Best Tourist Spots in Shimla
Summer is on the way and people rushed to their internet and find a spot to get their travel mode on. One spot in the mind Shimla! and certainly, easy spot to get down to place to beat the heat in and temperature soaring high above.
The Winters make some stunning visuals of Snow and we love to play in the snow. The tourist spot is one of the most visited destinations of the with an estimated 4 million tourists every year.
A lush green city, situated atop the mountains, Shimla is trekkers as well as shoppers delight. The city is abuzz with monkeys, hotels that offer serene view of Himalayan foothills, well-crafted wooden items, mouth-savouring food, lively coloured textiles and humble populace. The accounts of awe-inspiring sunset at Ridge, as well as souvenirs from Lakkar Bazar never fail to attract thousands of tourists, throughout the year, to this city.
A view of Shimla from Jakhu Hill
Every city has places that are emblematic of its social, cultural, political, economic and technological enrichment. Hence, I have listed out a few spots to visit while in Shimla.
Statue of Indira Gandhi
Every year several newspapers across India publish photographs of snow-covered Ridge. In broad daylight Ridge is the most populous section of the city. A not very well-known fact about Ridge is that its walls house the water tanks, which is the largest source of water for the city.
The Christ Church, State Library, and three statues of Mahatma Gandhi, Indira Gandhi, and Dr Y.S. Parmar (first chief minister of Himachal Pradesh) stand out amidst the crowded ridge.
Visitors can also ride horses for a minimal amount of INR 100. Ridge allows tourists to have a glimpse of the mesmerizing Himalayan foothills. During summers, the state government annually organizes fairs and festivals here.
Horse riding on Ridge
Christ Church Shimla
Its five stained glass windows depict Christian virtues of faith, hope, patience, and humility. Built-in the year 1857, by Colonel J.T. Boileau, it is the second oldest church in North India. Built to guide the Anglican population of the region, the church’s neo-gothic structure continues to captivate the travellers with its serenity.
Adjoining the Scandal Point, known for its beautiful sunset, Mall Road is the economic, social and cultural heart of Shimla. Here one can shop for effervescent textiles, distinctly styled umbrellas, classy leather Tibetan leather sandals and boots, and flavoursome marmalade. It is here that the market for exquisite wooden items, known as Lakkar Bazar, is located.
Ever buzzing Mall Road
Moreover, several buildings of official and social significance are located here. The Kali Bari Temple, the Town Hall, and the Gaiety Heritage Complex being some of them. A visit to these building gives one a glimpse of the social beliefs, customs and practices of this city.
Shri Hanuman Mandir Jakhu
Located 2.5 km east from Ridge and covered amidst the deodar trees, every year Jakhu Mandir sees a vast influx of devotees. The 108 ft. the tall idol of Hanuman is discernible from below. Tourists a get here by hiring taxis, mules, or by walk. Tourists can also explore the newly built Jakhoo Ropeway to get to the temple.
The 108 ft. the tall idol of Hanuman
The temple advisory instructs the visitors to take care of their belongings as monkeys hover all around this place. The locales of this place revere these monkeys, as they believe them to be the part of Lord Hanuman’s army. Hanuman on his way to collect Sanjeevni booti, for Lakshmana, had stopped atop the Jakhoo hill to ask the mountain’s Yaksha about the direction in which the booti was located.
After the Yaksha told Hanuman the direction in which the medicine was located, Hanuman asked his monkey army to await his return. However, due to his scuffle with Kalanemi, a rakshas, he had to go back to Rama through a faster and simpler route. Hence, leaving his army behind. Locales believe that these monkeys even today await Hanuman’s return.
The carvings on the walls the temple are the evidence of the architectural brilliance of the local artists. Before leaving, do ring the temple bells, as they bring blessings and good luck to the visitors.
Taxi – INR 500-700
Jakhu Ropeway – INR 700
Rashtrapati Niwas or Viceregal Lodge
From 1888-1946, Rashtrapati Niwas was the summer residence of several British Viceroys. Even after independence, the presidents of India continued to use this place to brave summers at Delhi.
However, in mid-1960 to the Institute of Advanced Studies took over the building for conducting educational activities.
Built on the orders of Lord Dufferin by the architect Henry Irwin, the lodge houses wine cellars, and an inner tennis court. Here visitors can also see first Indian technically evolved piping system that supplies both cold and hot water simultaneously.
It was built using grey sandstone and light blue limestone available in nearby areas. The grand scale of the building, its tall and columned arches, and adjoining luxuriant balconies leaves visitors awestruck. This place holds a significant position in the chapters of Indian history, as it was here that British officers and Indian leaders agreed on the Indian partition of 1947.
Indians: INR 20
Himachal State Museum Shimla
Art lovers and archaeological experts must schedule a visit to this place. Located near the Ridge, in pre-independence days, this building was the residence of several British officials. However, on 26 January 1974, the state government decided to use this place to put several artefacts on exhibit.
Artefacts on Display
The structure of the building is in tandem with the architectural designs used during Victorian-era. Archaeological antiquities like stone images, paintings depicting the lifestyle of Himalayan people, woodcarvings, coins, photos and dolls wearing clothes worn in Himalayan regions, are the main attractions found in this museum. The museum also has a room for Mahatma Gandhi.
Currently, several workshops, competitions, and lectures are conducted in the museum. This museum is an emblem of Shimla’s historical significance and cultural diversity.
Indians – INR 20
Foreign Nationals – INR 50
Kalka Shimla Toy Train
This Narrow Gauge Railway was started in 1903 when Shimla was the summer capital of British India is the of UNESCO heritage sites in India. One can enjoy a splendid train ride amongst the hills on a toy train in Shivalik ranges of Himalayas. Also, Kalka which is around 90 km away from Shimla is the place where Indias oldest train “Kalka Howrah Mail” originates from here which was used to connect the summer capital of British India with the Captial of India (Kolkata).
Visitors should set aside at least three days for their trip to Shimla. You can get to Shimla using a car, state bus, train or flight. The city is just 44 kilometres away from the airport. The hotels can be a bit pricey during the holiday season but the place is worth it. If you want to take a quick vacation and want the prices to be reasonable then Shimla is your next destination.
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