If we look into the chapters of history in India we will come to know the origin of hill stations in india and the reason they are named so. These hill stations in india were established by the British basically to get rid of the humid summer heat and enjoy the peace and beauty of these places. These places have now become an attraction for tourists both from within the country and abroad. Besides enjoying the scenic view, many adventure activities have also been done here to make the trip to these amazing places a memorable one. There are a number of hill stations in india and amongst those I shall try to name and elucidate a little about the best hill stations in india.
10 Mount Abu, Rajasthan
Location: This is the only hill stations in india which lies in the Aravalli mountain range and is located in the Sirohi district of Rajasthan exactly between the border of Rajasthan and Gujarat It is about 540 kms away from Jaipur. Its elevation is about 1220 m above sea level.
How to reach here: One can opt for different means to reach Mount Abu i.e. either train, bus. But the best way to reach is by train as the nearest railway station is Abu Road and is just 26 kms away from the main city. This railway station is very connected to different cities like New Delhi, Jaipur, Mumbai and Ahmedabad. Some of the very popular trains are Ala Hazrat Express, Jodhpur Express, Porbandar Express and Ajmer Express.
Sightseeing / Activities: There are a number of beautiful Hindu temples located here like Arbuda Devi Temple, Raghunath Temple, Jain Temple and Dilwara Temple etc. A beautiful sacred lake named Nakki Lake is also located here. According to the ancient mythology this lake was dug by the God themselves using their nails. People come to this lake to enjoy the scenic view and relax themselves by boating and spending a quality time with nature. Another very beautiful place here is the sunset point. This is one of the most attractive points for the tourists visiting Mount Abu. There is also a very beautiful wildlife sanctuary in an area of around 288 kms with some rare species around like common mongoose, jungle cat, wolf, hyena, Indian fox, wild bear etc. This hill stations in india is another favourite spot of tourists. If one has love for trekking than should surely visit Toad Rock here. It’s a stone sculpture resembling a tortoise and is a very ideal place for adventure lovers.
Best time to visit: The climate remains pleasant here throughout the year and in winters temperature falls upto 12 degree Celsius. This season is November to February. One can visit Mount Abu at any time of the year as it doesn’t experience a very extreme temperature like other places of Rajasthan. The maximum temperature it experiences is about 33 degree Celsius.
09 Manali, Himachal Pradesh
Location: Manali is located in Kullu district, the northern part of Himachal Pradesh. It is at a distance of about 270 kms from Shimla. It is situated about 6,726 ft(2,050 m) above sea level.
How to reach here: There are different means of commutation to Manali as it is one of the most beautiful destinations for tourist. If one opts for flight then the nearest airport is Bhuntar which is approximately 50 kms away from Manali. But people generally prefer road transport as a number of state run or private buses are well connected to important tourist destinations like Leh, Shimla, New Delhi, Dharamshala and Kullu etc from Manali.
Sightseeing / Activities: Manali is mainly for adventure enthusiasts. There are many activities one can do while there stay in Manali like snow biking, skiing, trekking, river rafting and paragliding etc. The most beautiful tourist spots in Manali which one shouldn’t miss are Solang Valley, Rohtang Pass, Van Vihar Park, Great Himalayan Park, Hot Water Spring and Manali Sanctuary etc. In addition to the activities mentioned above one must also enjoy zorbing if he happens to visit Manali. It is a kind of adventure sport where one person is asked to go inside a huge transparent zorb ball and is then rolled down a mountain slope. A very beautiful number of temples too are located in this place. These are Hidimba Devi temple, Ghatotkach tree temple, Siyali Mahadev temple and Buddhist temple etc.
Best time to visit: Winter season, from October to February is the best time to visit this place to enjoy the cold weather. And to enjoy the pleasure of fresh snowfall one must visit in January.
08 Mussoorie, Uttarakhand
Location: Mussoorie is a very beautiful hill stations in india located in the district of Dehradun, Uttarakhand. It is situated at a distance of about 35 kms from Dehradun and 290 kms from Delhi. Its elevation is about 2,006 m above sea level. This place is exactly located in the foothills of Garhwal Himalayan Range. Mussoorie is also known by the name of ‘Queens of the Hills’.
