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7 Offbeat Things To Do In McLeodganj

McLeodganj used to be a hidden gem, but because of its gorgeous scenery and adorable cafés, it has gained immense popularity in the last few years. If you’ve already been to the popular spots of McLeodganj or don’t want to engage in crowded touristy activities, we’ve got you covered. Check out these offbeat things to do in McLeodganj, so you can explore the hill station in a new light.

7 Offbeat Things To Do In McLeodganj

  1. Enjoy A Boatride At Dal Lake Of McLeodganj
  2. Admire The Sunset At Naddi
  3. Watch A Movie At Cinemaa 1
  4. Explore The Darang Tea Estate
  5. Experience Music At Black Tent Cafe
  6. Visit The Gothic Church
  7. Spend Some Serene Time At Trilokinath Cave Temple

1. Enjoy A Boatride At Dal Lake Of McLeodganj

Yes, we understand that Dal Lake automatically takes you back to Kashmir, but this lake will not disappoint you either. You might not find Shikaras here, but this Dal Lake can definitely offer you a memorable boat ride experience. It’s a beautiful lake that is surrounded by magnetic Deodar Forests. The boat ride in the clean waters of Dal Lake will offer you the peace and calm which is becoming difficult to find in the crowded parts of McLeodganj.

2. Admire The Sunset At Naddi

Mountains and sunsets are a blissful combination and you can witness that here in all its glory. It's an easily accessible sunset point where you can witness the breathtaking view of mountains on one side and the entire Naddi village on the other.

The sunset point isn't too crowded, so you can spend good hours in solitude while admiring the mountains. If you enjoy photography and sunsets, you should definitely check this out, and trust us, you’ll come back with a filled camera roll and a big smile!

3. Watch A Movie At Cinemaa 1

No, we aren't asking you to go to a regular theater to watch a movie on your vacation. In fact, this place is all about the vibes. Cinemaa 1 is a small theater with a capacity of only 30 people and classic movies are played here on a projector.

You’ll mostly be surrounded by international travelers and Tibetans at Cinemaa 1. If you’re a movie buff, you’re going to cherish this experience forever. The ticket is just INR 200 and they also offer free popcorn and coffee. Definitely visit the place if you want to have a different movie-watching experience in great company.

4. Explore Darang Tea Estate

Darjeeling is the first place that generally comes to mind when one mentions tea gardens, but McLeodganj has a hidden gem for you. Darang Tea Estate is a 150-year-old family-owned plantation that has a glorious history and breathtaking surroundings.

You’ll be surprised to know that this was one of the first tree plantations planted by an Indian, and you can easily become a part of this history by booking your visit here. The place is located on the outskirts of McLeodganj with plenty of cottages, tea plantations, and natural streams. It’s going to be an expensive experience but as they say, mere bucks are nothing when we’re talking about a life-changing experience. 

5. Experience Music At Black Tent Cafe

McLeodganj is known for its aesthetic cafés and food, and it wouldn’t be fair to make a list without mentioning a hidden gem of a cafe. If you’re bored visiting the crowded wooden pizza and butter tea places, and are looking for an offbeat experience, do check out Black Tent Cafe.

It’s a laid-back café in McLeodganj that isn't swamped by tourists. The place has gorgeous Asian-themed interiors and Tibetan dishes. They’re especially known for organizing Tibetan live music. We suggest you call them in advance to inquire about the live music and plan your visit accordingly.

6. Visit The Gothic Church

Gothic Church, also known as St. John In The Wilderness, is one place that is unlike any other place in McLeodganj. It offers you an unusual combination of eerie and serene. The church was built in 1852 and is located outside the hustle and bustle of the main town.

The building is surrounded by tall pine trees and mountains, making it a perfect place to worship nature once you’re done worshipping inside the church. Even if you’re not into churches, you can visit this place for its vintage architecture, pristine carvings, and stained glass windows. This is a place where you can easily spend hours sitting inside or outside of the church, so make sure your itinerary isn't too busy that day.

7. Spend Some Serene Time At Trilokinath Cave Temple

Now that we’ve mentioned fun offbeat things to do in McLeodganj, this one is for the spiritual folks or for those looking to spend some peaceful time. Trilokinath Cave Temple is a religiously significant place where you can go for your spiritual awakening. The cave was once believed to be the meditation place of Lord Shiva and it still remains a hidden gem in the valleys of McLeodganj.

As per some stories about this place, the insides of the caves were believed to be lined with gold. But when people tried to steal them, Lord Shiva turned them into stone carvings. This ancient temple is located alongside the Dharamshala Pathankot Highway, and we strongly recommend you pay a visit for its serene beauty and stunning architecture.

Summing Up

A place is generally a lot more than its popular tourist destinations. Even with its recent popularity, McLeodganj continues to charm with its natural mystique and offers plenty of unique things to do. We’re hoping that our list of offbeat things to do in McLeodganj motivates you to explore this adorable town in a different way.


How Many Days Are Sufficient For McLeodganj?

McLeodganj is a small place with plenty of interesting places in and around it. If you want to check out just the popular spots, 2-3 days should be enough. But if you wish to have a relaxed holiday and like to explore things at ease, definitely plan 4 to 5 days to fully soak in the vibes.

What Is The Best Time To Visit McLeodganj?

McLeodganj can be visited at any point of the year because the weather is pleasantly cold for the most part. However, if you prefer the warmth and aren’t a fan of extreme cold, you should ideally plan your trip between the months of March and June.

Can A Beginner Do Triund Trek?

Triund trek is a stunning trek in Dharamshala. It’s a pretty popular trek because of its easy trail and accessibility. It’s not too difficult and pretty safe. So even if you're a beginner, you can easily complete the Triund trek, But it is advised to carry leg warmer to not get cold feet during the trek.

Do You Get Alcohol In McLeodganj?

Yes, alcohol is available in McLeodganj. You can easily find alcohol in many bars, cafés, and thekas at McLeodganj.

What Should I Wear In McLeodganj?

McLeodganj usually experiences cold weather for most parts of the year, so you can wear warm and comfortable clothes. If your trip is in the peak winter months, we’ll advise you to pack leg warmers as it provides ease and comfort during the trip.