Top 10 Hill Stations In India

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Most of the hill stations in India were developed by the British, around a central mall, to get respite from the oppressive summer heat. Many have picturesque lakes as their focal point, making them excellent places for boating activities. One thing is for sure, you won’t be short of things to do at any of the hill stations in India. You’ll find them all over the country. And, to add to the adventure, it’s possible to take a toy train ride up to some of them. This article lists the most popular ones.

1. Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir

Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, delights visitors with its lovely lakes and relaxing houseboats. In fact, lakes and gardens are in such abundance there that Srinagar is often referred to as the “Land of Lakes and Gardens”. The gardens have a distinctly Mughal influence, as many of them were cultivated by Mughal emperors. You’ll find Asia’s largest tulip garden in Srinagar, with a tulip festival held every April. Srinagar is a great place to visit if you’re a golf enthusiast, as there are a number of courses there. Don’t miss the many must-see Srinagar attractions.

A place of splendid natural beauty, historic gardens and distinctive mosques, Srinagar is without a doubt one of best hill stations in North India.

Best Experiences: Get enchanted by the beautiful Nishat Bagh and Shalimar Bagh, the botanical gardens during the popular Tulip festival and Badamwari Garden to see the almond trees in full bloom. Make a visit to the tranquil Shankaracharya Mandir, the beautiful Khanqah Shah-i-Hamadan mosque and Pari Mahal. And finally, spend a day exploring life on Dal lake and Nigeen lake. It is among the coldest hill stations in India during winter.
Best Time To Visit: April to October
Ideal Duration: Visit for a minimum of 4 days for a good trip.
How to reach: Take a flight directly to the Srinagar International Airport. Or take the train to Jammu followed by a taxi or a J&K State Road Transport Corporation bus to Srinagar.

2.  Manali, Himachal Pradesh

A popular retreat in Himachal Pradesh, Manali is well-known for its bewitching natural beauty, temples and sacred sites as well as the base for numerous adventure activities. One of the popular places in Himachal, Manali is also renowned as the best honeymoon destination. The hill station has always found favour in th eyes of the honeymoon couples with its unparalleled natural beauty, a plethora of honeymoon resorts, and numerous things to do.

Major tourist attractions in Manali

  • Hadimba Temple
  • Rohtang Pass
  • Solang Valley
  • Vashist Temples & Hot Water Springs
  • Tibetan Monasteries
  • Mall Road
  • Club House
  • Manu Temple
  • Nehru Kund
  • Bhrigu Lake
  • Kothi
  • Naggar Castle
  • Manali Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Old Manali
  • Sethan

Top things to do in Manali

  • River Rafting
  • Trekking
  • Shopping
  • Paragliding
  • Stay in an Igloo at Sethan
  • Skiing in Solang Valley (in winters)
  • Quad Biking in Solang Valley
  • Birding

How to reach Manali?

Manali is well-connected by road with several destinations in North India. From Delhi, Ambala, Dehradun, and Chandigarh there are buses on a regular basis for Manali. The nearest airport to Manali is in Bhuntar, fewer flights are available for here.

Best time to see snowfall in Manali: December to February

Where to stay in Manali?

  • Sun Park Resort
  • The Manali Inn
  • The Orchard Greens Resort & Spa
  • Hotel Greenfields
  • The Himalayan
  • The Orchard Greens

Where to eat in Manali?

  • Casa Bella Vista
  • The Corner House
  • Il Forno
  • Johnson Bar & Restaurant
  • Cafe 1947
  • The Johnson’s Cafe

What to buy in Manali?

  • Tibetan and Himalayan Handicrafts
  • Woollen Clothing: Manu Market
  • Kinnari and Kullu Shawls
  • Kulli Caps: Mall Road
  • Thangkas and other Souvenirs: Mall Road

Popular for its scenic beauty, flowery gardens, snow-capped mountains, and orchards of red and green apples, Manali is one of the best hill stations in India in May & June. This is one of the highest hill station in India.

