Palampur (1,219 meter) is a fascinating green hill station in the Kangra Valley, surrounded on all sides by tea gardens and pine forests before they merge with the Dhauladhar ranges. Palampur is the tea capital of northwest India. But tea is just one aspect that makes Palampur a special interest place. Abundance of water and proximity to the mountains has endowed it with mild climate.
The town has derived its name from the local word "pulum', meaning lots of water. There are numerous streams flowing from the mountains to the plains from Palampur. The combination of greenery and water gives Palampur a distinctive look
Palampur is at the confluence of the plains and the hills and so the scenery shows the contrast the plains on one side and the majestic snow covered hills on the other side. Behind this town stands high ranges of Dhauladhar mountains, whose tops remain covered for most part of the year.
Places of Interest
Bir and Billing ( 35 kms)
Sheltered by the mountains and surrounded by tea gardens, this village is famous for its Buddhist monasteries and Tibetan handicrafts. Hang gliding pilots use it as their landing site. Bir, surrounded by tea gardens and an amphitheater of low hills, is an ideal landing around for para-gliders. Bir has Buddhist Monasteries that are worth visiting. Fine Tibetan handy craft are also produced here. Billing, up in the hills 14 kms. from Bir with an arena of 200 kms. for high altitude and cross country flying, is one of the best aero sports sites in the country.
Baijnath ( 16 kms)
The Shiva temple at Baijnath is one of the most remarkable monuments of the Kangra valley. Ancient name of this town was 'Kirgrama'. Baijnath got its name from Shiva Vaidyanatha. The temple consists of an 'Adytum' surrounded by a spire of the usual conical shape with a 'Mandap' covered with a low pyramid shaped roof. The 'Adytum' contains the Lingam. There is fine sculpture work to be associated with Ravana, who worshipped Shiva at this spot and gained immortality. Baijnath is one of the 'Twelve Jyotirlingams'. Shivratri of Baijnath is a well attended fair.
Neugal Khad ( 2 kms)
Neugal Khad provides a fine view of the Dhauladhar range. It is roaring in the rainy season and gurgling all the year round. Himachal Tourism cafe provides food and a fine view from its restaurant. It is a famous picnic spot and ideal for a day escape from busy life.
Bundla Stream( 2 kms)
Bundla stream with wide chasm of more than 100 meters, swells up and rises madly in monsoons taking stones and boulders along with it making a loud noise like that of continuous thunder. This is a lovely walk from Palampur to Budla.
Andretta ( 13 kms )
The charming village, spread below the thickly wooded hill and sprawling plains of the Kangra Valley was once the home of the famous painter Sardar Sobha Singh and the playwright Ms Norah Richards. Now Andretta is a centre for various artistic activities such as pottery and is just 13-km away from Palampur.This presents an excellent view of the Dhauladhar Range.
Shobha Singh's Art Gallery :- It is situated in Andhretta which is 13 km. from town.
Chamunda Devi (25 Kms)
Legend has it that two demons Chanda and Munda tried to harass the goddess Ambika. Enraged, Ambika knitted her brows and from their folds emerged a terrifying from of Kali, who slew the demons. Pleased, Ambika declared that Kali would now be worshipped here as 'Chamunda'.
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