"The Still Square - Dharamshala-McLeod Ganj" Top 5 Page for this destination McLeod Ganj by anilpradhanshillong
McLeod Ganj Travel Guide: 125 reviews and 344 photos
The square that greets you may appear laughable, so small are the dimensions. However, it is the hub and the very soul of Dharamshala, the main town of the Kangra valley of Himachal Pradesh, located as it is on the spur of the Dhauladhar range of mountains. The wriggly roads that radiate from it may take you to your exotic destinations but return to this 40 feet by 20 feet focal point you must. It is a dis-embarkation and embarkation point, a meeting place, a hangout joint, plus the starting point of any procession in the town. It is also the place you start your journey from to discover yourself, your quest for your still centre, your nirvana.
You may complete all the must-see and must-do places of Dharamshala and of McLeod Ganj in a 2 nights 3 days package. Or you may rest here for a lifetime discovering inner peace, tranquility and happiness. As you stand at the square of Dharamshala and watch the other tourists rushing from one spot to another, you cannot help but marvel at the serenity on the faces of the red and ochre-coloured monks lost in their individual still centres. It is this incongruity, this dichotomy, this strangeness that is so telling. You may choose one or the other. Or better still, mix and match!
There is a 10 kms bus road that separates Dharamshala (1380 m; 4527 feet) and McLeod Ganj (1770 m; 5807 feet) besides a 7 kms steep light-vehicle road between these two places. However, the difference in altitude between these two stations is one of T-shirts and woollies. It is advisable to carry light woolies when you go up to the place chosen by the His Holiness the Dalai Lama for his people to live in exile. Established by the British as a hill station in the mid-19th century, McLeod Ganj is named after the-then Governor of Punjab, David McLeod. The town was abandoned after the major earthquake of 1905 till HH the Dalai Lama led his people here to live in exile in 1959, turning it into the ‘little Lhasa’. The best way to see either of the towns is on foot, unless you want to travel between the two.
- Pros:Tranquillity Personified by the Dhauladhar Range
- Cons:Chaos of Tourists
- In a nutshell:Great for a quick getaway
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