Chamba is a hill town perched at an altitude of 1,676m above sea level in the Ravi River valley. There are temples all around town and up on the hillocks. The Chowgan is the most important part of the town with lush green grass.
In 920, Raja Sahil Varman (or Raja Sahila Verma), King of Bharmour, shifted his capital here at the urging of his daughter Champavati. The town was named Champa, after Champavati, and over the years became 'Chamba'.
1 Bus stand. South of the town center.
The nearest railway station is at Pathankot, 120 km away.
Chamba town is not big so walking around the town is the best option.
- Bansi Gopal Temple, near Chamba palace. Shikhara style.
- 1 Champavati Temple, behind the Treasury building and city police station. The temple is named after Champavati, daughter of King Sahil Verman, who built it in her memory. It is said that Champavati influenced her father to set up Chamba city at the present location. Champavati is now venerated as a goddess. This temple is constructed in Shikara style, with wheel roof and stone curving. It is almost as big as the Laxmi Narayan Temple.
- 2 Chamunda Devi Temple. This temple is dedicated to the goddess Chamunda in her terrific form. This temple is of a later class and is made in hill type architecture.
- 3 Hari Rai Temple, near Chaugan gate. Vishnu temple
- 4 Laxmi Narayan Temple. Chamba's main temple, built in the 10th century by King Sahil Verman in Shikara style. It continued to be embellished by the Rajas who succeeded to the throne of Chamba.
- 5 Sitaram Temple.
- 6 Sui Mata Temple.
- Vijeshwari Temple, at the end of Jansali Bazar. Almost 1000 years old and dedicated to Goddess of lightning, Vajreshwar Devi. Architecture of the temple is in Shikhara style.
- 7 Akhand Chandi Palace. The Palace of the Raja of Chamba, Sahil Verman. It has been turned into the Government College.
- 8 Bhuri Singh Museum. W-M 10AM-5PM. Has antique items on display. ₹10.
- 9 Kalatop Khajjiar Wildlife Sanctuary. One of the most beautiful sanctuaries in Himachal Pradesh. It's perfect for photographing nature.
- 10 Rang Mahal. Also houses a small post office, has a hosiery where hosiery items along with Chamba Rumal, which has an image of a finely embroidered miniature painting on it, can be bought.
- Minjar Mela. A seven-day festival held in July-August. People from nearby villages come to attend a thanksgiving ceremony to Varuna, god of rain, for the blessing of the harvest.
- Market, in the middle of town. M-Sa 9AM-8PM. Small market with over 200 shops built around parks of different size and a newly built complex by the museum.
There is a considerable Tibetan population in the region so Tibetan noodles, soups and dumplings are available in town, primarily opposite the post office building.
Chamba has several restaurants.
- 1 Cafe Ravi View, Chowgan. Indian and Chinese food
- City Heart.
Chamba town has a few outlets (shops and bars) where you can buy cheap liquor. Beer is generally served at Cafe Ravi View after 8PM.
There are several cheap lodges in town:
- Chamba Guest House.
- Jimmy's Inn.
- Mahajan Guest House.
- 1 Hotel Aroma Palace, near Pink Palace, Court Lane, ☏ , email@example.com. Restaurant, conference hall and terrace lounge with panoramic view of Chamba Town.
- 2 Hotel City Heart (near Champavati Temple), ☏ . Privately owned hotel providing good accommodation. Over ₹1000.
- Hotel Hritik Palace. Privately owned hotel providing good accommodation.
- 3 Hotel Iravati. Run by Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation (HPTDC). Has cheap and good accommodation with friendly staff. ₹500-₹1200.
- 4 Himalayan Orchard Huts, Village Chadiyara, ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. A family-run guest house 10 km north of Chamba, providing trekking services, cookery courses and eco-tourism.
- Dalhousie — popular hill station, very fascinating, with beautiful colonial architecture
- Khajjiar — popular hill station, a favourite destinations for Bollywood, as many filmmakers come to shoot sequences for their movies