Mcleod Ganj


McLeod Ganj is a suburb of Dharamshala in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh, India. It is known as "Little Lhasa" or "Dhasa" (a short form of Dharamshala used mainly by Tibetans) because of its large population of Tibetans.The Tibetan government-in-exile is headquartered in McLeod Ganj.

McLeod Ganj (also spelt McLeodGanj or Mcleodganj) is a suburb of Dharamshala in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh, India. It is known as "Little Lhasa" or "Dhasa"because of its large population of Tibetans.The Tibetan government-in-exile is headquartered in McLeod Ganj.

It has an average elevation of 2,082 metres (6,831 feet). It is situated on the Dhauladhar Range, whose highest peak, "Hanuman Ka Tibba", at about 5,639 metres (18,500 feet), lies just behind it.

Also known as Little Lhasa and famous around the world for being home to the Tibetan spiritual leader Dalai Lama, Mcleodganj is a beautiful town situated near upper Dharamsala. Nestled amidst majestic hills and lush greenery, this town is culturally blessed by a prominent Tibetan influence owing to the major settlement of Tibetans here. Mcleodganj has one of the most mesmerising landscapes in the entire state of Himachal Pradesh and attracts a lot of tourists throughout the year. The towns of Dharamsala, Mcleodganj, Bhagsu Nag and Kangra are situated very close to each other and tourists must cover all these destinations while travelling here. Few of the most eminent and religiously significant monasteries in India are located here, including the Namgyal Monastery and Tsuglagkhang, where the spiritual leader Dalai Lama resides. Tourists must also visit the scenic Dal Lake and Triund, which are apt for quiet picnics.

History


In March 1850, the area was annexed by the British after the Second Anglo-Sikh War, and soon a subsidiary cantonment for the troops stationed at Kangra was established on the slopes of Dhauladhar, on empty land, with a Hindu resthouse or dharamshala; hence the name for the new cantonment, Dharamshala. During the British rule in India, the town was a hill station where the British spent hot summers, and around the late 1840s, when the district headquarters in Kangra became overcrowded, the British moved two regiments to Dharamshala. A cantonment was established in 1849, and in 1852 Dharamshala became the administrative capital of Kangra district. By 1855 it had two important places of civilian settlement, McLeod Ganj and Forsyth Ganj, named after a Divisional Commissioner.In 1860, the 66th Gurkha Light Infantry, later renamed the historic 1st Gurkha Rifles, was moved to Dharamshala. Soon 14 Gurkha paltan villages were established nearby and the Gurkhas patronised the ancient Shiva temple of Bhagsunath.

Lord Elgin, the British Viceroy of India (1862–63), liked the area so much that at one point he suggested it be made the summer capital of India. He died at Dharamshala while on a tour there, on 20 November 1863, and lies buried at the St. John in the Wilderness at Forsyth Ganj, just below McLeod Ganj.His summer residence, Mortimer House, became part of the private estate of Lala Basheshar Nath of Lahore and was acquired by the Government of India to house the official residence of the Dalai Lama. The original Tea House built by Lord Elgin and catered to by a local grocery store called Nowrojee & Son continues to prosper to this date as a hangout for visitors to McLeodGanj.

The twin towns of Forsyth Ganj and McLeod Ganj continued to grow steadily in the coming years, and by 1904 had become important centres of trade, commerce and official work of Kangra District. But much of the town was destroyed by the devastating 7.8 magnitude 1905 Kangra earthquake at 6:19 am 4 April 1905; close to 19,800 people were killed and thousands were injured in the Kangra area. The earthquake destroyed most buildings in Kangra, Dharamshala, and McLeod Ganj; even the Bhagsunath Temple was destroyed.Thereafter, district headquarters were shifted to a lower spot, and the town waited another half century before anything significant transpired in its history.

In March 1959, Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, fled to India after the failed uprising in 1959 in Tibet against the Communist Party of China. The Indian Government offered him refuge in Dharamshala, where he set up the Government of Tibet in exile in 1960, while McLeod Ganj became his official residence and also home to several Buddhist monasteries and thousands of Tibetan refugees.Over the years, McLeod Ganj evolved into an important tourist and pilgrimage destination, and has since grown substantially in population.


Namgyal Monastery

Namgyal Monastery is currently located in Mcleod Ganj, Dharamsala, India. It is the personal monastery of the 14th Dalai Lama. Another name for this temple-complex is Namgyal Tantric College.

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Masrur

Hanumangarhi is a temple of Lord Hanuman in Ayodhya. More than 70 steps lead to the main Hanuman temple which is one of the most popular temples of Lord Hanuman in North India.It is a custom that before visiting lord Ram temple one should first pay visit to shri lord Hanuman temple.

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Kareri Lake Dam

Kareri Lake is a high altitude, shallow, fresh water lake south of the Dhauladhar range approximately 9 km North West of Dharamsala in Kangra district, Himachal Pradesh. Its surface is 2934 metres above the sea level.

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Gyuto Monastery

The Gyuto Monastery is one of the most famous monasteries and specializes in the study of Tantric meditation, Tantric ritual arts and Buddhist philosophy. It was founded in Tibet in 1474 by the main disciple of the first Dalai Lama, Jetsun Kunga Dhondup. After the communist Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1959, the monastery was re-established in India.

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Kangra Museum

This museum, just off the main street, displays some fine miniature paintings from the Kangra school, and Chamba rumal embroideries, along with traditional costumes from the area and photos from the devastating 1905 Kangra earthquake.

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Kangra Fort

The Kangra Fort is located atop a hill at the confluence of Banganga and Patal Ganga river (also known as the Majhi), in the south western outskirts of the old Kangra town. The fort was built by the founder of Katoch Dynasty, Bhuma Chand and is also known by other names, Nagarkot and Kot Kangra.

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Mcleod Ganj

McLeod Ganj is a suburb of Dharamshala in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh, India. It is known as "Little Lhasa" or "Dhasa" (a short form of Dharamshala used mainly by Tibetans) because of its large population of Tibetans.The Tibetan government-in-exile is headquartered in McLeod Ganj.

Read more

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