Popular for its scenic beauty and situated on the highway to Keylong/ Leh at an altitude of 3,979 meters (13,054ft) and at a distance of approx 52 kms from Manali, Rohtang Pass, which joins the Kullu Valley with Lahaul and Spiti, serves as the gateway to Lahaul and Spiti valleys in the state of Himachal Pradesh and holds strategic significance for India. Rohtang Pass, like the Zojila Pass, also serves as the gateway to Ladakh. This pass, which lies on the watershed between the water basins of the Beas River and Chenab River in the Pir Panjal Mountain Range of the Himalayas, was named Rohtang having its meaning the ‘ground of corpses’, because of the number of the people, who died trying to cross it.
With the majestic mountains at its splendor and altitude, Rohtang, which has snow even in the month of June, is called the only hill resort in India. At the top of the pass, you can feel the air to glitter against the snow. Rohtang Pass, which offers charming views of peaks, glaciers, Chandra River and Lahaul Valley, overlooks the twin peaks of Geypan too, and also plays its role as a natural divider between the humid Kullu Valley with the predominant Hindu culture and the arid & highly located Lahaul and Spiti Valleys with predominantly Buddhist. This pass figures high on the itineraries of tourists exploring Manali, Kullu, Leh and nearby regions. Delays are inevitable for being the road remained jam-packed.
Rahala waterfall, which is situated on the route to Rohtang Pass at a distance of 16 kms from Manali, flows down from a height of 2,500 meters and looks surprisingly charming. Because of the slippery road and narrow curves, the drive to Rohtang Pass becomes quite tough, so tourists must take a bus or hire a local cab.
Activities at Rohtang Pass
Here, tourists can take the enjoyment of several thrilling activities such as mountain biking, Para Gliding, skiing, trekking, snow-sledge rides, snow-scooter driving, pony riding, etc. ‘Snow-ball fights’ is enjoyed by a large number of kids as well as the grown ups. Sledges and ski-sets can be availed on rent.
Bollywood Connect: The shooting of the first part of the renowned song ‘Yeh Ishq Haaye’ from the romantic film ‘Jab We Met’ was made at Rohtang Pass.
Best Time to Visit Rohtang Pass
The best time to visit Rohtang Pass is from May/June to October/November. This pass, which becomes a hotspot for adventure enthusiasts during the month of May, is open between June and October for motor vehicles, but remains closed in winters for being snowbound during the rest of the year. Nevertheless, trekkers do proceed to the Pass even before the opening of it to the traffic of vehicles.