Camping in Himachal Pradesh
When it is the time for finding an escape from the city life, go camping in Himachal Pradesh and feel rejuvenated. There are many admired hill stations in the state, where numerous travel and hospitality companies have established their campsites. You can be sure to breathe in clean and unpolluted air as many of these are away from major towns. Another thing that you can expect are amazingly clear skies with uncountable stars, glowing after dark, except for cloudy nights. At many places, a section of the Milky Way Galaxy called the Orion Arm is clearly visible.
Himachal Pradesh is a state in North India that shares its boundaries with Uttarakhand, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and the Tibetan Plateau. Most of the state lies in the Western Himalayas, with the exception of its southernmost fringe, which is part of the fertile Northern Plains. The elevation of Himachal Pradesh ranges from about 1121 feet to approximately 7000 feet. Like most mountainous states in the country, it too exhibits a high geographical and climatic variation. There are four major ranges of the Himalayas that run almost parallel to each other through the state, namely Shivalik, Pir Panjal, Dhauladhar and Zanskar.
You have the privilege of enjoying camping in Himachal Pradesh in a number of scenic destinations:
• Shimla: The capital of Himachal Pradesh, Shimla is a picture-perfect and culture-rich destination. It is located in the Himalayas at an average elevation of roughly 7200 feet above sea level. The camping sites around the town are located amidst tranquil and scenic forests of pine and cedar.
• Junga: It is a good place to camp due to its moderate altitude and less temperature variation. The tiny hamlet lies approximately 5190 feet above sea level, and is surrounded by perpetually snow-covered peaks of the Great Himalayan Ranges. Many camping establishments here have facilities for adventure sports like rappelling and rock climbing, which will double your fun of staying at this beautiful place.
• Shoghi: This little settlement is perfect for camping in Himachal Pradesh as it is away from the hustle-bustle of cities and towns. It lies at an altitude of roughly 5700 feet, and politically forms a part of the Shimla district. While staying inside tents in serene environs, you will absolutely love the clean air, replete with the scent of pine trees.
• Dharamsala: This town lies in Kangra Valley, and has an altitude of around 4870 feet, which blesses it with a pleasant weather. Dharamsala has gained importance in the recent times for being the home of Dalai Lama, who heads the Gelug sect of Himalayan Vajrayana Buddhism. All through the day, you will be able to see the towering Dhauladhar Range from the town, which calls for a good photography session.
The best time to go camping in Himachal Pradesh is governed by the weather patterns of the destination you are planning to visit.
• Shimla: You can come here in winters, but finding accommodation may be a slight problem due to overbooking as lots of tourists come here to play with snow. Summers are ideal to get away from the heat of the regions, south of the Himalayas.
• Junga: Summers are perfect for coming here, owing to the mild heat. Winters are quite cold due to the freezing winds coming from the mountains.
• Shoghi: As Shoghi is near Shimla, the weather patterns of the two places are similar. Hence, you should come here in summers as the temperatures will be bearable then.
• Dharamsala: You can come here either in summers or winters as its elevation makes both the seasons see a pleasant weather.
• Shimla: The hill station is roughly 381 km from Delhi, and approximately 129 km from Chandigarh.
• Junga: This settlement is about 40 km from Shimla, from where it can be reached easily by road.
• Shoghi: Shoghi is a suburb of Shimla, and is about 16 km from the main town.
• Dharamsala: It is located approximately 243 km from Chandigarh, 486 km from Delhi and 86 km from Pathankot. Trains are available from Delhi to Pathankot, and the rest of the journey has to be covered by road.