Manali means the 'Home of Manu'. Legend has it that when a flood deluged the earth, Manu and the gods were towed to dry ground by a giant fish, which was the seventh `avatar' of the god Vishnu. The area where Manu eventually found refuge was Manali. He then came to Manali and recreated human life. Thus, the area of Manali is sacred and Hindus treat the temples over here as pilgrimage and its name finds mention in various epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata as well as Vishnu Purana.