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Backpacking to Dalhousie for 2 Days: The Complete Itinerary

Dalhousie two day itinerary should be able to cover most of this small but beautiful town in a short span of time. Dalhousie is one of the pristine hill towns of Himachal Pradesh. It is located in Chamba district at an elevation of more than sixty four hundred feet above sea level. Dalhousie treats its visitors with breathtaking views of the majestic snow capped Pir Panjal mountain range , Sach Pass and  Pangi Valley.

Dalhousie is a treasure trove of ancient Hindu temples, British architecture, traditional handicrafts, art and culture. It is situated on five different hills amidst the fragrant pines, rhododendrons and oak trees. It is for this reason that your Dalhousie two day itinerary should be able to help you maximize travel in this wonderous town. Being in this beautiful region and not being able to explore it fully will be a pity. Hence, plan and stick to an itinerary that assists you in making the most out of your trip.

Known for its pleasant climate and alluring valleys, Dalhousie is one of the must visit places for travelers, explorers and adventure enthusiasts who love to go into the wild and experience adrenaline rush. From adventurous activities to some light strolling, from locally made stuff to Tibetan handicrafts, each corner of Dalhousie has something unique to offer you.

Usually, a trip to Dalhousie is made as complimentary to a Chamba trip overall. If you’re in this beautiful region for sightseeing, 2 days are enough for covering Dalhousie and two days are enough for covering Chamba.

In case you’re in Himachal from an insider’s exploration point of view, make sure to cover Chamba in detail along with places like Spiti and Dharamshala.

Before I dwell onto the intricacies of Dalhousie as a region, here’s a brief overview of the Dalhousie two day itinerary that will highlight the essential aspects of your trip.

Dalhousie Two Day Itinerary: An Overview

Places that should be covered on Day 1 Khajjiar and Chamba Town in general
Places that should be covered on Day 2 Dainkund, Chamera Lake and St. Francis Church
Ideal starting time for exploring all the places Start not later by 8:30 a.m.
Things that can be skipped Since your Dalhousie two day itinerary spans roughly a 48 hour time duration, you can skip the trekking and camping in the region.
Time saving tip Start early morning
Money saving tip Live in Government run accommodation places.
Cost for the entire 2 day trip 6000 to 8,000 INR (This cost will increase further if you fly from New Delhi to Pathankot)

 

Dalhousie two day itinerary

The majestic Sach Pass. Explore it by making the duration of your trip a tad bit longer. Picture by Swarnabh

Stay Organic if you Truly Want to Explore Dalhousie

During your trip to Dalhousie, try to indulge with the local things and stay organic as much as possible. Drink water from natural water streams rather than plastic water bottles, try the local cuisine to connect with the flavours of the region and speak with the native people to know more about the place.

Before I proceed further with the Dalhousie two day itinerary, I would like you to go through some essential information on the region. Before visiting Chamba and Dalhousie, you should most certainly be aware of the basics of the region.

Location North India
State Himachal Pradesh
Best time to visit May-September;  December-March
Ideal Accommodation choices Home stay, Budget Hotels, Government Guest houses, Youth Hostels
Ideal means of transport Himachal Roadways bus or private vehicle/cab
Budget tip Eat like a local, stay like a local, travel like a local
What to avoid ? Alcohol



Places to Visit as Suggested by an Ideal Dalhousie Two Day Itinerary

The high mountain ranges amidst the terrain have given Dalhousie a sheltered position and helped in preserving it’s centuries old relics and numerous inscriptions. Far away from the chaos of the City, there are numerous hidden places to explore in Dalhousie.

Some of the must visit places in Dalhousie as suggested by an ideal Dalhousie two day itinerary are as follows.

1. Khajjiar
2. Chamba Town
3. Dainkund
4. Chamera Lake
5. St. Francis Church

Ideal Dalhousie Two Day Itinerary 

The ideal Dalhousie two day itinerary should be planned in a way so as to cover the following five places within 48 hours.

Day 1 : Khajjiar and Chamba

Day 1 should begin with a great breakfast. If you have booked a hostel, they will provide you the breakfast without any extra charges.

Hire a cab or take a bike on rent and move towards Khajjiar.  Spend quality time there.You can do zorbing, Horse riding, Paragliding etc. 

Many adventure sports activities are available there.  If you don’t want to indulge in any adventurous activity, feel free to simply enjoy the alluring beauty of the place. Listen to the local melodies there.

