BHAGSU, A SERENE HIMALAYAN ABODE
Amongst the large numbers of foreign tourists who are drawn to the charms of Bhagsu, young Israelis form the largest part. Hebrew is heard around every corner and their overwhelming influence can be seen in typical Israeli breakfasts as well as falafel, served in many a cafe. It all adds up to make a visit to Bhagsu an interesting and unique experience.
Not only does the village offer the weary visitor relaxation and tranquility, but there are also numerous activities and outdoor ventures for the more adventurous spirits to enjoy. The waterfall is one of the main attractions and an absolute must-see, which also means that it can be touristy and crowded. Make your way past the eateries and souvenir stores and you will be rewarded with a breath-taking sight. The valley is cloaked in hues of green, across which strings of colorful prayer flags dance in the breeze.
Bhagsu waterfall cascades down from Dhauladhar’s lower ranges and its water is believed to be sacred. Monks wash their robes in the gushing stream as it flows down over the rocks. If you plan to relax at the waterfall for a while, you can pick and choose from hookah lounges, snack stalls, and cafes all centered around the pool. If you feel energetic, make the climb up the steps to Shiva Café at the top of the falls. This location is especially popular with backpackers and a favorite spot at night.
Other attractions include a number of challenging trek routes and mountain bike rides. If this is not your style, take a leisurely stroll through the steep alleys and streets of the village, enjoy the spectacular scenery and emerge yourself in the everyday life and local culture.
Bhagsu is the ideal destination for that quick break during the winter months when you need to rejuvenate and charge your batteries. It will leave you feeling utterly refreshed.
How to get there:
By road: Dharamsala (McLeod Ganj) lies 400 km or ten hours’ drive away from New Delhi. To get to Bhagsu, take a car or walk a short distance.
Where to stay:
For backpackers, there are plenty of choices. A step up, but still affordable accommodation can be found in Hotel Bhagsu, which is run by the tourism department of Himachal Pradesh. More upscale options are also available.
If you plan a trip during winter, pack clothing warm enough for very low Himalayan temperatures. You may experience biting cold weather and some snowfall.
What to do and visit, a checklist
• Bhagsu Waterfall should be a priority. To escape the crowds, find a secluded spot in one of the serene corners at the top of the falls. Otherwise, join the tourists – take a refreshing plunge in the pool and then relax in a café with a beer in hand and something delicious to nibble on.
• Make sure to pack trekking gear for your visit to Bhagsu. There are numerous trekking routes all over the undulating landscape to challenge even the most adventurous visitor. Various mountain routes will lead you to spectacular vantage points with sweeping views of the beautiful terrain.
• If tranquility is what you seek, Bhagsu’s calming influence will immediately make you forget the frantic city life you left behind. Slow down the pace and meditate, get in tune with the vibe created by the monks and their monasteries, Dalai Lama, and the string upon string of prayer flags. Now is the time to enroll in a meditation course, or study the healing therapies of Reiki. Locate your own quiet spot for an hour of yoga. You will return home with renewed energy and zest for life.
• Volunteer your services at one of the many organizations in Bhagsu. You can lend a hand at Lha Charitable Trust which is dedicated to assisting Tibetan refugees, or become a responsible traveler by helping to keep the environment in pristine condition. Cleaning up the many hiking trails is a good course and an even better workout.
• Enjoy the local cuisine, and this includes the Israeli influence! Stalls between Bhagsu and Jogiwara sell Thukpa, a noodle soup from Tibet, fried sausages typical of the Himalayan area, and many more. You will also find Japanese, Italian, and many other international dishes to sample. And, remember, you cannot leave Bhagsu without tasting a few falafels!
Some Images From Our Trip To A Beautiful Village Bhagsu