How to reach here: The nearest railway station to Mussoorie is the Dehradun railway station which is about 36 kms away from Mussoorie. It is well connected to different cities like Delhi, Kolkata, Jammu, Amritsar etc. Tourist can board taxis and buses from this station to Mussoorie. One can also opt for flights but the nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun which is about 54 kms away from Mussoorie. There is also a good connectivity of buses from Delhi to Dehradun. But people generally opt for rail transport.
Sightseeing / Activities: Some of the very well known tourist’s spots of Mussoorie are Kempty Falls, Mussoorie Lake, Gun Hill, Christ Church, Company Bagh, Municipal Garden, Bhatta Falls, Lambi Dehar Mines, Mossy Falls, Nag Devta Temple and George Everest house etc. It is one the favourite hill stations in india for the foreigners and is counted amongst the popular honeymoon destinations. There are also many adventure activities in this place for adventure loving people. These are trekking, cable car ride, zip line sky trek at Kempty falls, tree top adventure and finally not to be missed the sky walk at Dhanaulti. If one visits Mussoorie taking a thrilling sky walk at Dhanaulti is must or else the trip will be incomplete.
Best time to visit: The best time to visit Mussoorie is during summers i.e. April to June if one wants to enjoy a pleasant weather. But if anyone wants to experience its snowfall must visit during winters. Mussoorie experiences a very heavy rainfall during the monsoon season i.e. August to September.
07 Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu
Location: Kodaikanal is one of the most beautiful hill stations in india located in the hills of the Dindigul district of Tamil Nadu. The meaning of Kodaikanal is “The Gift of the Forest”. Kodaikanal is also known as “The Princess of Hill stations” and is one of the most popular hill stations in India. It is located at an elevation of 2,133 m and at a distance of about 426 km from Chennai and 120 km from Madurai.
How to reach here: To travel to Kodaikanal if one opts for flight then the nearest airport is the Madurai airport which is about 120 kms away. Trichy and Coimbatore airports are 150 kms and 175 kms away. Many people also prefer travelling by train and they get down at the Kodai road which is about 100 kms away from Kodaikanal. From there one can board a taxi. Regular bus services are also available from cities of Chennai, Coimbatore, Madurai and Pondicherry etc.
Sightseeing / Activities: Kodaikanal has a very wide variety of flora and fauna. There are so many eye catchy spot one must not miss if plan a trip to Kodaikanal. A few to be named amongst those are Palani Hills, Kodaikanal Lake, Pillar Rocks Viewpoint, Silver Cascade Falls, Berijam Lake, Guna Caves, Dolphin Nose, Pine Forest and Coaker’s Walk etc. One can enjoy staying in Kodaikanal and experience few adventurous activities like trekking, biking, boating etc along with nature walk. A lovely destination for honeymoon couples as well.
Best time to visit: Kodaikanal has a very pleasant and beautiful weather throughout the year. So it can be visited at any time of the year. But the weather is at its best in months of September to May and hence would consider these as the perfect season to visit.
06 Nainital, Uttarakhand
Location: Nainital is located in Uttarakhand and is considered to be one of the most famous hill stations in india. It lies in the Kumaon foothills of outer Himalayas at an elevation of about 2084m above sea level. This place is set around a pear shaped lake which is a very popular boating site.
How to reach here: The best way to reach Nainital is by train. Kathgodam is the nearest railway station and is about only 34 kms away from Nainital. It is well connected to important cities like Delhi, Lucknow and Howrah with daily trains running from New Delhi. It also has good bus connectivity to different places in North India. And in case if anyone wants to board a bus from Delhi then one can avail the service with good options of buses.
Sightseeing / Activities: Nainital is divided into two divisions i.e. Tallital and Mallital. The most popular spots for sightseeing here are Nainital Lake, Tiffin top, Eco Cave Gardens, Nainital zoo, Kilbury, The Mall road, Snow view point, Naina Devi temple and Naina Peak etc. Adventurous activities to do in Nainital are trekking, horse riding, camping, paragliding, parasailing, Jeep tours, sunset hikes, Kayaking and biking etc.
