Best places to visit in Manali, experiences, food, and best time to visit

Best Places to visit in Manali Images

When I visited Manali, it reminds me of the beautiful picturesque city present between Pir Panjal and the Dhauladhar ranges. No doubt Manali is one of the best tourist destinations in India. Once there, you can enjoy the jaw-dropping views, green and sprawling meadows with flowers, forests, clear blue waters of Beas, and many more. It seems like you are in wonderland. Here you will be in awe after exploring some of the best places to visit in Manali.

You will find museums, temples, little mountainous villages, rafting, trekking & hiking, shopping galore, and good food. Latest Times of India reports suggest that Manali may soon touch 40 lakhs mark for tourists visiting each year. In 2016/17, the figure was 36,37,000.

Thus, you can say that it is one of the sought after tourist destinations in India. In this blog, I will share the best places to visit in Manali, food, the best time to visit, costs, etc. So, let’s read the blog further.

Best Places to visit in Manali

Well, my trip was for 3 nights and 4 days, which means I along with my parents stayed there for 3 nights and returned on the 4th day afternoon. There are more than 30 popular to lesser know tourist spots in Manali, they are:

Solan Valley Rohtang Pass
Hadimba Temple Vashisht Baths
Chandratal Baralacha The Great Himalayan National Park
Manikaran Hampta Pass
Kullu Chandrakhani Pass & Parvati Valley
Manu Temple Old Manali
Nehru Kund Van Vihar
Manali Sanctuary Naggar
Malana Gayatri Temple
Jogini Waterfall Bhunter
Bhrigu Lake Jana Waterfall
Gulaba Gadhan Thekchhokling Gompa Monastery
Himachal Culture & Folk Art Museum Siyali Mahadev Temple
Arjun Gufa Rahala Falls
Himalaya Nyingmapa Buddhist Temple Rozy Water Falls
Gauri Shankar Temple Keylong


So, you can plan your trip accordingly. Well, I will discuss in details about the tourist spots in Manali which we explored.

Best Places in Manali which we visited

I was travelling with my parents so I had to actually choose between places based on my stay. Here is the list of few tourist spots visited by me during the stay.

Day One

Hadimba Temple – I paid a visit to this temple along with my parents on the 1st day of our trip. The temple is just 2 km away from the city centre, so it does not take much time. Perched on a serene landscape, this temple will give holy vibes all around. This is why it is one of the important tourist spots in Manali.

The temple is dedicated to the wife of Bhima, Hidimba (one of the Pandava brothers in the epic Mahabharata). The temple is famous for organizing the Hidimba Devi Festival, also known as the Doongri Festival, which draws the attention of tourists all over the world. You will come across vibrant dance performances during that time.

We missed the festival though as it happens in the month of May, wherein we travelled in April. But anyway, we came out of the temple with lots of positivities. So, I will recommend you visit the temple once when you visit Manali.


Apart from this, we explored the Mall Road and Van Vihar and explored Old Manali as well.

Day Two

Solang Valley – You will find this valley, based between the Beas Kund and Solang village. This is one of the best tourist spots in Manali is a major attraction. People know the valley as Snow Point Also as it is well-known for glaciers and snow-covered landscapes. Along with that, there are countless adventure activities to do here. Some of the activities are:

  • Parachuting
  • Paragliding
  • Horse riding
  • Driving mini-open jeeps

During winters, you can also try out skiing. I travelled in April, so it was green everywhere with clear blue skies and patches of snow on the mountain tops. As the snow melts, skiing is taken over by zorbing. The valley is open to visits between 9 am – 6 pm.

Though I did not try the adventure activities, I did try the massive transparent ball. Thus, Solang Valley is one of the best places to visit in Manali.

Rohtang Pass – If you are at Manali, you can’t miss Rohtang Pass. Thus it is among the best places to visit in Manali. Rohtang Pass is about 16 km away from the Manali city and connects Manali to Spiti & Lahaul. I visited Solang Valley and Rohtang Pass on the second day of my trip as these two places are a must for anyone visiting Manali. These are the best places to visit in Manali.

The pass is pitted at the height of 3978 meters and is a treat to watch. As your vehicle will move further up the Manali-Keylong road, you will be in awe to find the beauty around you. Do you know that Rohtang Pass is home to many Bollywood Movie shootings? Yes, hit movies like Jab We Met & Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani were shot here.

Rohtang pass is an experience of a lifetime in spite of its chilly weather and your ears getting jammed due to the altitude. In April, we could travel till Sno Point. The sights were breathtaking, with the greenery around, patches of snow, and crystal clear green waters of the Dashir Lake.

It is one of the ideal tourist spots in Manali to trek. Activities to do in Rohtang are:

  • Trekking
  • Hiking
  • Tobogganing
  • Skiing (During Winter)
  • Tire Drop, and Mountain Biking

We also explored a nearby lake at Snow Point near Rohtang Pass, it is Lake Dashir.

Manikaran – The next in our list was Manikaran which is a small town located between the two rivers Parvati and Beas. We enjoyed our trip to Manikaran very much. The town is about 28 km away from Manali, so while travelling, we enjoyed the beautiful picturesque landscape around.

Best Places to visit in Manali

The place is famous for its hot water springs and beautiful landscapes. The town has a well-known Gurudwara called Manikaran Sahib. This gurdwara is a famous pilgrimage spot for Sikhs all over the country. Hence, it is one of the best places to visit in Manali.

When we stepped inside, we were completely taken by the holy vibes and calmness of this place. The water of the spring is known to cure diseases because of the sulfur contents. The water is also used for langar. My parents and I took dipped our ankles in the holy water and enjoyed its warm.

The surroundings around the gurdwara were amazing as well. So, very aptly, Manikaran is one of the best places to visit in Manali.

