Undoubtedly one of the most beautiful and attractive tourist locations that can be found in Chandigarh, the Leisure Valley is an eight-kilometre long linear stretch that covers a large part of Chandigarh. The place is also known as 'the lungs of the Chandigarh city', as this 'garland of gardens' not only adds to the beauty of the city but also helps to keep it clean and pollution free. The Leisure Valley is one of the most loved tourist attractions in the entire town, and people like to visit this attraction time and again to break free from the monotonous and stressful daily routine.
The eight-kilometre long Leisure Valley is a stretch that extends all the way from the Rajendra Park in Sector 1 in the north, to Sector 53 in the southernmost part of the city. There are 12 unique and beautiful parks and gardens in all in the Leisure Valley, with each garden boasting of its own particular charm that appeals to different kinds of nature lovers.
Rajendra Park in Sector 1 is spread over an area of 400 acres and is usually used for fitness activities, yoga, horse riding, running and walking.
Smriti Upvan is also located in the same sector and has been set aside for a special purpose. People are allowed to plant trees in this garden in the memory of their dear departed ones.
Bougainvillea Gardens in Sector 3 was inaugurated in 1976 and is dedicated to hundreds of varieties of bougainvillaea which look brilliantly colourful and dazzling, especially in the springtime.
In Sector 10, one will find the Fitness Trails, which is an ideal place to enjoy long walks and perform physical exercises. The famous Flower Garden is located just to the south of the Fitness Trails and houses a variety of seasonal flowers and sculptures that have been made by renowned artists. Various cultural activities are also held here.
Botanical Gardens in Sector 14 and the Rose Garden in Sector 16 are also famous attractions of the Leisure Valley. The Rose Garden is the largest one in all of Asia and boasts of more than 17,000 plants which represent over 1600 varieties of roses.
Shanti Kunj in Sector 16 claims of having an entirely noise-free environment. The garden is divided into five areas by the natural stream that runs through it, and these five parts showcase different kinds of trees such as flowering trees, trees for shade and medicinal plants.
Sector 23 houses the Terraced Garden, which is renowned for its illuminated musical fountain. The annual Chrysanthemum Show also takes place in this particular garden.
Different animals that have been created out of creepers and bushes capture the attention of children in the Topiary Park in Sector 35, while the Garden of Fragrance in Sector 36 appeals to all kinds of tourists with its variety of plants like Raat ki Rani, Motia, Jasmine, Damask Rose, Champa and Mehendi.
Hibiscus Garden is located in Sector 36 and covers an area of 8 acres. It is home to about 40 different varieties of Hibiscus shrubs.
A three-day long annual festival, popularly known as the Chandigarh carnival, is celebrated in February at the Leisure Valley. This event is one of the major festivals that is celebrated in India, and it aims at promoting the talents of the children as well as the elderly. The Rose Garden also hosts the annual 'Festival of Gardens' in February, and the festival is also listed in the "National Calendar of Events".
The idea of the Leisure Valley was proposed by Le Corbusier, who wanted to develop a place where people could enjoy and relax in a clean environment, away from the pollution and dirt that often characterises daily life in the city. Thus, he transformed an eroded valley into a lavish linear belt, the views and greenery of which are enjoyed by thousands each day.
The best time to visit the Leisure Valley is in February or March. These months are the blooming period for the flowers, and the gardens look exquisite in their colourful and flamboyant beauty.
The Leisure Valley is located in Sector 10 B, near the Jan Marg. It is conveniently located just 15 mins away from the sector 17 ISBT. The place can easily be reached using any means of public transport.
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