord Shiva's crown. On the full moon night, moon-rays reflected from the jewel can be seen from Manimahesh Lake. Walking on the bank of Manimahesh Lake is an incredible experience which one can't forget throughout one's life. The aura of the lake is so pious and pure that it can purify anybody's mind and soul. On the bank of lake, there is a marble image of Lord Shiva which is also known as Chaumukha. The lake is surrounded by amazing landscape and a small temple in Shikhara shape which houses a brass image of Goddess Lakshmi Devi known as Mahishasuramardini.
The lake is considered to be as sacred, pure, and blessed as the Manasarovar lake, Tibet. During the month of August to September, Manimahesh Yatra is organized in full swing. A huge procession, followed by "aarti" is organized during the special festival. The aura of the place is absolutely blissful, and it is the perfect time to visit the lake. The pilgrims walk along the rocky path completely bare footed, singing Bhajans and praying ecstatically to Lord Shiva. There is a sensation of ecstasy in the air of the Manasarovar Lake.
Imagine a pastured meadow amidst the gigantic mountains; in between the meadows there are beautiful willows and poplar trees, Buddhist temples a small emerald basin called Nako lake. Nako Lake is a small secluded reservoir which can charm anyone with its pristine natural beauty and cultural innocence. The spiritual lake is the secret hideaway in the mystical land of the Himalaya. The lake is nestled at an elevation of 3662 m, surrounded by willow and poplar trees. Groves of willow trees surround the lake, making for a fascinating sight.
Nako lake is bounded by 4 Tibetan temples. Close to the temple, there are four caves which are believed to be the meditation site of saint Padmasambhava. These were the caves from where Guru Padmasambhava gave disclosure to his followers.
There is a waterfall nearby the lake which as per legends and locals is regarded as the heavenly abode of fairies. It is also said that, it's not at all easy to find the waterfall as there is no marked trail leading to it. During the month of September, tourist can enjoy boating on the shimmering lake or relish the beauty of the enchanting mountains.
A tour to Nako Lake requires a special permission from the inner line as the place is quite close to Tibet border. If tourist are looking for a relaxing and rejuvenating session on their tour to Himachal then Nako is a must visit site. The natural scenery all around and the view of the eternal snow are picturesque and charming. Explore the strange, exciting lake of Himachal Pradesh, Nako lake.
While most of the lakes in Himachal Pradesh are famous for their untouched beauty, Renuka Lake in Sirmaur district is famous for its cultural and historical connection. The tourist can experience some of the breathtaking views when they reach the ridge of the lake while passing through the dense alpine forest. The lake is located at an elevation of 672 m above sea level. Renuka Lake is the largest lake (area wise) in Himachal Pradesh, covering a circumference of about 3214 m.
It is believed that the lake is an embodiment of Renukaji, the mother of Parshurama - one of the ten avatars of Lord Vishnu –and wife of the sage Jamadagini. As per the stories told by the locals, once an evil named Sahasarjuna killed the sage Jamadagini (Renuka ji's husband), and attempted to abduct his wife Renuka, but she threw herself in the lake to escape from him. Many gods and goddesses tried to bring Renuka out of the lake, but she decided to stay permanently in the river. After her death, Lake Renuka was formed.
Even today, the immorality of Goddess Renuka is celebrated. In the month of October or November (after Diwali) a fair is held on the bank of the lake. Saints from all parts of the country come to the lake to witness the holy assembly of mother and son. Huge procession to Parsu Ram tal is organized in which several idols of Parsu Ram, believed to be the incarnation of Lord Vishnu, along with other local deities, are carried in decorated palanquins. The idols are meant to be stationed at the temple but before that they are given a bath in the holy lake.
Renuka Lake is the perfect place to relax and rejuvenate in the arms of nature. Here, tourists can cat catch the glimpses of animals at the nearby zoo, go for boating, sightseeing, and many other recreational activities like lion safari, etc. Next to the lake is the famous temple dedicated to Renuka which as per facts was built overnight in the eighteenth century. The lake is set on a long valley and surrounded by slopes covered with a variety of vegetation and thick woods. This is the perfect around-the-year destination that beckons every traveller.
