Blessed with picturesque snow clad Himalayan mountains, lush greenery, grand colonial architecture, paradisiacal natural charm, gleaming lakes and numerous other scenic places of delight, Shimla is indeed one of the best places to visit in Himachal Pradesh for an unforgettable holiday. The erstwhile summer capital of India, the 'Queen of Hills' captivates tourists and enthralls them with its magical air and wondrous charm. It is hardly surprising then, that it continues to occupy one of the top spots in the bucket list of every traveler.
One of the most popular and best places to visit in Shimla is the Ridge, a photographer’s utopia owing to its gorgeous views of the Himalayan landscapes and marvelous Gothic structures. Running through the heart of the city, the wide open street provides you the opportunity to feast your eyes on the stunningly beautiful landscapes and snowy mountains of Shimla. The Ridge connects the Mall Road to the famous Scandal Point, where you can watch the adorable views of the setting sun below the stunning Himalayan horizon. If your eyes need some rest after soaking in the majestic charm of the Himalayas, head to the numerous cafes, boutiques, bars, restaurants and shops lined across the Ridge, and immerse yourself in the wonders of heavenly gastronomical experiences.
Jakoo Hill is great for devotees and tourists in search of a divine spiritual experience. Situated at an elevation of around 2,440 meters, and home to an ancient Hanuman temple which is famous for housing the world’s tallest statue of Lord Hanuman, the Jakoo Hill will undoubtedly win your heart.
Christ Church, with its majestic grandeur and neo-gothic architecture, attracts both devotees and lovers of architecture. The Tara Devi Temple, home to the 250 years old shrine of Goddess Tara, is another spiritual haven where you can rediscover your connection to the Almighty. Shimla, and especially its Mall Road, has been a favorite destination of honeymooners since the colonial times. Home to a plethora of restaurants, bars, elusive handicrafts shops, exquisite jewelry, intricately designed wooden articles and exotic clothing stores, the Mall Road is an exciting place to be in.
Lakkar Bazaar is another spectacular shopping paradise in Shimla that promises to leave in your heart and mind the footprints of your holiday in the beautiful Himalayan capital. A short and fascinating getaway to the nearby destinations of Kali Bari Temple, Town Hall, Scandal Point and Gaiety Theatre will surely satiate all your wanderlusts.
For history lovers and book nerds, Shimla is an ideal destination. At the Indian Institute of Advanced Study, you can see the massive halls and spacious ballrooms where historical pacts were signed, and judgments were made during India’s freedom struggle. A historical tour of this beautiful city is incomplete without visiting the sprawling Himachal State Museum. Home to a plethora of stone sculptures, coins, miniature paintings, handicrafts, weapons and numismatic articles, it should be at the top of every history buff’s travel itinerary. Don’t forget to check out the Annandale Army Heritage Museum, nestled amidst the luxurious scenic landscape. Take a dive into the rich military history of this city or just relax and enjoy a game of polo, the choice is yours!
Not quite Madame Tussauds, but an experience of a similar kind awaits you at the Jonnie’s Wax Museum in Shimla, popularly known as Madame Tussauds Museum of Shimla. Here, you can meet their favorite Bollywood stars in all their glorious waxy avatars!
Shimla is also the ideal destination for bird lovers. The alluring tourist spot of Himalayan Bird Park is great for spotting a wide range of rare and endangered birds. In addition to this, Shimla is also renowned for hosting the famous Ice Skating Carnival every winter, from December to March. Boasting a massive open air ice skating rink, Shimla becomes the most sought after retreat for adventure enthusiasts and thrill seekers during the winter months, when the entire city is covered under a thick blanket of snow.