Mandi City of Himachal Pradesh - India   Encyclopedia of Tours and Travel to Himachal Pradesh, featuring information on Fairs & Festivals, Wildlife, Excursion, Adventure & Weather of Himachal Pradesh.
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Mandi

Excursion | Festival | Getting There | Hotels & Accomodation | General Information

Indira Market In Mandi

The people of Mandi proudly boast that while Kashi (Benaras) has only 80 temples, Mandi has 81! And it is no idle boast. J.C. French supported their assertion when he described the town as a miniature Benaras with innumerable temples, old houses, long flights of steps, the streets steep and winding and the market place with an aura of medieval picturesque ness.

Excursion
Sati pillars called barselas in the local dialect are erected on the left bank of the Suketi Bridge. These six to seven feet high stone pillar are erected in the memory of the deceased rulers of Mandi. When one died it was required by custom to put up such a pillar to perpetuate his memory. His likeness was chiseled on the pillar with his name, date of death along with the names of his wives, concubines and slave girls who perished on his funeral pyre to provide him company in distant world.

The most conspicuous monument is the palace of the Raja of Mandi, which stands in the southern part of the town and presents a number of tall white buildings, with roofs like those of the Chinese pagoda.

About 25 km from Mandi town and 6000 feet above sea level, on the crest of Sikandhar Dhar is the Rewalsar Lake, a place of Pilgrimage. The lake is dotted with seven huge masses of reeds, which give the appearance of small floating islands when the breeze is strong. There are three shrines by the lake, a Buddhist monastery, a temple and a gurudwara (Sikh temple).

Temples
On a high ground is situated the temple of Shyama Kali also known as Tarna Devi, one of the goddesses of Hindu mythology. It is dedicated to the consort of Lord Shiva. According to Hindu philosophy a woman has two sides to her nature, one extremely tender and the other highly ferocious. In this temple the divine consort of Lord Shiva is depicted as Kali or Shakti (power) full of fury. The legend goes that once the goddess started dancing and the dance began slowly. Gradually the tempo increased and reached a peak of frenzy. In her ecstasy, her movements, which were delicate and graceful at the start, became wild and terrifying like the tremors of an earthquake. The earth shook and vibrated under the impact of her movements. Panic stricken, people ran to Shiva for help. He obliged them by lying down in her path. Kali stepped on Shiva’s prostrate figure but as soon as she realized who it was, she stopped in her tracks. The idol depicts her in the Rudra Roop or the fearsome form with a garland of human skulls and protruding tongue.

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Festival
With a rich legacy of venerated temples, it is natural that religious festivals like Janmastami and Shivratri are celebrated at Mandir with much fervor. Janmastami, the birthday of Lord Krishna, is observed as a state function with perfect decorum. The main ceremony takes place in the temple of Madho Raj.

By far the most important religious festival is Mahashivratri when the village deities are carried to Mandi to the temple of Baba Bhootnath. This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. From far-flung villages these deities are brought in richly decorated palanquins swaying on the shoulders of the devotees to the singing of devotional songs and blowing of conch shells. The devotees believe that at the time of drought, water drawn from the Beas and poured on the idol of Baba Bhootnath, brings rain by the time the poured water drains back in to the Beas. The Shivratri fair lasts for about eight days and is inaugurated by the Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh. The palanquins with the deities are assembled in the main ground of Mandi. The people in their multicolored robes and skullcaps present a glorious sight against the backdrop of the Dhaulagiri hills. So much color and gaiety can only be witnessed either at Mandi or at Kullu during Dussehra in October.

Getting There
By Air
Bhuntar Airport of Himachal Pradesh is the nearest, 63 km (flight from Delhi via Chandigarh).

By Rail
Nearest station is Kiratpur 125 km away.

By Road
Approachable by road via Chandigarh (200 km), Pathankot (205 km), Shimla (165 km), Kullu (71 km), Delhi (465 km) and Manali (107 km). Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation runs deluxe buses form Mandi to Manali, Kullu, Chandigarh, Shimla and Delhi.

Holets & Accomodation
There are numbers of hotels available to accommodate the tourists. The price range varies widely to meet the need of different levels of tourist’s budget.

General Information
Languages : Himachali, Hindi, local
Best time to visit : During Summer Season
STD Code : 01905

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General Information & Accomdation info on Mandi city of Himachal Pradesh - India

 
Main Cities
Bilaspur | Chail | Chamba | Dalhousie | Dharamshala | Hamirpur | Kangra | Kasauli | Kufri | Kullu
Kyelong
| Lahul | Mandi | Manali | Shimla | Solan | Spiti
 
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