Best Experiences: Visit the Rohtang Pass, the highest point on the Manali-Keylong Road. Some of the other great spots here are Kalath Hot Water Springs, Vashist Hot Water Springs, Jogini Falls, and Solang Valley.
Best Time To Visit: October to February
Ideal Duration: Plan for a 4 day trip to one of the famous hill stations in India to visit in May.
How to reach: Fly to Bhuntar airport followed by a 2 hour taxi or bus ride. Or take the Himachal Pradesh State bus from Delhi to Manali (553 km) which takes 10 hours..

3. Shillong, Meghalaya

Best Experiences: Visit the Umaim lake created by the Umiam river and famous for water sports. Also, visit the rolling meadows of Shillong Golf Course bordered by pine trees and enjoy a boat ride on the Ward’s Lake. Other attractions here are the Shillong Peak, Elephant Falls, Sweet Falls, and the Lady Hydari Park.
Best Time To Visit: September to May
Ideal Duration: Visit for a minimum of 3 days for a good trip.
How to reach: Take a flight directly to the Shillong Airport in Umroi. Or take the train to Guwahati (104 km) followed by a 3-hour taxi.

The topography of Shillong is compelling and this is why it attracts honeymoon couples. This capital of Meghalaya boasts lush green rolling hills, vibrant ambiance, and tranquil settings that can in fact make anyone fall in love with it. Shillong also houses some of the top romantic hotels that ensure the best holiday experience to the newlyweds.

Major tourist attractions in Shillong

  • Shillong Peak
  • Umiam Lake
  • Lady Hydari Park
  • Elephant Falls
  • Ward’s Lake
  • Don Bosco Centre for Indigenous Culture
  • Laitlum Canyons
  • Mawphlang
  • Sweet Falls
  • Spread Eagle Falls
  • Diengiei Peak
  • Meghalaya State Museum
  • All Saints Church
  • Cathedral of Mary Help of Christians
  • Air Force Museum
  • Police Bazaar

Top things to do in Shillong

  • Boating in Umiam Lake
  • Angling in Dawki
  • Trekking
  • Horse Riding
  • Camping
  • Golfing
  • Rock Climbing
  • Shopping

How to reach Shillong?

The nearest airport to Shillong is situated in Barapani, which is some 30 km away. Cabs are easily available for Shillong from the airport. The nearest railway station to Shillong is in Guwahati, which is around 100 km away. Cab service is available from Guwahati to Shillong on a regular basis.

Where to stay in Shillong?

  • Cafe Shillong Bed & Breakfast
  • The Pear Tree
  • The Habitat Shillong
  • Ri Kynjai

Where to eat in Shillong?

  • City Hut Family Dhaba
  • Dejavu
  • Cafe Shillong
  • Dylan’s Cafe
  • ML 05 Cafe
  • Madras Cafe

What to buy in Shillong?

  • Scottish Cloth/Dress Material
  • Bamboo Handicrafts
  • Shawls and Stoles
  • Khasi Scrubs
  • Raja Chilly and Other Organic Products

4. Mount Abu, Rajasthan

Being the only hill station in Rajasthan, Mount Abu is quite popular amongst the honeymoon couples. This famous tourist destination in Rajasthan boasts pretty settings of the Aravallis, a beautiful lake and a number of temples including the famous Dilwara Jain Temple. Mount Abu offers many breathtaking sunsets points, from where you and your partner can enjoy gorgeous sunset.

Mount Abu is the only hill station in Rajasthan situated close to the Aravali hills. One of the best times to visit this place is during the monsoon season when the lush green environment of the place can enchant you.

Best Experiences: The drive along Udaipur – Mount Abu highway is truly breathtaking. The hill station is famous for Dilwara temples, Nakki Lake and Peace Park. Do not forget to miss the gorgeous sunset at Sunset Point that makes it one of the best hill tourist places in India.
Best Time To Visit: November to March Ideal Duration: Visit here for a minimum of 3 days for a good trip.
How to reach: Railway line from Ahmedabad to Marwar junction is available connecting passengers from Jaipur, Delhi or Jodhpur. Or plan a road trip from Udaipur which is 162 Kms.

