Manali is a popular tourist destination for the backpackers in the state of Himachal Pradesh. It is also loved by the newlyweds as a honeymoon destination. Many places here are located on banks of the Beas River and are the gateway to several adventure activities. The town as such is famous for lush green sceneries, snowy mountains, lakes, and valleys around, which is always buzzing with tourists.
There are many versions of the Manali itinerary. Let us now see top places to visit in Manali which should not be given a miss. These are a mix of tourist attractions blended well with culture, flora and fauna, scenic beauty and others. Also, Manali offers different hues across the year so let us begin with the best time to visit Manali.
Best time to visit Manali
- Manali as a place has so much to offer in terms of its culture, food, sightseeing, and fun activities. Manali has something to offer all around the year. Every season here has its own perks.
Manali in summers (March to June)
- During summers the temperature rises to a moderate range of 10 degrees to 25 degrees Celsius. Which is perfect for going out and exploring the city during the day. If you are someone who doesn’t like chilly winters, the summer season is the best to visit Manali.
Manali in summers offers pleasant weather with little colder nights, which is perfect for enjoying a bonfire. The clear weather also offers exciting activities like paragliding, rafting, trekking, and other mountaineering activities.
Manali in winters (October to February)
- During winters, the city is seen at its full glory. Its slopes are covered in thick snow blankets and the temperature drops below -1 degrees Celsius. This weather and the gorgeous view of the mountains make Manali in winter one of the favorite destinations for couples. There are institutes that provide training in adventure sports for tourists to experience skiing and other ice sports.
Manali in monsoons (July to Mid-September)
- Although traveling to a hilly area in monsoon is not a great idea because not many adventure sports are available during this season nor can you go out much to explore the town. Also, during monsoons, hilly areas get prone to landslides. Therefore imposing restrictions on the local means of transportation. This means that bus services are halted or temporarily shut down during monsoons. In spite of all these drawbacks of visiting Manali in monsoons, people like to visit for its serene lush greenery and tranquil atmosphere during monsoons.
This is among the top and must in the places to visit in Manali. This is a beautiful temple which is dedicated to the wife of Bhima, Hadimba. This place is most striking given the location in mid of the Dhungri forest. There are pine trees all around the place and it’s unique given the picturesque location, architecture, and peaceful environment. It is among popular religions site in Manali.
When to visit: 8 AM to 6 PM every day
What to do: Enjoy the temple architecture, nature walks
Himachal Culture and Folk Art Museum
Just near to Hadimba temple is the Museum of Himachal Culture and Folk Art. This homes unique collection of antiques, religious relics, weapons, instruments, scale models and many others. This is for sure a visit needed if you are a history lover.
When to visit: 8 AM to 8 PM every day
What to do: Enjoy the unique collections
Manali also has a Tibetan population settled from ages and has several monasteries which are must visit to admire their architecture and beliefs. The Himalayan Nyingmapa Gompa and Gadhan Thekchhokling Gompa are among must-visit places in Manali. The Tibetan art and craft are also at display at these places.
When to visit: 7 AM to 7 PM
What to do: Meditation, shopping
Vashisht temple and hot water springs
About 3.5 km from Manali is a quaint little village Vashisht. There, through a narrow street lined with local winter and blanket shops you’ll reach the vashisht temple. The temple is 400-year old and is dedicated to sage Vashisht. Sage Vashisht was one of the great seven rishis (or saptrishis) and Guru (teacher) of Lord Ram and Lakshman. The village is named after him as it is said that he lived and meditated there.
Inside the temple, there is a spring hot water bath, separated in two parts for men and women. The bath is said to be sacred and has healing properties. The spring bath is said to have emerged itself from the earth where Lord Lakshman fired an arrow.
When to visit: 7 am to 1 pm, and 2 pm to 9 pm on all days.
Manu temple is loved by those who want to experience a sense of beauty, peace and serene environment. Dedicated to the Lord Manu, this is among popular destinations in Manali for religious tourists.
