About McLeod Ganj
Barely 4 km away from Dharamshala by foot, the hill station of McLeod Ganj is home to many majestic monasteries, delicious smelling kitchen cafes, video rental shops, western food cafes, trekking companies and wall to wall stores selling Tibetan souvenirs and many more goodies. Also known as Little Lhasa and the abode of the Dalai Lama, the Tibetan spiritual influence and its mystical green hills mark McLeod Ganj as a significant tourist destination and a major traveller hang-out in the Kangra Valley. A 5-minute walk south of this town will take one to the Tsuglagkhang Complex, which comprises the official residence of the 14th Dalai Lama, vibrant monasteries with beautiful murals and even a bookshop cafe that goes by the name of Namgyal Gompa. Tourist activity after monsoon picks up, after October, with February March being pleasant months to visit the hill station to witness the Losar Festival or the Tibetan New Year being celebrated. This compact sized town is best explored and enjoyed by walking or trekking. Intriguing short walks around Mcleod Ganj include one that goes 2km east to Bhagsu which leads one to a waterfall and a temple. The most well-known trek, 8 km starting from the town, is to Triund, a snow-flanked and serene camping spot from which one can also travel 5 km ahead to reach a charming little forest rest house. With many many hipster eateries, the food here is some of the best you'll find at any mountain destination.
Best Time To Visit
Best time to visit McLeod Ganj is from March to June
How To Reach
Book a Package Tour
This place can be found in upper Dharamshala and yes it is a very famous tourist spot. Having been named after David McLeod, this place now happens to be the seat and abode of the Dalai Lama on a temporary basis. McLeodganj is also home to an important Tibetan learning centre. The town is also referred to as Little Lhasa and this indicates the Buddhist influence upon the place. The town has a number of temples, edifices, monasteries and spots that make it an important tourist site. If one has a list of things to do in Dharamshala, visiting McLeodganj should be on the very top of it.
Serenity personified is how one would describe Dharamakot. This small town happens to be close to the Bhagsu waterfalls and thus is a place that invariably attracts many western tourists round the year. If rustic charm is what you want then that is what you get here at Dharamkot. There are simple guesthouses where one can stay and they offer just the basic amenities. Home to the famous Tushita Research Centre, this place lies 1457 metres above the sea level. Get there and experience life minus the luxuries and you will see how well you enjoy it.
This is a small region in the McLeod Ganj Region and is known for the effect of Buddhism as well as dalai Lama. The main activvity you can enjoy here is trekking and the climate is rough at times increasing the adventure quotient. This is mainly a monsoon prone area and thus you have to be very careful if you want to trek here.
St. John in the Wilderness
This is an anglic church in the McLeodganj. The church from the outside looks completely abandoned and covered with creepers all along. As you enter it you will find it extremely clean and maintained and thus fully active always. Made in the Gothic form of architecture, it was dedicated to st. John's the Baptist and is a widely visited area here.
The 14th Dalai Lama happens to have the Namgyal Monastery as his residence and is a considered as a centre of learning since its establishment either in 1564 or 1565. It was then called Phende Lekshe Ling and was renamed in 1751 to Namgyal Monastery by Lama Gyalwa Sonam Gyatso, the third Dalai Lama. This was done to honour the Goddess Namgyalama. The Tibetan Uprising of 1959 caused the place to be relocated to where it now stands. The Namgyal Monastery is home to 200 monks that are from the four main monastic lineages of Buddhism. The place takes care of an eldery home in Shimla and as well as a temple n Kushinagar.
St. John Church
The board outside the church claims that this is one of the oldest Anglican Church in India, built in 1852 and dedicated to John the Baptist. The surrounding Deodar forest and the Belgian stained glass windows add to the architecture of the church. Buried in the graveyard right behind the church are the British Residents. History: in 1905, the bell tower and spire of the church were destroyed due to earthquake, while the structure survived. Ten years later, a new bell was brought from England and installed in the compound of the church.