After Lunch, move towards Chamba town. It take almost an hour to reach Chamba from Dalhousie.                  Visit Chamunda Devi temple, Laxmi Narayan Temple which was built in 10th century and Bhuri Singh Museum.

You can relax and enjoy the ambiance of the town by simply strolling at Chamba Chowgan or move to a nearby village to explore more.

After spending good time in the Chamba Town, return to your place of stay at evening and enjoy star gazing.

Day 2: Dainkund, Chamera Lake and St. Francis Church

Start your second day by witnessing the astonishing sun rise view from the Dainkund Peak. Visit Pohlani Mata Temple there and enjoy the fresh and fragrant air along with the 360 degree view.

You can also camp there if you wish to take a quick nap till afternoon. To me a quick nap or rest at beautiful peak is very soothing.

Return to Dalhousie and have lunch. Visit to Chamera lake and spend some there. Boating is a good option at the lake. Enjoy some light Snacks that are readily available.

Return to Dalhousie and visit the St. Francis church. You can stroll through the local markets  as the Church is situated nearby the Subhash Chowk.

End day 2 as well as your trip by taking some rest at your place of stay.

Don’t forget to reserve your return bus ticket in advance.

 

Dalhousie two day itinerary

A capture from Khajjiar popularly known as the ‘Mini Switzerland of Himachal.’ Picture by Dhruv Gaur

A Description of all the Must Visit Places in Dalhousie for a Memorable 2 days Trip

Find below a brief description of some of the finest places in and around Dalhousie. Your intention should be to cover all of them. Ensure a spot for them in your Dalhousie two day itinerary.

Khajjiar

Famously known as the ‘Mini Switzerland of India,’ Khajjiar is a popular hill station, located at a distance of about 22 kilometres from Dalhousie. It takes almost 30 minutes to 1 hour to reach here by bus or car.

Khajjiar is situated at a height of 6500 feet and bestowed with natural beauty and pleasant climate. It is covered with dense deodar forests from all sides. This gives a pleasant sight to the eyes of every visitor. It has a rare combination of three ecosystems – lake, pasture and forest.

From paragliding to horseback riding and zorbing, there are plenty of recreational activities in this scenic hill town. Not that keen on adventure? Fret not, you can simply relax amid nature and soak in the spectacular vistas of surroundings from the lake.

Chamba Town 

Chamba is the only town in north India to preserve a well-documented history from circa 500 A.D. The temples erected by Rajas (kings) of Chamba more than a thousand years ago continue to be under worship even today. It is 54 km from Dalhousie and is famous among travelers. There are several historic places to visit and explore here.

Chamera Lake 

Chamera lake is situated at a distance of 35 kms from Dalhousie. It is mystical in nature and is one of the the most beautiful artificial lakes in Himachal Pradesh. The Chamera lake is set amid picturesque valleys with lush green trees.

It is a famous travel destination due to its perfect year round climate. Water sports like pedal boating, motor boating etc are organised by Himachal Pradesh tourism here on an annual basis.

Spend time strolling on the lake side listening to the melodies of nature and thinking deep about life.

Dalhousie two day itinerary

Chamera Lake is the perfect destination to take a mid day stroll. Picture by Rishabh Mehra

Dainkund Peak 

Situated on the altitude of 2775 meters, Dainkund is the highest peak in Dalhousie. A picturesque mountain peak with 360 degree view from the top gives a breathtaking scenic glimpse of Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal mountain ranges. Also, three to five rivers of Punjab glittering in the sun shine as they disperse somewhere in plains.

Besides this, Dainkund peakt is the perfect spot to witness sunrise and sunset in a very mystical way. Play of clouds in lush green down-hills is really pleasing here. It is a place where nature is fully blessed with a lot of things. Tiny hamlets, lofty mountains, peaceful meadows are like pure heaven. It gives you a chance to explore Dalhousie in all its purity.

Dainkund peak should certainly be a part of your Dalhousie two day itinerary. Explore it by all means.

St. Francis Church 

Built in 1894, St. Francis Church is located at the Subhash Chowk. Dalhousie’s St. Francis Church was built in accordance to a famous Church of England.

The architectural style of the church bears the old British type of architecture. The St. Francis Church in Dalhousie is a major travel attraction. The magnificent stone works and the glass designs please the art lovers and the general visitors alike.

