DHARAMSALA AND MCLEODGANJ.
Population approx: 40,000. Founded in 1855, it has one of the most spectacular settings for a Hill Station. It is built along a spur of the Dhaula-Dhar mountain range and varies in height from 4,500ft at the bazaar to 5,900ft at Mcleod Ganj. It is surrounded by trees and is set against a backdrop of peaks rising to over 15,600ft on three sides. The great granite mountains almost overhang the town. Views are superb, not only of the mountains but also over the Kangra valley and Siwalik range of foothills. There are two sections to the town, the upper part is Mcleod Ganj and the lower is called Dharamsala. The distance between them is almost 10km by road from centre to centre but there is a shorter, steeper path that takes about 40 minutes to cover. In both towns there is a strong Tibetan influence. The Dalai Lama settled here after his flight across the Himalayas following the Chinese invasion of Tibet in October 1959. There is a monastery in Mcleodganj, a short distance along from the Dalai Lama’s residence and a Library.
Radha Krishna cafe ,Dharamkot
The tranquil and charming Gyuto Institute is set in a park inspired by the Karmapa residence . It is modeled on traditional Tibetan styles. Surrounded by green fields and villages of the Kangra valley, the Institute stands against the backdrop of the towering Dhauladhar range of Mountains. Dedicated to the preservation of Tibetan culture in both its literary and artistic forms, the Institute comprises workshops where masters, artists, crafts people and scholars pass on the traditional knowledge and skills of statue making, Thangka painting, appliqué, tailoring, woodcarving and metal craft in a unique bid to preserve the endangered heritage of the Tibetan people. The Institute includes the unique Seat of Happiness Temple, a centre for higher learning for Tibetan students and a museum of hand-crafted dolls displaying the elaborate costumes of old Tibet. The Norling crafts outlet provides the opportunity to obtain original and affordable hand crafted gifts in the Institute.