Manali travel guide

Manali Tourism | Manali Guide

You're Going to Love Manali

With a backdrop of breathtaking snow-capped mountains in the winters, lush green hills in the summer and colorful little houses and cafes, Manali looks and feels like a little town plucked out of Europe and transplanted to northern India. Enjoy trekking, hiking, rafting and biking - you'll never want to leave.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Manali

1. Take a Dip in Hot Baths

Tucked away in the Manikaran and Vashisht villages are rejuvenating, natural hot sulphur baths. Book a spa day to unwind and de-stress.

2. Winter Fun in the Rohtang Pass

Connecting Manali to Ladakh and Leh, the Rohtang Pass is full of winter sporting opportunities, like skiing, paragliding and trekking the snow-covered trails.

3. Raft Down the Wild River Beas

Battle the icy, refreshing waters of the River Beas on your own white water raft adventure. The best time is in June.

4. Hang Out in Old Manali

For a change of pace, hang around in Old Manali and let its charming cafes, tattoo parlors and live outdoor music have its way with you.

5. Trek to the Temple

The Hadimba Temple, with its wooden doorway, three-tier pagoda-style roof and intricate, hand-carved figures of gods, animals and dancers on its outside walls, is worth a visit.

What to do in Manali

1. Breathtaking And Unforgettable

The Rohtang Pass sits 13,050 feet above the land, and is open from May to November 15th. In the winter, the pass is closed due to the danger to visitors untrained for the climate and snow. While you'll need a permit to go through, the pass is the best place for motorbiking and taking in panoramic views of the Himalayas. Plenty of small, local "dhabas" or eateries and food stalls pepper the route of the Leh-Manali highway and this pass is every adventurer's dream.

2. Best On Wheels

It feels as though Manali in its entirety is one big sanctuary, with a clear reverence for nature and an almost monastery-like peace and serenity. But it all comes together at the Manali Wildlife Sanctuary, a natural setting spanning 3,180 hectares of land, where creatures like the Himalayan black bear, musk deer, striped hyena and even leopards roam free. Get a guide and a Jeep for the best kind of safari: from the comfort and safety of a vehicle.

3. Enjoying The Views

Take a steady, two hour hike from Vashisht Temple and you'll be able to enjoy Manali's true jewel: its natural scenery and setting. Manali's clear, crisp air and gorgeous foliage is on display during the year and hikers can go at a steady pace for a fast ascent or take a gentler walk as the trail itself is not very challenging. Once you've had your fill of hot spring baths at the temple, pack a lunch and seal the afternoon with a picnic while gazing up at the majesty of these waterfalls. If you get tired, stop at the Chai Cafe for a Mountain tea pick-me-up.

4. Fun For Everyone

The Manali Club House is intended for adults as well as kids. It may sound posh but it caters to all ages and has a range of activities to engage visitors. Visitors to the Manali Club House can take advantage of the amusement and adventure zone, game facilities and activities such as carom, go-karting, billiards and table tennis. The club house is situated right on the banks of the Manalsu Nallah river. Those who love zip-lining will appreciate a white knuckle foray over the river, using a ropeway. Once you've had your fill of adventure, it's time to fill your tummy. Fortunately, the club house also features a well-stocked cafeteria.

5. Witness Progression Of History Through Artifacts

The central point of a collection of unknown and rare antiques gathered through the ages, the Museum of Himachal Culture and Folk Art allows visitors to witness the progression of history through artifacts. Starting with the private collection of Indian traveler and culture expert, J.R. Sood, the collection today includes displays of model temples, houses and forts, along with hand looms, wood carvings, stone vessels and handicrafts. Exhibits guide visitors into the story of the early culture and the current day-to-day life of present-day Manali.

1. Breathtaking And Unforgettable

The Rohtang Pass sits 13,050 feet above the land, and is open from May to November 15th. In the winter, the pass is closed due to the danger to visitors untrained for the climate and snow. While you'll need a permit to go through, the pass is the best place for motorbiking and taking in panoramic views of the Himalayas. Plenty of small, local "dhabas" or eateries and food stalls pepper the route of the Leh-Manali highway and this pass is every adventurer's dream.

2. Best On Wheels

It feels as though Manali in its entirety is one big sanctuary, with a clear reverence for nature and an almost monastery-like peace and serenity. But it all comes together at the Manali Wildlife Sanctuary, a natural setting spanning 3,180 hectares of land, where creatures like the Himalayan black bear, musk deer, striped hyena and even leopards roam free. Get a guide and a Jeep for the best kind of safari: from the comfort and safety of a vehicle.

