The mysterious Himalayan valley of Hatkoti is located near Jubbal, along the banks of the serene Pabbar River, roughly a hundred and five kilometers east of Shimla, the Himalayan capital and should be visited by people planning a holiday in Shimla
. This rarely explored valley consists of a significant number of famous age old stone temples carved during the period of the Gupta Dynasty. Hatkoti is rightfully considered as a place of pilgrimage by the local folk due to the influx of three streams in its area, the three streams being the Pabbar, the Bishkulti and the Ranvi respectively. Of these, the water of the Bishkulti stream is said to be poisonous due to its grayish and muddy color and the locals steer clear of using the water from the river for their daily use.
Must See Attractions
Stone temples are a rare aspect in the Himalayan region, and Hatkoti is one of the few locations studded with their presence. Visit the temple of Mahishasuramardhini during the first day of your trip. The main temple in Hatkoti is dedicated to Mahishasuramardhini, an incarnation of the Goddess Durga. Another temple, which is a rather small one while compared to the magnificence of the former, is dedicated to Lord Shiva and stands by the side of the larger temple. This smaller temple can be visited around the evening on Hatkoti tours in North India
The Garbhagriha or the sanctum sanctorum of the former temple is generally dark and the idol of the Goddess, portraying her riding a lion and casting a spear through the demon Mahishasura with one of her eight hands, is made of exquisite bronze. The smaller temple dedicated to Shiva is quite similar, and the Lingam is wider and larger than the doorway. Spend the next day soaking in the serenity of the hills. The hills of Sunpuri are also well known and a favorite among the visitors. A small temple in one of the hills is also oft visited, dedicated to the Goddess Mahishasuramardhini. An upcoming spot for enthusiasts of Skiing, called Khara Patther is also a must visit for people traveling to Hatkoti for the first time.
Planning your trip
Located at an altitude of 1100 meters, the valley of Hatkoti shares a
similar climate with Shimla, hence making it an ideal tourist spot for
all the seasons. However, regulars cite April to October and December to
January as the best time of the year to visit Hatkoti. This is because
major fairs are held around the beginning of the Chaitra Navaratra, in
April, and the Ashvin Navaratra, in October. Pilgrims flock to the
valley from far and near and the entire valley represents an
amalgamation of unearthly hypnotic sounds and Vedic chants during this
season on your HP tours
The fair is an opportune moment to experience every aspect of the
Himalayan culture, as walnuts and rice are offered to the Gods, and
goats and other cattle are sacrificed to appease the Goddess Durga
during the fair. You can plan a trip for Hatkoti for a day or two, and
the stone temples can be covered in the first day. The second day can be
spent well by visiting the Sunpuri hills, at the heart of Hatkoti.
The nearest airport is at Shimla, and the nearest broad gauge railway station is at Kalka, for Shimla supports narrow gauge trains only. Hatkoti can be accessed by road from Shimla, as it is situated a mere 105 kilometers away, and many buses ply through the Hatkoti-Shimla route, so you can take packages from Delhi
to reach Hatkoti..
Hotels are few in the valley, and the Forest Rest house is reputed for providing the best services in the area. Those among you looking for luxury hotels may, however, have to head to Rohru. Taxis and cars are available for travel within the valley, and for traveling to the Sunpuri hills. Hatkoti is a traveler’s delight, with moderately priced rooms and exhilarating scenery adding credit to its already mysterious air.