War Memorial

With monasteries and temples as key attractions, Dharamshala in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh is largely a spiritual place to visit. Remarkably, there is also fascinating history here that revolves around war and revolution. Discover the War Memorial where you can pay your respects and enjoy a day with loved ones.

Understanding the History

India isn't a stranger to conflict, which is reflected by the many wars fought since the 1940s. For example, the Indo-Pakistan wars occurring in 1947, 1965 and 1971 and the Indo-China war in 1962 all have their soldier losses. As a brainchild of Brigadier Khushwant Singh, the War Memorial was finally constructed in 1972. Naturally, this landmark is dedicated to those soldiers who've lost their lives. In addition, families are always welcome to visit as a solemn location for their loved ones, too.

Practicing Appropriate Etiquette

As you approach the War Memorial by foot, you're greeted by three black marble outcrops. Extending upward in a curved configuration, these walls hold the names of all the fallen soldiers. Preferably, every visitor should pay their respects. Take some time to read over the names inscribed on the walls. Ideally, maintain a low voice so that others can have their solemn moments, too.

Next, smell the flowers planted in strategic bunches around the landmark. The red, pink and white roses symbolize youth, childhood and the elder years. Overall, this landmark is a poignant reminder of history, national pride and humanity.

Parking and Entry Fees

Because the War Memorial is offset from the main road, driving to the attraction is commonplace. Depending on your vehicle's size, parking fees vary from 20 to 40 rupees. In addition, an entry fee of 20 rupees is appreciated. Remember, this landmark relies on entry fees and donations to care for the black marble and tend to the grounds. Because the fee is minimal, visitors don't mind paying it for a day of exploration and education in Dharamshala.

Venturing to the War Memorial

From Dharamshala, the War Memorial is about 10 minutes south by car. Typically, visitors use the bus lines or hire a taxi to reach the landmark. It resides in a secluded area off the road with many trees shading the area. Possibly, the location was chosen for its solemn surroundings. Because the drive is short, enjoying an entire day at the landmark is a common choice among visitors.

Planning a Day at the War Memorial

Spending time at the actual memorial doesn't take a long time. However, there are plenty of landmarks surrounding the marble walls to make a day of the visit. For example, gaze up at the vintage plane exhibit or marvel at the perfectly landscaped gardens. Here, the gardeners created a landscape shaped like India, which reflects pride and joy in the people and culture. Next, discover statues, creative works and other fine attractions at the War Memorial. Indeed, there's an adjacent museum full of artifacts. Ultimately, learn more about Indian history right here at the War Memorial.

Picking the Right Season for a Visit

India is known for its monsoonal season and extreme heat, and Dharamshala is no exception. With these weather concerns in mind, visiting the War Memorial in the spring, such as March through June, is one of the best times. Alternatively, explore the landmark during the early fall, including September through November. Naturally, avoiding the extreme weather will make any visit an enjoyable one.

Photographing the Experience

Visitors are welcome to photograph the War Memorial, but practicing self-awareness is highly encouraged. For example, refrain from taking photographs when a family is currently paying their respects. Wait until you have an open space for photographs.

Additionally, the black marble can reflect significant light if you activate a flash. Be careful with flashbulbs so that the other visitors aren't startled by the light. Ideally, taking quality photos of the War Memorial and posting them to your social media site is a great way to show modern respect for those who've lost their lives.

After visiting the War Memorial, consider a donation to the organization. These funds go towards the care and upkeep of the attraction. In the end, remembering the fallen is the best way to preserve history and make the future a better place.

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