Story by Srishti Jha
Srishti introduces Vagobond readers to the beauty and wonders of Palampur, India.
I had a wonderful trip to Palampur last month. I went with my friends and two teachers from my college in Delhi.
The picturesque valley of Palampur is located in the Kangra region of Himachal Pradesh, a hilly state in India. Palampur is a famous hill town and once constituted a section of Jalandhara kingdom.
This beautiful hill town is very famous for its Kangra tea. The major attraction of Palampur recognized throughout the world is the famous Kangra tea. Kangra tea is herbal and known for its distinctive flavor.
Our trip covered Palampur and the Kangra Valley, places near Palampur, the tea estates, and Mcleod Ganj.
Our flight left us at Gaggal airport early in the morning. Gaggal is 35 kilometers away from Palampur. From there, we took a bus to Palampur. This journey was breathtaking as we could view beautiful snow covered mountains on both sides of the road. On the way, we also visited the famous Buddha waterfall. It is a very thin streak below the rocks, however in the rainy season, the Buddha waterfall swells and roars like thunder.
After reaching our hotel, we enjoyed local dishes for breakfast and were rejuvenated with new energy. From there, we took a bus to reach the Kangra Tea factory where we saw the entire process of making tea.
After the tea factory, we visited a famous artist’s house in Andretta. His name was Shobah Singh and his paintings beautifully depict mesmerizing scenes of the Dhouladhar mountain range.
We went to Baijnath Temple, which has archaeological as well as religious importance. It is believed that Ravana, a character of the famous epic Ramayana worshiped Lord Shiva in this temple. Baijnath temple is considered to be is one of the ‘Twelve ‘Jyotirlingams’ [Lord Shiva’s place] & the Shivratri Festival is celebrated here.
It was evening by the time we finished visiting the temple and so we returned to the hotel to rest. The next day, we started toward Taragarh Palace. Muslims used this place to propagate Islamic principles and in 1933, the ‘Nawab of Bhavalpur’ had built a palace there, which is called Alhilal.
The palace was used as warehouse until 1949 and then it was converted into Motel Taragarh Palace after India’s independence.
We also went to Bir, while returning from Palampur. It is a unique place for paragliding. There are many Buddhist monasteries. Beautiful Tibetan handicrafts were available near monasteries. I bought a small purse and few mementos to cherish the memory of this wonderful trip.
Srishti Jha inherited the passion of writing and lives in Delhi. Srishti writes “I want to tell people to love nature and do not spoil it. I love traveling and writing. I love adventure sports too. Whenever I am free, I go for a tour. Next year I am planning a trip to South India and Shirdi in Maharashtra. Shirdi is a religious place and the famous Sai Temple is located there.