Simla, is the capital city of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh, located in northern India. Shimla is bounded by Mandi and Kullu in the north, Kinnaur in the east, the state of Uttarakhand in the south-east, and Solan and Sirmaur to the south. Shimla acts as a hub for India’s tourism sector. It is among the top 10 preferred entrepreneurial locations in India.
In 1864, Shimla was declared as the summer capital of British India, succeeding Murree, northeast of Rawalpindi. After independence, the city became the capital of Punjab and was later named the capital of Himachal Pradesh. After the reorganisation, the Mahasu district and its major portion was merged with Shimla. Its name is derived from the goddess Shyamala Devi, an incarnation of the Hindu goddess Kali.
As of 2011 Shimla comprises 19 hill states; mainly Balson, Bushahr, Bhaji and Koti, Darkoti, Tharoch & Dhadi, Kumharsain, Khaneti & Delath, Dhami, Jubbal, Keothal, Madhan, Rawingarh, Ratesh, and Sangri.
Shimla is home to a number of colleges and research institutions as well as multiple temples and palaces. The city’s buildings are styled in the Tudorbethan and neo-Gothic architectures dating from the colonial era.
Owing to its steep terrain, Shimla hosts the mountain biking race MTB Himalaya, which started in 2005 and is regarded as the biggest event of its kind in South Asia.
Annandale: Developed as the playground of Shimla, Annandale is 2–4 km from The Ridge at a height of 6,117 ft. It is a very big beautiful ground, but not meant for playing as it comes under the Indian Army.
Tara Devi: 11 km from the Shimla bus-stand. Tara Devi hill has a temple dedicated to the goddess of stars on top of the hill. There is a military Dairy Town here as well as the headquarters of Bharat Scouts and Guides.
Sankat Mochan: A very famous Lord Hanuman temple is located here.
Junga: Junga is near Tehsi, 26 km from Shimla. Its original name (with diacritics) is Jūnga and is a former royal retreat of the princely state of Keonthal. It is also known as the Keonthal Estate.
Anand Vilas: Midway between Shimla and Junga. “Sarva Dharma Mandir”, Temple of all Faiths, is a spiritual group dedicated to Mother Nature. Thousands of visitors and devotees come here every year. There is an “Art is Values” school with students from all over India. Classes are provided free of cost.
Totu: A major developing suburb of Shimla on NH-88. Houses Jutogh railway station & HimFed under Govt. of Himachal Pradesh.
Mashobra: 13 km from Shimla, site of the annual Sipi fair in June.
Kufri: 16 km from Shimla at a height of 8,600 ft, Kufri is the local winter sports centre, and it also has a small zoo.
Chharabra: 13 km from Shimla on route to Kufri.
The Mall: The Mall is the main shopping street of Shimla. It also has many restaurants, clubs, banks, bars, Post Offices and tourist offices. The Gaiety Theatre is also situated there.
Christ Church: Situated on The Ridge, Christ Church is the second oldest church in Northern India. It has a very majestic appearance and inside there are stained glass windows which represent faith, hope, charity, fortitude, patience and humility.
Jakhu Hill: 2 km from Shimla, at a height of 8000 ft, Jakhu Hill is the highest peak an offers a beautiful view of the town and of the snow-covered Himalayas. At the top of the Hill, is an old temple of Lord Hanuman, which is also the home of countless playful monkeys waiting to be fed by all visitors. A 108 feet (33 metre) statue of Lord Hanuman, a Hindu deity, at 8,500 feet (2,591 metres) above sea level, is single statue to stand at the highest altitude among several other master pieces in the world, overtaking the Christ Redeemerin Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Jutogh: Located just 8 km away from the city centre, this army cantonment is near Totu, an important suburb of Shimla city.
Shimla State Museum: The Museum, which was opened in 1974, has tried to protect hill-out and the cultural wealth of the state. There is a collection of miniature Pahari paintings, sculptures, bronzes wood-carvings and also costumes, textiles and jewellery of the region.
Indian Institute of Advanced Study: This institute is housed at the former Viceregal Lodge, built in 1884-88.
Summer Hill: Situated at a distance of 5 km from The Ridge is the lovely township of Summer Hill, at a height of 6,500 ft on the Shimla-Kalka railway line. Mahatma Gandhi lived in these quiet surroundings during his visits to Shimla. Himachal Pradesh University is situated here.
Naldehra: 22 km from Shimla, with a nine-hole Naldehra Golf Club. The annual Sipi fair in June is held in Naldehra.
Chail: Chail was built as summer retreat by the Maharaja of Patiala during the British Raj, it is known for its cricket pitch, the highest in the world.
Tattapani: Location of sulphur springs which are found near the Tatapani mandir(holy temple).
- Air: Shimla has its own airport that offers connections for Delhi and Kullu. The Jubbarhatti airport is 23-km from Shimla and major domestic airlines cater their services from here to Shimla. One can catch direct flights from Delhi. Chandigarh also well connected with Delhi by many domestic flights, and is the gateway to Shimla.
- Train: Reaching Shimla by rail is also very convenient as Kalka is the nearest major railhead which is connected with Shimla on the narrow gauge. The city boasts of three railway stations with Shimla, being the main station with other two located at Summer Hill and Totu (Jutogh) respectively
- Road: Access to Shimla by road is made possible by the well-maintained and efficient network of roadways and National Highway 22 that links the town with Chandigarh. The transport system within the town is also good and bus or private vehicles can be used to travel from one part of the town to another
- State: Uttaranchal
- District: Shimla
- Famous for/as: Hill Station
- Languages: Hindi, English
- Best time to visit: Sep – Jun
- Weather: Summer 14 to 28°C, Winter -2 to 10°C
- Pincode: 171001
- STD code: 0177
- State Govt. tourism website: http://himachaltourism.gov.in/