Major tourist attractions in Mount Abu

  • Dilwara Jain Temples
  • Mount Abu Honeymoon Point
  • Mount Abu Sunset Point
  • Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Nakki Lake
  • Abu Road
  • Achalgarh
  • Trevor’s Tank
  • Guru Shikhar
  • Peace Park
  • Adhar Devi Temple
  • Arbuda Devi Temple
  • Achalgarh Village
  • Toad Rock
  • Raghunath Temple

Top things to do in Mount Abu

  • Boating in Nakki Lake
  • Trek to Guru Shikhar
  • Wildlife Sighting in Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Birding at Trevor’s Tank
  • Caving/Spelunking
  • Rock Climbing

How to reach Mount Abu?

The nearest airport to Mount Abu is in Udaipur, which is about 161 km away. Cabs are easily available from Udaipur to Mount Abu. The nearest railway station to Mount Abu is in Abu Road, which is situated some 27 km away. Cabs are available from here for Mount Abu. There are private and public bus services available for Mount Abu from Udaipur, Jaipur, and Delhi.

Where to stay in Mount Abu?

  • Hummingbird Resort
  • Hotel Silver Oak
  • Hotel Ashoka
  • WelcomHeritage Connaught House Mount Abu
  • Chacha Inn
  • Hotel Toppers Corner
  • Hotel Hillock
  • Ratan Villas

Where to eat in Mount Abu?

  • Jodhpur Bhojanalaya
  • Opa Restaurant
  • Mulberry Tree Restaurant
  • Four Season Restaurant & Lounge

What to buy in Mount Abu?

  • Kota Sarees
  • Bangles
  • Linen with Sanganeri print
  • Jaipuri quilt
  • Marble items
  • Sandstone items
  • Sandalwood

5. Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh

Nestled amidst the picturesque coniferous forests of Himachal Pradesh, Dharamshala is the abode of the snow-clad peaks, spectacular landscapes and stunning views of the Himalayas. Also home to His Holiness Dalai Lama, it is the starting point of several enthralling treks around the Himalayan Range.

How to reach: Fly straight to Dharamshala Airport from the Capital city New Delhi for just INR 4,415.

Along with being one of the most favourite places for tourists, Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh is home to the holy Dalai Lama. Fringed by the lofty mountains and dotted by Deodar and Cedar forests, this holiday destination in Himachal is also amongst the most popular hill stations in India. Dharamshala is situated at an altitude of about 1487m in the Kangra Valley of Himachal Pradesh. The city is divided into two parts namely, Dharamshala and Mcleodganj and is separated by a village called Ganchen Kyishong. A large number of travellers along with family vacationers throng here for summer vacations. However, many tourists like to visit in winter here to see the snowfall.

Major tourist attractions in Dharamshala

  • Dharamshala Cricket Stadium
  • Naam Art Gallery
  • Monolithic Rock Temples
  • Bhagsu Waterfall
  • Bhagsunag Temple
  • Kangra Museum
  • Kunal Pathri Temple
  • Chamunda Temple
  • Dal Lake
  • Mcleodganj
  • Namgyal Monastery
  • Triund Hill
  • Naddi View Point

Top things to do in Dharamshala

  • Trekking
  • Shopping

How to reach Dharamshala?

Dharamshala is well-connected from cities like Delhi, Ambala, and Chandigarh by road. There are regular buses to Dharamshala from these destinations.

Best time to see snowfall in Dharamshala: December to February

Where to stay in Dharamshala?

Budget HotelStandard HotelLuxury Hotel
SN ResortSpring ValleyAveda Hotel
SkylarkPong ViewAsia Health Resort
Sky HeavenMeghavan Holiday ResortBella Heights

Where to eat in Dharamshala?

  • Crepe Pancake Hut
  • Common Ground Cafe
  • Lung Ta
  • Trek and Dine
  • Illiterati
  • Peace Cafe
  • Morgan’s Place

What to buy in Dharamshala?

  • Singing Bowls
  • Buddha statues, Prayer wheels and Prayer flags
  • Tibetan handicrafts
  • Bead necklaces, metalwork jewellery
  • Silk and satin wall hangings
  • Colourful Bags and Purses
  • Handcrafted diaries and handmade paper
  • Handwoven rugs and carpets

6. Mahabaleshwar, Maharashtra

Mahabaleshwar is the perfect tourist destination in Maharashtra. It is one of the 10 most visited hill stations of the state and is adorned with evergreen forests, while boating scenic vistas of the surrounding valleys. The Venna Lake here is one of the top attractions along with many vantage points, views from which are memorable. Mahabaleshwar is an ideal family destination in Maharashtra with a plethora of relaxing resorts and good motorable roads.

