Places to Visit in Mandi, Himachal Pradesh, India
Formerly known as Mandav Nagar, Mandi is a city in Mandi district in Himachal Pradesh which is about 153 kms from state capital Shimla. The city was established in the year 1527 and covers a total area of 23 sq kms located at an altitude of 3425 feet above sea level. The literacy rate of Mandi is 83% and Hindi form the most popular spoken language of the people living in Mandi. Mandi comes under Mandi Lok Sabha Constituency and coordinates with 31.42’25” degree North Latitude and 76.55’54” degree East Longitude. The Postal Code of Mandi is 175001.
Meaning and History of Mandi:
As per Indian mythology, sage Mandav performed aggressive penance in this area due to which the rocks present in the area used to turn black due to severe penance. Thus the place came to be called as Mandi in due course of time.
Mandi was to be a princely state during 1200 A.D. which was found by Bahu Sen but it was Ajbar Sen who actually discovered the historical city of Mandi in the year 1526 A.D. Mandi was ruled by Maharaja Ranjit Singh in 1839, but soon after his death Mandi became a part of the British rule.
Tourist attractions in and near Mandi:
This is a tiny village near Mandi known for paragliding and other adventure activities. One can also notice Chauntra Valley has small Tibetan settlement, Tibetan University and a Monastery which makes the place a major tourist attraction.
Rewalsar Lake is located at an altitude of 1350 meters above sea level which consists of 3 shrines namely, a Hindu temple, a Buddhist monastery and a Sikh Gurudwara. Rewalsar Lake also provides as a major picnic spot for the tourists.
The garden is famous for its lush greenery and provides spectacular view of the hills and the valleys located in Mandi. The garden has a pagoda type structure clock tower which forms a major attraction for the visitors.
This temple represents Shiva in half man and half women posture and such kind of temples are very few to be found in India. It is a one of the holy sites in Mandi which draws huge devotees during Mahashivatri.
Bhima Kali Temple:
The temple is situated on the banks of river Beas and is dedicated to mother goddess Bhimakali who is the main deity of this temple. There is also a large museum in the premises of the Bhimakali temple.
Due to settlement of large population of Buddhist in this part of the region, there are many monasteries located near Mandi out of which Bir Monastery is the most noted monastery in Mandi that is visited by large number of people. The monastery exhibits Buddhist paintings, carvings and is known for its excellent masterpiece work.
This temple is known for the deity of lord Shiva who is worshipped with true faith and devotion by the locals of Mandi. The deity in this temple has 5 faces hence it is called as Panchavaktra which attracts many devotees and locals all round the year.
The temple was built in the year 1520 by queen Sultan Devi and is known for its excellent architecture and craftmanship. The main deity of this temple is lord Triliknath, also known as lord Mahesh.
Shimla is known for hill stations, ice-skating, snowfalls, skiing and monasteries is about 153 kms away from Mandi.
Kotli is an important pilgrimage center in Mandi famous for several temples dedicated to lord Shiva, Janitri Devi, Nagini Devi temple and Maha Dev temple.
Sundar Nagar is located near to Mandi known for ancient temples and pilgrimage centers situated atop the hill.
Tattapani is located at a height of 655 meters on the banks of river Sutlej that consists of hot springs said to possess medicinal properties. Tattapani is also well known for rafting, fishing and trekking.
Barot is famous for ideal picnic spot situated near Summer Palace of the Mandi kings. It is renowned for breeding ground of trout fishes. One can also undertake rafting, trekking and fishing in Barot.
Karsog is located 350 meters above sea level well known for apple orchards and valleys which is a major tourist hub in Mandi.
Chindi is situated on the Karsog valley bound by mountains, hills, forests consisting of pine, deodar trees and apple orchards. Chindi is also famous for rugs and handicrafts items.
Shikari Devi Temple:
The temple is located at a height of 3359 meters above sea level overlooking the Shikari mountain ranges dedicated to goddess Shikari Devi bound by thick forests, gorges, snow clad peaks and rivers.
Nargu Wildlife Sanctuary:
This wildlife sanctuary is located on the banks of river Uhl where the tourists can have a close view of many endangered species and vulnerable animals moving around freely within the sanctuary.
How to reach Mandi in Himachal Pradesh?
Mandi is connected by National Highway 20 and National Highway 21 that provides easy access to this place via road. Shimla is about 153 kms and New Delhi is approx 475 kms from Mandi. Frequent bus services are available from Mandi to New Delhi and Shimla. The nearest railway station from Mandi is Jogindernagar Railway Station which is approx 50 kms from the town of Mandi. The nearest airport is Bhuntar Airport which is approx 75 kms from town of Mandi.
Best Time to visit Mandi:
Mandi can be visited all round the year i.e. during summer, monsoons and even during winter months. As the place remains cool during summer many people visit Mandi to beat the city heat. Mandi can also be ideally visited during winters because the area receives snowfalls which attract many visitors during this point of time.
Hotels in Mandi:
Being a popular tourist destination in Himachal Pradesh, Mandi offers good standard accommodation facilities for the tourists visiting the place all round the year. The hotel rates vary from Rs. 600 onwards for single bed accommodation and goes up to Rs. 1000 for double bed accommodation. Some hotels also provide services like doctors on call, arrange for ticket bookings, set up help desks and travel desks, laundry services etc. List of some of the hotels located in and near Mandi are:
- Hotel Raj Mahal Palace
- Standard Hotel Restaurant & Bar
- Hotel River Bank
- Hotel Regent Palms
- Tourist Inn Hotel
- Hotel Dear & Dears
- Hotel Mamleshwar
- Hotel City Heart