Hatkoti Tourism | Best Tourist Places To Visit In Hatkoti |
Hatkoti is a town in Shimla district in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. It is a town located on the banks of Pabbar River and it is about 105 kilometres away from Shimla city. At this time of the year, Shimla becomes a crowd-puller, with hordes of people seeking the thrills of winter descending upon the town. You can enjoy its charms too, ambling along the Mall, exploring the countryside around and catching snowfall. And when you want to break away from the tourist circuit, there are quieter realms.
Head to Hatkoti, located 105 kilometres east of Shimla. Standing on the banks of the river Pabar, this village lies in a dramatic valley. The mountain streams of Bishkult and Raanvti also join the Pabar at this point. This, then, is the confluence of three streams and, therefore, a Sangam. This scenic and sacred setting form the backdrop for a series of stone temples and that is what brings the traveller to Hatkoti. At the centre of this ancient and mysterious temple complex is the main temple dedicated to Durga, in the form of Hateshwari here, and a smaller temple dedicated to Shiva. The Durga idol here, cast in bronze, depicts the goddess astride a lion and slaying Mahishasura. The temple contains an inscription in a variation of the Brahmini script which has not been deciphered so far.
Besides the temples, you will also find some conical stone structures meant for storing grain. A Dharamshala, a kirtan Ghar and a rest house are also part of this intriguing collection of buildings. Historians have studied the architecture of Hatkoti and have surmised that they go back to the Gupta period, having been built between the sixth and ninth centuries.
Standing in the middle of the Hatkoti valley are the hills of Sunpuri. They merge with each other and are considered sacred by the locals who call it Ardhnarishwar, the form that unites Shiva and Shakti. Crowning this hill is a small temple with an intricately sculpted stone image also of Mahishasurmardini. There are several small temples scattered across the landscape here and local legend has it that they were built by the Pandavas; they are known here as Panzo Pandora Ghaurdoo or the toy houses of the five Pandavas. Once you’ve explored these fascinating temples that Hatkoti is famous for, you can go to Giri Ganga, a pilgrimage spot. Then, there’s all the adventure that the Himalaya offer. Climb mountains hit the trekking trails and also discover some excellent new ski slopes that are becoming popular in this part of Himachal Pradesh.
- Hit the slopes Khara Pather, 85 km from Shimla, is on the Hatkoti Shimla route, and has recently found favour as a ski spot. Whether you are an amateur or a professional skier you can find thrills on the snow-clad slopes here.
- Walk in the woods Khara Pather is also excellent for walking and trekking. Situated at above 8,000 feet, it is blessed with natural beauty and there’s a sense of adventure in the air. Hit the trekking trails and feel the exhilaration. Or, amble gently on quiet roads amidst apple orchards.
- Go camping The rugged and scenic terrain makes this a super spot for a camping vacation. Take your gear along, pitch your tent and enjoy a perfect outdoor experience.
- Eat & drink local It’s apple country all around, so make sure you eat fruit from an orchard when you are here. Also, try the local favourite of air-dried lamb seasoned with salt and turmeric.
Drive Arrive in Shimla and drive to Hatkoti, passing Theog, Kotkhai and Khara Pather. It’s just over 100 km from Shimla and a scenic drive.
Stay There are no accommodation options in Hatkoti itself. The Srikhand, run by the state tourism department, is in Sarahan and is a good place to stay.
Pack You’ll be hitting high altitudes when you head for this getaway. Pack warm clothing, particularly at this time of year, and don’t forget a pair of sturdy walking shoes.
Let’s wrap up Hatkoti Tourism | Best Tourist Places To Visit In Hatkoti | article. Read also Your Ultimate Climbing Guide To India | Top 10 Treks In India |
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— Sunil Nain