Grand Himachal Tour
Located north of Delhi, the mountainous state of Himachal Pradesh is home to some wonderfully scenic hill and historic hill stations.
It’s easy to see why the British during the colonial period loved these places so much as an escape from the heat of the plains below. The most famous town in the region these days is probably Dharamshala, home to His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Government in Exile. The best time of year for this region is March to May and mid-Septem....
ber to mid-November.
Day 1 - Arrive at Delhi
You’ll be met on arrival in Delhi and assisted with the transfer to your hotel. Overnight in Delhi.
Day 2 - Delhi
Transfer to Delhi airport and fly to Chandigarh, where your driver will meet you on arrival. Day for sightseeing around the planned-city, brainchild of the famous Swiss/French architect Le Corbusier. Overnight in Chandigarh.
Day 3 - Delhi – Shimla
Begin your driving journey today with an ascent into the hills and the one-time British summer capital, Shimla. While the small hill station is now a bustling town and favourite weekend escape for Delhiites, elements of its original charm remain and guided sightseeing in the afternoon with include historic buildings and viewpoints. Overnight in Shimla.
Day 4 - Shimla- Day excursion
A day of exploration to Kufri and Chail. Kufri is famous for expansive views and ski slopes and an enjoyable walk from here leads up to Mahasu peak. Have lunch at Wildflower Hall, a grand old hotel with great views and a palpable sense of historic. Later visit Chail, nestled in a beautiful forest setting. In 1893 the British decided this would be a great place to play cricket and polo, and had the top of the hill levelled- at a touch under 2500 metres it is the highest altitude cricket pitch in the world! Return to Shimla in the afternoon- while the total driving distance today is under 100km, it will likely take close to 5 hours to cover this distance. Overnight in Shimla.
Day 5 - Shimla – Kurfi – Chail – Shimla
Morning breakfast at hotel and followed by exursion to Kufri and Chail. Kufri is famous for its wide views and ski slopes. an enjoyable walk leads up to the Mahasu peak, Near Kufri lies a Wild Flower hall, It is pictureque place famous for a fine view of the city and snowclad far off Mountain peaks. And also visit Chail Nestling in the shelter of virgin forests which cover many untoddole hills , Chail is a tiny resort in shivalik region. Visit Cricket ground built in 1893, after leveling the top of hill, this stands at 2444m and is the highest cricket pitch and polo ground in the world. Return back to Shimla for overnight stay.
Day 6 - Shimla – Jalori Pass- Banjar
The driving just gets more spectacular as this trip goes on- next stop is the relatively little-travelled Jalori Pass on a road which winds through forests of cedar and deodar before descending to your accommodation at Banjar. Take a walk here in the afternoon- if time permits, add an extra day to the itinerary to allow for more extensive walking while you are here. Overnight at Banjar.
Day 7 - Banjar- Kullu – Manali
Drive down into the Kullu valley and reach Manali, your base for the next 3 nights, after around 5 hours driving. Overnight in Manali.
Day 8 - Manali
The highest-altitude of the Himachal hill stations, and the most difficult to reach, Manali is a base for all kinds of adventure activities. In the morning, begin your tour visiting Hadimba Devi temple built in 1553 and with superbly crafted four-tiered pagoda roof and exquisitely carved doorway, Manu temple, several monasteries and hot springs. Overnight in Manali.
Day 9 - Rohtang Pass excursion
The Rohtang Pass is the gateway to Ladakh, and even though this itinerary stays within Himachal, you’ll be able to drive to the top of the pass and get a feeling for the changing terrain as you work higher into the mountains. This is a very scenic drive. Note that the road opens sometime in April and closes again in September or October, whenever the first big snowfall happens. Overnight back in Manali.
Day 10 - Manali – Mandi
Rather than try to drive all the way to your next stop in one day (it can be done but is 8-9 hours on a challenging road), it is better to stop at Mandi. Overnight in Mandi.
Day 11 - Mandi- Pragpur
Continue your descent to the plains and the unusual heritage village of Pragpur with its narrow cobblestoned lanes and quaint buildings. A complete contrast to the busy hill stations, Pragpur retains a lot of its old-town charm. Nearby Garli is also of interest- explore both towns in the afternoon.
Day 12 - Pragpur- Dharamshala
More time around Pragpur in the morning before driving up the Kangra Valley, stopping for a look around the fort en route, and reaching Dharamshala by mid-afternoon. Overnight in McLeod Ganj/Dharamshala.
Day 13 - Dharamshala
Tour the town, stroll up to the waterfall at Bagshu and visit nearby places of interest. With something of a confluence of cultures, elements of the British imperialist past, more recent Tibetan influence (the Dalai Lama fled here when Tibet was invaded in 1959) and incipient Indian modernity, Dharamshala is a nice place to conclude your tour. Overnight in McLeod Ganj/Dharamshala.
Day 14 - Dharamshala- Gaggal- Delhi- Depart
If you’re timing is impeccable, you may chance upon a major cricket match at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association’s stadium in Dharamshala. Easily one of the most scenic cricket grounds in the world, a Test or IPL match here would be an unforgettable experience. Otherwise, transfer down to the airport at Gaggal, fly to Delhi and depart in the evening.