The British empire may have ceased
to exit, but its echoes linger on in Shimla (2205). As
the 'summer capital' of the British in India, this was
the country's focus for the better part of every year
and now, it is state capital of Himachal Pradesh. Today,
it has well developed facilities, easy accessibility and
numerous attractions make it one of India's most popular
hill resort. Placed in the lower ranges of the Himalaya
mountains, it is surrounded by pine deodar, oak and
rhododendron forests. Towards the north lie the
snow-covered high-ranges, while the valleys breathe
whispering streams and swaying fields. Within the town
are host of splendid colonial edifices, quaint cottages
and charming walks. Shimla holds a variety of shopping,
sport and entertainment.
ACCESS: The airport is at Jubbal Hatti, 23 km away.
Shimla is connected to Kalka by an even chanting narrow
gauge railway line- where even a quaint rail - car plys.
By road, Chandigarh is 117 km, Manali is 280 km, Chail
is 45 km and Delhi is at a distance of 370 km. From
Delhi, Manali and Chandigarh, luxury coaches and taxis
ply to Shimla. During season HPTDC also operates regular
deluxe buses from Delhi and Manali.
CLIMATE: In winter, the temperature can drop below
freezing point when heavy woolens are required. Summer
temperature are mild and light woolens/cottons are
PLACES OF INTEREST
THE RIDGE : This large open space in the heart of town
presents excellent views of the mountain ranges.
Shimla's landmarks - the neo- gothic structure of Christ
Church and the neo - Tudor library building - are worth
LAKKAR BAZAR : Popular for its wood crafts and
Souvenirs, this is just off the Ridge.
JAKHOO HILL (2.5 km): At 2455m, this is the town's
highest peak and a vantage point for Shimla's famous
views. The summit is crowned with a temple dedicated to
Lord Hanuman. The hill is full of paths and narrow roads
which are enjoyable walks.
ST. MICHAEL'S CATHEDRAL : This dressed-stone church with
fine stained glass has a cruciform design. It is located
just off the Mall, below the District Courts.
STATE MUSEUM (3km): This houses a representative
collection of Himachal Pradesh's rich heritage. Exhibits
include archaeological artifacts, carvings, paintings
and sculptures. Closed on Monday and holidays.
INDIAN INSTITUTE OF ADVANCED STUDY (4 km) : At 1983m,
this magnificent English renaissance structure was the
former Viceregal Lodge. Its lawns and woodland are added
attractions. Entry by ticket ( nominal charge ). A
portion of the interior is also open to the public,
except on Sundays and holidays.
THE GLEN (4 km ): At 1830m, It is a thickly wooded
ravine through which a stream flows. It is a popular
ANNANDALE (4.5 km) : Surrounded by a thick deodar
forest, this large glade has an ancient temple on an
PROSPECT HILL AND KAMNA DEVI ( 6 km) : At 2125m and
crowned by a temple dedicated to Kamna Devi, the Hill
offers spectacular wide views of the city and its
SANKAT MOCHAN (7 km) : This is a temple dedicated to
TARA DEVI (11 km) : 2044m, A thickly wooded hill whose
peak has a temple dedicated to Tara Devi.
MASHOBRA (12 km): At 2149m, this beautiful suburb is
surrounded by a thick forests. From here, a track leads
down to Sipur which is an exquisite glade shaded by
ancient deodar trees. There are old temples on a side
and a fair is held every April.
KUFRI (16 km) : At 2501m, this is famous for its wide
views and ski slopes. An enjoyable walk leads up to the
Mahasu Peak. At Kufri, Himachal Tourism runs the Cafe
FAGU (22 km) : At 2510m, Fagu has some enchanting views.
Himachal Tourism runs the Hotel Peach Blossom (presently
CHAIL (45 km): This was the former 'summer capital' of
the Patiala State. The palace in now run as a luxury
hotel by Himachal Tourism.
TATTAPANI (51 km) : At 656m, there are hot sulphur
springs here. Himachal Tourism has a restaurant and
Tourist Bungalow at Tattapani.