8 Best Places To Visit In Khajjiar

One of the most beautiful destinations in Himachal Pradesh, Khajjiar is often referred to as the mini-Switzerland of India. It is known for its picture-perfect grassy meadows and pristine lake sitting amidst the meadows. Khajjiar’s unexplored roads and destinations make it seem almost untouched by tourists and add to its enchanting solitary atmosphere. Apart from its obvious scenic beauty, the small town offers explorers moments of adrenaline rush with adventure sports like paragliding, zorbing, and horse-riding. So for your trip to mini-Switzerland, we bring you the 8 best places to visit in Khajjiar.

Best Places To Visit In Khajjiar

  1. Khajjiar Lake
  2. Kalatop Wildlife Sanctuary
  3. Kailash Villages
  4. Panch Pandav Tree
  5. Khajji Nag Temple
  6. Dainkund Peak
  7. Tibetan Handicrafts Center
  8. Lord Shiva Statue

1.Khajjiar Lake

Located in the Chambal district, the pristine Khajjiar Lake is perched on a massive height of 1920 meters and presents a picture-perfect bird's eye view of the surrounding valley. The crystal-clear waters of the lake sparkle against the blue of the sky, reflecting the picturesque image of the evergreen mountains and silver clouds. Khajjiar lake transports you to a different place altogether with the sounds of the chirping of birds, sun rays dancing on the water, and an emerald blanket of cedar trees!

A major attraction of the place is the floating island in the middle of the lake, which is actually a cluster of grass growing on the lake’s surface. And if you’re lucky and blessed with a clear sky, then you might also be able to catch a glimpse of the majestic Mount Kailash from here! You can enjoy a visit to Khajjiar Lake like a walk across the enchanting landscape at sunrise or sunset. And if you’re an adventurous spirit, then you can partake in paragliding and horse riding activities.

Also Read: Top 7 Things To Do In Himachal

Timings: The best time to visit the lake is during the day, as the light is perfect for photography.

Entry Fees: There are no entry fees to enjoy the beautiful lake.

Things To Do: Zorbing, paragliding, horse riding, and trekking by the lake can satisfy the hunger of the adventure junkies. The lake offers an enthralling scenic view which is perfect for photography.

Best Places To Visit In Khajjiar

2.Kalatop Wildlife Sanctuary

The sanctuary is also called the Kalatop Khajjiar Sanctuary and is located in the picturesque, hilly district of Chamba in Himachal Pradesh. The name Kalatop means ‘black cap’, which refers to the thick, evergreen forest cover that looks almost black on top of the mountain. The sanctuary is covered in thick deodar foliage and is home to a plethora of wildlife. The snow-capped mountains give way to gurgling streams that add to the sanctuary's ecosystem.  And with the persistent veil of mist and fog, the forests look like a mystical fairyland straight out of a book!

The forest has remained pristine, with a surplus wildlife population like the Himalayan black bear, pheasants, leopards, deer, black-headed jay, Himalayan black marten, and jackal to name a few. The Chamba Dam and Chamera reservoir on River Ravi is located a few kilometers from the sanctuary and adds to the rich flora and fauna of the area. The well-laid-out trekking and hiking trails throughout the sanctuary make for a great nature walk. The most favorable time to visit is between March and October, as you can enjoy the snow-capped mountains of the Pir Panjal range, the thick cover of the forests, and the exotic wildlife at its best!

Timings: The timings of the sanctuary are 7 am to 6 pm.

Entry Fees: This beautiful sanctuary has a minimal entry fee of INR 250,

Things To Do: Trekking, wildlife safari, picnics, bird-watching, photography.

Also Read: 5 National Parks in North India to Visit During Covid

Best Places To Visit In Khajjiar

3.Kailash Villages

Resting at the foothills of the famous Kailash Parbat are some quaint and picturesque villages, collectively known as the Kailash Villages. These little villages are some of the best places to visit in Khajjiar and to get a full experience of traditional country life. The charming little huts with sloping roofs covered in snow, nestled among apple orchards against the majestic backdrop of the snow-covered mountains are truly a view out of postcards. The villages provide a tranquil set-up for soul-searchers and individuals looking for some solitude.

