If you’re going Shimla by roads and wanna do rest of the route via train than Kalka will be the last station to Shimla. Depart here and enjoy the roads. This is complete fun in itself. If you prefer to travel by road from Kalka to Shimla, it will take you four to five hours to travel 90 kms (56 miles). Unless, you come in June or July months, when this road is busy with too much traffic.
If you are interested in visiting just Shimla city, you should keep at least 2 nights and 3 days aside. This is because you would want to explore local food along with visiting different places of interest. Someone referred me to the famous Chhole-bhature shop of Sitaram & Sons in Lakkar Bazar, Shimla. This shop is 70-80 years old. Chhole-bhature (chickpeas in spicy gravy-all-purpose flour flatbread deep fried in oil) Though this is called chhole-bhature elsewhere, this flatbread is called “Luchi” here. This shop is very famous, very popular and very old! Just one bite in,They’ve topped the chhole with two types of chutneys – mint chutney and a sweet relish. The sweet chutney is also delicious. Shimla’s Food is really Nice!
In Himachal Pradesh, you get to eat Dham (traditional Himachali meal) at any marriage or religious function. If you want to test Dham thali you may need to go Mall Roa. And there is rice too. Good! Sepu Vadi is made with split Urad Dal (black gram). It is a famous dish of Mandi district. Trishool Bakeries is a popular shop on the Mall Road. It has got a lot of varieties of pastries – quite hard to decide.
Local Places To Visit in Shimla
We went to the Jakhoo Temple to visit as well as to watch the sunrise from there. The road to Jakhoo temple is quite asteep incline. When Lord Hanuman was on his way to Sanjivani mountain, he took a rest at the Jakhu mountain. It is believed that the statue of Lord Hanuman installed at this temple appeared by itself. Every morning at 7 a.m. an aarti is performed to pay obeisance to Lord Hanuman. Just behind this temple is another place which houses the feet impressions of Lord Hanuman.
Mehru’s Sweets in Lower Bazar, Shimla, is famous for two things – sweets and milk-jalebi. In Himachal Pradesh, You could feel the flavor of mint leaves is different from elsewhere. There is sugary jalebi inside this glass and over it goes boiling hot milk. If the weather is really cold, eating this jalebi dipped in mik is a delicious experience. You can come here to see how they serve milk-jalebi. It is a tasty thing to eat. They are frying jalebi in pure ghee (clarified butter). On the side you can see milk being boiled in a large pan. Watching this scene, the temptation to eat grows on its own.
In Shimla, I am staying at Hotel White in Lakkar Bazar. The tariff is Rs 2478 (about 36 USD) on a twin-sharing basis. The winning point of this hotel is that the rooms are of bigger size. The room size is bigger as per the standard size of rooms in Shimla hotels. Rest, housekeeping, room service are of average quality. Neither good nor bad.
The Mall Road and Scandal Point are at a walking distance of 10 min and 15 min, respectively. Rest everything is decent. From Mall Road the distance between Indian Institute of Advanced Study is 4 kms, which you can either cover by car or on foot. It is a 1 hours journey on foot. Before India’s independence, this building was known as the summer residence of Viceroy of India. But today it houses the Indian Institute of Advanced Study. The architecture is really beautiful. This complex is also historically important.
For instance, the Shimla Conference of 1945 and Cabinet Mission meeting of 1946, etc, are some of the events held here. The tourists are free to visit the garden outside the main building, enjoy the view around, go inside the photo gallery or appreciate the old and beautiful woodwork of the building.
Some of the areas of the complex, like the library, are not open or accessible to the tourists. A group of 50-60 people is allowed entry at a time into the building complex. The first group of the day is allowed in at 10.00 a.m. and the last group can go in by 4.30 or 5.00 p.m. Even though videography is not allowed inside but take my word for it, it deserves a visit.
Overall, it was a good experience for me to come here and eat poori-chhole for breakfast like this, to visit the Sankat Mochan temple at Bagh. The first thing that one notices inside the temple is how clean it is. You can go inside to pay obeisance and learn from the priest about the history of this temple. Priest: “This temple is Shri Sankat Mochan Hanuman temple of Shimla. It is quite a famous temple.”and when their wish is granted, they organize bhandara (religious feast) here.
To make your journey further interesting, You can go into the deep, unexplored interior of villages,… and ate Himachali food, searched for a homestay for ourselves in Naldehra, enjoyed horse riding… as well as trekking. Isn’t it awesome Local Places To Visit in Shimla ?
Himachal Tourism’s Official Website