Rahala Falls – This beautiful waterfall is present on the way to Rohtang Pass. Rahala Waterfalls is 29 km away from the Manali Bus Stand. On our way to Rohtang, we decided to halt at Rahala to enjoy the beautiful spectacle.

At Rahala, you will find thick vegetation of Deodar and Silver Birch trees. You can also enjoy the visuals of snow-covered peaks from Rahal. The chirping of birds complements well withe sound of the trickling water. This is one of the best tourist spots in Manali.

Vashisht Baths – This is one of the tourist spots in Manali is based within 6 km from the main city. We visited this place because of the hot water springs and baths. After reaching there, I did take a dip in one of these springs. The experience was soothing and refreshing, to say the least!

Jogini Waterfalls – After visiting Vashisht Baths, our next stop was to explore Jogini Waterfalls. You will like the beautiful surroundings around the falls and the sound of crystal clear water trickling downhill. The location is about 3 km from Manali and 2 km from Vashisht Baths. So, it is quite nearby, and you can complete the trip quickly if you are travelling from Manali or moving towards Solang Valley. It is one of the best places to visit in Manali

Day Three

On the 3rd day of our trip, we mostly spent time inside the city and explored a few other places like the

  • Van Vihar (a natural park for family and friends to hang out)
  • Nehru Kund
  • Arjun Gufa (a legendary rocky formation)
  • Gadhan Thekchhokling Gompa Monastery, and of course Old Manali

Adventure activities in Manali

Manali is well-known for various adventure activities, like rafting, trekking, hiking, paragliding, skiing, etc. So if you have a flair in all these, you can try them out. Some of the best places to visit in Manali for trekking, etc. are –

  •  Beas Kund Trek
  • Chandratal Baralacha Trek
  • Hampta Pass Trek
  • Bara Bagnhal Trek
  • Geo Tibba Trek

These are some of the best places to visit in Manali for adventure lovers. We also spent time exploring the market on Mall Road and obviously shop for ourselves and friends. Few local cuisines were also explored, especially by me. My parents also tasted a few local delicacies along with me. Will discuss food and shopping below in the blog.

Best places to visit in Manali: For Food Lovers

Well, in Manali you will come across some high-quality restaurants offering yummy food. There are Chinese, Korean, Italian, Japanese, Thai, and continental dishes. Tibetan momos are quite famous here. I tasted a few local dishes like –

  • Samosas
  • Pav Bhaji
  • Masala omelette

During the night, I had a River Trout (a fish preparation with local flavours) along with rice. My parents too enjoyed a share of it, and we really enjoyed the meal. Some go to restaurants in Manali are –

  • Khyber Restaurant
  • Ride Inn Cafe
  • The Lazy Dog
  • Taste of India
  • Tandoori Platter, etc.

These are some of the best places to visit in Manali for a foodie.

Best places to visit in Manali for shopaholics

Well, anyone loves shopping these days, and we were no different. There are end numbers os shops on the Mall Road and other local markets. I will recommend you to explore the local market rather than branded ones. There you will find hand made local stuff at affordable prices. I got myself a nice comfy woollen jacket for 1500 INR.

My mom bought a nice crafted stole for 1000 INR, and my dad bought a sweater for 900 INR. All these we got from the local Tibetan Market. Apart from this, my mother has a liking towards local handloom and handicraft products, so we also explored Himachal Emporium. We got handcrafted showpieces and a pashmina at a good price. Other best places to visit in Manali for shoppers are –

  • Manu Market
  • Old Manali Market
  • Mall Road
  • Bhuttico
  • Club House

When to visit in Manali?

October – June is the best time to visit to enjoy all the best places to visit in Manali. We visited at the beginning of April 2018. The weather was good during that time, and we could find snow in patches at higher altitudes.

One must avoid monsoon and rainy season because Manali is prone to landslides. The temperature during April was between 14 – 16 degrees Celsius which were quite manageable.

How we reached?

We did think about the flight route but later cancelled it as my parents are not comfortable with the break-in journey. The nearest airport is at Bhuntar which is 50 km away from Manali. Also, the flights are not regular, and options are less. So, we decided to travel by Volvo as there is direct connectivity by road.

We availed the bus service from, which took 14 hours to reach our destination and experience the best places to visit in Manali. The bus was a deluxe one and was comfortable for my parents as well. The charges were 950 per person, and we departed from Delhi at 6 pm evening.

Now, the cost of travel will depend on the mode of travel and the class of services you want to avail. Flights are definitely costly so as travelling by car, but they are the quickest modes of travel. The railway is the cheapest mode to travel, but my parents preferred the bus. So, it all depends on preferences.

Best places to visit in Manali – Budget

Well, again, the budget is entirely dependent on the number of persons, preferences, and choice of activities after reaching there. Let me list the expenses that we had to bear –

  1. Travel Cost from Delhi to Manali and vice versa – 6000 INR approx (950 * 3 persons, 900 * 3 while returning).
  2. Hotel Charges – Booked from MakeMyTrip at 2500 INR per night (included breakfast).
  3. Food – Total 3500 INR for 3 nights & 4 days.
  4. Tour Package – We hired a local agent to explore the best places to visit in Manali. He charged us 4000 INR after some bargains from our end.
  5. Shopping – This is completely variable. We shopped for 5000 INR.

So, for three of us, the entire tour cost us 26,000 approx INR, including almost everything.

Wrapping up

So, this was my trip to Manali, which was one of my memorable trips, and it was a family trip that made it so special. We completed the most important tourist spots out of the best places to visit in Manali during our tour, and it was an enjoyable experience. If you have similar experiences, do share in the comment section below!

For more information on Manali tourism visit the Official Himachal Tourism Website here.


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