Blended with the purest form of Buddhist culture and nature’s gift, your trip to Mcleodganj is going to be an unforgettable experience. It is a very famous hill station located at a 9 Km distance from Dharamshala in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh. It is inhabited by Tibetian people mostly as in exile government of Tibet runs from here and this is the reason this hill station is filled with the essence of Buddhist teachings and culture followed by his disciples. Planning a trip to Mcleodganj will not disappoint you, provided you are an adventure and nature lover, and if you enjoy the cross-cultural exploration.
Why McLeodganj is famous–
Because it is a Hill station where one can relax and spend some luxury time with or without family out of stressful life. Also, it is important on the map because the Government in exile of Tibbet or you can say Chief lama has his throne stationed here. Dalai Lama who is presently chief Lama is stationed here, which means a population density of Tibetian people is most as compare to any other part of the country.
The route to reach Mcleodganj:
There are usually two routes which are adopted by travelers to reach McLeodganj:
First one is
while the other one is
How to Reach McLeodganj
You can reach to Mcleodganj by using any convenient medium out of Road/Train/Flight which is best suitable for you to travel.
By Road to McLeodganj
It is the most common medium of transport used by the people, It is about 250 Km from Chandigarh and 485 km from Delhi. It takes about 10-11 hours of journey to reach McleodGanj from Delhi via bus, and there are regular bus services available from Delhi and Chandigarh every day on the route. Luxury and semi-luxury buses are available from both the cities, in fact, buses from Delhi to Mcleodganj comes via Chandigarh only.
By Train to McLeodganj
There is no direct Rail connectivity to McLeodganj through which you can reach your destination. But the nearest railway stations on the narrow gauge are at Kangra and Nagrota which are about 25 km of Mcleodganj while the nearest railhead (Broad Gauge) is at Pathankot which is 95 km from here. Pathankot is well connected to Delhi and Chandigarh through trains on regular intervals. From there, you can catch the bus or taxi easily to reach the destination.
For more information about train timings, you can contact @ 0186-2230175 to Station Superintendent at Pathankot Railway Station.
✈✈By Flight to McLeodganj
Nearest Airport to McLeodganj is Gaggal Aiport situated at Dharamshala, which is at around 10 Km from Mcleodganj. Gaggal Airport is well connected to Delhi and Chandigarh by Air on a regular basis with the services offered by Air India and SpiceJet Airways. Schedule for flights keeps on changing depending on prevailing weather at Dharamshala so it’s better to check prior boarding.
Best Time to Visit McLeodganj:-
McLeodganj can be traveled throughout the year depending on the season you want to enjoy there at Hill station. Best time to spend your precious time in the best manner is:
March to June which is Summer Season here, green and clean nature will be at its best in this season for you to explore the beauty. Adventurous activities like Rafting, Trekking, Paragliding can be enjoyed in this season.
July to September is Monsoon time and in this season hill station receives a lot of rains. So it can be avoided if possible as the roads leading to McLeodganj also become unsafe to travel.
October to February which is Winter Season and you can enjoy chilling cold days and nights here. But as the winter here is a bit harsh so movement and other activities can not be explored in this season.
Time required for McLeodganj:-
The time required to move in and around of Mcleodganj is 3 days in which one day must be kept reserved for Trekking to famous Triund, and if interested in Meditation and Yoga than tour stretches up to 4 days
Places/Things to do in McLeodganj:-
* Bhagsunaag Fall :
It is situated around 3 Km from the city center where you will get a little bit of Trekking exposure plus falls on the way. Avoid slippery stones while going to falls, as the way to reach Bhagsu Naag fall is narrow and it is dangerous for kids and old age peoples. Also if possible then avoid visiting falls during Monsoon time.
* Shiva Cafe
Shiva Cafe is located at around 200 meters from Bhagsu Naag falls on a very narrow branching pathway. It is present at some 100-meter height from the falls where you can enjoy a peaceful time with good snacks and a great view of the city in the background with adorable peaks. Shiva Cafe is a perfect location from where you can have a picturesque view of the hill station.
* Bhagsunaag Temple
Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and Deity Snake with a distance of 1.5 Km from the city center. Road to the Bhagsu Naag falls passes through this temple only and Temple houses a Pond being filled with continuously flowing freshwater from the Falls. The water of the Pond remains always at a very low temperature so one can enjoy swimming in freezing temperatures all the time. Crystal clear water of the pond will give you a nice feeling of nature with the religious mixture.
Triund Trekking is a popular and must-go Trekking destination for each going to Mcleodganj. Triund is 9 Km from the city and if you start your trekking from Dharamshala then the distance will increase to 19 Km. The peak at Triund gives a scenic view of tri-cities i.e Chamba, Mcleodganj, and Dharamshala at night and of Moon peak/Indra pass. Camping at Triund at night in itself is a mesmerizing thing and one must explore that.
Accessories for camping plus Guide can be arranged at the McLeodganj. Alternatively, Tents can be hired for a night at the peak itself but you will be left with no option but to take their price only at peak. It is advisable that, please search for more than 5 agencies for the Trekking budget in the city itself so that trekking can be undertaken at competitive prices for you.
⇔ Please avoid carrying Plastic and Liquor to Triund Peak, because it is we who are responsible for spoiling the beauty of hill station.