Villages like Rota and Ladi are some of the most wonderful villages offering clear views of Mount Kailash, bright green slopes, and snow-capped peaks. Kailash Parbat, whose massive snow-clad peak is visible from a few locations in India, is believed to be the abode of Lord Shiva. To further add to the charm of the villages, one can find a variety of finger-licking dishes in the local cuisine, which is a true embodiment of the earthy and rejuvenating landscape. The Kailash Villages are a great location for nature photographers and artists looking for inspiration, as it showcases the beautiful amalgamation of human lifestyle and scenic landscape.

Timings: There are no timings to visit these beautiful hamlets.

Entry Fees: No entry fees.

Things To Do: The villages are ideal for peace seekers and photographers but the adventure junkies can also find activities to enjoy like cycling and mountain biking.

Best Places To Visit In Khajjiar

4.Panch Pandav Tree

In Khajjiar, nature does not fall short to provide astonishing views and the Panch Pandav Tree is one such miraculous sight. The exquisite tree is located amidst the lavish, green coniferous forest of Khajjiar. You must be wondering why a tree is one of the places to visit in Khajjiar. Well, the tree gained its glory due to the uniqueness of possessing six shoots only. It is a deodar tree with a common root but has a base split into six parts or six shoots. The tree holds religious significance to the locals and is worshiped by them.

According to folklore, it is believed that the Pandavas took shelter nearby during their exile. The local inhabitants coined the term Panch Pandav Tree as they believe that the five branches represent the five Pandavas and the sixth shoot symbolizes their wife, Draupadi. It is further believed that for the betterment of the earthbound beings, the Pandavas and Draupadi left their souls on earth even after attaining incarnation.

But this is not the only tree with several shoots in Khajjiar. A few kilometers further you can also locate the Mother Tree with 13 shoots, which is believed to be the mother of the Panch Pandav Tree.

Timings: The daytime is recommended as it offers the best light for photography and exploration.

Entry Fees: No entry fees.

Things To Do: Photography, sightseeing, picnic.

5.Khajji Nag Temple

Khajjiar is famous for the Khajji Naga Temple, which is located near the popular Khajjiar Lake. The temple dates back to the 12th century AD and is dedicated to Naga - the Lord of Serpents. It is decked with a golden dome and spire and you will always find numerous idols of snakes here. The dome-shaped temple is made up of limestone slates coming from the local quarries. The Nag temple has a perfect blend of Mughal and Hindu styles of architecture which is reflected in the wooden carvings on the ceilings and wooden posts.

The inner sanctum of the shrine depicts the epic battle between the Pandavas and Kauravas during Mahabharata. The walls and ceiling showcase images and carvings representing the Kauravas who were defeated by the Pandavas. The Khajji Nag Temple showcases Pahari-style architecture with slanted rooftops that extend over the veranda as well. Furthermore, the paintings of the five Pandavas are also Pahari-style, showcasing the use of contrasting colors and large, almond-shaped eyes. Other than the Naga shrine, the temple also has adjoining shrines of Lord Shiva and Goddess Hadimba.

Timings: The temple does not have specific timings and can be visited anytime throughout the day.

Entry Fees: There are no entry fees to visit the temple.

Things To Do: Worship, horse-riding, meditation, photography.

Also Read: Traveling To Himachal During Covid

6.Dainkund Peak

The Dainkund Peak is one of the most visited places in the Dalhousie district and is located at an altitude of 2755 meters. The winding trails and routes to the top of the hill are perfect for trekking and hiking. This whole stretch is full of natural beauty that gives a completely different experience to the hikers. Although trekking is the most commonly enjoyed activity in this area, a lot of people come here to enjoy the calm and peaceful surroundings.

The view of Khajjiar Lake from Dainkund is a photographer’s dream to capture. With the tall and beautiful Deodar trees, calm forests, colorful flowers, and green valleys, it comes as no surprise that people are fond of this place. The top of the peak offers a 360-degree view of the entire valley and provides a superb picture of the lush green trees and tranquil mountains. This place is also popular for its colorful flower valleys that seem alive and even more beautiful during the rainy season. This peak is sometimes called the “Singing Hill” because of the whistling sounds the cool breeze makes as it passes by the hill.

Timings: Visiting this location during the daytime is favorable.

Entry Fees: No entry fees.

Things To Do: Trekking, sightseeing, photography, camping.

