Lap of Snow - as the name translates is a composite of many hill kingdoms. It is a land of contrasts from the vast emptiness and harsh heat of Lahaul, Spiti and Kinnaur to crowded Manali and Shimla with their heavy monsoon showers. From dominant Hindu culture to the Buddhist Lahaul arid Spiti bordering Tibet. Alpine meadows, apple orchards, hot springs and fields of cannabis - Himachal offers an escape to all!
Three mountain ranges extend across Himachal Pradesh. The Dhaula Dhar Range at an average elevation of 4419 mtrs- 5029 mtrs. The Pir Panjal Range with an average elevaton of 5029 mtrs to the north of the Chamba, separating it from the Chenab Valley and the Great Himalayan Range between Himachal Pradesh and Ladakh where peaks soar above 5943 mtrs. Himachal has the most phenomenal views to offer. Snow capped peaks, verdant forests, rolling meadows, wild thyme, gurgling brooks, swinging suspension bridges, Snowbound passes and glaciers.
Tourism is the new buzzword in the state. Old locals are farmers and shepherds but sadly their numbers are dwindling. Colourful in their attire and exuding a warmth and charm the Himachali beguile you and make you their own. Hindus predominate Shimla and Manali; prayer flags in Kaza quickly proclaim Buddhist domination. With the Dalai Lama as a resident Dharamshala is very much on the tourist map.
Himachal has lots to offer adventure seekers - treks from moderate to strenuous, skiing in winter, paragliding and biking. The drive from Shimla to Kaza is considered one of the most incredible routes cutting across mountains of solid rock. But a MUST DO for all is white water rafting! One of the best rides are to be had in the Beas River- not a small feat, considering India boasts of so many mighty rivers!
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