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Where to Eat in Manali – a food and dining guide

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You might be surprised by the sheer choice of cuisine on offer in Manali. Thanks to its popularity with domestic tourists as well as foreign travellers, this mountain town has a vast array of cafés and restaurants. As with most Indian towns, some of the best deals can be found on the street and at the bazaar, but for those with delicate tummies, there’s plenty of mid-range restaurants and international cuisine on offer.
Typical dishes

 

 

The River Beas is a big source of food for local people, and you’ll find many local restaurants serving trout, caught fresh from the river. Curries spiced with cardamom and cinnamon are also served up.

Manali Markets

 

The markets, or bazaars, around Manali are a prime place for chaat, or snack food. Wandering through, you can grab a bag of piping hot pakora, those crunchily delicious clusters of deep-fried vegetables, as well as crispy samosas and big juicy onion bhajis. You’ll also find dhabas – local quick-eat restaurants – serving up delicious dosas, freshly made naan breads and straight-from-the-pan aloo paratha, an unleavened flatbread stuffed with potato.

 

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Mall Road

 

The bustling area around Mall Road is bursting with eateries, from dhabas to restaurants where you can linger. There’s a variety of cuisines on offer too, from Punjabi to Nepalese, Tibetan to Chinese. One of the most popular choices for Tibetan food is Mount View Restaurant. If you need warming up after a stroll through the cold mountain air, its traditional Tibetan soup is sure to help. Chopsticks is another favourite, with a vast menu including Chinese and local dishes such as tandoori trout.

 

• Mount View Restaurant, Mall Road, Manali; Tel: +91 980 501 1208

Chopsticks, Mall Road, Manali; Tel: +91 190 225 2639

 

Old Manali

 

A great place for cheap eats, international menus, and mellow hangout spots, Old Manali exudes a laid-back traveller vibe. On a scenic riverside spot and strewn with comfy bean bags, the Lazy Dog is a bit of an institution, serving everything from trout to thalis – traditional Indian plates with pots of curry, chutney, rice, and dhal. Worth a visit just for the proper coffee, Dylan’s Toasted and Roasted is a chilled hangout offering cinnamon teas, fresh cookies, and a mean espresso.

 

• The Lazy Dog, Manu Temple Road, Manali; Tel: +91 190 225 4277

Dylan’s Toasted and Roasted, Manali; Tel: +91 889 423 6364

 

Vashisht

 

Smaller than Old Manali, and even more mellow, Vashisht’s compact village centre is home to some appealing eateries catering to foreign travellers with international food and low-key bohemian style. One of the best of these is World Peace Café, which sits on the rooftop of Surabhi Hotel. Offering majestic mountain views, it also puts on quite the spread with menus drawing from Italian, Mexican, and Israeli influences. For something completely different try Fuji Japanese Restaurant, which serves up authentic Oriental food including noodles and miso soup.

 

• World Peace Café, Hotel Surabhi, Vashisht, Manali; Tel: +91 981 604 2796

Fuji Japanese Restaurant, Main Square, Vashisht, Manali; Tel: +91 190 225 4493