Situated in the municipal corporation in Kangra district, Dharamsala is one of the hundred Indian cities to be selected as smart cities under PM Narendra Modi's flagship. The name Dharamsala is a Hindi word whose English translation would mean spiritual dwelling.
Some of the suburbs of Dharamshala include Mcleodganj, Bhagsunath, Dharamkot, Naddi, Forsythganj, Kotwali Bazar, Kachheri Adda, Dari, Ramnagar, Sidhpur and Sidhbari.
Dharamshala was founded by British and it served as their hill-resort between 1815 and 1847. Dharamshala remained a low-profile hill town till the arrival of Tibetan refugees along with Dalai Lama in October 1959. India welcomed Dalai Lama and his people and offered them a place to settle in Dharamshala and also allowed them to form a Government-in-exile. Since then, the town has been transformed into small Tibet with School, Buddhist Temples, Craft organisations, Meditation centres, library and medical centre.
Dharamsala has now become an important touristic destination with many hotels and restaurants, leading to growth in tourism and commerce. Its beautiful breathtaking scenic beauty and culture makes it a must visit destination for travellers and also there are great number of things to do in order to keep travellers engaged and fascinated. It's a home for places of religious significance (Adi Shakti Temple Indru Nag Temple, Namgyal Monastery Etc), natural beauty (Dal lake (1,775 m above sea level), waterfall, the pine forests and green meadows), commercial activity (shop here for paintings, sculptures, coins, jewellery, shamianas and many sach fascination collection of culture) and adventure (trekking, rock, climbing, mountaineering and fishing).
The indigenous people of Dharamshala follow Hindu religion and led nomadic and semi-nomadic lifestyle. Though upper Dharamshala and McLeod Ganj consist of people from Tibetan community, with majority of people following Tibetan Buddhism. Just like other towns of India, local people in Dharamshala are generally very amicable and warm-hearted towards tourists.
The most common languages spoken here are Hindi, Tibetan, English, Pahari (Spoken by people living in mountains).
Dharamsala has a humid subtropical climate. Summer season starts from March and goes till mid-July. The temperature ranges somewhere between 22 degree Celsius and 35 degree Celsius. From mid-July to mid-September, you will get to see rainfall in the hills, the region appears to be the most beautiful during this time of the year. But be prepared for road blocks due to continuous rainfall. Winter season starts in December and goes up-till February. It is a beautiful time to see snowfall and the temperature might dip below -1 degree Celsius.
HOW TO REACH DHARAMSHALA
A train journey is a good option for Dharamshala. The nearest railway station from Dharamshala is Pathankot. Pathankot is just 85 kms away from Dharamshala. A cab can be taken from Pathankot to reach Dharamshala
Dharamshala is well-connected to Delhi as well as other parts of Northern India by Bus. The Journey is 520 kms fro m Delhi
WHAT TO DO IN DHARAMSHALA
• Amuse yourself in the spell-bounded beauty of nature.
• Visit famous temples and churches which give you an aura of sanctity.
• Shop in the local markets and discover the paintings, sculptures and jewellery of the region.
• Spend a day or two doing adventure activities such as trekking and rock climbing and also capture the images of stunning landscapes in your Camera.