3. Enjoying The Views

Take a steady, two hour hike from Vashisht Temple and you'll be able to enjoy Manali's true jewel: its natural scenery and setting. Manali's clear, crisp air and gorgeous foliage is on display during the year and hikers can go at a steady pace for a fast ascent or take a gentler walk as the trail itself is not very challenging. Once you've had your fill of hot spring baths at the temple, pack a lunch and seal the afternoon with a picnic while gazing up at the majesty of these waterfalls. If you get tired, stop at the Chai Cafe for a Mountain tea pick-me-up.

4. Fun For Everyone

The Manali Club House is intended for adults as well as kids. It may sound posh but it caters to all ages and has a range of activities to engage visitors. Visitors to the Manali Club House can take advantage of the amusement and adventure zone, game facilities and activities such as carom, go-karting, billiards and table tennis. The club house is situated right on the banks of the Manalsu Nallah river. Those who love zip-lining will appreciate a white knuckle foray over the river, using a ropeway. Once you've had your fill of adventure, it's time to fill your tummy. Fortunately, the club house also features a well-stocked cafeteria.

5. Witness Progression Of History Through Artifacts

The central point of a collection of unknown and rare antiques gathered through the ages, the Museum of Himachal Culture and Folk Art allows visitors to witness the progression of history through artifacts. Starting with the private collection of Indian traveler and culture expert, J.R. Sood, the collection today includes displays of model temples, houses and forts, along with hand looms, wood carvings, stone vessels and handicrafts. Exhibits guide visitors into the story of the early culture and the current day-to-day life of present-day Manali.

Where to Eat in Manali

If you've worked up an appetite, why not dig into a South Indian fare when in the north? Check out Madras mess, a mess-style eatery offering unlimited meals for ₹80.

When to visit Manali

Manali in April
Estimated hotel price
$6
1 night at 3-star hotel
Manali in April
Estimated hotel price
$6
1 night at 3-star hotel

Manali is cold in the winters while summers are warmer but still retain a touch of coolness. Temperatures are typical of the north: lows of 39°F and highs of 68°F.

Data provided by weatherbase
Temperatures
Temperatures
Average
Celcius (°C)
Data provided by weatherbase

How to Get to Manali

Plane

Travelers arrive at Bhuntar airport in Kullu, which is 31 miles from Manali. Use a prepaid taxi for ₹2,200-₹2,300 from companies like Innova or Tavera.

Train

Though there are no direct trains getting in to Manali, you can travel from cities like Delhi to the nearest stops like Chandigarh or Kalka and take a bus for the rest of the journey in to Manali.

Car

Manali is well-connected to other major cities. From Delhi, for example, use a combination of the NH44, NH205 and then the NH154 to arrive.

Bus

Book a Volvo bus passage online from the RedBus company from Delhi to Manali for anywhere between ₹925 to ₹1,200.

Airports near Manali

Airlines serving Manali

SpiceJet
Okay (22 reviews)

Where to stay in Manali

Kasaul - Right by the flowing Parvati River is the quaint little village of Kasaul, whose large, shady trees, interesting vintage shops and eclectic cafes will help you embrace a slower pace of life.

Popular Neighborhoods in Manali

Old Manali - The "old town", as it's known, is a haven for youthful "hippies" and long-term travel "nomads". Expect lots of beaded jewelry shops, tattoo parlors and vegan cafes playing Bob Dylan tunes.

Vashist - About 1.5 miles north of Manali is Vashisht, which overlooks the formidable Beas River. The pace is quieter, which is perfect for its hot sulphur baths.

Where to stay in popular areas of Manali

Most booked hotels in Manali

Hotel Mountain Face by Snow City Hotels
Excellent (8.7, Excellent reviews)
$27+
See all hotels

How to Get Around Manali

Public Transportation

Bus services in Manali are cheap but service is infrequent. Service starts at 7 a.m. and trip fares vary based on destination between ₹10 and ₹40.

Taxi

Most travelers use prepaid taxis that they can hire for the duration of their trip or even for the day. Rates start at ₹1800/day or a discounted price of ₹3000 when you book for three days.

Car

If you're going to get a self-drive rental car, there are plenty of options from companies like ZoomCar. Rates start at ₹60 per hour.

The Cost of Living in Manali

Shopping Streets

Visit the Manali Market for a selection of funky souvenirs as well as more functional items like woolen shawls, clothing and local wooden crafts.

Groceries and Other

A quart of milk costs ₹45 and eggs cost ₹60.

Other popular cities in Himachal Pradesh