During the Brithsh Rule, the tranquil and evergreen ambience of Mahabaleshwar used to be the summer capital of Bombay. Located on the Western Ghats and at a height of 1,353m above the sea level, it is also known as the ‘Land of Strawberries’. Be it a family trip, outing with friends and colleagues or on for a honeymoon, Mahabaleshwar can be an ideal option in Maharashtra.

How to reach: Fly to the nearest airport of Pune from Mumbai at super low ticket prices starting at INR 3,985!

Major tourist attractions in Mahabaleshwar

  • Pratapgarh Fort
  • Venna Lake
  • Mahabaleshwar Temple
  • Tapola
  • Panchgani
  • Lingmala Waterfalls
  • Elephant’s Head Point
  • Old Mahabaleshwar
  • Krishnabai Temple
  • 3 Monkey Point
  • Arthur Point
  • Kate’s Point
  • Wilson Point
  • Pratapgad

Top things to do in Mahabaleshwar

  • Boating in Venna Lake
  • Jungle Trekking at Tapola
  • Try Strawberries & Cream
  • Rock Climbing
  • Horse Riding
  • Shopping

How to reach Mahabaleshwar?

The nearest railway station to Mahabaleshwar is in Pune, which is some 117 km away. Cabs and buses are easily available from Pune to reach Mahabaleshwar.

Where to stay in Mahabaleshwar?

Budget HotelStandard HotelLuxury Hotel
Rahi PlazaSaket PlazaRamsukh Resorts and Spa
Hotel PoonamGautamEvershine – A Keys Resort
Pratap HeritageSunny InternationalRoyal Orchid

Where to eat in Mahabaleshwar?

  • Farmhouse Bistro
  • The Grapevine
  • Bagicha Corner
  • Mad Smoke House
  • Chingari
  • Olive Garden

What to buy in Mahabaleshwar?

  • Strawberries
  • Black Raspberries
  • Wooden Items
  • Leather Footwears
  • Fruit syrups, juice concentrates, fruit crushes
  • Turmeric
  • Honey
  • Cane Baskets
  • Pappads

7. Gangtok, Sikkim

Sikkim’s capital, Gangtok, sits along a cloudy mountain ridge about 5,500 feet above sea level. Sikkim only became part of India in 1975. Before that, it was a small independent Buddhist kingdom with its own monarchy after the end of British rule. Gangtok is a popular base for travel throughout the state, particularly with trekkers. It’s a well-organized and clean city with strict littering, traffic and tobacco laws. Attractions include monasteries, viewpoints, a cable car, and a zoo that houses rare animals rescued from traders and poachers.

Gangtok, the vibrant capital of Sikkim, offers extravagant joys of the city in addition to the quaint aura of a hill station. The city has a ropeway which offers a bird’s eye view of the city and surrounding locales. Walking is the best way for visitors to explore Gangtok and its charming people. The main market features various businesses selling local handicrafts which make perfect gifts. Several restaurants and bars around the city provide local delicacies as well as international cuisine. Days in Gangtok can be well spent at the Tashi View Point, Banjhakri Hill, Rumtek Monastery and the Tsongmo Lake.

Major tourist attractions in Gangtok

  • Tsomgo Lake
  • Saramsa Garden
  • Cholamu Lake
  • Hanuman Tok
  • Seven Sisters Waterfalls
  • Ganesh Tok View Point
  • Kanchendzonga National Park
  • Shingba Rhododendron Sanctuary

Top things to do in Gangtok

  • Trekking
  • Cable Car Ride
  • Mountain Biking
  • River Rafting at Teesta Bazar
  • Paragliding
  • Skiing at Mt Katao

How to reach Gangtok?

The nearest airport to Gangtok is in Pakyong, which is about 31 km away. Cabs are easily available for Gangtok from the airport. The nearest railway station to Gangtok is in New Jalpaiguri, which is some 118 km away. Cabs from here are also readily available.

Where to stay in Gangtok?

