"Shimla of the Hills" Top 5 Page for this destination Simla by lachydragon
Simla Travel Guide: 120 reviews and 262 photos
I spent 3 days in Shimla in my travels through Northern India in 2004. My stay was in the low season of February and in places around town there were some patches of snow from a big dump a couple of weeks before I arrived.
Shimla itself is an interesting town that is strun out along various ridgelines in the foothills of the Himalayas. The main street called "The Mall" is rambling as it follows the geography of the hills. On a clear day there are wonderful views out to the giants of the Indian Himalayas - but they never come through as well in photos...squint hard and you can see them in the one above!!
This page is a work in progress so bear with me here!
From Shimla I headed to Dharamshala or McLeod Ganj - which you can link to from here if you would like to follow my trip...
Shimla is perhaps the archetypal Indian Hill-Station, the town really came to life during the height of British Rule in India as a place to holiday away the summer months when the plains of India were too hot for British sensibilities. In fact, in terms of Hill-Stations Shimla held great importance by account of the fact that the whole Indian Parliament under the British shifted to this town in the amazing building that still stands (and probably will still be standing a century from now on account of its sturdiness!) called the ViceRegal Lodge.
There is no hiding this history as you wander along The Mall in town - numerous buildings were constructed in the Tudor style for homesick British and if you take out all the happy Indian holidaymakers then you could be in a little village in England somewhere!
As I alluded to in the previous section Shimla today is an immensely popular tourist destination for Indian holidaymakers. It was quite fun to be sharing my holiday with a whole lot of "locals" who were also out holidaying as well. Some of the western travellers I met said that they didn't like Shimla because it had become too "touristy" and I can see some merit in that argument if you compare it to the quiter Hill-Stations like Mussoorie, but nonetheless I quite enjoyed it for this very reason.
The Mall in the evenings was quite the place for teenage Indian holidaymakers to mix and mingle as teenage holidaymakers tend to do (I can speak authoritatively on this matter being only 3 years out of "teendom"). While during the early evenings you could sit up in the bandstand and watch the younger childern chasing each other to exhasution on the main stretch of the Mall or chasing balloons bought form the balloon sellers lotiering in the shadow of the statur of Gandhi-Ji!
So I suggest that you take a step back and enjoy Shimla for what it is and you too will love you time here!
- Pros:Wonderful vestiges of British past sitting in the picturesque Himalayan Foothills
- Cons:A little "touristy" perhaps... but tourists are happy people aren't they??!!
- In a nutshell:Shimla speaks of both past and present and the mountains of time immemorial all in one breath!
This one is going to sound a little strange to all the 'Bharatiya Log' visiting this page, but it is possibly noteworth... more travel advice
1947, at the height of the Partition Tensions there were many, many histroic meetings held in this building. Built as... more travel advice
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