Manali has long been the preferred holiday spot of North India’s privileged crowd.
Here are ten reasons why it’s much loved by them, as well as the numerous ex-pats, adrenaline junkies and families that climb up to its cool altitude.
These are our Manali Things To Do.
1. Enjoy the rapid action
Manali isn’t all about languid rest and replenishment. Plenty of adventure sports are available here for thrill-seekers. One such activity is white water rafting. During summers, you can arrange a ride down the rocky rapids of River Beas for the thrill of a lifetime.
2. Sledge and ski Rohtang Pass
This is the most popular day tour from Manali. It’s a snow-clad region where hundreds of people can be seen having snowball fights, making snowmen, sledding and more. It’s also a lot of fun to watch the tourists trying to ski for the first time and falling on their faces. A little mean but fun nonetheless.
3. Feel the wind beneath wings
On your way to Rohtang Pass, you’ll come across lots of people enjoying paragliding. You can be one of them by arranging a paragliding experience with the professionals who work there. The ride doesn’t often last long, but is fun and gives you a beautiful bird’s eye view of Manali’s lush landscape.
4. Rest and relax
Manali’s hot water springs are essentially made of hot sulphur water, which helps relax your muscles and are believed to cure many skin diseases. A dip in your personal chamber isn’t going to cost a lot. So bring your bathing suits.
5. Bow your head
The Hidimba temple is one of the most revered religious spots in Manali for Hindus. It is dedicated to Hidimba Mata, one of the most influential female characters in the Mahabharata. Other than this important temple, plenty of beautiful monasteries are speckled all over Manali. If you plan your trip to coincide with the festival of Dussehra, you might catch the famous Kullu Dusshera – a great parade of deities – at its best.
6. Play dress up
At most tourist spots you will have the chance to dress up in traditional folk attire and get a photo. The clothes can be rented for a small amount and the photograph is often handed to you within minutes.
7. Go rock climbing
The temptation of taking on the mighty Himalayas attracts a lot of rock climbing enthusiasts to the area. But for those who want to enjoy a light-hearted version of the adventure sport, there are plenty of companies who will take good care of you with something for beginners.
8. See the glaciers of Solang Valley
The famed Solang Valley is a great place near Manali from where you can see beautiful glaciers and snow-clad mountains. You can reach its ski point using the ski lift. Even if you don’t ski, the journey will afford you unforgettable vistas of the region.
9. Soak up the Old Town atmosphere
If you’re looking to hang out with the elite crowd of Manali and not the usual tourists, then Old Manali is where you should head to. Other than the very best cafes, bars and restaurants in Manali, you might even notice a celebrity or two. The eating and drinking places are filled mostly with ex-pats and retired or semi-retired actors, who call this area of Manali home.
10. Finish with a toast
The state of Himachal Pradesh is most famous for its red, juicy apples. And naturally, the apple juice and cider produced here is unmatched by any other brand or place. But for those who prefer their drinks with a bit of a kick, Lugdi and Chhang are the perfect options. These are locally produced alcoholic drinks and have a pretty robust flavor.
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Front page image credit: Virdi
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