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Bir Billing Valley
 
Location: Kangra, Himachal Pradesh
 
Recommended Seasons: March to May and then again from October to November.
 
Height: 5000 m.
 
What to See:
 
The paragliding site at Bir-Billing in Kangra district near Baijnath is regarded as among the best in the world for Paragliding. Billing (2290 m) is the take-off site and Bir (1400 m) is the village at the landing site. The road distance between the two is 14 km. Bir is sheltered by the Dhauladhar mountains and the ridges behind keep rising to 3000 m, 4000 m, 5000 m and one after the other so as pilot can fly at 4000 m and still watch the mountains tower above. Bir is a beautiful village surrounded by tea gardens and spectacular scenery, whereas Billing offers unique opportunities for high altitude and cross country flying and flights of 180 km have been achieved from here.
 
All along the bottom of the ridges runs a parallel road from Mandi to Dharamshala and beyond which assures easy recovery for pilots after landing. The most important feature of this region is its weather. On bad weather days one can still fly 20-30 km and on good days 100 km is not difficult. October & November are the ideal months for flying in autumn and March to May i.e. spring is also flyable but conditions are very strong in spring with thermals of 6-12 m/sec and cloud base of 4000 to 6000 m.
 
The small towns of Taragarh, Baijnath and Jogindernagar are close to Bir- Billing and large town of Palampur is 29 km from Bir.
 
Bir is famous for its Tibetan colony and various Buddhist monasteries which are worth visiting. The Tibetan colony is one of the earliest Tibetan refugee settlements in India and was established in 1962 by those fleeing the Chinese invasion of Tibet. The Deer Park Institute is a famous centre for the study of classical Indian wisdom traditions which was established by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche.
 
The Chokling Monastery is the most famous monastery in Bir and has a large stupa and a statue of Padmasambhava. The Palpung Sherab Ling Monastery is another famous monastery which offers periodic courses in Buddhist meditation and philosophy and is the monastic seat of Kenting Tai Situ Rinpoche.
 
Hang gliding pilots use Billing as their landing site. The village, completely surrounded by tea gardens and an amphitheatre of low hills, is ideal landing around for para-gliders. Fine Tibetan handicrafts are also produced here. Palampur is 29 km and Baijnath is 13 km from Bir.
 
Billing presents a panoramic view of the valley below. Bir and Billing was rated as one of best destinations for paragliding in the world. From May to June a tented colony is set up by the Himachal Pradesh Tourism for the convenience of hang gliders.
 
Billing is also renowned for being the venue of the first paragliding competition and every year, The Department of Tourism and Civil Aviation, Government of Himachal Pradesh organises the 'Para Gliding Pre-world Cup' at Bir Billing in the month of October. Tourists can also try their hand at Han gliding and parasailing.
 
Bir and Billing have another claim to fame. Bir and Billing have one of the most beautiful jeep-able routes in Kangra valley. The 14 km distance from Bir to Billing is actually a road hew out of the rock face in 1962. The distance can only be covered either by foot or a jeep.
Location- Kangra, Himachal PradeshActivities to do- Trekking, Camping, paraglidingFacilities:Hotels, Restaurants.
How to reach?

By Air: Nearest Airport: Kangra has its own domestic airport at Guggal, which is 7km away from the town, ByTrain: Nearest Railway Station: Pathankot is the nearest railway station, By Road: Take a bus or taxi from Pathankot to reach Bir and Billing.


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Destinations of Paragliding
  • Bir Billing Valley
  • Kunjapuri