Shimla Himachal Pradesh | History, Places to Visit, Things to Do and Famous Food

Welcome to Shimla Himachal Pradesh!

Situated in the lap of the vast Himalayas, Shimla of Himachal Pradesh is a proof of natural beauty and cultural richness. It is surrounded by green hills with snow-capped peaks. Tourism and agriculture/horticulture are the major sources of income. The place is also famous for its natural beauty, architectural buildings, wooden crafts and apples.

Shimla Himachal Pradesh
The Ridge | Shimla Himachal Pradesh

Shimla History in Hindi

The history of Shimla is a captivating story that unfolds during the colonial era. Originally a location during the British Raj, it became the summer capital of British India. The legacy of this colonial past is reflected in the architecture and streets, offering visitors the opportunity to travel back in time.

Established by the British in 1819 after the Gorkha War, Shimla gained fame for the temple of the Hindu goddess, Shyamala Devi. The first British summer residence, built by the Scottish civil servant Charles Pratt Kennedy in 1822, marked the beginning of Shimla’s role as the summer capital of the British Raj in the late 19th century.

It served as a refuge for the British army, traders and civil servants seeking respite from the scorching heat of the plains. Presently, it serves as the capital of Himachal Pradesh. Shimla has been witness to important historical events, including the signing of the famous Shimla Agreement between India and Pakistan.

An important moment in the history of Shimla came with the construction of the Kalka-Shimla railway line in 1906, which reduced travel time and increased its popularity.

Additionally, Shimla was designated as the capital of the undivided state of Punjab in 1871, a status it retained until Chandigarh, the present capital of Punjab, took over. Due to separation of Himachal Pradesh from undivided Punjab in 1971, Shimla became its capital.

Places to Visit in Shimla Himachal Pradesh

1. The Ridge:

Start your exploration at Shimla Ridge, the heart of the city. This open space offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and serves as a center for various cultural activities.

2. Jakhoo Temple:

Situated atop the Jakhu hill, the Jakhu temple is a spiritual retreat and provides a panoramic view of the Shivalik ranges. The huge Hanuman statue is a symbol of attraction and divine protection.

3. Mall Road:

It is important to take a leisurely stroll on the Mall Road. Lined with shops, cafes and historic buildings, it captures the essence of Shimla’s colonial past and vibrant present.

Shimla Himachal Pradesh
Mall Road | Shimla Himachal Pradesh

4. Christ Church:

Immerse yourself in the history of Christ Church, the second oldest church in North India. Its neo-Gothic architecture and stunning stained-glass windows add to the grandeur of the city’s architecture.

Things to Do at Shimla Himachal Pradesh

1. Toy Train Journey:

Embark on a nostalgic journey aboard the UNESCO-listed Shimla-Kalka Toy Train. The scenic ride takes you through lush landscapes and fascinating tunnels, offering a unique view of the area.

Shimla Himachal Pradesh
Shimla Kalka Toy Train | Shimla Himachal Pradesh

2. Adventure Sports in Kufri:

Kufri is a favorite place for adventure seekers. Engage in exciting activities like skiing, tobogganing and horse riding against the backdrop of snow-clad peaks.

3. Ice Skating in Winter:

In winter, Shimla turns into a winter wonderland. The natural ice-skating rink on the ridge attracts enthusiasts from all over the country, making it a memorable experience.

Famous Food’s of Shimla Himachal Pradesh

1. Siddu:

Enjoy the local delicacy, Siddu, traditional bread made from wheat flour and filled with local herbs. Enjoy flavors that reflect the essence of Himachali cuisine.

2. Thupka:

Warm up with a bowl of Thupka, a noodle soup packed with Himalayan flavor. This Tibetan dish has found a home in the diverse culinary cuisine of Shimla.

3. Chana Madra:

A dish with a rich history, Chana Madra is a mixture of chickpeas, curd and local spices, providing a taste of the authentic cuisine of the region.

Shopping in Shimla Himachal Pradesh

1. Lakkar Bazaar:

For a shopping spree, head to Lakkar Bazaar. Famous for its wooden crafts, handmade walking sticks and unique souvenirs, it is a treasure trove for shoppers.

Shimla Himachal Pradesh
Lakkar Bazaar | Shimla Himachal Pradesh

2. Lower Bazaar:

Explore the bustling Lower Bazaar for an array of woolen goods, handicrafts and local artefacts. Interact with the friendly vendors to take home a piece of Shimla’s vibrant culture.

3. Himachal Emporium:

Visit Himachal Emporium for a wide collection of local handicrafts, shawls and handmade jewellery. Support local artisans and find truly unique souvenirs.

Conclusion

Shimla in Himachal Pradesh is more than just a hill station; It is a journey through time, nature and culture. Whether you are mesmerized by its history, mesmerized by its natural beauty, or indulging in the local cuisine, Shimla offers a wonderful experience that leaves a lasting impression.