Hill stations in India are the perfect escape for the summer vacations. The pleasant weather and the fresh air of the mountains create holiday when summer comes knocking. India has abundant options of scenic hill stations. The mountains of Himalayas and the Western Ghats have many towns blessed with picturesque beauty, interesting things to see and do, in total, the ideal recipe for a fun-filled vacation.
Of the plethora of options, we bring to you 12 best hill station in India for summer vacations.
- Shimla- the Queen of the Hills
When it comes to summer vacations in India, Shimla is the most popular name. The capital of Himachal Pradesh, is ideal to escape the heat and revel in the bliss of vacations. Surrounded by snow-covered mountains, Shimla has been a favorite summer getaway since the days of British Raj. Enjoy a ride on the Toy Train, explore interesting sights, go hiking, visiting temples and revel in the beauty of Himalayas.
- Why Visit Shimla: Toy Train, Christ Church, Jakhu temple, Mall Road, Museums, day trips to Kufri, Mashobra, etc.
- Ooty- the Bliss of Nilgiris
The ‘Queen of Nilgiris’, Ooty is an emerald oasis, a perfect holiday spot. Perched at heights of 2,240 m above sea level, Ooty it is a popular summer getaway. The pleasant tourist attractions lure for a visit. The hill station is soothing and an invigorating break from the chaos of cities. Ride the Nilgiri Toy Train, explore tea estates and the scenic pleasures of the town. Do not miss home-made chocolates, a local speciality of the town.
- Why Visit Ooty: Botanical Gardens, Dolphin’s Nose, Tea Museum, Kalhatti Falls, Toy Train Ride in Nilgiri mountain railway, Emerald Lake, Avalanche Lake, St. Stephen’s Church, etc.
- Darjeeling- Home to UNESCO Himalayan Toy Train
Darjeeling, a beautiful town in North East is also one of the pleasant hill stations in India. Perfect for a summer vacations, Darjeeling is surrounded by lush tea gardens and presided by the majestic Kanchenjunga (8,586 meters above sea level). The weather is soothing even in summers. Explore the Tibetan monasteries, markets, zoo and the town. The slow chugging Toy Train is a fun ride loved by all.
- Why Visit Darjeeling: Tiger Hill, Batasia Loop, Happy Valley Tea Estate, Ghoom Monastery, Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park, Japanese Peace Pagoda, etc.
- Mount Abu- the Green Oasis in the Desert
The sole hill station of Rajasthan, Mount Abu is the highest point of the Aravalis. The green oasis in the desert was the former summer getaway for Rajputana royalty and today is one of the best hill stations for summer vacation in India. Enjoy the picturesque views, explore the renowned Jain Dilwara temples, wildlife sanctuary and revel in the Rajputana glory. Spend a holiday of pampering, sightseeing and memorable experiences.
- Why Visit Mount Abu: Dilwara Jain Temples, Nakki lake, Abu Road, Achalgarh, Guru Shikhar, etc.
- Mahabaleshwar- the Blessed Hamlet in Western Ghats
Nestled in the Western Ghats, Mahabaleshwar is one of the best places to enjoy summer season in India. Known for mouthwatering mulberries, raspberries, gooseberries, exciting trekking trails and the perfect weather, it is one of the best hill stations in India. Do not miss to attend the Strawberry Festival, a 9 day-festival held in May, where you can have berries to your heart’s content. Get to the heart of natural bliss.
- Why Visit Mahabaleshwar: Venna Lake, Mapro Garden, Mahabaleshwar Temple, Morarji Castle, Mount Malcolm, Rajpuri Caves, Wilson Point, Pratapgad Fort, Lingalam falls, Elephant’s Head Point, Lodwick Point, etc.
- Nainital- the City of Lakes
Snuggled in the heart of Uttarakhand, Nainital is a beautiful hill station. Known as the ‘City of Lakes’, it is one of the most romantic locales in India. Snuggled in the lap of snow covered mountain peaks, dotted with clear lakes, the town is home to ancient temples, and adventures. The colonial charm added with the scenic beauty makes it a perfect summer getaway.