When to visit: 5 AM to 9 PM
What to do: Trek to the temple, enjoy natural beauty surrounded to temple
This is among the main places to visit in Manali due to the natural views, stunning picturesque valley, and melodious sounds of waterfalls. This also has several authentic Himachali dishes around the place. You can even trek to the route if you are an activity enthusiast.
When to visit: Any time before sunset
What to do: Enjoy nature, photography, food
This lies between Beas Kund and Solang Village and is the most popular places to visit in Manali. It lies around 14 km away from Manali and is well-known for its winter skiing festival. It is famous for adventure sports.
When to visit: 9 AM to 5 PM
What to do: Zorbing, Quad Biking, Skiing, Snowmobiling, Gondola Or Solang Valley Ropeway are some of the popular activities to do in Solang valley.
Rohtang pass, located at 51 km from Manali, is known for its snow-covered slopes. It is closed from October to May. From June people start coming here in large numbers as it becomes one of the best places for adventure sports and nature lovers.
Activities you can do in Rohtang pass
- River Rafting
- Paragliding Skiing
- Mountain Biking
- Jeep Safari
- River Crossing
- Snow Scooter
- Quad Biking
The beautiful village of Kothi is located amidst the forest and verdant land which is located 16 km away from Manali. The villages here have a rustic charm and breathtaking views all around. It is a must-visit place in Manali if you like to unleash and free your creativity.
When to visit: Anytime
What to do: Trek to Rohtang Pass, Paragliding
The Rahala waterfalls are a famous picnic spot located amidst Deodar forests, 16km away from Manali. This magnificent fall is from glaciers and rocks amidst the deodar trees. The view is gorgeous given the amazing views of snowy Himalaya ranges
When to visit: Any time
What to do: Enjoy the scenic beauty
This destination is the latest arrival on the list of tourist places to visit in Manali. Snow activities are well known around here and are less crowded when compared to other areas like Solang and Rohtang.
When to visit: All round year, sports from 6 AM to 6 PM
What to do: Paragliding, skiing
This village is again a beautiful destination for nature lovers. It is situated along the River Beas and is 19 km away from Manali city. The most amazing views of the valley along with the art gallery and temples around the area is what make this place famous.
When to visit: All round year
What to do: Tripura Sundari temple and Art gallery
This is for those trekking lovers and adventure enthusiasts. This beautiful trekking route goes through from Manali to Kasol and is going to make you fall in love totally with its enchanting beauty and nature. One goes between rural villages, lush green vegetation and mountain ranges here. One can also witness Parvati range from this trek
When to visit: Any time
What to do: Trekking
If you want to get away from hush-hush hill station surroundings of Manali, do not miss this place which is filled with cool cafes, hostels, and rustic hotels. This looks like an altogether new place to visit.
When to visit: All the time
What to do: Enjoy the creative and rustic cafes
This should not be given a miss if you want to grab local delicacies or do some souvenir shopping. One must try sizzling momos here along with checking out wooden handicrafts, woolen clothes and accessories here. There are some great restaurants which one can check out as well.
When to visit: All round the year
What to do: Shopping and food tasting
If you are looking forward to more of scenic beauty and deodar trees around, Van Vihar is the place to visit. This tourist attraction has also a man-made lake and is taken care of by the municipal corporation. It is for nature lovers who want to come in the evening and spend some quality time.
When to visit: Anytime
What to do: Sit down and relax
In case you are wondering where is something for flora and fauna lovers, here it is. This beautiful wildlife sanctuary is within walking distance which has rich flora and fauna of mountain areas. One can also camp at this place and explore sanctuary through hiking.
When to visit: 9 AM to 6 PM
What to do: Witness the exotic flora and fauna
Hope you have enjoyed reading the places to visit in Manali. These are among the must not miss spots which every nature lover and adventure enthusiast would want! Plan a trip and let us know how it all went!