Shimla, the most sought after hill station, needs no introduction. Its lush greenery, pleasant climate, and snow-clad hills have attracted tourists for years. With a plethora of activities and places to visit in Shimla, the Queen of Hills offers more than you can hold onto.
But before we take you through the best things to do in Shimla, let us quickly scan through some essential information that will help you plan your trip to this beautiful hill station.
Best Time To Visit Shimla
Shimla is a year-round destination. However, due to heavy rainfall and the high possibility of landslides, it must be avoided during the monsoon season (July – September).
March – June: Summers in Shimla are pleasant and perfect for trekking, camping, and rafting. The temperature varies between 15 ° & 30 ° and you would need light woolens during the night hours.
October – February: Winters in Shimla are popular for snowfall and snow activities. The temperature varies between – 2 ° & 8 ° and you would need thick woolens.
The best time to visit Shimla is December – February, especially for those who wish to enjoy the snow. One can go skiing and ice-skating during this period.
How To Reach Shimla
By Air: The nearest airport, Jubbarhatti, is located 23 km from the main city. The other nearby airports are Chandigarh and New Delhi.
By Train: The world heritage narrow gauge railways connect Shimla to Kalka. This toy train route is quite popular with kids. Further, Kalka is abundantly connected to all the major cities of India.
By Road: Shimla is approximately 350 km from New Delhi, and 118 km from Chandigarh. Regular buses, both private and state-run, ply from Delhi en-route Chandigarh.
15 Things To Do In Shimla
It is now time to explore the activities you can undertake in the hill station if you’re thinking what to do in Shimla. To save you from the never-ending chaos of narrowing your list, we have prepared a list of most popular things to do in Shimla.
1. Toy Train Ride: Passing through the green hills
Enjoying the Kalka – Shimla toy train ride is, indeed, one of the best things to do in Shimla. The old railway line along the mountains paints a tranquil picture of the place. Watch the other end of the train from your window as the toy-train moves like a snake on the curved tracks. And boy you are lucky if it starts to drizzle! Also, on this route is the famous tunnel no 33, which is one of the 25 most haunted places in India.
Suggested Read: 5 Most Haunted Places In Shimla: Exploring The Eerie Side
Himachal Holiday Packages On TravelTriangle
Head to Himachal to witness lush valleys surrounded by snow-capped hills. Indulge in skiing, paragliding, and other adventure sports. Book holiday packages inclusive of airport transfers, cab, resort, sightseeing, and meals to Shimla, Manali, Kasol, Dharamshala, and more.
2. Shopping at Lakkar Bazar: For The Shopaholics
When the sun reaches the horizon in the evening, Lakkar Bazar is a different sight, altogether. The long stretch of shops on either side offers some of the finest woodwork artefacts. Apart from artefacts, you can also buy winter wears at a very cheap price. It is a good place to pick souvenirs and little gifts for your loved ones.
Don’t miss: Checkout the local handmade shawls and Nehru jackets.
Suggested Read: Shimla Vs Manali Honeymoon: Which Is Better For You And Why?
3. Ice skating: Asia’s Only Open-Air Ice Skating Rink
Show off your skills at the open-air ice skating rink is one of the things to do in Shimla during peak winters. The rink attracts thousands of people every year in search of an amazing ice skating experience. The ice is formed by a special technique that the British taught the Garhwali highlanders. The thickly forested hillside keeps it shaded and the low temperatures in winters prevent it from melting.
Timings: 8 am – 11 am and 5 pm – 8 pm; December – March
Cost: INR 100 – INR 200
4. Rafting At Tattapani: Feel The Adventure
Located 50 km from Shimla, Tattapani is simply a heaven for adventure lovers. Nestled on the banks of Satluj, the region is popular for its natural hot water springs, lush green valleys, and one of the finest rafting experiences that attract thousands of tourist every year. A perfect weekend getaway, Tattapani will surely rejuvenate your soul.
Cost: INR 1,500 per person per ride
5. Chadwick Waterfall: See The Splendid Beauty
Amidst the Glen forest lies the tranquil Chadwick waterfall. Located 7 km from Shimla, the waterfall is an ideal place to start your day with. The combination of aesthetic beauty and a serene environment makes it perfect for catching up on some solitude. And yes, witnessing sunrise at Chadwick fall is one of the best things to do in Shimla if you are a nature lover. The trek to the waterfall itself is extremely peaceful & enthralling.
