Spiti Valley Chitkul

11th June 2024

10 Best Things to do in Chitkul: Epic Adventures (2023)

Are you looking to uncover the best things to do in Chitkul? If so, we’ve got you covered in this blog post.

From our past experience of leading group trips here, we’ve gathered insider knowledge that will make your visit truly memorable. 

From exploring charming temples to embarking on breathtaking treks, Chitkul offers a plethora of captivating experiences.

Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a cultural explorer, or simply seeking tranquility in the mountains, Chitkul has something special to offer.

Join us as we unveil the top attractions and hidden gems that will leave you enchanted by this mystical destination. Let’s dive in and embark on an unforgettable journey through the best things to do in Chitkul!

5 Facts about Chitkul

1. Chitkul is the last inhabited village on the Indo-Tibetan border, offering a mesmerizing glimpse into the remote Himalayan lifestyle.

2. Known as the “Land of the Gods,” Chitkul is blessed with breathtaking landscapes, including snow-capped mountains, lush green meadows, and the enchanting Baspa River.

3. Chitkul boasts of the highest cricket ground in the world, where visitors can enjoy a friendly match surrounded by majestic mountain peaks.

4. The village is famous for its traditional Kinnauri wooden houses adorned with intricate carvings, showcasing the rich cultural heritage of the region.

5. Chitkul is a gateway to numerous treks, including the popular Kinnaur Kailash circuit and the picturesque Sangla Valley, offering adventure enthusiasts a paradise to explore.

Best Things to Do in Chitkul

1. Mathi Temple

Mathi Temple is a sacred place located in Chitkul that holds immense religious significance for the locals. Dedicated to the goddess Mathi, it is believed to be over 500 years old.

The temple’s architecture showcases the unique blend of Kinnauri and Tibetan styles, with intricate wood carvings and vibrant paintings adorning its walls.

Devotees visit Mathi Temple to seek blessings and offer prayers for prosperity and well-being. The serene atmosphere and panoramic views surrounding the temple add to its spiritual charm, making it a must-visit destination for both religious and cultural enthusiasts.

  • Location: Mathi Temple is located in the picturesque town of Kalpa in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, India.
  • Famous For: Mathi Temple is famous for its rich cultural significance and being dedicated to the local deity, Goddess Mathi.

2. Charang Chitkul Pass Trek

The Charang Chitkul Pass Trek is an exhilarating adventure that takes trekkers through the pristine beauty of the Himalayas.

This trek connects the villages of Charang in Kinnaur district and Chitkul in Himachal Pradesh, offering breathtaking views of snow-capped peaks, lush valleys, and charming hamlets along the way.

The trail passes through high-altitude meadows, dense forests, and rugged terrains, providing a thrilling experience for adventure seekers. Trekkers also get a chance to explore the ancient Charang Gompa, a monastery dating back to the 11th century, adding cultural significance to the trek.

  • Location: The Charang Chitkul Pass Trek takes place in the stunning Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, India.
  • Famous For: This trek is famous for its breathtaking landscapes, high mountain passes, and picturesque villages.

3. Kagyupa Temple

Kagyupa Temple, also known as Kagyupa Monastery, is a revered Buddhist site nestled in the serene surroundings of Chitkul. This ancient monastery belongs to the Kagyupa sect of Tibetan Buddhism and serves as a spiritual retreat for monks and practitioners.

The monastery showcases stunning Tibetan architecture with colorful murals, intricately designed prayer wheels, and a tranquil prayer hall.

Visitors can witness the monks engaged in their daily rituals and meditative practices, immersing themselves in the peaceful ambiance and gaining insights into Buddhist teachings and philosophy.

  • Location: The Kagyupa Temple is situated in the scenic village of Tabo in the Spiti Valley of Himachal Pradesh, India.
  • Famous For: Kagyupa Temple is renowned for its ancient Buddhist murals and sculptures, dating back over a thousand years.

4. Baspa River Front View

The Baspa River Front View offers a captivating sight where the crystal-clear waters of the Baspa River gracefully meander through the picturesque landscapes of Chitkul.

The riverfront presents a serene and tranquil atmosphere, surrounded by lush greenery and majestic mountains. Visitors can enjoy leisurely walks along the river banks, listening to the soothing sounds of the flowing water and immersing themselves in the breathtaking natural beauty.

The Baspa River Front View is a perfect spot to unwind, relax, and soak in mesmerizing views, making it a favorite among nature lovers and photographers.

