20 Best Things to Do In Himachal Pradesh for a Fun Vacation

 In Destination, Himachal Pradesh, Holidays, India, India, Travel

A Destination for All Seasons and All Reasons” – Himachal’s Tourism Tagline truly justifies the popularity of this state when it comes to the Top Tourist Destinations in India. Nestled in the lap of the mighty Himalayas, the state of Himachal Boasts many activities for a perfect escape from your routine life. So explore this state with our Himachal Holiday Packages and enter this wonderland that awaits surprises at every turn.

Himachal Pradesh is truly an all-year-round destination. Visitors flock to this place in winter to experience the winter wonderland and indulge in several winter activities like skiing, snowboarding or simply experience the joy of making a snowman or a snow fight. 

During summers, the weather of Himachal Pradesh is comparatively more pleasant than the rest of the country, making it an ideal place to visit during this season. Visitors can explore the places closed in winter due to heavy snowfall in summer, walk on the vast green meadows, explore the waterfalls, or simply enjoy the clear views of some of the magnificent Himalayan peaks. 

Whether you are an adventure enthusiast, nature lover, explorer, biker, wine connoisseur, culture vulture or someone seeking a peaceful vacation, Himachal Pradesh is a one-stop destination for all. So, get the best of this amazing state with the following things to do in Himachal Pradesh and see what suits you the best.

20 Best Things to Do in Himachal Pradesh

1. Paragliding at Asia’s Highest Paragliding Site


Soar like a free bird in the sky by paragliding and enjoy the bird’s eye view of the high Himalayan Mountains and Valleys. Paragliding is one of the top Things to do in Himachal Pradesh when you visit the picturesque town of Bir and Billing.

Take off from the Billing Take off site which is located at a whooping height of 2400 meters above sea level, thus making it Asia’s Highest Paragliding Site and land in the scenic town of Bir, famed for providing some of the best sunset views (Pro Tip – Take an evening slot for Paragliding in Bir-Billing to enjoy the sunset views). Other than Billing, you can also go for paragliding in Solang and Khajjiar. The average cost for paragliding in Himachal Pradesh will be around ₹3000/- to ₹4500/-

2. Go For a Biking Adventure


The state of Himachal Pradesh also houses the raw terrain of the Spiti Valley which is a perfect biking playground for bikers and motocross lovers. Apart from visiting the highest villages, highest post office, age-old monasteries, high-altitude lakes, and high mountain passes a bike ride to the Spiti Valley is sure to give plenty of opportunities for the bikers to flaunt their biking skills.

Traveling to Spiti on Bikes can be a different experience depending on the route you take. If you decide to travel from Manali, you cross the beautiful Lahaul Valley, Kunzum Pass, and the crescent-shaped Chandratal Lake. the route from Shimla will give you opportunities to visit Chitkul – the last Indian Village on the Indo-Tibetan Border, the tinsel town of Kalpa which gives you a glimpse of the Kinnaur Kailash Peak, the Khab Sangam, etc.

3. Visit the High-Altitude Lakes


Himachal Pradesh is home to a number of alpine lakes that beautifully reflects the surrounding mountain ranges or forests, making it a perfect place to be in nature’s lap. Along, with the scenic beauty, the lakes in Himachal also have many stories and cultural significance associated with them. One of the famous lakes in Himachal Pradesh in Tirthan Valley is the Serolsar Lake, which is considered home to the Budhi Nagin – the mother of all Naags (snakes) and thus is a revered spot by locals.

The lakes in Himachal Pradesh can be directly reached by a vehicle or can be explored by short treks and hikes. Some of the popular lakes are Chandratal, Suraj Tal, Kareri Lake, Parashar Lake, Bhrigu Lake, Dhankar Lake, Nako Lake, Dal Lake, Khajjiar Lake, etc, each offering a different experience overall.

4. Relish in the Local Cuisine


The cuisine of Himachal is a mix of traditional and Tibetan cuisine, since the settlement of the Tibetans in this region. One of the traditional feasts of Himachali cuisine is the Dhaam – a dish consisting of many components, mostly prepared during festivals or any kind of celebration. Other famous dishes include Siddu – a type of local bread, Madra, Kullu Trout Fish, Lotus Stems, Aktori, Tehri, Kaale Chane ka Khatta, etc.

