A Mystic Land – Spiti Valley
After Tibet became a part of China, and Dalai Lama took shelter in the Indian Himalayan state of Himachal Pradesh, a big number of Tibetan immigrants followed (the number is still increasing everyday) and started living in the border areas, with Himachal Pradesh having the majority. Today, Himachal Pradesh looks just as much a part of Tibet as it is of India.
The last stop on an old trade route to Tibet and at the junction of several trekking routes, Chitkul, in Himachal Pradesh is the last Indian town to Tibet. The only buildings you see in Chitkul are a handful of slate and wooden-plan rooftop houses, built in the traditional Himachali style architecture. Chitkul Fort, a beautiful but ancient building, made out of wood and stone, for example, is one among them. Location: Chitkul, Himachal Pradesh.
The many ancient monasteries, other than the popular Kagyupa temple, moreover make Chitkul another religious town in Himachal Pradesh. But civilized by a 100% Tibetan community, it feels more like Tibet and less like India. Location: Chitkul Himachal Pradesh.
The state of Himachal Pradesh is dotted with various holy sites, revered by people of many faiths. And among all, one of the most famous holy place is the Key Monastery in Lahaul and Spiti. Located on top of a hill at an altitude of 4,166 metres above sea level, close to the Spiti River, Key Monastry dates its foundation back in 11th century.Location: Key, Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh.
Tibetan architecture contains Chinese and Indian influences but has many unique features brought about by its adaptation to the cold, generally arid, high-altitude climate of the Tibetan plateau. And a part of it, can be explored in Spiti Valley in Himachal Pradesh. Location: Tabo, Himachal Pradesh.
Dubbed as ‘Dev Bhumi’, or the Land of Gods, Himachal Pradesh has a very rich mythological past too. And with people believing in their own local deity, they have their own way to practice spiritual practices. For example most of the temples, particularly around the popular Kullu Valley stay close for public, and only open during religious ceremonies. Location: Naggar, Himachal Pradesh.