⇔ Avoid trekking in Monsoon time as slippery stones can be harmful to the travelers.
⇔ Do not litter at the Peak.
Dharamkot has located 1 km from the city provides a great view of Kangra valley. The village is having natural beauty filled with flowers and the shadow of Triund Hills is also called Yoga Village as Dharamkot has meditation centers where one can release stress using natural meditation. You can go on foot to the village and there is no need to hire a Taxi. If you are interested in meditation then reserve one day must be kept reserved for it.
* Dal Lake
Lake is around 3 Km from the city on some considerable height as compared to the city surrounding by Deodar trees with a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva at the lake. Good spot to trek for a small distance. (can go anytime without any entry fees). One can go by foot and it will take approx 1.5 hours to reach or else has to hire a taxi to reach there. But I will recommend enjoying the nature walk till the lake early morning.
* St. John Church
The Church is situated on road from Dharamshala to Mcleodganj on the right side of the road before entering into Mcleodganj. This neo-gothic architecture was built in 1852 and a quite good place to see once (can be visited from 7AM to 6.30PM on weekdays and 9.00 AM to 6.30 PM on Sunday without any entry fees). Easily approachable via foot and no need to hire Taxi from the city center.
* Norbulingka Institute:
It is at 4 Km from the city and is a perfect place for practicing and fostering Tibetan culture and art. Institute in itself contains Tibetans architecture and design classics. A monastery is a perfect place to enjoy the calmness and serene beauty of Buddhist culture.
* Namgyal Monastery
It is also known as Dalai Lama’s house at 4 Km from the city and has around 200 small to older monks in the house that can be seen easily practicing Buddhism (can be visited between 5 AM to 8.30 PM without any fees). The monastery can be reached by a small walk from the city center and there is no need to hire taxi/Cab for that. The best part of this place is evening religious practice carried out by little monks daily to understand the teachings.
Hotels in McLeodganj:
In the city, you can find the number of Hotels/Guesthouses and can select based on your comfort level. (Must try to reside in Homestay if possible at some distance from the city). I will not recommend names but surely you can check out Good Hotels starting from 5 stars to deluxe one on any of the apps or websites. There are ways how to Book a cheap hotel in any destination and these are quite easy if you can plan the same in advance and if your trip goes as per plan.
There are enough options available for you to reside while planning a trip to Mcleodganj and you can book your stay here. Mcleodganj has enough options to reside and you can book cheap hotels online or offline while payments can be done through all available methods of Plastic money like Credit cards and others. There are many deluxe and luxury hotels also available in close proximity of (within 1 km) where you can choose your stay.
Services Available in McLeodganj
1. Mobile network —— yes of most of the operators
2. Bank/ATM —————-yes
3. Hospital —————— No (but Dharamshala has hospitals which are very near to it and easily approachable in an emergency)
4. Pharmacy/Medicals ——Yes
5. Restaurants ————-Yes
6. Bars —————————Yes Liquor shop is also available
7. Automobile/Vehicle Repair ——Yes
8. Courier facility ——Yes
9. Massage & Spa plus Saloons. ——Yes
10. Police Station ——Yes
11. Parking space —– yes at selected locations
12 Fuel Station —– yes, just 5 km downside
Shopping in McleoDganj:-
The market remains open from 10AM to 9PM mostly and it will take around 3 to 4 hours to explore the market on foot. You can buy Singing bowls, Budhha praying flags, trekking gears, old coins, locally made clothes from the market.
* Local Tibetan Handicraft and art craft designs from Norbulingka Monastery
* Local syle jewelry from Roadside market or Kotwali Bazaar
* Books on Tibetan culture from a local roadside market
Time to eat in Mcleodganj
* Never miss having local foods prepared in the house some of them I can name are –
Thenthuck, Tibetan noodles, and Bread, Momos(must try), Bok Choy soup, Thupka, Vigen food, Falafel.
some of the good restaurants are like Woesers Bakery, Jimmy’s Italian Kitchen, Seed Cafe, Tibetan Kitchen.
🙆🙆Planning a trip of week-long or more than that you can follow–
Chandigarh-Kangra-Mcleodganj- to Dalhousie-Khajjiar-Pathankot-Chandigarh
Nearby Destinations to McLeodganj:-
* Kangra 20 Km
* Dharamshala 09 Km
* Dalhousie 120 Km
* Khajjiar 145 Km
* Palampur 45Km
💭💭Worth to mention (please note):-
* Don’t throw Plastic and spoil the beauty of Hill station
* Please left this beauty for our next generation to enjoy as well
* Carry sufficient Cash in hand which will save you from some situations where no card facility exists
* Try to taste local foods wherever you go
* Be polite with serving staff
* If time and your will permit please help locals to collect garbages thrown over there by visitors like us so that we can think to plan same destination again
If at all somebody is thinking about what to do if stuck midway due to any reason from Chandigarh to Destination then let me assure you that there are enough staying options available on road till your destination.
💘💘At the end don’t forget
* To take your Camera + addition batteries + memory cards to allow you to capture memorable moments forever without any glitches.
* Wherever need please hire local guides
* Try to enjoy the time there and don’t just keep clicking images unnecessary.