Along with these traditional dishes, you will also find some authentic Tibetan dishes here to tickle your taste buds. Some of the popular dishes include – Momos/ Dumplings, Thentuk, Thukpa, Laphing, etc.

5. Taste the Locally Brewed Spirits and Drinks


Himachal Pradesh is a fruit basket, which produces export-quality fruits like apples, oranges, kiwis, etc. These fruits and other flowers are locally brewed to make fruit vines, apple ciders, etc. Thus, trying these fruit wines and the popular rhododendron wine is one of the best things to do in Himachal Pradesh.

The towns of Kasauli, Solan and Mandi in Himachal Pradesh are known for the local breweries which produce these wines and spirits. The Kasauli Brewery is considered one of the oldest and first of a kind in the country and was established in 1820.

6. Explore the waterfalls in Himachal Pradesh


One of the best ways to enjoy your natural retreat in Himachal Pradesh is by visiting its cascading waterfalls. Most waterfalls in Himachal Pradesh are accessible by a short hike and have their own charm. You will have to walk through the forest or cross small water streams to reach the waterfalls, which is an adventure in itself.

Some of the popular waterfalls are the Jogini Falls in Manali, the Sissu Waterfall, the Chhoie Waterfalls near Banjaar, the Bhongru Waterfall of Bir, Bhagsunaag in Mcleodganj and the Chadwick falls in Shimla.

7. Go for a Spiritual Retreat


The state of Himachal Pradesh is studded with a number of religious sites, making them a perfect spiritual retreat amidst nature. Most of the temples in Himachal reflect the Himachali architecture like the Hadimba Temple in Manali, Balu Naag Temple in Bahu, Shangchul Mahadev Temple of Shangarh, Bhimakali Temple in Sarahan, etc. Other famous temples include Baijnath, Jhakhoo Hanuman Temple, Maa Chitpurni Temple, Bajreshwari Temple, Bijli Mahadev Temple, etc.

Other than the popular hill station of Shimla Houses one of the oldest churches of North India – the Christ Church located on the Shimla Ridge. Other famous churches in Himachal Pradesh are located in the Dharamshala, and Dalhousie pockets like the famous St. John’s Church in the Wilderness and St. Francis church. The Manikaran Sahib Gurudwara in Parvati Valley is also a revered Sikh pilgrimage site that is also famous for its sulphur hot springs.

The influence of Tibetan Culture in Himachal Pradesh is reflected by its monasteries, some of them being 500 years old. The famous Namgyal Monastery in Dharamshala is home to the 14th Tibetan Guru – the Dalai Lama. Other than that the Key Monastery of Kaza, Nako, Tabo and Dhankar Monasteries in Spiti Valley, the Gue Monastery which houses a mummy of a Tibetan Monk are some of the popular spiritual retreats in Himachal.

8. Soak Views from the High Mountain Passes


Soaking the panoramic views of the surrounding valleys and Himalayan peaks from the high mountain passes can be an exhilarating experience. These high mountain passes scattered all over Himachal Pradesh can be visited with the help of a vehicle (car/ bike) or sometimes by trekking.

The mountain passes that are accessible by road are – Rohtang Pass, Kunzum Pass, Baralachla, Jalori Pass, etc. Other scenic mountain passes that can be accessed by trekking a few days are Hampta Pass, Chandrakhani Pass, Rupin Pass, Pin Parvati Pass, INdrahar Pass, etc.

9. Go Hiking or Trekking


The state of Himachal Pradesh is heaven for mountaineers and trekkers as it offers a plethora of hiking and trekking trails. From short 1-day hikes to 9-10 days long trekking trails, Himachal Pradesh provides plenty of options for trekkers to choose from. These trails pass through the beautiful pine forest, small tinsel villages, alpine lakes, and vast meadows and provide the best vantage points to soak in the natural beauty.

