McLeod Ganuj, northern suburb of Dharamsala, is the home away from home for the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government in exile. It is in the foothills of the Himalayas, a four-hour drive from Amritsar. We attended two events in the Buddhist temple there: a prayer session for victims of the Chinese occupation of Tibet and a public appearance by two Nobel Peace Prize winners, His Holiness the Dali Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
Dharamsala  Our beautiful, Tibetan-decorated room at the Chonor House, which is run by the Tibetan Norbulingka Institute Dharamsala  Hand-painted Tibetan art on the room walls Dharamsala  Lobby of the Chonor House Hotel Dharamsala  Central salon of Chonor House; note the heater and the warmly dressed children
Dharamsala  The temple was overflowing for the prayer meeting in honor of Tibetan victims of the Chinese occupation of Tibet. Do not know whether this is the Tsuglagkhang or the Kalachakra Temple (probably the former). in12 020815071 j a  Statue of the Buddha in the temple Dharamsala  Butter candles Dharamsala  It was cold, so hot chai and bread were distributed to everybody. From generosity, not as a Symbol of some item of creed...
Dharamsala  Monks and laypeople at the temple Dharamsala  Inside the temple, the deep-bass voices drone on. Dharamsala  What space was not occupied by monks was squatted by laypeople and tourists. Dharamsala  View of Dharamsala from ... the men's urinal. The Chonor House (red, with balconies) is visible in the trees.
Dharamsala  The other side of the valley. Dharamsala  Gate of Chonor House after a cold and snowy night Dharamsala  Sun peeping through snowy pines Dharamsala  Prayer flags �berall
Dharamsala  Prayer flags on pine tree in morning light Dharamsala  From Chonor House, we could see the golden top of the Tsuglagkhang Temple in the distance. Dharamsala  We made our driver stop the car to look at the mountains. Dharamsala  Beautiful mountains!
Dharamsala  The road here is one lane and one way. Dharamsala  The nearby town of Bhagsu is built on a hillside Dharamsala  Curious temple interior with cobras Dharamsala  To get a bit of exercise, we walked up this path (almost) to a waterfall.
Dharamsala  Bhagsu waterfall Dharamsala  Anybody know what kind of bird this is? We saw it on the way to the waterfall. Dharamsala  Cottony flowers Dharamsala  First time we have seen larches in India
Dharamsala  Yes, let's! Dharamsala  The water here is gorgeously clean -- for the moment. Dharamsala  Happy Swedish tourist in ... scarf Dharamsala  Looking down the valley
Dharamsala  Looking down the valley Dharamsala  Only in India have we seen ladies carrying loads of bricks on their heads, and we have seen them all over. Women's lib or equal opportunity? Of course, such manual laborers are Dalits. Dharamsala  Slouching American tourist in Tibetan cap and Swedish tourist in happy scarf. It was cold in the restaurant, so the waiter served us on the terrace on three chairs. Nice of him. Dharamsala  Dal Lake, near McLeod Ganj
Dharamsala  The Tibetan Children's Village provides free education for refugee children. Since it was winter vacation, not many of the children were around. Dharamsala  We were given a tour by a young Tibetan lady. Dharamsala  The TCV is located at the foot of the Himalayas. Dharamsala  The "Baby Home" of the TCV
Dharamsala  Siv and some of the children Dharamsala  Downtown McLeod Ganj Dharamsala  A morning without snow Dharamsala  Lunch on the Chonor House terrace -- in the sun
Dharamsala  The center of McLeod Ganj Dharamsala  Yummy! Dharamsala  Caught in the act! Dharamsala  Monks strolling in the town -- with cow
Dharamsala  Chorten (or stupa) in a temple in the middle of McLeod Ganj Dharamsala  Prayer wheels at the chorten Dharamsala  Sunset Dharamsala  Mountains above Dharamsala
Dharamsala  Last look at the mountains Dharamsala  Prayer wheels at the Norbulingka Institute in Dharamsala Dharamsala  Norbulingka Institute Dharamsala  Temple at the Norbulingka Institute
Dharamsala  Norbulingka Institute temple Dharamsala  Dolls in the Losol Doll Museum of the Norbulingka Institute Dharamsala  More dolls Dharamsala  Prayer flags at the Norbulingka Institute