Best time to visit: Nainital has a very good climate throughout the year and hence can be visited at any time of the year. It experiences a chilled weather in winters i.e. from November to February. During this season the temperature drops down leading to heavy snowfall. Nainital is the most captivating landscape in India and attracts tourists from all around the globe.
05 Munnar, Kerala
Location: Munnar is a small town and a very beautiful hill stations in india located in Idduki district of Kerala. It is situated at a distance of 130 kms from Kochi. This place is located at about 1532 m above sea level. Here we can see very beautiful tea plantations established in the late 19th century.
How to reach here: The best means of commutation to Munnar is by train. The nearest railway station is Aluva which is at a distance of about 110 kms from Munnar. Ernakulam and Madurai stations are at a distance of 130 kms and 135 kms away from Munnar. Flight is another option as the nearest airport is Cochin International airport which is about 110 kms away from Munnar. One can board a cab from the airport. And for people residing in Kerala and Tamil Nadu there are state run or private buses to travel to Munnar.
Sightseeing / Activities: Munnar is a very beautiful hill stations in india with lush green tea plantations and a very pleasant weather. There are a number of tourist attraction spots in Munnar. Amongst them a few are Eravikulam National Park, Mattupetty dam, Hydel Park, Pothamedu view point, Attukad waterfall, Echo point etc. One can also enjoy some adventurous activities here like trekking, boating and paragliding. There are very beautiful tea gardens in Munnar which one must visit.
Best time to visit: Munnar’s climate is pleasant throughout the year so one can visit it at any time of the year. But monsoons here have a different charm. From June to September it is the best time to visit Munnar if one is looking for a quiet vacation. Monsoons actually add beauty to the lush green trees and plantations here.
04 Ooty, Tamil Nadu
Location: Ooty is a small beautiful place in the state of Tamil Nadu. It is also known as Udagamandalam. It is situated at a distance of 80 kms from Coimbatore and at about 547 kms from Chennai. Ooty is said to be amongst the most popular hill stations in india located in the Nilgiri Hills.
How to reach here: There are many options to travel to Ooty. If we opt for flight, then the nearest airport is Coimbatore about 88 kms away and is well connected to most of the Indian cities. Good bus connectivity to Ooty also can be seen from different cities of south India like Mysore, Bangalore and Chennai. And the nearest railway station to Ooty is Mettupalyam which has good connectivity with Chennai, Mysore, Bangalore and Coimbatore.
Sightseeing / Activities: Ooty is a mesmerizing tourist destination. So many beautiful lush green plantations and breathtaking scenic beauty can be experienced here. There are a number of spots to be visited in Ooty like Ooty lake, Doddabetta, Mukurthi National Park, Stone house, government botanical gardens, Rose gardens, Thunder world, Pykara lake, Tiger hill, Emerald Lake, Ooty mountain railway, St. Stephen Church, Raghavendra Temple, Wellington Lake etc. Adventure lovers have a great time in Ooty with activities like trekking, hang gliding, mountain biking, horse riding and angling. People specially visit this place to have a peaceful and leisure time with their family.
Best time to visit: The best time to visit Ooty is between March to June. During this season the climate here is very pleasant and hence is perfect for sightseeing and other adventure activities. The maximum temperature in summers is about 20 degree Celsius and never rises beyond.
03 Darjeeling, West Bengal
Location: Darjeeling is located in West Bengal and is considered to be one of the most beautiful hill stations in india. It is about 614 kms away from Kolkata. Darjeeling is situated in the foothills of Himalayas at an elevation of about 2,042 m.
How to reach here: There is no airport or railway station in Darjeeling. So if one wants to visit this beautiful place has to look for the nearest airport or railway station from the area. The nearest airport to Darjeeling is Bagdogra, which is about 95 kms away from the city. One can board a taxi after reaching Bagdogra and it takes almost near to 3 hrs. And if one opts for train then the nearest railway station is NJP (New Jalpaiguri). This place is about 88 kms away from Darjeeling.
