A lazy weekend well spent at Shimla, Himachal Pradesh - By Bhavna Negi

Soon after, many of us updated our Facebook status to "Long Weekend | Looking for Vacation"; we all had an email from our admin for weekend trip to shimla. Now that was one quickest way to get answers to all your wishes, of course, the one's you facebook'ed.

My trip to Shimla, rightly given the sobriquet of "Queen of Hill Stations", has left me mesmerized and astonished. There are so many things in this small yet picturesque town to try that I was almost surprised and ever eager to explore as what is next which I can do. Known as the summer capital of India, this hill station is presently the capital of the state of Himachal Pradesh.

I remember everything so perfectly about my Shimla trip that I would like to share how it went and the things that I observed there.

The trip was a great travel ride, all thanks to the weather which was really pleasant with winters just seeping in. We all boarded train from Delhi to Chandigarh. Many of us played cards and games of dumb-charades, whilst few dozed off. (We were scolded for making the noise, but then - you've got to do what you've got to do).

After we reached Chandigarh, we had our tour-bus and the travel-guides awaiting to take us to Shimla. Our Travel Tour Guide were travinspire. The travel guides were really sweet helpful. They made the journey so smooth. We soon stopped at “Haveli” at Dharampur to treat our taste buds and fill our tummy.
Haveli at Dharampur
There are not a lot of roads. The main, twisty road through the middle has just enough room for one vehicle in each direction and a few tributary roads off that. Shimla, the capital of Himachal Pradesh, is one of the picturesque city and top tourist destinations in India. We had our stay at East Bourne Resort & Spa, Shimla.

East Bourne Resort is a little away from town but a very good family destination. Its has an extremely cheerful atmosphere. The beautiful garden & the lovely flowers in the middle of the resort is a treat.

The food was delicious and the services were great.

They had helpful staff who attended you and greeted you with their smile. The amazing in-house heated swimming pool is a place to die for and the spa, probably icing on the cake.

We decided to explore places in/nearby Shimla. We got a cab booked from the hotel and left for Mall Road - one of the busiest commercial areas of this place. Automobiles are not allowed and hence you can find tourist strolling on this road.

We also visited Christ Church and Shimla State Museum. The church is the second oldest church after St. John's Church in Meerut.The church contains five fine stained glass windows. One represents the Christian virtues of Faith, Hope, Charity, Fortitude, Patience and Humility and the museum is famous for is collection of ancient sculptures, paintings, coins and photographs. The museum has samples of the famous Pahari miniature art form, which ceased to exist when the Western art form took over.

Shimla Ridge is a large open spacious platform from where you can have a panoramic view of the mountain peaks of Shimla. One fascinating tourist attraction with major places of Shimla like Lakkar Bazaar, Mall, Scandal Point, Jakhoo hill, etc. well connected through it.

Jhakhoo Temple
Another famous must-visit attraction in Shimla is Jhakhoo Temple which has Lord Hanuman’s foot prints engraved on a marble (as believed by the devotees), paintings and statues of Lord Hanuman and Lord Ram. The pious chants (or Bhajans) and the ringing of bells fill up the entire complex.

We all came back to the resort to indulge ourselves with the luxury of the spa and the heated swimming pool. During dinner, we had several games like Tambola / Musical Chairs for everyone. 

Everyone had a fun-filled evening with a DJ who played all the dance number. It was a great party.

We all went back to our rooms and played cards, games of Mafia, Uno Card. None of us felt sleepy and it was a fun-filled night. Next morning we had sumptuous breakfast we all left in multiple groups to different must-see visits nearby Shimla. 

Naldehra hill is the perfect place to unwind and relax amidst beautiful surroundings. There could be nothing better than waking up every morning and watch the sunrise from behind the hills.

Mashobra is part of Shimla Reserve Forest sanctuary and catchment area. The natural vegetation comprises pine, oak, cedar or Himalayan deodar, and rhododendron, as well as maple and horse chestnut.

Kufri is a winter sports capital. Kufri is situated at an altitude of 2622 meters above sea level Skiing can be pursued in Kufri. It takes approximately one hour to drive to Kufri from Shimla city. You should make it a must-visit place during your winter weekend getaway trips.

And like any other trip, we too never wanted this weekend to end. But then, we end one holiday so as to plan another one. We packed our bag and board bus to Chandigarh, from where we had train to Delhi.

Ohh.. I did miss on mentioning you could also treat your eyes to nature view. All you have to do is, book a ticket for Toy Train and enjoy your ride. 

Shimla apart from being an ideal respite from scorching summers is a suitable spot for enjoying the idyllic environment and ethereal grace bestowed by Mother Nature.People love visiting Shimla for rejuvenating their hearts and minds and enhancing their innate skills.

For a layman, Shimla is truly a nature's captivating paradise and one can rejoice in the realm of celestial beauty and tranqill surroundings with unceasing fervour.

Pic Credits - Nitin Gupta | Bilal Ansari

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