Suraj Tal Lake
The name Himachal invokes the image of a dry area with arid mountain terrains, endless snow, alpine trees, green pastures and camps. But in the center of this sanctified place, there are numerous lakes with sterile blue water; Suraj Tal Lake is one such lake in Himachal Pradesh. Located at an elevation of 4950 m above sea level, the lake is considered as the third highest in India and the 21st highest in the world. Suraj Tal Lake shrugs its calmness in the months of summer.
Suraj Tal Lake is quite close to the Baralacha Pass, which is considered as the meeting point of the roads leading to Spiti, Ladakh and Zanskar. The Baralacha Pass is also known as "the pass with crossroads on the summit." The name, Suraj Tal, is derived from 2 Hindi words; Suraj meaning Sun and Tal meaning lake. This is the reason the basin is revered as the "lake of the Sun God." Legends say that a holy dip in the Suraj Tal Lake can purify one from all the sins.
Suraj Tal Lake is created by the streams of the Bhaga river (based on which this entire valley is known by the name Bhaga Valley today). During the month of summer, the water is drawn from the surrounding mountains and nearby glaciers. Bhanga valley on which the lake is situated is an enthralling and divine sight for the eyes. In the valley, two rivers: Bhaga River and Tandi River mingles and make their way to the narrow and slandered hills of the region. Close to Suraj Tal, the small Deepak Lake is yet another important stopover.
Suraj tal lake is an extensive haven for Indian and foreign tourist looking for road trips, trekking and motorcycling. Motorcyclists can catch the glimpse of the lake on the most famous Manali-Leh trail. Avid trekker has marked this place on the top of their bucket list. Suraj Tal makes for a refreshing stopover for travellers' like mountain bikers and trekkers.
The lake seems like a green emerald in the thick of the barbarous mountains and is drenched in mysterious and soothing splendors. For travelers and adventure aficionados, the place is a destination that should be visited again and again. Come and witness the untouched beautiful lake of Himachal Pradesh.
Maharana Pratap Sagar Lake (Pong Lake)
Located in Kangra district, Maharana Pratap Dam is a man-made reservoir. In 1960, a dam was built on the river Beas which ultimately leads to formation of the huge Maharana Pratap Sagar lake. The reservoir is a popular tourist spot of Himachal Pradesh where one can do paddle boating or simply take in the view while walking along the boulevards. The reservoir is a man-made wet land, and is spread over an area of 45,000 hectares.
Don't miss the scenic beauty of the lake which offers a pleasant view of the hills and landscapes; apart from this, the reservoir is an animal sanctuary as well, known as the Maharana Pratap Sagar Sanctuary. The sanctuary is home to diversified flora and fauna, while the water sport center established here is a good spot for some adventure and fishing.
Bird watching is an activity that attracts visitors to the Maharana Pratap Sagar Lake. During the months of summer, flock of migratory birds flies to the Maharana Pratap Sagar lake. Since the lake is nestled in the sylvan surroundings of the Kangra valley, it has become home to major species of birds, fishes and animals. One can catch the glimpses of endangered birds, like Northern Lapwing, Spot-Billed Duck, Barheaded Geese, Ruddy Shelduck, Northern Pintail and many more while walking on the lakeside. Maharana Pratap Sagar lake is home to many variety of fishes as well like plovers, egrets, black-headed gulls, terns, etc. Tourist can also spot animals like sambar, wild-boars, oriental small-clawed otters, leopards and barking dears.
Set the spirits free and take a dive in the Maharana Pratap Sagar Lake. The lake is an extraordinary destination for the adventure fanatics to feel the adrenaline rush. Various water sports like canoeing, rowing, sailing, and water skiing, apart from swimming are organized here.
Maharana Pratap Sagar Lake provides excitement like no other. Don't wait further, carry a picnic basket, a book, binoculars and camera and spend a peaceful afternoon on the banks of the lake.
Kareri Lake, which is a tiny basin located about 9 kilometres northwest of Dharamshala town, tends to escape most visitor's radar. Surrounded by coverlets of cedar and oak forest, Kareri Lake is watered by the melted snow from Dhauladhar range and glaciers. The water in the basin is such crystal clear that one can see the lake bed. Majestic mountains, clear blue skies, lush green surroundings and the shimmering waters add to the lure of this popular tourist destination.