  • Location: Baspa River Front View offers a stunning vista in the serene Sangla Valley of Himachal Pradesh, India.
  • Famous For: This picturesque spot is famous for its breathtaking views of the gushing Baspa River, surrounded by lush greenery and snow-capped mountains.

5. 7 Pebbles Wish

The concept of 7 Pebbles Wish is deeply rooted in the local folklore and traditions of Chitkul. According to the belief, individuals can make seven wishes by throwing seven pebbles into the Baspa River, and it is believed that the wishes will come true.

This ritual has a symbolic significance, reflecting the deep connection between humans and nature.

Visitors can participate in this ritual and experience a sense of spiritual connection and hope as they release their wishes into the flowing river, creating a unique and memorable experience.

  • Location: The concept of 7 Pebbles Wish is often associated with the small village of Nako in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, India.
  • Famous For: It is believed that if one can successfully balance seven pebbles on top of each other in a small crevice, their wishes will come true.

6. Sangla Meadows

Sangla Meadows, also known as Sangla Valley or Sangla Kanda, is a picturesque landscape nestled amidst the Himalayas near Chitkul.

This enchanting valley is blessed with lush green meadows, vibrant flowers, and snow-capped peaks, offering a visual treat for nature enthusiasts.

Visitors can indulge in leisurely walks, picnic amidst the scenic surroundings, and capture stunning photographs of the idyllic landscapes.

The tranquility of Sangla Meadows, coupled with the panoramic views, makes it a haven for those seeking solace and a connection with nature.

  • Location: Sangla Meadows, also known as Sangla Valley or Baspa Valley, is nestled in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, India.
  • Famous For: Sangla Meadows is famous for its stunning natural beauty, offering breathtaking views of the snow-capped Himalayas, lush green meadows, and the Baspa River.

7. Kamru Fort

Kamru Fort is a historical gem located near Sangla in Himachal Pradesh. This ancient fort is perched atop a hill and offers panoramic views of the surrounding valleys and snow-clad mountains.

The architecture of Kamru Fort reflects the traditional Himachali style, with intricate woodwork and ornate carvings. Inside the fort, visitors can explore the Kamakshi Temple, dedicated to the goddess Kamakshi, and witness the exquisite wooden balcony, unique idols, and religious artifacts.

Kamru Fort stands as a testament to the region’s rich history and cultural heritage, attracting history buffs and architecture enthusiasts alike.

  • Location: Kamru Fort is situated in the village of Kamru near Sangla in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, India.
  • Famous For: Kamru Fort is renowned for its architectural brilliance and historical significance.

8. Bering Nag Temple

Bering Nag Temple is a revered religious site located in Chitkul, dedicated to the serpent deity Nag Devta. This ancient temple holds great significance among the local population, who believe that Nag Devta protects them from natural calamities and brings prosperity.

The temple’s architecture showcases the traditional Himachali style, with intricate wood carvings and colorful paintings. Visitors can witness the rituals and offerings made to Nag Devta and experience the spiritual aura of the temple.

The tranquil surroundings and the religious fervor associated with Bering Nag Temple make it a significant place for devotees and cultural enthusiasts.

  • Location: Bering Nag Temple is located in the scenic village of Chitkul in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, India.
  • Famous For: Bering Nag Temple is famous for being dedicated to the snake deity, Lord Bering Nag.

9. Buddhist Monastery

Chitkul is home to a peaceful Buddhist Monastery that offers a serene retreat for meditation and reflection. The monastery follows the teachings of Buddhism and provides a spiritual haven for monks and practitioners.

Visitors can explore the prayer halls adorned with ornate murals, spin the prayer wheels, and soak in the peaceful ambiance. The monastery also hosts Buddhist festivals and ceremonies, offering a glimpse into the vibrant cultural traditions of the region.

The Buddhist Monastery in Chitkul is a place of tranquility and introspection, where visitors can find solace and connect with their inner selves.

  • Location: Buddhist Monasteries can be found in various parts of Himachal Pradesh, including the Spiti Valley and Kinnaur district, among others.
  • Famous For: Buddhist Monasteries are famous for being spiritual and cultural centers, showcasing the rich Buddhist heritage of the region.

10. Tibetan Wood Carving Centre

The Tibetan Wood Carving Centre in Chitkul showcases the exquisite craftsmanship of local artisans. Here, visitors can witness the intricate art of wood carving, a traditional craft passed down through generations.

