The Best Hill Station Getaways In India
Trying to endure India‘s unforgiving summer heat can be a difficult task. One of the best ways to achieve this is by traveling to one of the country’s famous hill stations, where the weather is temperate and you are able to forget about the oppressive heat. Aside from a camera, you’ll even want to pack some winter clothing for some of these locations. Use this list to delve into some of the country’s famous mountain resorts that will not only provide respite from the heat, but are also beautiful places in their own right.
Kashmir has always attracted tourists from time immemorial. Srinagar in Jammu and Kashmir is known for its scenic splendor, charming houseboats, and historic and lovely gardens. This place is also referred to as, ‘The Land of Lakes and Gardens,’ and rests in the Kashmir Valley along the banks of the Jhelum River. Full of fascinating alleyways and buildings belonging to the Mughal era, this hill station is sure to leave you spellbound.
Jhelum River, Srinagar | © Basharat Alam Shah/Flickr
An erstwhile summer retreat of the British, Nainital is a small town settled amidst Uttrakhand’s Kumaon range. It is also known as, ‘The Lake City,’ and is surrounded by huge mountains that provide for a stunning backdrop. Nainital is famous for its dreamy weather conditions, flower filled valley, and magnificent sparkling lakes that are sure to sweep you off your feet. Tourists can indulge in fun activities like yachting, kayaking, parasailing, horse riding, or a wild safari tour in Jim Corbett National Park.
Ooty is a visual delight filled with pretty cottages, fenced flower gardens, thatched roof churches and some of the most beautiful botanical gardens. The lush greenery, thick forests, lakes and waterfalls, make this eco-friendly land visually appealing for those coming to stay in Ooty. It also offers exciting options for trek lovers, so don’t forget to pack your trekking shoes when you head here.
Ooty ariel view | © Hemant meena/WikiCommons
Darjeeling, West Bengal
Surrounded by the massive Himalayan mountain range, Darjeeling is one of the most wonderful hill stations in India. Known as the ‘Queen’ of hill stations, it is a favorite choice among honeymooners. This hill station is nestled away in the northern part of West Bengal and is world famous for its sprawling tea plantations, exotic waterfalls and flowery hills. Don’t forget to experience the, ‘toy train journey,’ which lets you soak in the magnificent surroundings of this scenic getaway.
Shimla is one of the most visited hill stations in India and is known for its snow-clad mountains, dense forests, ethnic culture and eternal beauty. It has a lot of variety to offer and is an ideal place for activities like fishing, golfing, skiing, and trekking. Shimla is a famous destination for honeymooners and boasts colonial era structures in the town’s lower bazaars that hum with local life and shops selling souvenirs, fabrics and spices.
Shimla | © Aiwok/Wikicommons
Mount Abu is an oasis in the barren desert land of Rajasthan. The cool climate of Mount Abu is due to its extravagant flora, which consists of flowering shrubs and coniferous trees. Situated 1,720 meters above sea level, this hill station is the most visited of north-west India and is known for beautiful lakes, the Aravali Range, ancient forts, hidden picnic spots, and first class resort accommodations. The area hosts varying religious temples (Jain & Hindu), and well preserved historical architecture throughout the town.
Mount Abu | © Andreas Kleemann/WikiCommons
The capital city of Meghalaya, Shillong sits amidst the Khasi Hills. Known as the, ‘Scotland of the East,’ this hill station is famous for its awe-inspiring landscape filled with pristine lakes that are difficult to express in words. This land of forests, hills, waterfalls, lakes, caves and cottages is full of Mother Nature’s benevolence. Don’t forget to get a glimpse of the 18-hole golf course, which is considered to be the best in the country.
Umiam Lake, Shillong | © Benoy/WikiCommons