Budget HotelStandard HotelLuxury Hotel
Hotel TashiSai ResidencyThe Royal Plaza
Hotel Dew PondSilk RouteOrange Village Resort
Hotel SaikripaSidlon ResidencyDenzong Residency

Where to eat in Gangtok?

  • Shuffle Momos
  • The Coffee Shop Restaurant
  • Cafe Live & Loud
  • Roll House
  • Baker’s Cafe
  • Khan Uncle’s Biryani House

What to buy in Gangtok? (If you get time from your adventure expedition here)

  • Tibetan Carpets
  • Buddhist Figurines & Prayer Flags
  • Sikkim Tea
  • Semi-Precious Stones
  • Sikkimese Cups
  • Thangkas
  • Silver Jewellery
  • Wall Hangings
  • Black Cardamom

8.  Bir Billing, Himachal Pradesh

Situated amidst tea gardens and forests in the foothills of the Indian Himalayas Bir-Billing is a popular destination for adventure sports including paragliding. This place is slowly emerging as famous hill station in India.

Best Experiences: Soar high and enjoy the untouched scenic locations and verdant landscapes, go camping to enjoy the view of Kangra Valley and Beas Valley. Also, visit the beautiful Chokling Monastery and the Palpung Sherab Ling Monastery in the Tibetan town of Bir.
Best Time To Visit: April to June
Ideal Duration: Visit for a minimum of 4 days for a good trip.
How to reach: Take a flight directly to Dharamshala airport followed by a 45-minute taxi ride. Or take the train to Pathankot followed by a narrow gauge railway to Bir.

In the Joginder Nagar Valley, Bir is a tiny village that has become a popular paragliding destination in India. Enjoying a scenic setting, Bir technically is the landing site for paragliders, while the take-off site is situated 16 km away in Billing. Dubbed the paragliding capital of India, Bir Billing offers an unmatched adventure experience in Himachal Pradesh.

Major tourist attractions in Bir Billing

  • Palpung Sherabling Monastery
  • Tibetan Colony
  • Bir Tea Factory
  • Chokling Monastery
  • Dharmalaya Institute
  • Deer Park Institute
  • Nyinyang Monastery
  • Bangoru Waterfall
  • Tsering Jong Monastery
  • Rajgundha Valley
  • Barot Valley
  • Baijnath Mandir
  • Palampur

Top things to do in Bir Billing

  • Paragliding/Tandem Paragliding
  • Watch Sunset
  • Try the Tibetan Cuisine
  • Trek to Rajgundha

How to reach Bir Billing?

The nearest railway station to Bir Billing is in Pathankot, which is about 141 km away. Cabs are available from Pathankot to Bir Billing. Another way of reaching Bir Billing is by a volvo bus service from Delhi available from ISBT Kashmiri Gate.

Best time to see snowfall in Bir Billing: December to February

Where to stay in Bir Billing?

  • Zostel Bir
  • Tatva Bir Tents and Hotel
  • GoStops
  • Chokling Guest House

Where to eat in Bir Billing?

  • Garden Cafe and Restaurant
  • Nyingma Kitchen
  • Nyingma Cafe
  • 99 Not Out Restaurant
  • Vairagi Cafe
  • Glider’s Pizzeria
  • Bimla Dhaba

9. Ooty, Tamil Nadu

Ooty or Ootacamund is famous for the picturesque sites, its pristine lake, rolling hills. But the chief attractions of Ooty are the sprawling tea gardens. This beautiful tourist spot in Tamil Nadu has for long been the favourite of the honeymoon couples, and nothing has changed. Ooty remains an incredible Indian destination for honeymooners who would love to spend time relishing the picturesque beauty of the place.

The scenic beauty of Ooty makes it one of the most celebrated as well as highly visited hill stations in India. Nestled deep within the Nilgiri Hills, this quaint delight is a hub for the honeymooners and nature lovers. It is indeed entitled as one of the best hill stations in the Nilgiri Ranges.