Also Read: Trekking In India During Covid

7.Tibetan Handicrafts Center

The Tibetan Handicrafts Center in Khajjiar is a must-visit if you want to shop for exquisite carpets and colorful wall-hangings. This center is located at a distance of 2 kilometers from Dalhousie. It is the most suited place to purchase traditional artifacts that show the efficiency of Tibetan craftsmen. The emporium is run by Tibetans and displays various types of ornaments, mementos, and goods.

One of the famous things about this center is the exquisite assembly of Tibetan carpets, lovely mattresses, and vintage handlooms. With a plethora of options to choose from, shopping here is a pure delight. And when shopping gets you hungry, you can indulge in a quick bite of the famous hot momos and spicy noodles that are a specialty of the Tibetan Market.

The busy and vibrant center is a major attraction of Khajjiar, and it is ideal to be traversed on foot, for a truly local experience. Going on a vacation means bringing back souvenirs for family and friends, and the handicraft center offers a plethora of options for the same.

Timings: The center is open between 9:30 am - 10 pm.

Entry Fees: There are no entry fees.

Things To Do: Shopping, indulging in the local cuisine, photography.

Best Places To Visit In Khajjiar

8.Lord Shiva Statue

The colossal Shiva statue is a brilliant example of a human marvel, standing tall at an astounding height of about 85 ft., and is the tallest statue in Himachal Pradesh. The statue is said to have been built with the support of past rulers to urge the god for the kingdom’s prosperity and to receive his blessings. Completely made of copper, the statue glistens when the sun rays fall on it. The copper statue stands in stark contrast to the lush green backdrop of pine and deodar trees.

Apart from the belief that the statue was built to bring blessings from Lord Shiva, there are other folk tales and anecdotes associated with the statue. It is said that once you visit the statue and the Shiva sanctuary located in the vicinity, then the entirety of your desires will work out as expected.

When you look at the breath-taking beauty of the valley, lush green meadows, and the pristine lake, the photographer in you is bound to awaken! And whether you’re religious or not, a spiritual belief or not, the location’s panoramic view and mythological ties will make it one of the best places in Khajjiar for you.

Timings: You can visit the statue between 9 am and 6 pm.

Entry Fees: There are no entry fees.

Things To Do: Photography, worshiping, sightseeing.

Best Places To Visit In Khajjiar

Summing Up

Khajjiar is a beautiful amalgamation of stunning scenery, unexplored territories, mythological beliefs, and a whole lot of adventure activities. Nestled among the thick carpet of pine trees and snow-crested mountains are some of the best places to visit in Khajjiar, waiting to be explored. So, start planning your next trip to this quaint hilly town to quench your thirst for adventure and solace.

FAQs

Is Khajjiar Worth Visiting?

While it is a tiny hill town, Khajjiar packs a punch in terms of adventure, nature, and culture, making it worth a visit while vacationing in the Himalayas. Khajjiar is famous for the popular Khajji Naga shrine and the Khajji Lake as well.

Why Is Khajjiar Called Mini Switzerland?

The then Vice Chancellor of Switzerland during his visit to India called Khajjiar the 'mini-Switzerland'. The comparison came into his mind due to the striking topographical resemblance of the place with Switzerland.

Which Is The Best Time To Visit Khajjiar?

The best time to visit Khajjiar is between October and March. You can enjoy the cool climate and blooming valleys during the summer months, or enjoy the beautiful snowfall and the snow-capped mountains during the winters.

Which Movie Was Shot In Khajjiar?

The iconic film ‘Kuch Kuch Hota Hai’ shot its summer camp scenes in this breathtaking destination. Also, another film called 'The Blue Umbrella' was shot here.

Does Khajjiar Have Snowfall?

Winters in Khajjiar transform this pretty little town into a winter wonderland as the region encounters heavy snowfall starting from the month of December itself until February-end.

How Many Days Are Enough For Khajjiar?

Khajjiar can easily be covered in 2 to 3 days, giving you enough time to space out your exploration and not rush through the sightseeing.

How Far Is Khajjiar From Dalhousie?

Khajjiar is 20 km from Dalhousie. You can reach Dalhousie by road, which would take up to an hour.

How To Reach Khajjiar?

You can reach Khajjiar either by road, rail or flight. Khajjiar is well connected by road to all the major places in Himachal Pradesh. Pathankot is the nearest railhead at a distance of 118 km. Gaggal airport in Dharamsala is the nearest airport at a distance of 122 km.