Situated in the outskirts of Dharamshala, Mcleodganj is one of its own kind of destination. Mountains are not the only attraction, but the feeling of being in an open land is something that I would die for. A place is defined by its people, and Mcleo people are one of the most beautiful people I have come across. Walk in to any shop or bump in to any stranger at any time of day and ask for help, and you won’t be disappointed.
How to reach
Not many options to reach these holy mountains.
Bus– Take any bus from Delhi/Chandigarh or any other place from where you are coming and reach Dharamshala Bus depot. Platform Number 21 at ISBT Kashmere gate is somewhere you will get to board your bus.
There is only one direct AC bus from Delhi to Mcleodganj per day for which it will always be difficult to find tickets, so if you are planning your trip in advance, then go for this one.
HRTC (AC) bus from Delhi to Dharamshala will be available at Rs 838 per person. And now you have 2 options:
- From the platform number 1 at the bus depot, bus to Mcleodganj will be available every 30 minutes.
- 500 mtrs away from the bus depot towards the BP petrol pump, there you will find some of the taxis, and basically they will also take you through the same route. It will be a congested 13 seat “Force” car.
Both these options will cost only Rs 15 per person. And online booking sucks, so prefer going to the Kashmere gate to book for the tickets.
Taxi/Private Car– live by your own rules, take your car to wherever you want to, go for your own or private vehicle. Though it will be expensive but you will enjoy a lot.
What all to carry
Now this depends on at what time of the year are you visiting the place, but there will difference for only few of the things. Apart from basic stuff like camera, cell phone and basic clothes this a small list of stuff to carry:
- Bag– preferably a back pack, since you will have to walk from the depot or otherwise.
- Woolen clothes– even in the peak summer months, this place will make you shiver at night, so it is better if you take along few woolen clothes. Quantity and type of woolen clothes depend upon your fashion sense and time of the year.
- Towel– Mcleodganj is not a fancy place when it comes to hotels, and definitely in case you are reading this article you are a backpacker. So do carry a towel because cheap hotels won’t provide you with one.
- Clothes– don’t forget to take a pair of shorts in case you are travelling in summer time (which would be the case in most of the times). And some cool t-shirts will be awesome thing to carry.
- Power bank– you can’t rely on electricity in Mcleodganj, and I am sure falling short to capture pictures because of less battery will be a trip spoiler.
- Cash– Dont rely on the ATMs there, and do carry necessary cash, and it would be suggested to carry more cash than you think would be required. You might want to shop a little.
Places to visit
- Monastery– If you are a soul in search of peace, you will find heaven here.
- Shiva Café– Being the oldest café’ in the vicinity, located 4Km uphill from the market area, it becomes a must visit for good food as well as awesome Hookas. And plus it is a not very expensive place.
- Bhagsu-nag waterfall– situated 1 Km below the Shiva Café is this beautiful waterfall. Basically the route is the same, from a part you take a detour and reach Shiva Café. Pretty awesome pictures in the cold water are waiting for you.
- Triund trek– It is one amazing trek plus. This place will be covered in the next article exclusively.
- Mcllo– At the main chowk Mcllo is the biggest restaurant you will notice, and enter the plce for amazing food.
- Quality bakery– a very small outlet on the Jogiwara Road and it will fill your stomach with its awesome cakes. My suggestion- OLD MONK cake and I bet you won’t be able to stop at one.
- Carpe-diem– Again a beautiful restaurant on the Jogiwara Road, serving multi-cuisine at its best.
There are many other places, and in fact every restaurant serves you amazing food. In the next issues we will talk exclusively about different restaurants.
Stay tuned for more on Mcleodganj!