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Sightseeing in McLeod Ganj

  • Bhagsu waterfall – 20 minutes walk from McLeod is a stunning waterfall with beautiful views of the valley around. You can stop for a drink and admire the views if you wish.
  • Triund – 2 – 4 hours depending on age and fitness. Close to the snow capped Dhauladhar range of mountains, you will get panoramic views of the Dharamshala valleys and mountains below. A favourite with trekkers. Limited accomodation and food is available. Many people choose to camp and bring their own food. Bring all weather clothes if camping is your choice. During the monsoon, (July – Sept.) and in the winter months, weather conditions change quickly so assessing safety is a must at this time.
  • The Main Temple and The Dalai Lama’s Residence – 10 minutes walk from McLeod Ganj. You can take a serene morning or evening walk around the temple and residence. Tibetans call this ‘Ling Kor’- a place for circumnabulation with beautiful views of the Dharamshala area. You can see many traditional Buddhist stupas and prayer flags fluttering. At the main temple you can meditate while listening to monks chanting from 6-8am and in the evening you can watch the monks debate between 4 -7pm. There are wonderful statues of Buddha, Chenrezig and Guru Rinpoche (Padmasambhava) in the main temple alongside many Buddhist scriptures. You are unable to visit the Dalai Lama’s residence for security reasons unless the Dalai Lama is giving a public audience in the residence grounds.
  • The Tibetan Museum – The Tibetan Museum is within the temple area and has a very well presented permanant display of pictures depicting Tibet’s recent history. They also have frequent visiting displays. Open 10am – 6pm Tues – Sunday.
  • The Tibetan Library- 15 minutes walk. Two Geshes (Doctors in Buddhism) give teachings Mon – Friday, 9- 10 and 11- 12pm; the Dharma class at 11 has an excellent English translator. Between Dharma classes, 10 – 11 you can study the Tibetan language. There is also a small museum here and a good bookshop. There is a small monthly fee for attendance at classes. Enquire at the office: 222467
  • GU-CHU-SUM – 5 minutes from main square. Established in 1991, Gu Chu Sum provides support to ex-political prisoners and their families. There is a permanent photographic exhibition hall here where you can learn more about Tibet’s history under the Chinese occupation.
  • Norbulingka Institute – 20 mins from Dharmashala bus station + 15 min walk, or 20 minutes from McLeod in a taxi. Norbulinka Institute promotes and preserves Tibetan traditional arts and culture as well as offering apprenticeships at both degree level and for craftspersons. You can see artists at work on Thangka painting, applique, woodcarving, metalwork and tailoring. The grounds are peaceful and beautiful, a true sanctuary, with Japanese style gardens and water features. The temple is also stunning with a giant statue of Buddha and many beautiful frescoes. High quality food is available at the restaurant and you can also stay at the hotel for a price. Make sure you take a bit of extra cash as it is a little more pricey than usual for India though the quality is high. Bring mosquito repellent!

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