Dharamshala (also spelled Dharamsala) is the second winter capital of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh and a municipal corporation in Kangra district. It also serves as the district headquarters. It was formerly known as Bhagsu. The Dalai Lama’s residence and the headquarters of Central Tibetan Administration (the Tibetan government in exile) are in Dharamshala. Dharamshala is 18 kilometers from Kangra.
Dharamshala has been selected as one of the hundred Indian cities to be developed as a smart city under PM Narendra Modi’sflagship Smart Cities Mission.
On 19 January 2017, Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh declared Dharamshala as the second capital of Himachal Pradesh state, making Himachal Pradesh the third state of India with two capitals after Jammu and Kashmir and Maharashtra.
Several thousand Tibetan exiles have now settled in the area; most live in and around McLeodGanj in Upper Dharamshala, where they have built monasteries, temples and schools. It has become an important tourist destination with many hotels and restaurants, leading to growth in tourism and commerce.
Dharamshala is the winter capital of Himachal Pradesh. The Legislative Assembly is at Sidhbari, near the Chinmaya Tapovan Ashram, and the winter sessions of the Government are held there. Dharamshala is also one of the famous bird watching spots in India.
How to Reach? Transport Information:
Buses of all classes (deluxe, air-conditioned, and regular) ply daily between Dharamshala and major cities such as Chandigarh, Delhi, and Shimla through NH 154 and NH 503. Several buses each night connect McLeodGanj with Majnu Ka Tila, the Tibetan settlement in Delhi.
Dharamshala town is reached by Kangra Gaggal Airport codes|DHM|VIGG, about 12 km to the town’s south and about 10 km north of Kangra, Himachal Pradesh town. To reach Dharamshala by train, one has to reach Kangra, Himachal Pradesh town by Kangra Valley Railway line from Pathankot 94 km away or Una Himachal station i.e. 120 km from Dharamshala and then take a bus or a taxi.
Pathankot is a broad gauge railway head. There is another railway line from Pathankot to Jogindernagar, a part of the Mandi District of Himachal Pradesh, which is a narrow-gauge line. The nearest station to Dharamshala on this line is Chamunda Marg, half an hour away, where a Shaktipitha is; the town is well connected by road to other parts of the country.