Visit Best Place of Chitkul in Himachal Pradesh
The last inhabited village close to the Indo-Tibet Border on the old India-Tibet road, Chitkul in Kinnaur district at an elevation of 3,450 meters boasts off a rich traditional atmosphere. Dotted with approximately 150 slate and wooden plank rooftop houses in the lap of the jaw-breaking mountainscape, the village is mostly inhabited by various tribal settlements.
On your trip to Chitkul you can visit the 500 years old Mathi Devi Temple, which is a typical example of the Himachali architecture built in wood and stone with intricate carvings; Chitkul Fort, which is a three storied architecture with a combination of wood and stone; and the nearby Buddhist temple. Some other villages that you can visit from Chitkul are Nichar , Wangtu , Karcham , Rakcham, Reckong-Peo , Puh , and Kibber. The Jalori Pass trek from Narkanda is one of the popular treks in Himachal Pradesh that passes through Chitkul and thus making the remote village one of the popular stopovers for trekkers.
The drive from Sangla to Chitkul is an absolute treat for nature lovers, especially the last 10 km after crossing the nomadic village of Rakcham which marks the half way point between Sangla and Chitkul. The bumpy road along the valley is extremely beautiful, with the Baspa River dividing the snow clad Himalayan peaks on the left, the apple orchids and wooden houses made with either Bhog Phattar (slate) or wooden plank roofs on the right. The former locals claim protects the houses from earthquakes and lighting bolts.
Chitkul at first glance will give you a feeling of time travel, way back into the past. The village has no cell phone coverage, no market, no ATM but a couple of home-run shops selling basic necessities.
The main attraction in Chitkul is the wooden houses and the temple complex in the village. The Goddess of Chitkul is believed to be very powerful and is the only non-Buddhist deity to which respect must be paid by the Parikrama pilgrims. It is believed that the local deity is related to the deity of Gangotri and till date the locals carry the deity to Gangotri on foot over high mountain passes.
Walking is the best way to get around the village, which is more like a small maze with various lanes which all lead to the temple complex of Goddess Mathi which is situated at the centre of the village.
Travellers who are interested in street photography will surely love strolling around the village. While walking around the village, one will surely bump into numerous friendly locals who will greet you with a broad smile and try making some small talk by asking you a few general questions.
The main occupation of the villagers is either animal husbandry or farming. Chitkul produces one of the best variety potatoes in the entire country, nearly all of which are used in producing packaged chips.
Chitkul has two village schools, the primary school is located within the village and the secondary school is situated on the banks of the River Baspa. Considering the extreme remoteness of the place, the village has very good supply of electricity.
While in Chitkul, travellers can be one with nature by either chilling on the banks of the river Baspa or by hiking into the woods around the village. Before venturing into the woods for a hike it is advisable to take local advice since there is also a possibility of getting lost in