Major tourist attractions in Ooty

  • Ooty Lake
  • Ooty Botanical Gardens
  • Ooty Rose Garden
  • Doddabetta Peak
  • St Stephen’s Church
  • Thread Garden
  • Tiger Hill
  • Kamraj Sagar Lake
  • Thunder World
  • Ketti Valley View
  • Nilgiri Mountain Railway
  • Cairn Hill
  • Adam’s Fountain

Top things to do in Ooty

  • Toy Train Ride
  • Hiking
  • Nature Walks
  • Boating in Ooty Lake
  • Tea Factory Tour
  • Chocolate Factory Tour

How to reach Ooty?

The nearest airport to Ooty is in Coimbatore, which is some 84 km away. Cabs are available for Ooty from Coimbatore. One can also board the famous Nilgiri Mountain Railway’s Toy Train to reach Ooty from Coimbatore.

Where to stay in Ooty?

  • Sterling Ooty Fern Hill
  • Club Mahindra Derby Green
  • Sterling Ooty Elk Hill
  • Sherlock Hotel
  • Accord Highland Hotel Ooty
  • Sinclairs Retreat Ooty
  • Delightz Inn

Where to eat in Ooty?

  • Ponmari Multicuisine Restaurant
  • Earl’s Secret
  • Hotel Pankaj Bhojanalaya
  • Hyderabad Biryani House
  • Adayar Ananda Bhavan
  • Nahar Sidewalk Cafe
  • Ascot Multi Cuisine Restaurant at Ooty

What to buy in Ooty?

  • Tea
  • Chocolate
  • Honey
  • Aromatic Oils
  • Antiques, Jewellery, and Handicrafts

10. Coorg, Karnataka

The coffee aroma-infused air of Coorg makes it all the more compelling to choose Coorg as a honeymoon destination in India. The lush green landscape and the tranquil settings of Coorg offer the perfect venue to newlyweds to spend time together. Coorg also has salubrious weather and some cozy tailor-made hotels for the honeymooners.

Coorg is a district in the Karnataka state which is known for an array of tourist attractions and quaint villages. There are mountain ranges with a spectacular view.

Best Experiences: For a nature lover, nothing is as blissful as the experience of exploring The Coorg District. The beautiful scenery, warm hospitality of people can allure you towards the hill station. The other attractions include Abbey falls, Nagarahole (Wild Life Sanctuary), Mountain Ranges, Churches, Forts.
Best Time To Visit: December to February
Ideal Duration: Coorg is an idyllic place for a quick weekend getaway.
How to reach: The nearest railway station is at Mysore which is about 100 kms away from Coorg. Buses are frequently available to take off to Coorg on a 4-5 hours comfortable journey.

Major tourist attractions in Coorg

  • Coffee Plantations
  • Abbey Falls
  • Irupu Falls
  • Trekking
  • Dubare Elephant Camp
  • Golden Temple/Namdroling Nyingmapa Tibetan Monastery
  • Raja’s Seat
  • Omkareshwar Temple
  • Madikeri Fort
  • Gaddige Raja’s Tomb
  • Dubare Elephant Camp

Top things to do in Coorg

  • Bathe the Elephants at Dubare Elephant Camp
  • Trekking
  • Food Tour
  • Coffee Plantation Tour
  • Camping
  • Fishing
  • River Rafting
  • Heritage Tour
  • Quad Biking

How to reach Coorg?

The nearest airport to Coorg is in Mangalore, which is 137 km away. The nearest railway station to Coorg is in situated in Mysore at a distance of 117 km. Cabs and buses are available from both of these destinations for Coorg. Bus service is also available between Bengaluru and Coorg.

Where to stay in Coorg?

  • Taj Madikeri Resort & Spa
  • Evolve Back
  • The Serai Kabini
  • The Tamara Coorg
  • Kadkani River Resort
  • Coorg Cliffs Resorts
  • Amanvana Spa Resort
  • The Windflower Resort and Spa
  • Heritage Resort Coorg

Where to eat in Coorg? (Restaurants are in nearby Madikeri)

  • Bigcup cafe
  • Beans N Brews Cafe
  • Coorg Cuisine
  • Raintree
  • The Fort Mercara – Restaurant

What to buy in Coorg?

  • Coffee
  • Organic Spices
  • Dry Fruits
  • Honey
  • Homemade Wine
  • Handmade Chocolate
  • Silk Saree

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