Height: 960 m
Area: 3950 sq.
Population: 9.01 lakh
Language: Hindi, Pahari, Punjabi and English
The historic town of Mandi is built along the banks of the river Beas. It has long been an important commercial centre and the sage Mandva is said to have meditated here. This one time capital of the princely state of Mandi is a fast developing town that still retains much of its original charm and character. Today, it is a district headquarters. Mandi is renowned for its 81 old stone temples and their enormous range of fine carving, it is often called the 'Varanasi of the Hills'. The town has remains of old palaces and notable examples of 'colonial' architecture. The temples of Bhootnath, Trilokinath, Panchvaktra and Shyamakali are among the more famous ones. The week long international Shivratri fair in Mandi is the major attraction of the area every year. In the year 2013 the fair was celebrated in March. In the fair the activities like cultural programmes in the evenings, exhibitions, sports etc. attract the tourists as well as locals.
By Road - Mandi is approachable by road from Shimla (145 Kms), Chandigarh (205 Kms) and Delhi (450 Kms). There are regular bus services linking it to the other towns like Manali, Palampur and Dharamsala.
By Rail - Broad gauge train travels upto Pathankot, from where a narrow gauge train takes you to Joginder Nagar- Mandi distance of 55 Kms can be covered by road.
By Air - Nearest airport is at Bhuntar, 31 Km from Mandi.
Janjehli - At a distance of 85 Km from Mandi, Janjehli is one of the virgin tourist places, where tourists find serene beauty of nature. It is also a paradise for hikers, offering treks up to a height of 3,300 metres. After covering 32 Km by a motorable road up to Gohar and rest of the journey is on foot. In the midst of thick forests, a forest (15 Km from Gohar) is Bajahi. There is a beautiful and well furnished rest house to stay overnight; from here Janjehli is a scant 20 Km away through bridle path. The famous unique temple of Shikari Devi is about 15 Km from Janjehli. In this valley tourists can also visit Kamrunag temple and sacred lake there.
Karsog valley - Karsog valley in the Mandi district is famous for apple orchards and dense forests. In the Karsog area Kamaksha Devi and Mahunag are the famous temples. Karsog is situated at a distance of 125 Km from Mandi and is also accessible from Shimla (100 Km) via Tattapani. The place Tattapani is famous for hot water springs on the side of Satluj River.
Joginder Nagar -
The large hydro-electric project in Jogindernagar is a living tribute to man he has harnessed and tamed the wild and roaring river for his betterment. Here an electric trolley takes the visitor up the steep, rocky face of 2,500 metres-high (8,202 ft) mountain and drops sharply on the other side to Barot, where the reservoir is located.
The railway line goes up to the power station, the water rushing down from the reservoir at Barot in the Uhl river through penstock pipes going down nearly a thousand metres(3,280 ft). For tourists who go up to Barot by the trolley there is a comfortable rest house of the Electricity department. Barot is a beautiful place, 40 Km from Jogindernagar via Ghatasani. A trout breeding centre, makes it a wonderful place for angling. Barot has all the ingredients of a retreat. Jhatingri, 5 Km from Ghatasani on Barot road is another beautiful visitable place. Bassi power station is five Km from Jogindernagar and next to it, is Machindar where fishing is not permitted as it is considered a sacred spot, but it is a popular as a feeding spot for fish.
Rewalsar - About 25 Km from Mandi, 14 Km from Ner Chowk is the Rewalsar lake, famous for its floating islands of reed. It is believed that all of them can be moved by prayer or breeze. The place is held sacred by Hindus, Sikhs and Buddhist alike. Legend has it that the great teacher and "tantric", Padmasambhava used his enormous powers to take flight to Tibet from Rewalsar. Also known as Guru Rimpoche, the precious Master, it was under Padmasambhava's influence that Mahayana Buddhism took root in Tibet and at Rewalsar waters, his spirit is said to reside in the tiny island of floating reed that drift over the waters. There are three Buddhist monasteries at Rewalsar.
Commemorating the month-long stay of Guru Gobind Singh in 1738, Rewalsar has a Gurudwara that was built in 1930 by Raja Joginder Sen of Mandi. Rewalsar has three Hindu temple which are dedicated to Lord Krishna, Lord Shiva and sage Lomas. The Lake of Kunt Bhayo (1750 m above sea level) lies above Rewalsar, which is also visitable and there are also six other lakes of legend. These are associated with the escape of the Pandava's from the burning palace episode from the epic Mahabharata.
Sunder Nagar Famous for its temples, 26 Km from Mandi towards Shimla and at a height of 1,174 metres on the raised edge of a fertile valley, the beautiful town of Sundernagar is known for its shady walks amidst towering trees. On top of a hill and visited by thousands of devotees every year, is the Sukhdev Vatika and temple of Mahamaya.
The biggest hydro-electric project in all Asia, the Beas-Sutlej project, irrigating nearly one-fourth of the northern plains of India has brought unprecedented prosperity to Sudernagar. The Beas-Sutlej link colony is the biggest colony in Himachal Pradesh.
Parashar Lake - This Lake lies 45 Km north of Mandi, with a three storied pagoda like temple dedicated to the sage Parashar. The Lake is located at an height of 2,730 m above sea level. With deep blue waters, the Lake is held sacred to the sage Parashar and he is regarded to have meditated here. Framed by snow-capped peaks and looking down on fast flowing river Beas, the lake can be approached via Drang. Every year in the month of June, famous traditional fair is held here. Several camping sites are also located here and it is the base for numerous easy & hard treks.
Places to visit
1. Enjoy hiking at Jhanjheli.
2. Make the way to trekking at Parashar Lake and visit the Parashar
temple located at its vicinity.
3. Visit Lakes, Monasteries and other Mythological Structures and
stories of Rewalsar.
4. Visit the many temples of Sunder Nagar.
Mandi has accommodation to suit most types of budgets and tastes. HPTDC guest houses, rest Houses, hotels & home stays provide a comfortable stay at reasonable prices. Details are available from local tourist offices.
Local buses operate regularly. Taxis are also available.
The town of Mandi with Its ancient temples revels in the Shivratri fair for a whole week. On elaborately decorated palanquins, hundreds of local deities are carried to the town. Accompanied by folk bands, they make their first stop at the Madho Rai Temple and then go to pay obeisance to Lord Shiva at the Bhootnath Temple.
Baisakhi To commemorate the festival of Baisakhi, people take purifying dips in the waters of Parashar Lake. Numerous village fairs complete with wrestling, dancing and archery are also held on this day.
Chaitra and Ashwin Navratra Mela During the Chaitra Navratra in March/April and Ashiwin Navratra's in September/October, large number of Pilgrims visits the temples of Mandi to seek the blessings of the Goddess Durga.
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Temperature : In winter, the temperature can drop to below freezing point Summer temperature stays mild and pleasant.
Clothing : Light woollens and tropical in summer and heavy woolens in winters