Dalhousie two day Itinerary

Dalhousie is a place where nature is present in its purest form. Picture by Priya Jha

Average Cost for 2 Days Dalhousie Trip

Considering the two way journey ( New Delhi-Dalhousie-New Delhi), accommodation, meals and local travel by bus/cab, an estimated amount for 2 days backpacking trip should not be more than 6000 to 7000 INR.

The overall amount spent during your Dalhousie two day trip can be even lesser if if you cut down on shopping. Also, try to book a hostel or a guest house run by Government of India.

In case you’re unable to book the Government run Guest House, you can opt for any of the following two budget accommodations. Make sure to book your stay in advance to avoid last minute charges.

Smart Hill Kalatop

This is a decent place to stay for both families as well as backpackers. The hygiene of the place is quite good and so is the service. Wifi provided here is free of cost and there’s a common seating are as well for all guests. The average price of staying here for one night begins at 750 INR.

Apple Mountain Villa

A wonderful place of stay for travelers, Apple Mountain Villa offers a spectacular view to all its visitors. Each room is fitted with a balcony. The staff is quite decent and the variety of rooms offered is good.

How to Reach Dalhousie  ?

Most people reach Dalhousie by bus since direct buses run between New Delhi (the Indian capital) and Chamba. However, in all , there are three ways to reach here.

By Air

Nearest airport is at Pathankot. It lies at a distance 83 km from Dalhousie. Single flight of Air India departs daily from New Delhi.

By Train

Nearest Railway station is also at Pathankot. From New Delhi, it takes 9-10 hours to reach Pathankot. Traveling by Sleeper class will cost you about 285 INR, by AC -3 Tier will cost you about 765 INR, by AC -2 Tier will cost you 1100 INR, by AC – 1st Class will cost you 1860 INR.  The travel time form New Delhi to Pathankot is about 9 hours by train.

By Bus

Dalhousie is connected to all major cities with a good road network. It takes almost 2 – 3 hours from Pathankot to reach Dalhousie by bus. The HRTC is the most preferred and  trusted means of transport. Direct bus to Dalhousie is boarded from ISBT Kashmiri Gate, New Delhi. An ordinary bus of Himachal Road Transport Corporation (HRTC) will cost you 650 INR, whereas an AC Volvo will cost you 1425 INR. The average travel time is 14 hours



Essential Tips for Saving Money on your Dalhousie Trip

Plan your Dalhousie two day itinerary in such a way that it helps you stick to your budget. Over spending on travel aspects that don’t need extra spending is being plain foolish. Instead, plan methodically and keep the following tips in mind at all times.

Try to implement my ‘The Local’ formula- Travel Local, Eat Local, Stay Local. Believe me this will help you save a lot of money.
Don’t waste your money on hotels.  Rather try to book any home stay, guest house or hostel. Most of them will provide you free breakfast and free wifi.
Instead of visiting fancy restaurants, try the traditional cuisine which are available at most of the local eateries. Don’t miss the Madraa of Chamba, a famous Chamba dish.
For shopping lovers, Gandhi Chowk Shopping market is the best place for you. Here, you can find some famous and traditional stuff at flexible rates.

Is Dalhousie Safe for Women Backpackers and Solo Travelers ?

Dalhousie is extremely safe for women backpackers. The hospitality of the native people is unmatched. They are very helpful and respectful towards both travelers as well as nature.

Some Important contact numbers are as follows –

Police Station Dalhousie- 01899-242126 Ambulance- 108

Dalhousie is a great weekend site to relax and detox your body emotionally and physiologically. Plan a good Dalhousie two day itinerary soon and venture into the hills.

Always remember, we don’t create nature. Nature has created us. So let it be that way. Don’t bring or spread plastic or polythene bags to the hills. Try to maintain the sanctity of the mountain regions by preserving the ecosystem.

Happy wayfaring.

 About the Author

Avdesh Pandit

Avdesh Pandit

Avdhesh Pandit hails from the beautiful town of Chamba in Himachal Pradesh and is a ‘Pahadi’ by Birth. He is pursuing Medicine and has an immense love for Himalayas and the hill culture. His efforts for preserving the culture and tradition of Himachal Pradesh has earned him a name of ‘Himalayan Soul’ in his region. An avid traveler and explorer, he believes in visiting new places to know their culture, language, food and moreover the problems that they face. He prefers ‘Chai’ over coffee and ‘Naati’ over DJ songs. He wants to inspire fellow travelers about respecting and maintaining the serenity and cleanliness of the mountain regions.

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