With verdant pasture surrounding the lake on all the sides, the lake makes for a perfect picnic spot. The lake is nestled at an elevation of 2934 m above sea level.
Kareri Lake is best known as one of the most mind-blowing trekking destination of Dhauladhars. Kareri Lake also serves as the gateway for trekking deep into the Dhauladhar and towards Chamba and Bharmour via the Minkiani Pass at 4,250 meters and Baleni Pass at 3,710 meters. A favourite amongst the wacky travellers, the place is rejuvenating and relaxing and has a green shallow lake as its base with wilderness all around.
Located in the Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh, Brighu Lake is a paradise on earth. Commonly known as the "pool of god", the lake attracts large number of visitors every year. Flanked by snow-capped mountains from all the sides, the lake is situated at an elevation of 4,235 m above sea level. Legends have it that Rishi Bhrigu, a renowned sage of the Hindus, meditated at this site for a long period of time. It is also believed that many gods of the Kullu valley took a holy dip in the hallowed water, and that is why the lake is considered sacred by the Hindus and many devotees.
Nestled in the lap of nature, Brighu Lake is nothing less than an expedition for the nature lovers. Brighu Lake is located to the right (8 km south-west) of the Rohtang Pass, around 6 km away from the village of Gulab, which is a well-known lake of the Kullu region. The lake is often visited by the trekkers as it is the starting point of the thrilling, Bhrigu Lake Trek.
On a short trip to Brighu Lake, trekkers can reward themselves with tremendous views. On a trip to Himachal, one place tourist shouldn't miss is the Brighu lake.
Himachal Pradesh has been a popular retreat for generations of British officials, and later, scores of city-dwellers. Think of Himachal Pradesh and visualize luscious alpine forest, gigantic mountains and sparkling serene lakes. There are endless destinations in this vivacious land which tourist can't afford to miss; one such place is Pandoh Lake. The deep blue lake is a delight for all the photographers.
The major source of lake water is Pandoh dam which helps in diverting the river for power generation. Pandon Lake acts as a basin for Pandoh dam and comes under the administration of Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB). Pandoh Lake is a major attraction for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts.
If tourists are looking for some enthralling experience then they should go camping or white water rafting at Pandoh Lake. The breath-taking view of the rising waves in the river Beas is always an amazing sight to behold for experienced and inexperienced rafters. The bank of the lake is an ideal destination for camping as well.
The man-made picturesque Pandoh Lake in the foothills of mountain ranges is an idyllic place for a secret communion with nature. With its vast expanse of pastured meadows, this popular spot is perfect for walks, boating and lazy picnics.
Dashair and Dhankar Lake
In the humdrum of city life it is difficult to find a retreat, which can completely rejuvenates one's soul. A tour to Dashair and Dhankar Lake is one of the best ways to enlighten the mind and soul. Blessed with some of the most extravagant and winsome landscapes anywhere, the place with its lofty snow peaks, lush green valleys, enchanting mountain lakes, beautiful temples and monasteries steeped in time beckons every tourist.
Located at an elevation of 4270 m above sea level, Dashair and Dhankar Lake is located nearby the Rohtang Pass. The lake is also known by the name of Sarkund. Dashair and Dhankar Lake is considered as half man made and rest natural. As per the stories, King Puran Lal of Syalkot (now in Pakistan) visited the spot and decided to construct a lake.
Many stories and myths are associated with the establishment of the Dhankar Lake. According to these the stories, Lord Shiv stayed at this lake for some time in search of Vishnu. While Shiva was wandering in search of Vishnu, his attendant Nandi drank some water from this place and as a reward Lord Shiv blessed the area with plenty of water.
As per another story, Lord Indra saw the dryness of place and complained to Lord Shiv about this. He requested Lord Shiv to look into the matter but he was busy looking for Lord Vishnu. Seeing the delay, Lord Indra threw his axe and by the impact of his axe, a spring came out and formed a lake. Since then on every Mouni Amavasya, a festival is celebrated by the residents of this area.
At a short distance away from the lake is the Dhankar Monastery which is one of the five main Buddhist centres and a major tourist destination in the Spiti region. Dashair and Dhankar Lake can be approached by a trek from the monastery.
Dashair and Dhankar lake is always attracting tourists all over India and abroad. A trip to Dashair and Dhankar Lake is a treat for the soul and eyes.
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