Do not be fooled by the jibe ‘Dull and Lousy’ owing to its name and laid back Himachali peace, but take a walk around the mall and hills, get mesmerized by the stately charm of the high deodars in Kalatope forest, picnic in the scenic waterfalls in Panchpullah, enjoy the tasty Tibetan cuisine, shop around for Tibetan handicrafts and Chamba and Kullu shawls and you will know what real Dalhousie is!
A perfect destination for rest and recoup, Dalhousie is spread over five hills at 6.562 feet and established by the British in 1850’s as a Sanatorium for officers and civil servants. Dalhousie boasts of sprawling bungalows and charming cottages reminiscent of European villages, beautiful churches, a cemetery spread over 9 terraces, ruins of a beer brewery and numerous rock frescoes painted by Tibetan emigrants.
Kalatop is a hilltop dedicated to Lord Shiva, which gives a panoramic view of the Pir Panjal Range. The Kalatop-Khajjiar wild life sanctuary falls in the altitude range of 4,851-9,079 feet. A 2 m trail to the Kalatop peak is a peaceful and rewarding path through thick cedar forest. The terrain is spersed with dense coniferous and oak forests with Deodars in the upper reaches. Kalatop is an open forest with bear, leopard and shy ghoral as prominent wild life.
Satdhara and Panchpullah falls
About 1 Km from Gandhi chowk there is a spot where seven tiny streams converge, Satdhara. The streams are known to have medicinal properties. Further 1 Km down the road are two impressive waterfalls within touching distance. A two & a half Km trek by the stream to Alha reservoir on Bakrota hill is a nice place to sit around.
About 23Km from Dalhousie, is an open meadow Khajjiar situated at a height of 6,430 feet. Originally, developed by British as a golf course it is now a popular picnic spot. A 17th century golden-domed temple to Khajinag is also here.
Khajjiar popularly termed as ‘mini Switzerland of India’ is popular as a picnic spot among tourists for a tiny lake, a floating island and horse riding and walks in the Deodar forest.
For those who wish to take a retreat from the busy city life, Dalhousie built on five hills is reminiscent of an earlier era and has a flavor of history through its colonial architecture.