The Clay Oven Restuarant
Clay oven is a quiet café located just 100 m from Mall Square on the Dharamkot Road. This place is a hidden treasure with down to earth staff and very relaxed seating. They have their own WiFi like other restaurants, and one can just sit and relax endlessly in this café. In a span of 2 days ended up here more than three times at different times. The rates are super economical, and the quantity is more than justified.ThukpaUndoubtedly the best thukpa in town. The serving was more than generous. The taste was spot on and didn't need to add anything else to make it better. The best part about thukpa is that it fills up your stomach fast and at the same time gives nutrition as well as it has a lot of veggies in it.Cheese Omelet with Tibetan BreadWe had a hearty breakfast here with Cheese Omelet, Peach Tea, Oreo Shake, and Tibetan Bread with peanut butter on our table. Indeed, it was a King style breakfast. Breakfast in Clay Oven should definitely be on every foodie to do list.Carpediem
Had the best Pizza of my life in this place. The seating is very relaxed, and people from different countries and background were sitting, enjoying and having a hell of a time. The French fries is also a big hit in this place. Turned up here and had pizza and thukpa as well. The thukpa was not that good as compared to Clay Oven, but the Pizza was simply the best. The yummy taste still lingers in my mouth.Tibet Kitchen
Dragon I Resorts
This hotel was a tiny place in Mcleodgunj where we stayed on the day that we travelled from Chandigarh to here. The place was very convenient and cheap to stay at. The food is sumptuous and they also further guide you as to where and how one must travel in and around the city.
Also known as the Namgyal Gompa, this is the most important Buddhist worship and chanting center outside tibet. The monastery looks extremely simple from outside and has nothing to fancy at all. As soon as you enter this place, you will find a number of paintings, murals and structures inside on the walls. The moastery is mainly famous for their Kora rituals. It is opened for the public to come and meditate or chant during the whole day. the residential areas are however not accessible by the tourists.
Tibetan Institute Of Performing Arts
Founded by Tenzing Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama after he came back from exile in Tibet in 1959, this is an ideal place to know more about Tibetian Culture. This was set up as the Dance, Drama and Music Society whose aim was to preserve and conserve the rich culture of the Tibetans. The Opera Shows in this place are a great attraction for all tourists apart from all other Tibetan exhibits showcased here.
8 Auspicious Him View Hotel
In the McLeodganj region of Himachal, this is a hotel on a peak of a hill. The rooms are small but the cleanliness is remarkable. The environment is homely and the staff looks after the guests very well. The food and other facilities are good too. Standing on the terrace, you get a lovely view of the surrounding sceneries, peaks and ranges.
Tushita Meditation Centre
One can locate this place in McLeodganj and was established in 1972 to cater to a surge in demand by westerners who wish to learn more about the Buddhism. Collaboration between Zopa Lama and Yeshe Lama and some western students led to the birth of this centre at a house in Dharamkot. It was first known as the Tushita Retreat Centre and then as the Tushita Meditation Centre. Since the establishment of the institute there had been no looking back and true to what the name means, its a place of joy and learning about the tenets of Buddhism.
Mcllo Beer Bar and Restaurant
Ahead form here I reached the main square of Mcleodganj decided to take a hault to sip over few beers. Mcllo Bar and Restaurant is one of the oldest and the best café in this city. Highly recommended for its ambience and food. Lots of celebrities and Cricketers have visited this place shows from the posters hung on the walls of café. You get a panoramic view of the city from rooftop. In short, loved the place and it’s a must visit!!!
Common Grounds Cafe
Just off the main square, as the road disperses from commotion of the main square to pedestrian tranquility, there's a cafe called Common Ground. Created with the mission to encourage conversations, particularly among Chinese tourists and Tibetans, the cafe embodies the spirit of millennial Tibetan identity."I still dream of Lhasa", said a man who wound up in the cafe, years after he escaped Tibet as a teenager. Since then, he had been to five countries, lived in France for a year and was now studying to be a monk. I glanced at the beaded bracelet on his wrists. It spelled "Save Tibet". His family still lives in Tibet. I sincerely hoped that he would see them again.