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Rampur : 140km from Shimla
On the Hindustan Tibet Road. Once the capital of the Princely State of Bushahr, the town is situated on the banks of Satluj river. The whole area is a maze of lanes, shops and temples. In the month of November, the Lavi Fair is organized here. Dumgir Buddhist Temple,  Padam Palace,  Raghunath Temple,  Ayodhya temple and Narsingh Temple, are worth visiting. Himachal Tourism runs a tourist Complex and air conditioned Cafe, Satluj.

Attraction of Lavi Fair
The highlight of Rampur is the age-old Lavi Fair, reputed to be one of the biggest trade fairs in Northern India. The fair is held every year in the second week of November (11th-14th).
It’s quite a thing for the people of the region and involves hectic activity for three feverish days. Large crowds pour in from Kinnaur, Spiti and Lahaul.
They gather on the banks of the Sutlej to buy, sell and barter their produce which includes everything from homespun blankets and shawls to dry fruit and even horses.
There are sporting competitions during the day, and dancing around bonfires after dark. The fair coincides with the return of the shepherds from high pastures for the coming winter and has been held for over 300 years.

A Shopping Hub
As you’ve guessed it, there’s much to shop in Rampur even when it’s not November.
The place is famous for its exquisite soft wool sold by Tibetan traders. The shawls woven here are known as Rampur chaddars and are famous for their velvety softness and durability.
They’re made of pashm wool, a special kind of wool from a special goat. It is said that these shawls first caught the fancy of Lord and Lady Dufferin who then passed on the craze to other Europeans.

Main Attractions of Rampur
Rampur is not a mean place for sightseeing too. The Padam Palace is the most overwhelming edifice here.
The palace, designed by one Bir Chand Shukla, housed Raja Padam Singh of the Bushahr kingdom.
It was six years in the making (1919 to 1925) and is an outstanding testament to taste, style and architecture.
The two-storeyed building is made of wood and stone, and has a slanting tin roof with spiral projections.
The big lawn was often used for festivities and public functions. At one end of the lawn stands Macchkandi, a masterpiece in woodwork which was used for seating the royal family (especially the women) during the celebrations.
Stone arches dominate the lower floor while woodwork is king on the upper storey. Wooden screens with floral and figurine designs admitted light without exposing those inside. Portraits of royalty adorn the walls of the hall till today and the wood ceiling is exquisitely carved.

Unfortunately, you cannot enter the building but will have to make do with the lovely gardens. A curious summerhouse here has Tibetan murals and there’s also a Hindu Temple on the premises.

But the older part of the town – below the palace and by the river – is the most interesting place to wander in. It’s a maze of tiny lanes, lined with shops and Hindu and Buddhist temples such as the Sri Sat Nahan Temple (Buddhist), which was built in 1926.

Not a good place for staying the night. If necessary, try Bhagwati .

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