Situated in the mountains of Himachal Pradesh, Manali is one of India’s most popular hill stations. Known for its snow-capped peaks, lush green valleys, traditional villages, adventurous activities, and Hindu temples, Manali attracts over 2 million visitors every year. If you’re planning a holiday in this scenic town, here are the top things to do in Manali:
1. Trek to Beas Kund
The glacial Beas Kund Lake, located at an altitude of 3,700 meters, is one of Manali’s most popular trekking destinations. The moderate to difficult graded trek takes you through forests, meadows, and steep mountain passes before culminating in the stunning blue waters of Beas Kund. The lake is also deeply sacred, featuring prominently in regional myths and legends.
2. Go Skiing in Solang Valley
From December to March, adventure junkies flock to Solang Valley to enjoy winter activities like skiing, snowboarding, parachuting, zorbing, and paragliding amidst Himachal’s famed snowy landscapes. Local institutes here offer training courses for beginners, advanced-level skiers, and snowboarders. Equipment can also be easily rented out to enjoy an adrenaline-pumping day out in Solang. Choosing Manali tour packages is also a great way to enjoy your vacation.
3. Visit Hadimba Temple
This beautiful wooden temple was dedicated to Goddess Hadimba, wife of Bhima from the Mahabharata, and dates back to 1553 AD. Surrounded by towering cedar trees and offering lovely views of nearby snowy peaks, Hadimba Temple should feature in every Manali itinerary for its spiritual significance and splendid natural setting.
4. Shop Local Handicrafts
Manali is filled with bustling Tibetan markets and shops selling gorgeous woolen sweaters, stoles, shawls, and coats. You can also find handicraft emporiums selling antiques, sculptures, locally made jams, decorative metalwork, and more. Don’t forget to put your bargaining skills to good use while shopping in Manali!
5. Try Adventure Sports
Get that adrenaline pumping by trying adventure sports like river rafting on the Beas river, paragliding to stunning Himalayan vistas, rock climbing the sandstone cliffs, zorbing, or mountain biking through wooded trails. Trained experts and institutes offer everything from beginner courses to hardcore adventure packages.
6. Visit Jogini & Rahala Waterfalls
Tucked away in gorgeous forested corners just a short trek from Manali town are stunning waterfalls like Jogini and Rahala that seem to tumble straight out of postcard-perfect landscapes. The sights and sounds of these hidden waterfalls along scenic hiking trails will take your breath away.
7. Explore Old Manali
The charming old part of the town retains much of Manali’s traditional heritage and architecture. Explore quaint guesthouses, colorful handicraft shops, historic stone and wood temples like the 500-year-old Manu Rishi Temple, bustling local markets, and cute cafes along the meandering old lanes.
8. See Snow Leopards at Zoo
One of India’s best-managed zoos, the Manali Snow Leopard Rescue Center and Zoo is home to endangered snow leopards, musk deer, brown bears, and other high-altitude wildlife rescued, rehabilitated, or orphaned. This is a great place to observe exotic fauna up close in large enclosures resembling their natural habitats.
With spectacular scenery everywhere, adventure activities galore, and a charming traditional vibe – Manali packs in all that’s best about the Indian Himalayas into one easily accessible holiday spot!