Chamba Minjar Procesion
Chamba is a town and also know for its magnificent scenery and municipal council in Chamba district in the state of Himachal Pradesh. Chamba district is situated in the Western Himalayas and on the banks of the Ravi River (A major tributary of the Trans-Himalayan Indus River) at its confluence with the Sal River. The hub of all activity in Chamba town is the Chaugan, a fine grassy sward, about half a mile long and eighty yards wide, and here is held the Minjar fair, every year, in the month of August.
The Chamba region to the Kolian tribes in the 2nd century BC, the area was formally ruled by the Meru Verman, starting with the Raja Meru Verman from around 500 AD, ruling from the ancient capital of Bharmour, which located 80 kilometer form the town of Chamba.
In 920, Raja Sahil Verma shifted the capital of the Kingdom to Chamba, the town has a large number of temples and places and hosts two popular Jatras(fairs), The Suhi Mata and the "Minjar Mela", which last for several days and involve music and dancing. Chamba is also well noted for its arts and crafts, particularly its Pahari paintings, which originated in the Hill Kingdoms of North India between the 17th and 19th century and its handicrafts and textiles.
Early History & Modern History
The 2nd century BC the Khasa and Audumbaras were in power in the region. The 4th century AD during the Gupta period, the Thakurs and Ranas ruled. The 7th century, the Gujara Pratiharas, or the Rajpuut dynasty cameinto power The 1806 AD the combined forces of Gurkhas and local hills chiefs attacked the forces of Raja Sansar Chand in the battle and force a crushing defeat on him along with family took shelter in the Kangra Fort. The Gurkhas sieged the Kangra fort and ruthlessly looted the area between the fort of Kangra and Mahal Mohrian and virtually destroyed the villages. The siege of the fort continued for three years. In 1809 A.D., Raja Ranjit Singh, the Sikh ruler of Lahore, on the request of Sansar Chand, waged war against the Gurkhas and defeated them in But Sansar Chand had to pay a heavy price whereby he had to lose Kangra fort and 66 villages to the Sikhs
Chamba Geography and Climate
Chamba is located at 32.57°N 76.13°E. It has an average elevation of 996 meters (3267 ft).
Summer (April to October) is quite the best time to be in Chamba. The weather is pleasant barring the monsoon months of July and August. Summer temperatures range from 8°C at night to 39°C during the day, while winter temperatures drop to freezing between 10°C and 1°C. Cotton clothes and light woolens are fine for summer, but heavy woolens and snow clothes are required in winter. Chamba is the headquarters of the Chamba district, bordered by Jammu and Kashmir to the north-west and west, the Ladakh area of Jammu and Kashmir and Lahaul and Bara Banghal to the north-east and east, Kangra to the south-east and Gurdaspur district of Punjab to the south. It has an average elevation of 1,006 metres (3,301 ft).
The climate of Chamba is temperate with well defined seasons. However, there may be variations because of micro-climatic systems depending upon altitude and mountains. The winters last from December to February. March and April generally remain cool and dry but snowfall occurs at higher elevations during these months. The temperature begins to rise rapidly from the middle of April till last week of June or first week of July when monsoon breaks-in. Monsoon continues till the end of August or mid September. During the monsoon, the weather remains misty, humid and cloudy. October and November are comparatively dry but cold.
The maximum temperature in Chamba town in summers is 38°C and the minimum in winter is 0°C. The best time to visit Chamba is between the month of April to October. As during this time the climate is neither too hot nor too cold. For the adventure lovers the suitable month to visit Chamba is from November to March as the mountains during this time are covered by snow and they can easily undertake winter trekking and reach the villages easily on the foot. It is advisable to carry the woolens during winters.