Sightseeing / Activities: Darjeeling is best known for tea plantations and its wonderful view of Kanchenjunga (third highest mountain peak in the world). There is a number of amazing tourist spots here and a few to be named are Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, Tiger Hill, Batasia Loop, Japanese Peace Pagoda, Nightingale Park, Rock Garden, Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park and Singalila Park etc. It’s a great place for adventure lovers as there are many options for activities like trekking,Zorbing,Rock Climbing, Mountain biking, Rafting and Camping, Hot air balloon, jeep safari etc.
Best time to visit: Darjeeling should be visited during months of October to March. This is so because monsoon ends in October and there is a little bit of chill in the weather. Post that winter season starts and the average temperature remains to be 5 to 7 degree Celsius. Winters are mesmerizing here with beautiful scenic views.
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02 Shimla, Himachal Pradesh
Location: Shimla is the capital of Himachal Pradesh and is one of the most mesmerizing hill stations in India. In the earlier period it was considered to be the summer capital of British India. Shimla is the largest city of Himachal Pradesh and is a district. Its elevation is around 2,276 m.
How to reach here: There are a number of travel options to go to Shimla. If one opts for flight then the nearest airport is Jubbarhatti, which is 23 kms away from Shimla. One can get down at the airport and easily board a taxi. There are regular flights going to this place from Chandigarh and Delhi. Another good option is road transport. There are very good Himachal State Transport as well as private buses connecting Shimla to many cities in North India. Shimla doesn’t have a railway station but the nearest station is Kalka, about 96 kms away from Shimla. Toy trains connect Kalka to Shimla but it takes around 7 hrs. There are regular trains to Kalka from Delhi and Chandigarh.
Sightseeing / Activities: Shimla has such a wonderful number of spots for spending a quality time. Some of the most talked about are Ridge, Mall Road, and Jakhoo Temple, Christ Church, Lakkar bazaar, Himalayan Bird Park, Naldehra, Himachal State museum and Green Valley etc. There are also a few places near Shimla which are a must visit if one plans a trip to Shimla. These are Kufri (13 kms away), Mashobra (10 kms away), Chail (15 kms away). For adventure enthusiasts few of the activities one can enjoy are hiking, River rafting, paragliding, camping, mountain biking, Heli skiing, Skiing, Golfing and Ice skating etc. Shimla is thus an enchanting place.
Best time to visit: The perfect season to visit Shimla is from March to June as being a tourist season. Weather is very pleasant at this time and hence good for outdoor activities as well. Temperature during this season remains in between 15 degree Celsius to 30 degree Celsius. But if someone is looking for snow then the ideal time to visit Shimla is between October to February. The average temperature lies in between 8 degree Celsius to -2 degree Celsius during this period.
01 Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir
Location: Srinagar is the summer capital of Jammu & Kashmir. It is the largest city of the state and lies in valley of Kashmir on the banks of the Jhelum River. It is a mesmerizing hill station in India with beautiful gardens, waterfronts and houseboats. It lies at an elevation of around 1585 m.
How to reach here: There are different means of commutation to reach Srinagar. If one opts for flight then Srinagar, International Airport which is also known as Sheikh Ul Alam Airport is hardly 11 kms from the main city and is well connected with cities like Delhi, Mumbai and Chandigarh. The nearest railway station to Srinagar is Jammu Tawi or Udhampur. These stations have good connectivity with different places of India. So one can either hire taxis or board buses from these stations to Srinagar.
Sightseeing / Activities: Srinagar is well known for dry fruits and traditional Kashmiri handicrafts & there are so many amazing places to be visited in Srinagar. Some of them are Dal Lake, Mughal Gardens, Shalimar Bagh, Nishant Bagh, Pari Mahal, Manasbal Lake, Indira Gandhi Memorial Tulip Garden, Charar-e-Sharief, Chasme Shahi Garden, Hari Parbat, Wular Lake, Hazratbal Shrine, Pahalgam (village of shepherds) and Kheer Bhawani temple etc. The trip to Srinagar is quite incomplete without experiencing the thrill of the activities like Aero balloon, Shikara Ride, Golfing, Hiking and Camping etc. People can also relax themselves by a nature walk or bird watching. If you are a golf lover then there are many golf courses as well in this beautiful city.
Best time to visit: People can visit Srinagar throughout the year as it has a very pleasant climate. But still the best time to visit this place is between April to October as during this season the entire city is covered with beautiful blossoms.