Whether you are an amateur or a professional mountaineer, undertaking this adventure is one of the top things to do in Himachal Pradesh. Some famous small hiking trails include Serolsar Lake, Triund, Beas Kund, Kheerganga, Bhrigu Lake, Malana village hike, etc. Some of the popular long Himachal Treks include the Pin Parvati, Sar Pass, Friendship Peak, Pin Bhaba Trek, Beas Kund, Buran Ghati Trek, etc.

10. Go Cafe Hopping


As the quaint hillstations in Himachal Pradesh have become easily accessible, you can witness the growing cafe culture here. Emerging as one of the top things to do in Himachal Pradesh, cafe hopping on the hillstations here is a treat to both eyes and tongue. Most of the cafes in Himachal Pradesh offer picturesque views clubbed with delicious cuisines from all over the world like italian, mexican, lebanese, etc.

The cafes in Himachal offer a cozy ambiance, along with some books to read or indoor games to play, so that you can sit leisurely, enjoy your food and have some fun, all while enjoying the pretty mountain views around you. Some of these famous cafes are – Pink Panther in Jibhi, The Himalayan cafe in Kaza, Cafe 1947 in Manali, etc.

11. Visit the highest cricket stadium in the world


If you are a true cricket fan, then this is one of the best things to do in Himachal Pradesh for you. The Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium of Dharamshala is considered to be the highest cricket stadium in the world located 1300 meters above the sea level.

The main stand of the stadium is designed in Tibetan Architecture and the stadium is open for visitors between 3PM to 6PM, even when there are no matches. The best part of this stadium is its backdrop which consists for a scenic views of the majestic snow-clad Dhauladhar mountains.

12. Visit the Great Himalayan National Park


The Great Himalayan National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Himachal Pradesh, which is a haven for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts. The rich biodiversity of the Great Hiamalayan National Park include the snow leopard, tahr, blue sheep, bears, musk deers, etc. This national park is also a ground for several adventure activities like trekking, camping and wildlife spotting. One of the famous treks in this national park is the Pin Paravti Pass Trek which starts from the Mud Village in Spiti Valley and ends in the Parvati Valley in Barshaini or vice versa.

13. Enjoy the Winter Sports

winter sports-in-himachal-pradesh

The freezing cold temperature during the winters in Himachal Pradesh has given birth to a number of winters sports for an adrenaline pump. The slopes of Kufri, Fagu, Narkanda, Solang Valley, Hanuman Tibba are famous for housing activities like sledging, skiing and snowboarding. 

Trying your hands at ice skating at the iconic open-air ice skating rink of Shimla is one of the top things to do in Himachal Pradesh in winters for a memorable vacation. Taking an adventurous road trip to Spiti in winters is also an adventure for many.

14. Toy Train ride in Shimla


Regarded as one of the most beautiful train rides in India, the Kalka Shimla Toy Train has also gained a UNESCO World Heritage Status. Let the inner child in you dance with joy as you embark on this scenic narrow gauge train journey from Kalka to Shimla, which is one of the top things to do in Himachal Pradesh. You can choose from different types of trains depending on your budget, type of trains and timings.

This Toy Train journey from Kalka to Shimla Can take upto 4-5 hours to complete and serve you with breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains, tunnels, pine forests, waterfalls, valleys, little hamlets, British-era Bridges, etc.

15. Camping and Star Gazing


The clear sky and the clean atmosphere in Himachal Pradesh provides a perfect opportunity for stargazing and camping under this star-lit sky is cherry on cake. The vast meadows, river banks, alpine lake sides, and forests are some of the best places for camping in Himachal Pradesh.

Most of the high-altitude treks in Himachal often offer opportunities and camping at the same time. The Triund Hills, Kheerganga Top and Langza in Spiti Valley are some of the best stargazing spots in Himachal Pradesh that also gives an opportunity to witness the beautiful galaxy on clear nights.

16. Trout Fishing


The gurguling glaciated rivers in Himachal Pardesh offer several opportunities for angling and trout fishing, especially the brown and rainbow trout. The key places for trout fishing include the Tirthan and Sainj rivers in the Great Himalayan National Park, the Beas River near Manali, and the Pabbar Valley in Rohru.

