June 2012
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Chamba – an ancient town in the state of Himachal Pradesh.

Chamba is an ancient town in the Chamba district in the state of Himachal Pradesh situated in northern India. Chamba is located at an altitude of 996 metres (3,268 ft) above mean sea level. The town is situated on the banks of the Ravi River,at its confluence with the Sal River.
The town has a large number of temples and palaces. The town hosts two popular jatras (fairs), the “Suhi Mata Mela” and the “Minjar Mela”. These jataras last for several days and involve music and dancing.
Chamba is also well noted for its arts and crafts. Chamba is known for its Pahari paintings, its handicrafts and textiles. The paintings originated in the Hill Kingdoms of North India. These paintings are known to originate between the 17th and 19th century.
Chamba is the headquarters of the Chamba district, bordered by Jammu and Kashmir in the north-west and west. The Ladakh area of Jammu and Kashmir and Lahaul and Bara Banghal are towards the north-east and east. Kangra lies to the south-east and Gurdaspur district of Punjab to the south. The Shah Madar hill forms the backdrop on its eastern side.

The Ravi flows in east-west direction forming deep canyons. During the spring and summer months, the levels of the river rise significantly. The town is bounded topographically by the Dhauladhar and Zanskar ranges, south of the inner Himalayas. The nearest broad gauge railway stations are at Chakki Bank and Pathankot.

Landmarks and cityscape
Monuments built prior to 1846
• The 10th century Champavati Temple, said to have marked the birth of the town.
• The 10th century Sita Ram Temple.
• Bansi Gopal temple
• Kharura Mohalla
• Hari Rai temple
• 11th century Sui Mata Temple
• Chamunda Devi Temple
• Akhand Chandi palace
• Zenana Mahal
• Rang Mahal
• Champavati Temple
• Lakshmi Narayan temples
• Akhand Chandi Palace

Monuments built after 1846
• Jansali Bazar
• Gandhi Gate (Curzon Gate)
• Shiva Temple
• Chaugans
• The Police Lines
• The Church of Scotland
• The Shyam Singh Hospital
• Chamba Library
• The Post Office building
• Bhuri Singh Museum
• The State Forces barracks
• Administrative buildings of the British period
• Chaugan

Arts, Handicrafts and Musical Instruments
• Chamba miniature Pahari paintings
• Nagara
• Singa
• Ransinga (horns)
• Shankh
• Nad
• Beiunsuli
• Saihna
• Nag Pheni
• Thali Ghada
• Bhana, Karnal
• Pohol
• Dhons
• Kahal
• Kansi
• Hasat Ghanta
• Drugg

Important Points of Interest in Chamba

1. Khajjiar
• Just 27-km from Dhoudar the beautiful little plain of Khajjiar.
• It is one of the favourite retreats and has saucer-shaped meadow, ringed by pines, has a lake set in the middle, complet.

2. Triund
• Triund is situated 9 kms from Bhagsu Nag.
• This is very famous as a trekking paradise.
• Triund is name of a ridge in Dhauladhar Himalayas.

3. Manimahesh
• The Manimahesh Lake which is high up in the mountains near Bharmaur is known to be an important place of pilgrimage.
• The solitary Manimahesh Kailash Peak- the legendary abode of Shiva.

4. Bharmour
• Bharmaur is known for some very old archaeological remains.
• Of these remains are primarily the temples.
• All these temples stand on a level area which call the Chaurasi after the 84 Siddhas.

5. Banikhet
• Seven kms short of Dalhousie is Banikhet which is also the gateway to Dalhousie.
• At Banikhet the road bifurcates for Chamba and Dalhousie.

6. Hadsar
• Hadsar is the roadhead, 13-km from the ancient capital of Chamba State at Brahmaur.
• This is on the annual route of the Gaddi shepherds.
• It is also the starting point for the yatra to Manimahesh.

Places of interest around Chamba

• Katasan Devi Temple
• Sarol
• Chamera Lake
• Jhamwar
• Saho
• Salooni
• Pangi Valley
• Bhandal Valley
• Chaugan
• Bhuri Singh Museum
• Hari Rai Temple
• Laxmi Narayan Group of Temples
• Chamunda Temple
• Chruch of Chamba
• Rang Mahal
• Akhand Chandi Palace
• Chhatrari

Best time to visit/climate

• The temperatures in summer vary between 38 °C (100 °F) and 15 °C (59 °F).
• Winter: 15 °C (59 °F) and 0 °C (32 °F).
• The maximum temperature recorded in summer is 39 °C (102 °F).
• The minimum temperature in winter is ?1 °C (30 °F).
• March to June is said to be the best period to visit Chamba.
• The average annual rainfall in the town is 785.84 millimetres (30.939 in).

Location on Google Maps

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Some travel books from Amazon about Chamba

DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: India Lonely Planet Indian Himalaya Lonely Planet Trekking in the Indian Himalaya

How to get there?

• The Himachal Road Transport Corporation runs long distance services throughout the state.
• Their main stands are at Shimla, Solan, Kangra, D’Sala and Pathnakot.
• The connections are even from locations in the adjoining states of Delhi, Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh (UT).

1. By Rail
• The nearest railway station is at Pathonkot, 120 Km from Chamba town.
• Regular trains to pathankot from New delhi.

2. By Air
• The nearest air port is at Pathonkot, 120 Km from Chamba town.
• Other reachable air ports are Kangra(172 km), Amritsar (220 km) and Chandigrah(400 km).
Local Transport
Taxis: For tourists, taxis serve as the main means of traveling between resorts.

• The fixed rate fares only apply to peak season.

Places to stay (hotels / restaurants along with website / contact numbers)

Hotels at holidayiq.com

Blogs/Sites about Chamba

Blogs and reviews at travelblog.org
Blogs at lonelyplanet.com

Images and photos of Chamba

images at google.com
Images at oktatabyebye.com

Videos of Chamba

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