KhanaNirvana hOMepage
 Serving the world with love

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KhanaNirvana Community Café was a world cuisine restaurant and community hub in the dynamic Indian Himalayan town of McLeodGanj, Dharamshala (H.P.), the exile home of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government-in-exile.

KhanaNirvana was founded in 1997 and closed in 2012* after an amazing 15-year run. This website (dating all the way back to 1999) is preserved just for fun, for those who share fond memories of KhanaNirvana and DEVI.

In its day, KhanaNirvana served tasty, all-natural, hygienically-prepared plant-based food from around the world in a cosy, comfortable and creative café ambience. As the first restaurant in the Dharamshala area legally run by international managers (and a great Tibetan refugee staff), KhanaNirvana drew a diverse crowd of faithful regulars and short-term visitors from across the globe, making it a vibrant hub of connections and reflections. Pico Iyer wrote about it in Condé Nast Traveler and the Financial Times, and popular guidebooks gave it some love, too. [See reviews]

As host of the Dharamshala Earthville Institute (DEVI), KhanaNirvana held special community events almost every night. DEVI also ran a popular volunteer placement programme.

Just to be super-clear, the programs and activities mentioned on this website are no longer happening: this website is just a historical record. Fortunately, there are now many other restaurants in McLeodGanj that were inspired by KhanaNirvana's "community café" model, so there's now an abundance of fun places to hang out, learn, and make yourselves useful. And, in other good news, KhanaNirvana and DEVI "reincarnated" as a nonprofit educational institute just two hours away, in Bir, which even serves some of KhanaNirvana's original recipies to its programme participants, including the world-famous "Ferderferburger!"

More about KhanaNirvana >

*If you are in McLeodGanj today and happen to notice a restaurant with a sign saying "KhanaNirvana," you might be confused when you read that KhanaNirvana closed in 2012. If so, here's the answer to your riddle: The post-2012 "KhanaNirvana" is a "nakli-wallah" (a shameless imposter). After the real KhanaNirvana was forced to close in 2012 (ostensibly so its landlord could make room for a higher-paying tenant), an opportunistic (if unimaginative) proprietor tried to capitalize on KhanaNirvana's popularity by operating a decidedly different restaurant under the same name... and, wouldn't you know it, in the same location. Naturally, as you would imagine, the real KhanaNirvana's founders and extended global family found this unscrupulous yet somehow impressively brazen act of commercial counterfeiting to be in rather poor taste (not to mention in violation of the law, considering that the KhanaNirvana name is a trademark of an international nonprofit organization), but, alas, nobody felt it was worth the effort to waste time tussling with the imposter, so we can all consider the fake KhanaNirvana to be one of India's peculiar little jokes, at least until some other oddity takes its place. We only wish the food were still good, but unfortunately all reports say that the only thing the fake one has in common with the original is the name and the shell of the building where it sits. There are plenty of newer vegan and vegetarian restaurants you might enjoy instead.