The center exhibits a wide range of wooden artifacts, including statues, masks, furniture, and decorative items, all meticulously carved with intricate designs and motifs.

Visitors can observe the skilled artisans at work, learn about the techniques and symbolism behind the carvings, and even purchase unique pieces as souvenirs. The Tibetan Wood Carving Centre offers a glimpse into the region’s artistic heritage and provides a platform to support the local artisans.

  • Location: The Tibetan Wood Carving Centre is located in the town of Chhitkul in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, India.
  • Famous For: The Tibetan Wood Carving Centre is famous for preserving and promoting the ancient art of wood carving, showcasing intricate designs and craftsmanship.

11. Rakcham Landscape

Rakcham Landscape is a natural marvel situated near Chitkul, known for its awe-inspiring beauty. This scenic landscape offers panoramic views of snow-capped mountains, lush valleys, and glistening rivers.

Visitors can indulge in activities like hiking, and photography, and simply revel in the tranquility of the surroundings. The Rakcham Landscape provides an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life, allowing travelers to immerse themselves in the serenity of nature.

With its pristine beauty and captivating vistas, Rakcham Landscape serves as a reminder of the magnificence of the Himalayan region and leaves a lasting impression on visitors.

  • Location: Rakcham is a picturesque village located in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, India. It is nestled in the Himalayan mountains, close to the border with Tibet.
  • Famous For: Rakcham is famous for its breathtaking landscapes, including lush green meadows, snow-capped peaks, and the glistening Baspa River that flows through the valley.

Best Time to Visit Chitkul

The best time to visit Chitkul is during the summer months from April to June and the autumn months from September to October. During these periods, the weather in Chitkul remains pleasant and favorable for outdoor activities and sightseeing.

The summer season offers comfortable temperatures, clear skies, and blooming flowers, creating a picturesque ambiance. Autumn brings a riot of colors as the foliage turns vibrant shades of red and gold, enhancing the beauty of the landscapes.

However, it’s important to note that Chitkul experiences harsh winters with heavy snowfall, making it inaccessible and challenging for travel. It is advisable to avoid the monsoon season due to the possibility of landslides and roadblocks.

How to Get to Chitkul

1. By Road

Chitkul is well-connected by road, and the most common way to reach is by hiring a taxi or driving from nearby cities like Shimla or Sangla. The journey to Chitkul offers breathtaking views of the Himalayas, winding roads, and scenic landscapes.

2. By Train

The nearest railway station to Chitkul is Shimla Railway Station, which is approximately 244 kilometers away. From there, you can hire a taxi or take a bus to Chitkul. The train journey to Shimla is a delightful experience, passing through picturesque valleys and charming hill stations.

3. By Air

The nearest airport to Chitkul is Bhuntar Airport in Kullu, which is about 267 kilometers away. From the airport, you can hire a taxi or take a bus to reach Chitkul. Flights to Bhuntar Airport are available from major cities in India. The aerial route offers mesmerizing views of the Himalayan peaks during the landing and takeoff.

Where to Stay in Chitkul

1. The Wanderer’s Nest: Located amidst the picturesque landscapes of Chitkul, The Wanderer’s Nest offers cozy and comfortable accommodations for travelers. The guesthouse provides well-furnished rooms with modern amenities and stunning views of the surrounding mountains. The warm hospitality and serene atmosphere make it an ideal place to relax and unwind.

2. Hotel Rupin River View: Situated near the banks of the Baspa River, Hotel Rupin River View offers a tranquil stay in Chitkul. The hotel features spacious rooms with attached bathrooms, and some rooms even offer balconies overlooking the river.

3. Zostel Chitkul: If you’re looking for budget-friendly accommodation with a backpacker’s vibe, Zostel Chitkul is a great choice. This vibrant hostel provides dormitory-style rooms and private rooms with basic amenities. The common areas are lively and offer opportunities to interact with fellow travelers.

Where to Eat in Chitkul

1. The Last Dhaba: Known for its delicious local cuisine and warm hospitality, The Last Dhaba is a popular choice among visitors. This rustic eatery offers a range of traditional Himachali dishes, including steaming hot momos, thukpa (noodle soup), and local delicacies like siddu and trout fish. The cozy ambience and friendly staff add to the overall dining experience.

