Bilaspur, Himachal Pradesh

As a former princely state, Bilaspur was practically a millennium old and the town may well have been the first planned hill town in the country. This one-time capital was submerged when the Bhakra Dam was built over the river Satluj and today’s Bilaspur is fairly new and equally picturesque. In winter, when the water level of the immense Gobind Sagar lake comes down, the spires of the old temples can still be seen. The presence of the lake has added a variety of activities to the area and these include boating and fishing.

Fast Facts

Height: 673 m

Climate: Winter in Bilaspur is moderate but warm clothing is required. The summer months are hot and light cottons are recommended.

Getting There & Away: How to reach Bilaspur

Road: Chandigarh via Kiratpur is 130 kms away, Shimla is 86 kms.

Rail: Chandigarh is the nearest major railhead, at a distance of 130 kms.

Air: Chandigarh is the nearest major airport, 130 kms away. Shimla airport is at a distance of 95 kms and Kullu airport is 136 kms.

Tourist Attractions in Bilaspur

The Gobind Sagar offers fishing especially for the agile mahaseer (carp).

The Institute of Mountaineering and Allied Sport’s branch at Bilaspur provides training in many water sports discipline like water skiing, rowing, sailing and kayaking. Joy rides on paddle or speed motor boats can also be hired.

The Bandla Ridge Top overlooking the town of Bilaspur is used by para glider pilots as a take off point.

The Vyas Goofa cave, belief holds, was used by legendary author Rishi Ved Vyas to meditate and compose the Mahabharata epic.

The Kot Kahlur (40 kms) an old fort on a ridge marks the place that served as the ancient capital of Bilaspur state. One side of the fort overlooks Anandpur Sahib and the other, the vast expanse of the Gobind Sagar lake.

The Kandror Bridge (22 kms) is 285 metre long and is suspended over a ravine that is 60 metres high. The bridge is considered as an engineering feat.

At Markanda (20 kms), an annual fair on Baisakhi day is held to commemorate the legendary Rishi Markandaya. Waters from a natural spring here are reputed to have curative effects on some skin diseases.

The Bachhretu Fort (64 kms), the Baseh Fort (70 kms) and the Rattanpur Fort (21 kms) in the vicinity of Bilaspur, document the regions rich history.

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