Manali is famous for adventure sports like skiing, hiking, mountaineering, paragliding, rafting, trekking, kayaking, and mountain biking. Yak skiing is a sport unique to this area. Manali also featured in Time magazine's "Best of Asia" for its "Extreme Yak Sports". Manali also offers hot springs, religious shrines and Tibetan Buddhist temples.
Manali has become a favorite destination for honeymooners since the last few years. Statistics show that around 550 couples reach Manali daily for honeymoon in season (May, June, December, January) and around 350 couples reaches Manali daily in rest time.
Manali is known for its shiny gompas or Buddhist monasteries. With the highest concentration of Tibetan refugees in the entire Kullu valley, it is famous for its Gadhan Thekchhokling Gompa, built in 1969. The monastery is maintained by donations from the local community and through the sale of hand-woven carpets in the temple workshop. The smaller and more modern Nyingmapa Buddhist Gompa stands nearer the bazaar, in a garden blooming with sunflowers.
Manali is administratively a part of the Kullu district, with population of approx. 30,000. The small town was the beginning of an ancient trade route to Ladakh and, from there, over the Karakoram Pass on to Yarkand and Khotan in the Tarim Basin.
Manali and the surrounding area is of great significance to Indian culture and heritage as it is said to be the home of the Saptarshi, or Seven Sages.
How to Reach Manali
Reach Manali by Air
The nearest airport is at Bhuntar, which is about 50 km (31 mi) from Manali. Currently, Kingfisher Red operates daily nonstop services from Delhi, Air India provides twice a week nonstop services and MDLR Airlines provides services to Delhi six days in a week.
Reach Manali by Train
Manali is not easily approachable by rail. The nearest broad gauge railheads are at Chandigarh - 315 km (196 mi), Pathankot - 325 km (202 mi) and Kalka - 310 km (190 mi). The nearest narrow gauge railhead is at Joginder Nagar - 135 kilometres (84 mi).
Reach Manali by Road
Manali is well connected by road to Delhi through NH-21 and NH 1, which goes on to Leh and is claimed to be world's highest motorable road. Leading up to Manali from New Delhi are the towns of Panipat and Ambala in Haryana, Chandigarh(Union Territory), Ropar in Punjab, and Bilaspur, Sundernagar, and Mandi in Himachal.
Map of Manali
Best Time to Visit Manali
April to June and September to December is the best time to visit Manali.
Places to Visit in Manali
Naggar FortLocated at a distance of 22 km, Naggar makes an ideal getaway from Manali. Besides its natural beauty, the place is also an important pilgrimage site with its Gauri Shankar Temple, the Chatar Bhuj Temple, Tripura Sundri Devi Temple and the Murlidhar Temple. Naggar was the capital of the Kullu Valley during the 16th century. The beautiful castle here, built by the then Kullu ruler, houses a temple in the courtyard with a small museum.
One of the most popular tourist attractions in Manali is the Hadimba Temple. This temple, with a finely wrought four - tiered pagoda roof, dating back to 1553, is built around a natural cave, which enshrines the footprints of the goddess Hadimba. Although carving is simple yet beautiful. This temple was built by Raja Bahadur Singh of Kullu. Every year in May a major festival is organized here. This place is a popular picnic spot among the tourists.
16 km from Manali town at the start of the climb to the Rohtang Pass. If one goes to Marhi on foot from Kothi from the old road, the sight of the falls is fascinating. It is a good picnic spot as well.
Solang valley offers the view of glaciers and snow capped mountains and peaks. It has fine ski slopes. The Mountaineering Institute has installed a ski lift for training purpose. The 12-km hike up the western banks of the Beas to the Solang Valley is noteworthy.
13 kms outside Manali is the Solang Valley, offering spectacular views of the snow-clad mountains and the glaciers all around. Solang is the venue for the annual skiing courses.
Located at a distance of 86 km from Manali, Manikaran is another mythological as well as religious site to visit from Manali. The name of the place is derived from the words, 'mani' (meaning jewel) and 'karan' (meaning ears). According to a legend, fascinated by its beauty, Lord Shiva and Parvati decided to stay here. One day Goddess Parvati lost one of her earrings here and could not find it despite all efforts. This made the Lord angry and He opened his third eye, which resulted in large-scale destruction. The name Manikaran is believed to have its origin in the above legend.
