, the”Queen of Hills,” has fixated tourists with its majestic vistas of snow-covered mountains, colonial-era structures, tiny alleys with lush greenery, and serenity. This colonial town also boasts an eclectic range of cafés, replete with delicious food, welcoming ambiance and the best views. Whether you’re looking for a hearty breakfast, a light bite to eat, or a decadent afternoon treat, the cafés in this town offer it all. Here’s our rundown of the best cafés to visit in Shimla, India.
Cafe Simla Times
Cafe, Indian, Italian, American, $$$
Cafe Simla Times
appeals to one and all with its artistic setting, relaxed vibe, and of course, the delicious food. The café is adorned with sketches of the popular attractions of the town, and the vintage car model standing outside the café adds to its charm. They serve everything from Indian to continental, Italian, and American dishes. A real hit is the tomato olive toasties, as well as smoked chicken and olive pizza. They have a delicious range of desserts and fruit shakes as well. You can snag a table inside and marvel at the artsy décor while chowing down on the delectable food, or head outside and enjoy the stunning vistas of the mountains and the world go by. Live band performances kick things up a notch on some evenings and weekends.
Wake and Bake
Cafe, Restaurant, Indian, European, Chinese, Mexican, Middle Eastern, $$$
The spectacular view of the town across the window coupled with a cup of joe and lip-smacking crepes or waffles—there couldn’t be a better way to start your day. And the perfect place to do just that is Wake and Bake. Nestled right in the heart of the town, Wake and Bake
pulls out the stops with its delicious food menu, friendly service, and laid-back ambiance. Any time of the day, you’ll find a great gathering here—a testament to its popularity. They serve Mexican, Tibetan, European, Chinese, and Middle Eastern food. Jamming and book reading sessions are also held here.
Cafe, Restaurant, Indian, Italian, $$$
Located on the bustling Mall Road, Cafe Sol is a perfect spot to rest your feet after exploring the charms this colonial town has to offer. The menu is packed with fresh, delicious treats that satisfy the palate of vegetarians and meat-eaters alike. Grilled fish, caesar salad with grilled chicken, Turkish pita platter, fried prawns and paneer tikka, along with an assortment of side items, are the crowd pullers. Besides, there is a tiny cake counter that has an intriguing selection of pastries and cakes.
Cafe Under Tree
Cafe, Indian, $$$
Sitting pretty at an elevation of 2,438 meters, Cafe Under Tree is the highest café in Shimla, offering breathtaking views of the town along with delicious and eclectic food. It is a vegan café and well-regarded for its pahadi tea and variety of dosas. Also, there is an array of other vegan options equally delicious. Best of all, the prices won’t burn a hole in your pocket. The décor, replete with deodar wooden furnishings and lighting filaments, add that extra dose of flair. The café is a treat for the senses and a must-visit.
Shimla Book Cafe
Cafe, Indian, Italian, $$$
The Shimla Book Cafe is a perfect spot for those who are in love with both food and books. This café is run by four prisoners who are presently serving their sentence in Shimla Jail. The prisoners are allowed to run the café during the daytime, and the Tourism Department of the State has funded it. The food menu comprises of tasty pizza and baked items, and everything on offer is prepared by the prisoners. A relaxed vibe pervades the café, which has the best views, a mini library with a great collection of books of all genres, and free WiFi.
Bakery, Cafe, Indian, Chinese, $$$
One of the oldest cafés in Shimla is the Embassy. Fresh, delicious, and innovative describe this café’s menu. The menu runs the gamut from Indian to Continental to Chinese. Homemade cakes and pastries and relaxed setting round out a delightful meal. Do try its fusion pastry, carrot cake, and creamy delicacies, such as the varieties of ice cream.
Indian Coffee House
Cafe, Coffee Shop, Indian, Vegetarian, Vegan, $$$
Indian Coffee House has been serving the locals and tourists alike for four decades. This authentic coffee house serves the best South Indian filter coffee and variety of dosas, like Masala Dosa, onion Masala dosa, and mutton dosa, to name a few. The menu also includes omelets, cutlets, and French toast, and they’re super delicious when paired with fragrant coffee. In addition, the amiable service, simplistic yet elegant décor, and easy-going vibe make it a highly-acclaimed café.
Hide Out Cafe
Cafe, Indian, $$$
Located smack dab in the middle of the town, the Hide Out Cafe dishes out Indian and Italian favorites in a relaxed, friendly setting. The café’s specialty is the breakfast platter, which consists of grilled toast, an omelet, roasted tomatoes, and a cutlet along with a dip. It is a tried and true go-to meal. Other enticing items include vegetable pasta, chicken roll, sweet corn soup, and egg wraps. Portions are hearty, healthy, and delicious. Finish things off with a mouth-watering dessert.