Jagatsukh is a village on the left bank of river Beas about 35 km from Kullu Town and 6 km from world’s famous tourists’ place Manali. Jagatsukh was earlier known as “Nast” and was the Ancient Capital of Kullu District. The Pal kings ruled for about 12 years with Jagatsukh as their capital until Raja Visudh Pal shifted the capital to Naggar.
We reached Manali at 5 in the morning. It was early November and the first thing I experience as soon as I stepped outside the bus is the Chilly weather, I checked on my mobile, it was 5 degrees. Our friend Mr. Ramakanth Sharma came to pick us up, who is one of panch of Jagatsukh Village. He gave us options to stay at Manali but we decided to stay at his Village. He first took us to his house which was very well designed and maintained and served us a very delicious breakfast. After breakfast, we checked-in into our hotel which was very near to his house. To add more to my dreamy start of the tour we got an awesome view from our room and can hear the flowing sound of Beas River. After admiring the view of that place, we got prepared very fast since Ramakanth Ji promised to take us to Manali tour.
Pandava Shiva Temple – Dedicated to Shiva and Parvati, Pandava Shiva Temple is an ancient stone temple located at Jagatsukh village. A genuine showpiece in a relaxing setting, this Shaivite temple dates back to 8th or 9th century B.C. and is a fine specimen of the “Shikhara Style”, a rare form of architecture in this part of the country. It’s believed that this temple was built by Pandavas while they were exiled in the forest.
Dhoongri Temple – Commonly known as Hidimba Devi Temple, dedicated to goddess Hidimba, wife of Bhima (Pandava). Maharaja Bahadur Singh built this temple in 1533. Surrounded by cedar forest at the foothills of the Himalayas, this place is stunning. Reflecting the pagoda style of architecture, it has intricate carvings on the wooden doors. The structure consists of three square-shaped roofs with timber tiles. There is a brass cone on the top. Inside this temple, a raised rock has the brass idol of the deity. It is one of the popular Hindu shrines in Manali and among the noted tourist attractions. Also, this sacred Dhoongri temple pulls a number of local devotees through out the year.
Siyali Mahadev Temple – Siyali Mahadev Temple is a very old temple of lord Shiva, very peaceful surrounded with lush green trees. The Wood work is immensely precious. Built around the early 8th century, it has a tri-ratha sanctum roofed by a Shikhara. The temple is of similar architecture as that of the Naresar group of temples.
Rishi Manu’s Temple – Manu Temple is one of the main tourist attractions in Manali. It’s in Old Manali region and connected with main market through a road which passes through Manali Community Center. We decided to take a walk after crossing the bridge to explore the old Manali. As I continued our 2 km walk, I realized it’s completely different from the rest of the Manali. It was like a foreign street, where you can hear different types of western music starting from Jazz to Metal and Country to Pop. I also saw a few foreigners with vermilion on their forehead and then came to know from Ramakanth Ji that many of the foreigners decided to stay in India and marry the locals for citizenship. Now, as we reached the temple we witnessed another marvellous work of wood. The temple is dedicated to the Indian sage Manu who is said to be the creator of the world and the writer of Manusmriti. It’s made up of Wood and stone and marble is used for flooring. It looks amazing and most of the temples in Manali regions are made of Wood with very nice carving. Deodar wood is considered as very good quality wood for any construction work and it’s rarely available because of strict government rules in Himachal Pradesh.
Next, we went for lunch which includes delicious Chicken Tandoori, Butter Chicken , Kadai Chicken and Butter Roti which was Ramakanth Ji’s treat. And then we explored the Manali market .
For the next three days we went on Bhrigu Lake Trek, Which is in another post. I am continuing from the day we came back from the trek.
Rishi Vashisht’s Temple – The village of Vashisht was named after Rishi Vashisht one of the seven sages of Hindu. According to the legend, Rishi Vashisht was left depressed on finding out that his children had been killed by Vishwamitra. Rishi Vashisht tried to commit suicide by jumping into a river but the river refused to kill him. He then started a new life in the village here. The river which took the rishi to the village was named Vipasha, meaning freedom from bondage. The Vipasha River is now known as the Beas River.
The Vashisht temple is believed to be more than 4000 years old. Inside the temple there is a black stone image of the Rishi wearing dhoti. The Vashist temple is decorated with excellent and beautiful carvings on wood. The interior of this temple is rather traditional which is ornamented with antique painting and figures.
There is another ancient stone temple known as Rama Temple adjacent to the Vashisht Temple. Inside the Rama temple, the idols of Rama, Sita and Lakshmana have been installed. Dussehra is celebrated for seven days. The village was the center of Vaishnava cult for a long time.
The Vashisht Hot Water Spring – It’s one of the famous attractions of this region. The hot springs are believed to have medicinal value. The springs are said to cure many skin diseases. Many people go to the Vashisht baths to take a dip and rid themselves of skin infections and diseases. There are also separate bathrooms for both men and women. As we are super tired from the hectic trek we wasted no time before jumping into the water and Oh boy! as soon as I step into the water I realized I was in deep trouble the water was boiling hot and I couldn’t dare to stay in water more than 60 seconds on a sunny bright day. But I dare you if you can let me know.
I had to make a separate snippet for the locals for the love and care they shown us. We were not only Ramakanth Ji’s friend but also for the whole village, everyone was one step ahead when it comes to helping and caring. We were provided a snooker table at the lone pub in the village to spend our time as the hotel owner went to attend a wedding and one of the local rushed to the wedding to bring that room key from the owner.
We were taking all our meals at a local restaurant and I am still in love in the maggie made by an auntie there. She was so caring that I told her once I don’t eat spicy, and every item she made any dishes for me was without spices. I promised her that I will come every year to eat her handmade food. She laughed with us, she scolded us for not eating right amount of food, her behavior was so motherly, she will remain in my mind for the rest of my life.
And then comes the biggest surprise which made this tour till date the best one. I met one of the most beautiful girl in the world, and she is none other than Asain Games Gold Medalist one of Himachal’s and India’s star daughter Kavita Thakur. And as soon as auntie (She is our beloved auntie’s daughter) introduced us with her I could not stop myself to ask her for a photo. I have a photo with a star of our country to cherish for lifetime.
I hope to visit Manali very soon again, and next time I will spend more time in Manali with the locals and will eat auntie’s food.
Please Note : All the photos used here collected from google.
For all type of Contact , Contact Ramakanth Sharma. Mob : 09816183284.