Himachal Pradesh has long been the most popular vacation destination in the country, and one unexplored gem from its treasure trove is Palampur. Set amidst tea estates and dense pine and deodar forests on the backdrop of Dhauladhar ranges, a trip to Palampur is a visual treat and an opportunity to indulge in adventurous activities such as trekking and paragliding. Palampur is also known for its ancient temples and colonial heritage which can be witnessed in the form of structures and tales.
Best Time to Visit Palampur
Located in Kangra valley, Palampur observes all the seasons, and you may arrive here at any time of the year. The best time to visit Palampur is the summer season i.e., between March and June. You may arrive here in the winter season as well if you wish to sip hot beverages in the spine chilling cold around the hills of Palampur. Scroll till the end to find out all the worth exploring sights in Palampur.
Palampur is primarily known as the tea capital of North India for its tea estates. Not many know that Palampur was explored and flourished as a tea estate by the Britishers in the 18th century. During that time, tea was traded to many countries from Palampur. Wah Tea Estate was one of the most popular tea estates in Palampur that garnered international acclaim.
Major Attractions in and Around Palampur
1. Saurabh Van Vihar
Built in the honor of the brave Kargil War martyr Captain Saurabh Kalia, this natural park is a popular attraction that is visited by locals and tourists alike. Nature lovers, bird watchers, children, and people who are looking for a refreshing break from the hustle-bustle of life arrive here on weekends to spend some quality time with their loved ones.
2. Palampur Tea Garden
All the tea connoisseurs, Palampur is your next destination to savor some fine quality tea straight from the tea estates. Tourists are welcomed at the Palampur Tea Corporative Tea Factory to experience the entire process of tea making from scratch - beginning from the plantation, plucking, processing to packaging. Besides witnessing the process, tourists can capture the captivating sights of the tea estate in their camera and may also buy the finest tea.
3. Baijnath Temple
Dedicated to Lord Shiva’s avatar, Baijnath ‘the God of Healing’, the temple attracts devotees and tourists in large numbers. This sacred temple was built in 1204 A.D.by Manyuka and Ahuka. Legends have it that Ravana, the antagonist from the epic Ramayana, was the staunch devotee of Lord Shiva. Impressed by his devotion Lord Shiva appeared in front of him and granted him immense strength. Ravana then asked Lord Shiva to accompany him to his kingdom in Lanka. Lord Shiva gave him a shivaling instead, but Lord Vishnu and Lord Brahma tricked him and made him leave the shivaling on the way, and that spot today is known as Baijnath Temple.
Chamunda Devi temple is one of the sacred 51 Shakti Peethas located in the west of Palampur. Chamunda Devi is a fierce avatar of Goddess Durga. Goddess Chamunda destroyed the two demons; Chanda and Munda. According to the locals, the goddess appeared in one of the priest’s dreams and instructed him to excavate her idol and built a temple. The priest along with the king and his men went to the instructed spot but failed to move the idol. Pained and confused by this, the priest prayed to the goddess, who again appeared in his dreams and told him that they failed because his men were not clean and devoted. The next day, all of them went to the holy site, clean with immense faith and successfully excavated the idol, which was then established in Chamunda Devi Temple.
How to Reach Palampur
Palampur is connected to all other states of the country via roadways, airways, and railways. This hill station is approximately 483km via NH44, 1800km via NH 48, 1900km via NH 19, and 2600 km via NH 44 from Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Bengaluru, respectively. Here is a compilation of the best route and transportation mode that you may consider if planning to visit Palampur soon.
Dharamsala Kangra Airport, Gaggalis the nearest airport to Palampur. Non-stop and connecting flights from all parts of the country arrive here, hence you can plan an air journey without worrying about the availability of flights. Airlines like Vistara, SpiceJet, and AirIndia, run frequent flights to Dharamshala.
Here is a list of Indian cities from where flights are available to Palampur
Pathankot railway station is the nearest station to reach Palampur. From the station, you have to travel another 112km via the local public transport like a bus or taxi to reach Palampur.
Joginder Nagar - Board JDNX PTK Passenger NG from Joginder Nagar and deboard at Pathankot station
Baijanathpaprola - Board BJPL PTK Passenger NG from Baijnathpaprola and deboard at Pathankot station
A road trip to any hill station that leads through scintillating valleys and hill roads makes for a memorable journey. The route to Palampur is full of scenic vistas that will surely amaze you. You can arrive at Palampur via tourist buses from the nearby cities or may take the self-drive option. Listed below is the distance estimate in kilometres and the best route to take if arriving from the following cities.