The most charming and beautiful Kulu valley spreads out its charm on either side of river Beas. The valley runs north to south of this river and is 80kms. long and about 2kms. at its broadest. Yet with awe inspiring glens and mossy meadows encircled by the rushing streams and meandering brooks, flung east & west, a fairly wide area is open to the tourists, the trekkers, the mountaineers, the artists and to anyone who wishes to escape the heat & dust of the plains to breathe the exhilarating air of the Himalaya and enjoy the spectacle of the variegated mountain scenery. The valley is also famous for its exquisitely woven colourful hand made shawls and kullu caps.
Kullu was once known as Kulanthapitha end of the habitable world. Beyond rose the forbidding heights of the Greater Himalayas and by the banks of the shining river Beas, lay the fabled Silver valley.
Kullu got its first motorable access only after independence. The long centuries of seclusion have however allowed the area to retain a considerable measures of its traditional charm. Here is the core of an intricate web of numerous valleys each of which is a visual delight and seems more than the other.
The silver valley has nature treasures that lie carelessly scattered as flowers on the high meadows. This wealth nestles by every tree in the splendid forests, it bursts forth in the blooms and in fruit of every orchard. Here are riches which can not be measured and echo down the ages with the words of every myth and pleasure in every step you take in these enchanted valleys and is every gurgle you here in the clear mountain streams.
BIJLI MAHADEV SHRINE (2460 m): 10kms. from Kulu across the Beas river, Bijli Mahadev temple is one of the striking temples in the temples strewn district. It can be reached by a tough but rewarding climb of 10 kms. trek. From the temple a panoramic view of Kulu & Paravati valleys can be seen. A 60 feet high staff of Bijli Mahadev temple glistens like a silver needle in the sun. in this temple of lightening it is said, the tall staff attracts the divine blessings in the form of lightening. The rest of the story can be heard from the priest, which is un-believable but true.
RAGHUNATHJI TEMPLE: 1 km. from Dhalpur, Raghunathji is the principal deity of the valley.
VAISHNO DEVI TEMPLE: At a distance of 4kms. from Dhalpur, a small cave enshrines an image of Goddess Vaishno Devi.
CAMPING SIGHT RAISON (1433 m): 16kms. away from Kulu, the sight is ideal for spending a quite holiday in solitary splendor and for holding youth camps. There are a large number of orchards in this part of the valley. HPTDC has log cabins for comfortable stay.
KATRAIN (1463 m): The central and the widest part of the valley, Katrain is 20kms. from Kulu on way to Manali. Apple orchards and trout hatchery lend charm and prominence to the place. It is also famous for bee keeping and Govt. trout farm at Patilkulh. Sufficient accommodation is availablein Hotels of HPTDC.
NAGGAR (1760 m): On the left bank of the Beas, Naggar is delightfully situated on a wooded slope and commands an extensive view. It was the capital of erstwhile Kulu state for about 1400 years. There are large number of famous temples notably Vishnu, Tripura Sundari & Lord Krishana. Cars and jeeps easily go upto the Naggar castle. Roerich art gallery which houses the paintings of Nicholas Roerich as well as his sculptures , is less than a km. from the Castle. Naggar is also a base for undertaking treks to Chanderkhani Pass and to remote valley of Malana.
KASOL (1640 m): Situated on the bank of Paravati river, Kasol makes a good holiday destination. 42kms. from Kulu, charmingly located on an open space which slopes down to the broad expanse of clear white sand at the Parvati river. The place is well known for trout fishing.
MANIKARAN (1700 m): Manikaran, 45kms. from Kulu and just 3kms. from Kasol, is famous for its hot springs. Thousands of people take a holy dip in hot waters here. The water is so hot that dal, rice & vegetables etc. can be cooked in it. It is also a well known pilgrimage place for both Hindus & Sikhs. Ramchandra and Shivaji temples besides a Gurudwara are there. According to an old legend, Manikaran is connected with Lord Shiva and his divine consort, Parvati, who lost her ear rings here, which gave birth to hot waters on the bank of Parvati river. Hearing this religious myth from the priests will be more rewarding and interesting. Ample accomodation in the temples and Gurudwara, is available for night stay besides the HPTDC hotel.
MALANA (2652 m): Little ahead of the beautiful Chanderkhani Pass lies the village Malana which is famous for the temple of Jamlu and its distinct, social and cultural life. Malana is considered to be the oldest democracy in the world. It would be worth while to visit this village to study the style and social system prevalent there.
BAJAURA: 15kms. short of Kulu , Bajaura is on the main road where BASHESHWAR MAHADEV temple is situated about 200 m from the village in a plain between the main road and the Beas river. It is believed to have been built in the mid 8th century.
LARJI (957 m): South of Kulu, Larji 34kms. away is a small hamlet providing excellent spot for trout fishing. The PWD rest house is located in a stunning position between the foaming torrents of the river Sainj & Tirthan, before they join the Beas. The place is patronized mostly by anglers.
BANJAR (1524 m): At a distance of 58 kms. south of Kulu, Banjar is an excellent spot for trout fishing in the waters of river Tirthan.
AIR: Kullu is connected by Indian Airlines, Trans Bharat Aviation and Jagson flights with Delhi & Shimla. The airport is at Bhuntar, 10kms. from Kulu.
RAIL: Nearest convenient rail heads are Kalka, Chandigarh and Pathankot on Broad Gauge from where Kullu can be reached by road.
ROAD: Kulu is well connected by road with Delhi, Ambala, Chandigarh, Shimla, Dehradun, Pathankot, Dharamsala & Dalhousie etc. Regular direct buses ply between these stations including deluxe, semi-deluxe and air conditioned buses during tourist season.
LOCAL TRANSPORT: Local buses operate between Kullu-Manali and Manikaran regularly. Taxis are also available.