Dharamshala and Mcleodganj itinerary: 5 days and 4 nights

October 27, 2018 at 12:07 pm |

As requested by a lot of you, I have come up with an itinerary for 5 days and 4 nights in Dharamshala and Mcleodganj.


When you visit the mountains, the only thing to remember is to not rush. The mountains are meant to be savoured, they are meant to be appreciated. Take your own sweet time wandering around the streets of Mcleodganj.


The easiest way to reach Dharamshala is by taking a bus from Delhi. It’s an overnight journey.
There are many public and private buses available, both AC and non-AC. The buses are as relaxing as it can be.

They make two halts during the journey, and I was thrilled to see the good dhabas they make a stop at, so ladies, freshening up won’t be that much of an issue, though I would still suggest you carry PeeSafe and toilet papers if you are super finicky like me.


We boarded the 8 Pm bus and reached Dharamshala early at 6:30 in the morning.
The nippy gust of wind was the best welcome we could have gotten. The mountains received us not with warmth but with a breath of fresh air.


Now, regarding the stay, opt to stay in Mcleodganj if you fancy living amidst the hustle and bustle of the city.
I love waking up to gorgeous scenic views and silence and hence I opted to stay at Dharamshala.


Now the itinerary:


Day 1

  • Check-in at your hotel, freshen up and have a good breakfast
  • Leave for Bhagsu waterfall.
  • You can either hire a taxi, they will most probably charge something around INR 400-500 till Mcleodganj (you need to haggle a bit), or you can also take a share taxi from Dharamshala bus stand for INR 20 per person.
  • The trek to Bhagsu waterfall is around a 1.1 Km climb.
  • Don’t forget to savour and enjoy the view on your way up.


  • From Bhagsu waterfall, climb up for 5-10 minutes and you will reach Shiva Café


  • I would suggest you take your time and really chill there. Have good food, lie down on the benches, soak the sun, listen to trippy trance music and then climb down once you are ready.
  • Have some food or walk around the Mcleodganj market a wee bit and retire back to your hotel early. You will need a good night’s rest for your next day.


Day 2


  • Wake up early, freshen up and head towards Gallu temple.
  • Gallu temple is where you start your Triund trek from. Target your start between 7:30 – 8:30 Am. It takes around 40 Min from Dharamshala to Gallu temple. Once you reach Gallu temple, have your breakfast from the many small shops there. These shops are locally known as a ‘tapri’.


  • Take your stick from one of these tapris; they would charge a deposit fee of INR 100.
  • Start climbing once you are ready.
  • The trek is around 6 km from Gallu temple.
  • I would definitely suggest camping for one night at Triund top.
  • You can either book your tents a day prior, or reach the top and do it. We booked ours a day prior, from a company called IBEX (their office is right behind the restaurant Mcllo). They charged us INR 1000 for a tent, which comes with either two blankets/sleeping bags, your choice, and includes dinner as well.
  • Enjoy your night stargazing, listening to horror stories around the bonfire and don’t forget to have a filling dinner of hot rajma chawal.


Day 3


  • Wake up early to see the sunrise. Trust me, you wouldn’t want to miss it.
  • Have tea and maggi and start climbing down early.
  • Reach your hotel and stay put for the evening. Your body will need the rest. As I said before, mountains are not going anywhere, so you don’t have to rush.


Day 4


  • Wake up and have a good breakfast.
  • You can stay in till lunch if you are sore from the trek. I certainly was.
  • Visit Illiterati Cafe in Mcleodganj for lunch.
  • Spend you day at Illiterati. Savour the view, eat good food, play with their dogs, read, talk, not talk… you are on a trip. Do whatever the hell you want.


  • Visit the Dalai Lama Monastery.
  • Walk around the Mcleodganj market. They usually close down by 7. So make sure you visit the monastery before that.
  • Just walking about the market was blissful.


  • Check out different Tibetan artifacts and once you are done shopping, visit Mcllo for a glass of beer and chili lamb. Oh, their lamb is to die for!


Day 5


  • Your return bus will be from MCleodganj. You can either board from there, or if you are staying at Dharamshala, you can catch the bus from there as well. We went to Mcleodganj, had lunch at a lovely rustic Korean restaurant and then parked ourselves for the rest of the afternoon at Illiterati.


This is it from my end. There are a lot more sightseeing places around Dharamshala and Mcleodganj, but since we are not really those sightseeing types, we just stuck to the above mentioned.


If you have been to these places and think we missed out on something, do comment below and let us know.


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