The majestic Dhauladhars, Tibetans roaming around, beautiful monasteries, quaint cafes, and the thrilling adventure is what invite you to Mcleodganj. It’s a place where you can immerse yourself in spirituality, learn about other cultures and religions, and experience the natural beauty of the Himalayas.
The montage of beauty and culture at McLeodganj is equally compelling. The best way to experience the best that Mcleodganj has to offer is to get out and explore. From getting some exercise and fresh air to learning about the history of the area, or just having fun, there are plenty of exciting things to do in Mcleodganj.
There are some great hiking trails in the area, which offer a great way to explore the Himalayas. You can also visit the local markets and shops, which are a great place to experience the local culture. The town offers an array of attractions for both travelers and backpackers.
But wait, once you’ve seen the tried-and-true in this Little Lhasa. What’s next? Don’t worry we’ve got your back. Here are some interesting things to do in Mcleodganj which we’re sure you’ll not regret doing. Come on, lay back, and keep your thumb in action as you read!
Top 10 things to do in Mcleodganj-
1. Visit the monasteries- Mcleodganj is home to some of the most eminent and spiritually significant monasteries in India, including Namgyal Monastery and Tsuglagkhang, where the Dalai Lama resides.
These monasteries are important centers for religious adhesion as well as for thousands of tourists each year who come to learn about the Buddhist and Tibetan cultures and to admire the beauty of the region. So, if you want to gain a firsthand understanding of Tibetan culture visit any of the peace-inducing monasteries in Mcleodganj.
See Buddhist and Tibetan practices, find inner peace, learn about their history, and perhaps even hear a Dalai Lama teach if you are amongst the lucky ones.
2. Cafe hopping-
If you’re a foodie, you’re going to love Mcleodganj more than anything else. First thing first, before hopping onto cafes, let us take you somewhere else. Have you heard of aloo and palak vale momos? Well, Mcleodganj cannot surprise you more!
As you enter the streets of mcleodganj from the one-way route, just a few meters before the mcleow square in the middle of the market stands a sweet lady selling momos. If you’re in Mcleodganj just have them. They are the world’s best momos. By the way, if you still can’t find her, just ask around.
Mcleodganj is filled with cool and chic cafes like Jimmy’s Italian cafe, Seed cafe, Tibet Kitchen, and Namgyal Cafe. Pick any of these cafes, go inside, take a seat and enjoy the food as you hook with the aroma of the cafe. Also, don’t miss out on the small restaurants that serve only Tibetan food. Eat what the locals eat. It’s fun.
3. Shop your heart out-
Shopping is something we can never say no to. On the same page? Mcleodganj’s market has its own charm. Fill in your bags with local souvenirs, which you probably will, because you don’t think twice here.
From jewelry and fashionable clothes to paintings, handicrafts, and home decor, you will find everything here. Additionally, if you want to buy the best Tibetan stuff with a pleasant shopping experience go to Thankas and Gifts, a shop owned by a Belgian lady. You might get the best deal. Don’t forget to do a decent bargain!
What to buy- Tibetan carpets and mats, Kangra tea, silver and stone jewelry, handicrafts and carvings in metal and wood, Mandala paintings and Thangka paintings, woolen shawls, idols of Buddha and Hindu gods, and caps and prayer flags and prayer wheels are the most bought items in McLeod Ganj.
4. Go trekking- Visiting mountains and not climbing them. Does that sound fair? Not at all. Trek and trails here are for everyone. Those who are beginners can go for the famous Triund trek, Bhagsu trek, and Gunna Mata trek.
These all are short hikes, and can easily be covered in one day. Setting up the pace for moderate, there is the Kareri Lake trek, Aadi Himani Chamunda trek, and Indrahar pass trek. So according to your time, health and the most important stamina decide your trek. No matter if it’s a short or a long one, the views from the top are to die for!
5. Camping- It’s obvious to camp if you plan a long trek. Camping is fun. Don’t you think? You get to connect with nature. It’s a wonderful way to spend time with friends, family, Mother Nature, or all three.
Wait! If you don’t wanna trek to camp that’s completely OK! You can have your best experience at campsites in Mcleodganj like Camp off-road, Bhangra campsite, and Camp Dharamshala.
Here luxury meets nature! You’ll be provided with the basic amenities in the tents you prefer to stay in. At night you’ll be under a blanket of stars accompanied by a warm bonfire. Trust us, camping is a one-of-a-kind experience that shouldn’t be missed at all.
6. Attend the Yoga sessions- Travelers can find a variety of yoga learning centers that offer yoga sessions and meditation. Om Yoga Center, Himalayan Iyengar Yoga Center, Universal Yoga Center, and Tushita Meditation Center are some of the best. Also, there are a wide variety of Ayurvedic treatments available in McLeodganj to improve the physical and mental well-being of the individual.
So if you’re up to that, pay a visit to the Ayurvedic rejuvenation center. Here you’ll meet experts and doctors who offer the best-in-class spa treatments.
7. Enjoy the ropeway ride- New kid on the block! The droopy ropeway starts from Dharamshala near the bus stop and makes you land in front of the Dalai Lama temple in Mcleodganj. Take one if you want to get an unbeatable view of the town and mainly to get rid of the traffic congestion.
It’ll take just 5 minutes for you to reach Mcleodganj. Isn’t it a relief? The tariff for traveling from Dharamsala to Mcleodganj is INR 300 per person, while the two-way tariff is INR 500 per person.
8. Cooking lessons- It is as interesting as it sounds! Just imagine coming to Mcleodganj and returning back to home with amazing recipes. After all learning new things is a good deal. Agree?
Cooking lessons of Tibetan cuisine are offered at Lhamo’s Kitchen and Sangey’s Kitchen. Here you’ll get to know the traditional recipes of all the famous dishes from soups to noodles. Well, if we were ‘you’, we would’ve never missed a chance like this.
9. Tibetan Institute Of Performing Arts- When in Mcleodganj, make sure you see the cultural shows on Tibetan culture (dances and music) at Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts. A Tibetan culture stage performance is presented occasionally at this center, including the traditional Lhamo – the local folk opera.
The Shoton Opera Festival – a nine-day long festival dedicated to traditional Tibetan opera – is by far the most popular. Almost 11 troupes from India and Nepal participate in TIPA’s annual folk opera festival during March or April, which attracts numerous tourists to the cradle of Tibetan culture.
TIPA seeks to preserve the cultural identity of Tibetans by sharing Tibetan artistic traditions with the world. In addition, they charge Rs.50 as an entry fee.
10. Visit Tibet Museum- Mcleodganj’s Tibetan Museum combines traditional and contemporary Tibetan architecture. One can see Tibetan historical documents, manuscripts, Thangka artwork, pottery, and other handicraft items here. The museum’s walls, which are painted a calm yellow and white, add to the quaint atmosphere of the complex.
Additionally, there is also a collection of photographs, interviews, and video records documenting the Chinese intervention in Tibet and the subsequent migration of Tibetans. As souvenirs, you can purchase paintings, artifacts, and handicrafts from the museum shops if you are a fan of art and history.
That’s not all. You can still explore the town all by yourself and find out what new things can be done. And as they say “Just when you think that everything that the city has to offer is already there, you discover new attractions”.
Mcleodganj is just the perfect place to relax and enjoy life if you want to take a break. No matter what you decide to do, Mcleodganj will not stop amazing you. The experience of being in this hill station will always remain memorable.
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