- Why Visit Nainital: Naini lake, Sattal, Naini Lake, Nainital Zoo, Aerial Ropeway, Naina Devi Temple, Tiffin Top, Eco Caves, Raj Bhavan, Snow View Point, Kilbury, Gurney House, etc.
- Mcleodganj- India’s own Tibet
Settled in the lap of the Himalayas in Himachal Pradesh, Mcleodganj is a scenic hill town. Perfectly fitting into your definition of a relaxing vacation, the town is picture-perfect. Learn all about Tibet as you are so close to His Holy Highness Dalai Lama’s home, Tsug la Khang. Explore the scenic environs of trekking trails, spend time exploring the Tibetan monasteries, markets and do not miss to experience Tibet in India.
- Why Visit Mcleodganj: Tsug la Khang, Masroor Temple, Tibet Museum, Norbulingka Institute, Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, Bhagsu Waterfall, Dip Tse Chok Ling Monastery, St John’s Church in the Wilderness, etc.
- Gangtok- Under the shadow of the mighty Kanchenjunga
Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim is one of the most visited hill stations of not just North East but also India. Blessed with views of snowcapped peaks of Mt Kanchenjunga, the hill town thrives with visitors in summers. Explore Tibetan monasteries, go trekking in the mountains, taste the delights of Tibet-inspired gastronomy and forget summer blues with Gangtok tour packages.
- Why Visit Gangtok: Tsogmo Lake, Ganesh Tok View Point, Nathula Pass, Himalayan Zoological Park, Khangchendzonga Biosphere Reserve, Kyongnosla Alpine Sanctuary, etc.
- Shillong- the Walk in the Clouds
A city amid misty clouds, Slong, capital city of Meghalaya is another beautiful hill station in India, perfect for summer vacations. Blessed with pleasing weather, lush greenery, sparkling lakes and beautiful waterfalls, the charm of Shillong is truly unmatched. The city is also known as the ‘Scotland of the East’ because its landscape and weather is similar to Scotland.
- Why Visit Shillong: Elephant Falls, Shillong Peak, Sweet Falls, Don Bosco Centre for Indigenous Cultures, Lady Hydari Park, Wards’ Lake and Police Bazaar.
- Munnar- Hill Retreat in God’s Own Country
Munnar is a green retreat nestled in God’s Own Country, Kerala. Nestled at heights of 1,600 m in the Western Ghats, the hill station is the perfect spot to spend summer vacations. It is famous for lush tea gardens, waterfalls, misty mountains, wildlife and thrilling adventures. Relish the bliss of nature along with thrilling activities.
- Why Visit Munnar: Tea Gardens, Kundala Lake, Echo Point, Elephant Lake, Anamudi Peak, Tata Tea Museum, Chithirapuram, Devikulam, and Chinnakanal, Carmelagiri Elephant Park, etc.
- Auli- Paradise in Uttarakhand
Another name among the popular hill stations in India, Auli is a beauty. Settled in Uttarakhand, it is one of the most popular ski destinations in India in winters but its charm is certainly not less in the summers. Enjoy the spectacular views of Himalayan peaks like Nanda Devi, Mana Paravat and Kamat. Ride on the ropeway, spend time exploring the scenic environs and revel in bliss. Summer is also perfect time to embark on Himalayan treks like Col Auden trek, Valley of Flower and Hemkund Trek.
- Why Visit Auli: Artificial Lake, Ropeway Ride, Skiing, Trishul Peak, Bhavishya Badri, Nandaprayag, Saildhar Tapovan, etc.
- Kodaikanal- Gift of the Forests
Kodaikanal is one of the beautiful hill stations in Western Ghats. The beautiful hill town of Tamil Nadu is a pleasant escape in the summer months. Kodaikanal name means ‘Gift of Forests’ and it is blessed with lush greenery of jungles of pine, orchards, numerous mountain waterfalls and streams. It is a perfect summer vacation getaway, away from the chaos of cities.
- Why Visit Kodaikanal: Kodaikanal Lake, Kurinji Andavar Temple, Palani Temple, Coakers Walk, Pillar Rocks, Silver Cascade Waterfall, Dolmen Circle, etc.