Nirmand is believed to be the biggest village in Asia. However, it is hard to say how much ground this claim holds, you will eventually start believing the same after paying a visit the village. This beautiful hamlet stands overlooking the Satluj Valley and is about 150 km from Shimla and 17 km from Rampur.
The village that is often referred to as the ‘Kashi of the Himalayas’ is home to shrubs of herbs and trees of golden apricots, green almonds, cherries and delicious apples. Nirmand is renowned for its exquisite wood and stone temples of the 6th and the 7th centuries. The name Nirmand is a spoiled form of Nrimund, which means the head of man as the severed head of Sati is said to have fallen here after destruction of Daksha Yajna, also referred to as Daksha-Yajna-Nasha. It is believed that Lord Parashuram made the Brahmins settle here to eliminate the Kshatriyas, from the face of the earth.
According to one belief Devi Ambika of Nirmand is Ambika of Mahabharata. Another legend is that in the Satyug when the demons created an atmosphere of terror in the Himalayas, Parshuram came to Nirmand. Here a Naga attacked him and lord Parshuram cut the Naga deity into pieces. Parshuram, then in his rage, eradicated many demons with his axe. But he could not overcome them all. When Gods saw that even Parshuram was unable to kill all the demons they went to Lord Vishnu. They meditated upon Mahakali (Ambika) on the advice of Vishnu. Then Devi Ambika fought the demons using her weapons like khapar (bowl), trishul (trident) and sword and killed all of them. After this event a temple was constructed for Devi Ambika at Nirmand. The Devi has eight mohras and the main mohra is called bhadrakali
The Dhar Deo Dhank Cave is 3km from Nirmand towards the south. A narrow gorge leads one to the temple complex. The cave is quite deep and about 6 feet in height. A shivalingam is enshrined inside the Dhar Deo Dhank cave. From the top of the cave water seeps down inside, drop by drop. Such a phenomenon is looked at as a miracle of nature, otherwise there is absolutely no trace of water on the rock in the hill. There is a bunch of revered trees outside the cave under which idols of other divinities are kept. The entrance to the cave is shaped in the form of Lord Ganesha. The local people consider it an exceedingly hallowed shrine.