One of the most popular holiday destinations in the western Himalayas, whose name itself visualizes snow covered mountains, a calm and quiet place with bountiful nature, is Manali. Throughout the year, Manali is crowded by many national and international tourists. The cold, pleasant atmosphere, scenic beauty, adventure sports, temples, dams, rivers makes it a favorite go to destination for all types and age group of people.
Manali has unbounded beauty and this extreme beauty has the ability to influence tourists. Manali has a symbolic past in history. It has procured its name after the great Lawmaker Sage Manu. He was the seventh one who landed and began life after the great flood which washed away life and everything from earth.
Amongst the endless list of tourist attractions at Manali, few spiritual places which not only relaxes us but also fills our heart with holiness are as follows:
Built in the 15th century, it is referred as Dhoongri temple by locals. The only temple in India which is dedicated to a demon is Hadimba temple. It is made to idolize the local goddess Hidimba Devi . Originally belonging to a demon family, Hidimba got married with the second Pandava brother Bheem. The construction style and architecture makes it unusual. Built over a huge rock, it consists of four wooden storeys, wooden doorways, walls decorated with stone and mud impressions.
The temple is famous for its Pagoda style, the top most roof is conical and clad in metal whereas the other roofs are covered with timber tiles. About 2kms away from the main city center of Manali, this temple is easily accessible by bus, taxi or by foot. Surrounded by cedar forest and a 24mt tall wooden tower, the temple has great spiritual and monumental importance to Hindu pilgrims.
Located about 3km away from Manali market is a must visit place not only for its religious significance but for its ancient, beautiful architecture and wooden carvings. It is the only temple dedicated to Manu, who is believed to be the Hindu Lawmaker of Mankind which helps maintain peace and harmony in society. He also wrote the Manusmriti.
The presence of River Beas, views of tall hills, green forests, soul pleasing atmosphere makes this temple a prime attraction in Manali. It is easily approachable by public transport. The temple is made of wood and concrete whereas the architecture is of a Pagoda style with decreasing wooden roof. It is believed that the construction of the temple is at the same place where Sage Manu had meditated when he landed on earth after the great wash of flood. The best time to visit Manu temple is between April and June still all around the year pilgrims and tourist visit here in great numbers.
Tripura Sundari Temple
A three-storied wooden pagoda style temple built by Raja Yashodhapal located at Naggar is Tripura Sundari Temple. It is in close area of about 1km from Naggar Bus Stop, at a walking distance from Naggar Castle and about 21km from Manali Bus stop.
Dedicated to Goddess Tripura Sundari the temple has a great historic importance in Himachal. The architectural design and style resembles the Hadimba Devi Temple in Manali. The temple is shaped like a web. According to the beliefs, it says that the temple is built by the Goddess herself after she turns into a spider.
The pillars, doors are carved beautifully with complex designs and are made up of deodar wood. The temple has an open courtyard where beautiful idol of Ganesha which is wooden carved welcomes all. Along with the main deity idol, the temple has stone idols of Lord Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva and Goddess Parvati and Lakshmi. It also consists of a 30cm idol of Tripura Rakshasa in the temple.
Himalayan Nyingmapa Buddhist Temple
A place where few minutes of meditation gives a perfect glimpse of the whole life of Buddhist monks is the Himalayan Nyingmapa monastery. Though it is located in the hustle and bustle of Mall road in Manali, the quietness, calm and pleasing atmosphere of this monastery is in contrast.
The monastery is a two storey structure with pagoda style architecture. The eye catching mural paintings over the walls and ceilings, two storey tall about 4.5 feet long idol of Sakyamuni and bright shade yellow paint of temple makes it most prominent among the other Buddhist monasteries in Manali.
Along with the huge statue of Sakyamuni in meditating posture, colored in gold and saffron, there are several more statues of Buddha in different sizes, shapes and the paintings which gives a glimpse of the life and principle of Gautam Buddha.
Apart from all these, there are multiple small temples in and around Manali and including all of them in one blog post is not feasible so let’s keep that for some other time. And if you plan on taking your parents with you for a religious trip to Manali, you can always book with us at Princess Villa for a comfortable stay.