Khajjiar – The mini Switzerland, is located in Chamba district of Himachal Pradesh. A little out of Dalhousie, it is a beautiful, charming retreat that makes an idea day excursion or even an overnight visit. As a result, thousand of tourists visit this place every year. Far from any major town, this spot has a small lake in the center, with a floating island. The local people hold the lake for in legend. A temple dedicated to ‘Khajji Nag’ is also located here. The temple here has a golden dome.
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In the center of a grassy meadow, surrounded by cedar forest, a small lake called the Kund, forms the center piece of Khajjiar. It lies in a depression formed by ancient glaciation. Dense conifer and broad leaved forests cover the steep mountain slopes around the lake. This lake remains full of water in all season. It requires no rain water for survival. With the help of a wooden bridge, it has been made accessible. A tiny island covered with reeds, keep floating in the lake.
Why Mini Switzerland?
Khajjiar is located at an altitude of 1951 meters. On 7th July 1992, Swiss Envoy – Willy P. Blazer named it as mini Switzerland and put it on the world map. In the presence of Indian officials P. Blazer put up a yellow Swiss hiking footpath sign board which formally and officially declared Khajjiar as “mini Switzerland”.
The sign board indicates the actual distance from the Swiss capital Berne upto Khajjiar as 6194 kilometer. Blazer as per tradition of his country had taken a stone from Khajjiar which was made a part of stone sculpture installed opposite the Parliament mansion in Berne. Places all over the world similar to Switzerland in respect of geographical and topographical traits and scenic elegance are named after it. Hence, Khajjiar became the 160th tourist spot in the world, named as mini Switzerland.
Source: The Wonderland Himachal Pradesh, An encyclopedia on a tiny state of western Himalaya.