2. Hotel Rupin River View Restaurant: Located within Hotel Rupin River View, this restaurant offers a delightful dining experience with its scenic views of the Baspa River. The menu features a variety of Indian, Chinese, and Himachali dishes, prepared using fresh local ingredients. From comforting curries to sizzling noodles, the restaurant caters to different palates.

3. Mahek Restaurant: Situated in the heart of Chitkul, Mahek Restaurant is known for its diverse menu and lip-smacking flavors. Whether you’re craving Indian classics, continental dishes, or even pizza, this restaurant has something for everyone. The attentive service and relaxed atmosphere make it a favorite spot for both locals and tourists.

Travel Tips & Suggestions

1. Dress in layers to prepare for fluctuating temperatures.

2. Carry sufficient cash as there are limited ATMs in the area.

3. Stay hydrated and carry a water bottle at all times.

4. Pack essential medications and a first-aid kit.

5. Respect the local customs and traditions.

6. Explore nearby villages like Rakcham and Sangla.

7. Engage in responsible tourism and minimize your environmental impact.

Conclusion – Best Things to Do in Chitkul

In conclusion, Chitkul is a mesmerizing destination that offers a wide range of experiences and attractions.

From exploring captivating temples to embarking on breathtaking treks, indulging in delicious regional cuisine, and immersing oneself in the vibrant local culture, Chitkul has something special for every traveler.

Whether you’re seeking tranquility in the mountains, a nature enthusiast, or a cultural explorer, Chitkul’s beauty and charm will leave you enchanted.

Don’t miss the chance to visit this mystical destination and create unforgettable memories amidst snow-capped mountains, lush meadows, and the serene Baspa River. Plan your trip to Chitkul and embark on an extraordinary adventure.

FAQs – Best Things to Do in Chitkul

What are some must-visit attractions in Chitkul?

Chitkul, a picturesque village in Himachal Pradesh, offers several attractions. Don’t miss a visit to the enchanting Chitkul Temple, known for its traditional architecture and serene surroundings. Take a stroll along the Baspa River, which offers breathtaking views and a peaceful atmosphere. You can also explore the quaint village lanes, interact with the friendly locals, and immerse yourself in the charming Himalayan culture.

Are there any adventurous activities to try in Chitkul?

Adventure enthusiasts will love Chitkul. Embark on a thrilling trek to the beautiful Kinnaur Kailash peak, which offers stunning vistas of the surrounding valleys. If you enjoy camping, spend a night under the starry sky near the mesmerizing Baspa River. Additionally, you can indulge in fishing or angling in the clear waters of the river, surrounded by the serene natural beauty.

What are the best hiking trails in Chitkul?

Chitkul boasts several breathtaking hiking trails that cater to different skill levels. One popular option is the hike to Nagasti Village, which rewards you with panoramic views of the snow-capped mountains and the lush green valleys. For a more challenging adventure, trek to the nearby Sangla Valley, known for its diverse flora and fauna. The scenic beauty along these trails will leave you mesmerized.

Are there any local festivals or cultural events in Chitkul?

Yes, Chitkul celebrates several local festivals that offer a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage of the region. The Fulaich Fair, held in September, is a significant event where locals gather to pay homage to their deities and celebrate with traditional dance and music. Attending such festivals allows you to witness the vibrant traditions and customs of the local communities.

What is the best time to visit Chitkul?

The best time to visit Chitkul is during the summer months, from April to June. The weather during this period is pleasant, with temperatures ranging from 10 to 25 degrees Celsius. You can enjoy the clear skies, blooming flowers, and lush green landscapes. Avoid visiting during the winter months as heavy snowfall may make the region inaccessible.

Are there any local delicacies to try in Chitkul?

Certainly! Chitkul offers a unique culinary experience. Don’t miss out on trying the traditional Himachali dish called “Sidu,” which is a steamed bread made from wheat flour and stuffed with a delicious filling of local herbs or vegetables. Another local favorite is “Kachalu,” a snack made from boiled potatoes served with a tangy sauce. These dishes will give you a taste of the authentic local flavors.

What are some nearby places to explore from Chitkul?

Chitkul serves as an excellent base to explore the surrounding areas. Pay a visit to the nearby Sangla Valley, renowned for its apple orchards and the ancient Kamru Fort. You can also plan a trip to Kalpa, a picturesque village known for its magnificent views of the Kinnaur Kailash range. These nearby destinations offer a delightful mix of natural beauty and cultural heritage.
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