6. Jakhu Temple: Trek To The Top
At an elevation of 2,455 m above the sea level, the Jakhu Hill is said to be the highest peak in Shimla. Trekking to the top of Jakhu Hill is one of the popular things to do in Shimla. Though it can be tiring on a sunny day, cloudy, windy and rainy days can turn this 2.5 km trek into one of the most enjoyable activities of your trip.
Don’t miss: While climbing, check out the famous colonial architecture of the Rothney Castle.
7. Pine Forests: Take A Walk Amidst The Nature
There are many interesting short hikes from Shimla that take you through the pine forests in and around the city. Some of the beautiful trails lead you to the Glen, the Summer Hill, the Prospect Hill, and the Kamna Devi Temple. Owing to their beauty and the romantic weather, these nature walks are among the best things to do in Shimla for couples.
Don’t miss: Sunsets from the hills.
8. Indian Institute of Advanced Studies: Capture The Beauty
Built by the British, the building was made as a summer retreat for the Indian President. But it was passed on to the nation by Dr. S Radhakrishnan, the then President of India, as an institute to promote advanced studies in arts & humanities. The grand architectural beauty and the soothing surroundings make it one of the popular tourist attractions in Shimla. And the colonial building is perfect for some wonderful camera shots.
Don’t miss: Take a tour to the Viceregal Lodge – formerly the residence of the British Viceroy of India – that houses ancient articles and photographs dating back to the times of the British rule in India.
Timings: 8 am – 6 pm
9. Military Museum At Annandale: Walk Through The History
If arms and ammunition excite you, then you must visit the Army museum located in Annandale. The museum exhibits various guns, uniforms, and the document of India – Pakistan war of 1971.
Don’t miss: The mini-golf course and helipad near the museum
Timings: 10 am – 5 pm
10. Scandal Point: Watch The Beautiful Sunset
Scandal Point, one of the major tourist attractions in Shimla, is a flat platform on the Ridge Road. It offers mesmerising views of the snowcapped mountains and the lush valley. A paradise for photographers and nature lovers, Scandal Point offers splendid spectre of the sunrise and sunset.
Don’t miss: The famous Tudor Library located on Ridge Road, near the Scandal Point
11. Camping: Stay Amidst The Woods
Apart from the lavish hotels, camping is another adventurous thing to do in Shimla. Resting amidst the nature’s finest setup’s, this gives a truly different experience. Since this hill station is also an abode for many trekking expeditions, trekkers can find some great spots to set up camp and spend the night amidst the woods.
Famous Camping Sites: RedWood Camp, Mashobra Greens, Kheerganga Camping Company
12. River Rafting: Sail Across The Crystal Clear Water
For the adventure junkies out there, River Rafting is one of the most adventurous things to do in Shimla. The free-flowing rivers in this queens of hills makes the ideal condition to this exciting water sports. The river Sutlej which flows near the city is the common place for river rafting in Shimla. The most popular river rafting places carries out from Chabba to Tattapani which is stretched across a region of 12Kms and takes at least 2 hours to finish.
Best Time To Visit: March-June
13. Paragliding: Take A Dive In The Sky
Glide across the crystal blue skies by experiencing paragliding in Shimla. Often called the ‘queen of hills’, Shimla is blessed with the finest natural landscapes which makes a perfect place to take a dive in the sky. The best place to experience Paragliding in Shimla is Kangra Valley which is located at a distance of 233 Kms and 6 hours to reach.
Best Time To Visit: March-June
14. Cycling: A Relaxing Ride
Take a break from the hustle-bustle of city life and enjoy cycling around the water catchment wildlife sanctuary which will be perfect pick for a lazy day. While the place is quite famous because of being a home to wildlife, this place is also a great location to go cycling without any worry.
Location: Kufri, East of Shimla
15. Kuthar Fort: Blend Of Architectural And Nature’s Beauty
Resting in the Himalayas eternally beautiful landscapes, Kuthar Fort is one of the best places to visit in Shimla to enjoy the historical charm of the hill station. The fort is spread across an area of 52.8 square kilometres and surrounded by an exotic pool and beautiful gardens. Apart from a blissful set-up, the fort also boasts a fresh water springs and sectors which were built around 800 years ago.
Location: State Highway 9 Kishangarh, Kuthar, Himachal Pradesh 173206
Best Time To Visit: Any time of the year
Further Read: 9 Boutique Hotels In Shimla Near Mall Road
So, what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and explore these amazing things to do in Shimla in the upcoming summer vacation and explore the best sights of the Queen of hills while indulging into these exciting activities. If you’re all charged up now, then plan your vacation to Shimla and enjoy the finest views of nature.
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