Rohtang Pass is the highest point, 4,112m, on the Manali-Keylong road, 51-km from Manali town. It provides a wide panoramic view of mountains rising far above clouds, which is a sight truly breath-taking. It offers only limited skiing opportunities, but trekking possibilities are immense.
The pass is open from June to September, although trekkers can cross the pass from May. Beyond Rohtang pass lies the remote and, perhaps, the stark and haunting landscape of predominantly Buddhist areas. The comparative inaccessibility of the place has helped preserve the pristine culture of the people of the region.
12 kms from the Manali, Kothi is a place that offers excellent surroundings.Kothi is a quiet but picturesque spot. The slopes above Kothi are a steep one-hour walk up from the road, but there are excellent thermals coming off the rocks and it is a favourite of the local eagles. This place is famous for movie picturisation and resting resort for poets, writers and lovers of peaceful environments.
Nehru Kund6 km. A natural spring of clean cold water named after the late Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru, who used to drink water from this spring during his stay in Manali. It is located on the Manali-Keylong road. This spring is believed to be coming from 'Bhrigu Lake'.
Vasisht Village and Vasisht Temple
Vasisht village is about 3 kms outside Manali. It is famous for its sweeping valley views and its sulphurous hot water spring. The village is considered the epicenter of budget travelers by some (however we would suggest it to be more of a back-packers center).
The village also has some fine shops of Tibetan and Kashmiri arts along with a wide selection of jewelry.
The Vasisht temple stands above the main square in the village and there lies two stoned temples built with elaborate wood carvings. The place also hosts a hot soak bathing pools (separate for men and woman, and of no charge).
Delhi to Manali
By road distance between Delhi to Manali is approximately 520kms.
Road Route: Delhi-Panipat-Ambala-Chandigarh-Roopnagar-Bilaspur-Mandi-Kullu-Manali
Shimla to Manali
By road distance between Shimla to Manali is approximately 250kms.
Chandigarh to Manali
By road distance between Chandigarh to Manali is approximately 350kms.
Adventure Sports In Manali
White Water Rafting In Manali
River rafting is an exciting adventure sport. There is an unmatched thrill of shooting down the rapids. Knowledge of swimming is not necessary but you have to be reasonably fit. The rafting is done on a 9-14 km stretch between Pirdi and Jhidi. Its a full day trip from Manali. Special Cost for bookings made through us will be Rs 300/- per Pax for Full Stretch of 14 kms . One change, towel and bath slippers are required.
Trekking In Manali
There are countless trekking routes in Kullu Valley. Most treks are of 2-10 days duration. However you could initiate yourself in the joys of trekking with a one day trek to Lamadugh. This is a light trek of approximately 6 km which even occasional walkers can enjoy. The cost is approximately Rs. 500/- per pax inclusive of lunch & transport. You must have proper walking shoes, jacket for rain protection and carry water & camera.
Para Gliding In Manali
You can sail high above the ground and see the mountains as never before. Experience the rush of cold air on your face and have a thrill of your life. Guided para gliding can be done from Solang Valley. The cost ranges from Rs. 250/- to 500/- per pax for a 5 to 15 minute flight.
Shopping in Manali
Shopping in Manali is mainly restricted to Tibetan and Kashmiri arts and handicrafts. Manali provides a great souvenir shopping opportunity with its wide variety of local stores selling shawls (Kullu and Kashmiri) and other jewelry and embroidered stuff.
There are wide range of locally made pickles, jams and juices. Natural oil like apricot oil for massages and shampoos are available in the shops on the mall.
Hotels in Manali
Budget Hotels In Manali
Hotel Gilbert Manali
Hotel Monarch Manali
Dream View Resorts Manali
Dream Hotel Manali
Hotel New Gulmarg - Manali
Hotel Ocean Inn
Hotel Rising Star Manali
Hotel Sawan Residency Manali
Paradise Chateau, Manali
Marina Villa, Manali
Morning Star, Manali
Hotel Crystal, Manali
Hotel Solitair, Manali
3 Star Hotels in Manali
Snow Valley Resorts, Manali
Sandhya Palace, Manali
Hotel Sun Park , Manali
Hotel Mountain Top, Manali
Honeymoon Inn, Manali
Royal Park Resort, Manali
Sarovar Portico , Manali
4 Star Hotels in Manali
Quality Inn River Country Resort, Manali
Manali Heights, Manali
Holiday Inn, Manali
5 Star Hotels in Manali
Span Resort, Manali