The best season for angling and trout fishing is from March to October when the water levels are ideal and the weather is pleasant. Anglers can relish the thrill of catching these prized fish amid the breathtaking landscapes of Himachal Pradesh.

17. Attend Local Festivals


The rich culture of Himachal also gives an opportunity to attend the local festivals of Himachal. Along with knowing the traditional customs, you will also understand the local legends and folklore behind the festivities and celebrations.

Some of the popular festivals to attend in Himachal Pradesh are Dusshera of Kullu, Losar festival, Mahashivratri in Baijnath and Mandi, Krishna Janmastami of Kinnaur, the Halda festival and much more. These festivals are sure to provide a culturally enchanting experience on your trip to Himachal Pradesh.

The rich culture of Himachal also gives an opportunity to attend the local festivals of Himachal. Along with knowing the traditional customs, you will also understand the local legends and folklore behind the festivities and celebrations.

Some of the popular festivals to attend in Himachal Pradesh are Dusshera of Kullu, Losar festival, Mahashivratri in Baijnath and Mandi, Krishna Janmastami of Kinnaur, the Halda festival and much more. These festivals are sure to provide a culturally enchanting experience on your trip to Himachal Pradesh.

18. Visit the oldest democarcy in the world


The Malana village in the Parvati Valley is one of the oldest democracy in the world. The people in this have their own governing system and they consider themselves as the descendants of Alexander – the Great. You will have to trek for 4 kms from Jari in Kasol to reach the Malana Village.

While visiting the village it is important to keep in mind that visitors are not allowed to visit the temples in the village, nor they are allowed to touch anything that belongs to the locals. For clicking pictures in this village you will have to first seek permission from the villagers.

19. Walk on the vast alpine meadows

Source : Wikipedia

Walking on the vast open meadows in Himachal Pradesh can be a refreshing experience, thus adding it to this list of top things to do in Himachal Pradesh. The famous meadows here is located in Shangarh, Khajjiar and Bhimakali Sarahan.

You can set up picnics here, indulge in a number of activities around or simply enjoy the pleasure of lying on the soft grass as you soak in the surrounding mountain views.

20. Go Shopping in the Local Markets.


Shopping in the local markets in Himachal Pradesh is a great opportunity to take back souvenirs for your loved ones. The warm Kullu Shawls by local artisans are a must buy in Kullu District. Explore a range of hippie stuff in the Kasol Market that include a wide range of variety like clothing, jewellery and accessories, reflecting the bohemian culture. You can also take back fruit and flower wines that are locally brewed here. The Kaza market is famous for selling the seabuckthorn tea – known for its medicinall properties.  Additionally, Tibetan handicrafts like thangkas, prayer wheels, and artifacts are abundant in the markets, showcasing the rich culture and heritage of the region.

Frequently Asked Questions About Things To Do In Himachal Pradesh

1. What are the top tourist attractions in Himachal Pradesh?

The top tourist attractions in Himachal Pradesh are the picturesque hillstation of Shimla, Manali, Bir, Dharamshala. For those seeking a little offbeat experience visit the Spiti and Tirthan valley. Other than these, Himachal Pradesh also houses some of the best treks for adventure lovers like the Hampta pass, Sar Pass, Pin Parvati, ,etc.

2. What is the best time to visit Himachal Pradesh?

The weather in Himachal Pradesh is pleasant during  the months of February to June and is ideal to explore the picturesque landscapes in the region. During this time, the valleys are adorned with colorful blooms, and the weather remains mild. Winter lovers can visit during the months of October to January to experience snowfalls and winter sports in popular hill stations like Shimla, Manali, and Dharamshala.

3. Are there any adventure activities to try in Himachal Pradesh?

Yes, there are an abundant number of adventure activities to try in Himachal Pradesh. As this state is nestled in the lep of the mighty Himalayas, it is an adventure playground for adventurers. You can go for trekking, river rafting, biking, paragliding at asia’s highest paragliding site in Billing, etc. Other than these you can also participate in skiing and snowboarding during the months of winter in this state.

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