With super views of the Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal Ranges, and with mountain adventures beckoning from all directions, Manali is a year-round magnet for tourists. Backpackers come to hang out in the hippy villages around the main town; adventure tourists come for trekking, paragliding, rafting and skiing; and Indian honeymoon couples or families come for the cool mountain air and their first taste of snow on a day trip to Rohtang La.
As the main jumping-off point for Ladakh, Spiti and Lahaul (between June and October), it makes sense to unwind here for a few days before continuing the long journey into the mountains. Most travellers stay in the villages of Vashisht or Old Manali, which have a laid-back vibe and plenty of services, but close for winter from sometime in October to May.
Manali destination guides
Beyond the Markha Valley
Trek beyond the famous Markha Valley across the Zalung Karpo La to Rupshu
The Road to Leh - festivals of Ladakh
Experience Dharamsala, the Kullu Valley and Ladakh during festival time