Shangarh, Sainj Valley, a few years back, not many must have heard about this hamlet in Himachal Pradesh. But recently, it has become one of the best offbeat locations in Himachal Pradesh, thanks to Zostel opening up a few years back.
It is a quaint little hamlet in the Sainj Valley about 100 kms (3-4hours driving) from Manali, with very few homestays and hostels compared to other places in Himachal Pradesh.
The best option is always to come via an overnight bus from Delhi or Chandigarh and get down at Aut (get down at the Aut bus stop & not before the Aut tunnel), which takes about 12 hours to reach. After getting down at Aut, there are three options:
You can also drive down from Delhi & Chandigarh, take the left turn on the exit before the Aut tunnel. The left turn takes you to Sainj valley & the right turn takes you to Tirthan valley.
Zostel: This is probably one of the best properties and gives you the best view of the entire valley. The place has dorm and private rooms (different types of rooms, from standard rooms to more premium mudwall rooms).
The price range varies from INR 600 – to INR 5000 depending on the season and the type of accommodation you choose.
A particular recommendation: If you are travelling in a group or as a couple, try and get room no. 301 for the standard mudwall room. It has the best view of the valley & has the best spot to stargaze. Visit the website.
House of stories: This property is run by a traveller and has a lively vibe. The place is secluded, and if you are someone who wants to be away from the main village area, this property is for you. Visit their Instagram profile for more information.
The hosteller: They have recently opened up the property and lies around 5 mins walk from the Zostel. It also offers a great view of the valley and is a good option for people on a budget. Website
Teja guesthouse: Run by Mr Tej Ram & his wife, it is an excellent option for families & couples who want to experience the local Himachali homestay. You can contact him at 9816731367. It is much closer to the meadows than the other options shared earlier.
Other notable options include:
The Last Chalet: https://g.page/the-last-chalet-shangarh?share
Mysterious Meadows: https://goo.gl/maps/uuEf4HuKdXisXFcA8
No society cafe and Stay: https://goo.gl/maps/kXEuKuhsichzxC5C7
You can contact Gyan +917807413913 from Sainj valley if you want to hire a cab to roam around Sainj Valley.
Note: Most of the accommodations have their cafes.
December to March: This is the winter season, and you can witness a good amount of snowfall during this season. If snowfall is your priority, you should visit during these months, but it gets freezing during this period.
April to June: This is the peak season for travellers. The climate is pleasant, and the sun’s out throughout the day. However, you can also witness rain showers during this period.
July to September: This is the peak monsoon season. Landslides & cloud bursts can happen anytime during these months. Hence it is not advisable to travel in these months to Himachal. However, the valley is at the greenest during this season.
October & November: The onset of winter is another good season when travellers flock to Shangarh.
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Travel Cost: Bus costs from Delhi to Aut & a return journey can cost anywhere between INR 3000 and INR 4000.
Accommodation: Dorms are available for INR 500 – INR 1000 per night
Food: You can expect anywhere to spend between INR 500 – INR 750 per person. (A good hack: Share meals with the other travellers in the hostels, that way, you can share the cost as well)
Local Attractions: There is no entry fee to any of the places. However, you can expect to pay anywhere between INR 2000 – INR 3000 for the cab fare to the above locations. (Hack: You can tag along with someone who already has a plan or ask around people if you are staying in the hostel, that way, you can quickly bring down the cab fare to INR 500 – 700 per person)
A 4-5 day trip to Shangarh will cost you between INR 12,000 – INR 20,000, depending on what kind of a budget you are on.
Feel free to contact us if you want to know more about Shangarh or Sainj Valley.