La Darcha Festival is one of those unique events that have both cultural and trade side to them. Celebrated in August, this multi-day festival lures traders from all over Kinnaur, Lahaul, and Kullu dussehra.
The Festival is nothing less than a meeting of cultures of Ladakh and Spiti, which is also the location where it is held. From handicrafts to artefacts to unspoiled culture, everything unique to this region is up for display here.
History of La Darcha Festival
La Darcha Festival is being celebrated since the time immemorial. However, there came a pause in celebrating this festival in 1962, that is, during the Indo-China war. However, people started to celebrate this fun festival again in 1980. Since then, La Darcha Festival is being celebrated annually for the past 40 years.
Major Attractions of La Darcha Festival
1. Fair and Exhibition. La Darcha Festival showcases myriads of exquisite items. A huge shopping fair and exhibition are organised. People specially come to see the unique products that are found only here. Being a primarily trade festival, it attracts merchants, brokers, and traders from both domestic and international regions.
2. Cultural Shows. Not just a business-related affair, La Darcha Festival also has a beautiful cultural side. People can not only indulge in shopping, but can also enjoy the Chaam and Buchan Dance, archery competitions, and special Buddhist sermons.
3. Variety of Products. There are tons of authentic and one-of-a-kind items that are exchanged during La Darcha Festival, including metal works, variety of grains, plastic products, utensils, and even animal products.
How to Reach
Spiti is a very beautiful and serene place. It translates to the middle land and signifies the land that is between Tibet and India. This region is also a cultural and research centre for Buddhism. Here are three main modes of transport via which you can reach the festival location.
By Air. The nearest airport to Spiti that is also well-connected to the major cities in the country is Kullu Manali Airport at Bhuntar, Kullu dussehra. After deboarding, you can take public transport to reach the La Darcha Festival venue. The airport is under the Airport Authority of India (AAI). It is equipped with all modern facilities, such as automated firefighting system, fire detection, modern ticketing counters, advance PA system etc.
Delhi - Board Air India, IndiGo, Vistara, Spicejet flights from Indira Gandhi International Airport. The airfares start from Rs.5,000
Mumbai - Board Air India, Go Air, Spicejet from Mumbai Airport. The airfares start from Rs.12,000
Kolkata - Board Spicejet, Air India, Go Air flights from Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport. The airfares start from Rs.13,000
Madurai - Board Spicejet, Air India, IndiGo from Madurai airport. The airfares start from Rs.12,000
By Train. The nearest railway station to Spiti is Jogindernagar. However, its connectivity to major cities is not strong. The next nearest railways station which is well-connected to far cities is in Chandigarh. The Chandigarh Junction railway station serves frequent trains to cities like New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, etc. From the airport, you can take a taxi to reach the festival.
Delhi - Board Kalka Shatabdi from New Delhi Railway Station and deboard at the Chandigarh Junction
Mumbai - Board Paschim Express from Bandra Terminus and deboard at the Chandigarh Junction
Kolkata - Board HWH DLI KLK MAIL from Howrah Junction and deboard at the Chandigarh Junction
Bengaluru - Board Yesvantpur Junction from Yesvantpur and deboard at the Chandigarh Junction
By Road. If you live near Spiti, then you can very well go for the road route. Here is some brief information on the road routes. You can take your own vehicle or hire a cab.