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Weeklong International Shivratri Mandi Fair begin in Himachal Pradesh

The weeklong International Shivratri Mandi Fair, also known as "Chhoti Kashi" was inaugurated on Saturday by Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh

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Lord Shiva, Wikimedia
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Mandi, Feb 25, 2017: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh on Saturday inaugurated the weeklong International Shivratri Mandi Fair in this town popularly known as “Chhoti Kashi”.

Speaking on the occasion, he announced a medical university would be set up here.

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Earlier, the Chief Minister participated in religious ceremonies in the ancient temple of Lord Madho Rai, an incarnate of Lord Vishnu and the chief deity of Mandi.

Accompanied by his cabinet colleagues, he led the colorful procession that also saw participation of nearly 200 assembled deities from hundreds of temples located in the region.

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The assembled deities follow the chief deity in beautifully decorated palanquins, as per protocol.

The festivities of Mahashivratri began here a day later when celebrations ended in other northern states. It will conclude on March 2.

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The celebrations date back to 1526 when this town was founded during the rule of Ajbar Sen (1499-1534). He had “invited” all the local deities to mark the founding of the new town.

Two more such processions, locally called ‘Jaleb’, would be taken out — another in middle of the festivity and the last on the concluding day of the fair.

Mandi, located on the Chandigarh-Manali National Highway-21, is dotted with more than 80 temples built in typical hill architecture. The prominent temples are those of Bhutnath, Triloki Nath, Jagannath, Tarna Devi and Jalpa Devi.

The Chief Minister announced an increase in the ‘nazarana’ or honorarium of deities by 10 per cent.

He said the life of the people of the state revolves around the local gods and goddesses, which are are an inseparable part of life and participate in almost all the activities. “We should perform all the religious ceremonies as per the traditional practice.”

Transactions worth millions of rupees are conducted during the festival. Kullu and Kinnauri shawls, handicrafts, carpets and dry fruits are a major attraction for the customers. (IANS)

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Tirthan Valley: Himachal Pradesh’s Hidden Paradise

The backdrop of Tirthan valley is the beautiful mountain range which seems to be touching the sky

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Tirthan Valley in Himachal Pradesh is one of the lesser known travel destinations in india. Wikimedia Commons
Tirthan Valley in Himachal Pradesh is one of the lesser known trekking destinations in india. Wikimedia Commons

By Ruchika Verma 

  • Tirthan Valley is an unexplored mountain valley in Himachal Pradesh
  • It has something for everyone
  • One can do activities like trekking, birdwatching and camping, etc. at Tirthan Valley

India is full of mountains and there is no dearth of trekking destinations. However, most of the trekking destinations in India have now become highly cliche and overcrowded. Wherever you go, you will find tourists loitering around.

India has many amazing hill stations. Wikimedia Commons
India has many amazing hill stations. Wikimedia Commons

Many people go on treks in search of peace and adventure, however, most of the popular trekking spots have now become highly commercial hubs where locals are trying to capitalise on their location. But, there is this one hidden gem in Himachal Pradesh which is still hugely unexplored. the Tirthan Valley.

Also Read: Lambasingi: A Snowfall Experience Like Never Before

Tirthan Valley in Himachal Pradesh is relatively unknown and has something for everyone. It offers activities like wildlife watching, trekking and fishing, etc.

Here is the list of few reasons as to why Tirthan Valley should be on your must-visit destinations list:

Beautiful River and Riverside Houses 

Tirthan Valley has really beautiful forests and through them flows the Tirthan River. The river is one of the reasons why Tirthan Valley looks so beautiful. Also, you can find riverside guest houses which don’t only look beautiful but are also incredibly cosy.

Tirthan River is beautifully calm and you'll find many different kinds of fishes in it. Wikimedia Commons
Tirthan River is beautifully calm and you’ll find many different kinds of fishes in it. Wikimedia Commons

Beautiful mountains surrounded by clouds

The backdrop of Tirthan valley is the beautiful mountain range which seems to be touching the sky, there are dense coniferous forests and sprawling alpine meadows which are perfect for sigh-seeing. Not only is it beautifully serene, but also it is one of the best places in Himachal Pradesh for bird watching.

Visit the Serolsar Lake

Tirthan valley doesn’t disappoint the lake-lovers either. There are two beautiful lakes which you can visit, the Serolsar Lake which is a 6 km trek from the Jalori Pass. This lake in the middle of rocks and snow is one of the most beautiful sights you’ll ever see. There you can also visit a tiny temple devoted to Goddess Buddhi Nagin, the mother of the 60 Nag Devtas who are believed to reside in the lake.

Tirthan Valley is relatively unknown and that's what makes it so peaceful. Wikimedia Commons
Tirthan Valley is relatively unknown and that’s what makes it so peaceful. Wikimedia Commons

Experience the Chehni Kothi Charm 

While in Tirthan Valley, visit the charming 1500 years old castle, Chehni Kothi. It was once a 15 storeys high building but now only 10 storeys remain. Chehni Kothi is built in traditional style and is the tallest structure in the Western Himalayan region.

Hidden Waterfalls 

A hike from the Rolla village will lead you to the beautiful waterfall amidst the forested valley. The tiny waterfall is perfect for a small a picnic. Its clean and pristine water will surely make for a serene ambience.

Also Read: Rundown of 7 Mountains in India

Other than what all is mentioned above, one can camp under a starry night at the Tirthan valley. One can also witness the culture and tradition of the place. Tirthan valley is a beautiful place full of fresh energy which won’t disappoint you.