Summer promises a lot of outdoor fun. However, as each year passes by, the summer heat is in ever increasing mode - be it Asia, Europe or America. Many countries experience the contrast of extreme winter and bitter summer, as the so called ‘spring’ in between is very short lived. In coastal belts, summer would mean the sultry-humid weather.
It is about 40°C outside, and many of us have pounding headaches by the end of the day. A week in the office, home or schools pass by this way during summers. Who doesn’t want to escape from the scorching summer heat to some soothing, chilled mountainsides? How does 22-23 degree celsius sound? Like heaven, doesn’t it? Why not head to the highlands during the weekends to make life refreshing. Sounds interesting?
India is blessed with diverse geography that comes with beautiful hill stations that are cold most times of the year. They are green, away from the hustle of the city, and easily accessible. Here are 10 hill stations in India for you to escape this summer.
Valleys of Spiti is covered in snow in April too. It is one of the best hill stations in India with snowfall on it most times. It is located in Lahaul and Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh. The town is about 4,270 meters above sea level, the reason for it to be cold most seasons. The valley is famous for skiing and yak safari. It is one of the popular adventure sports destinations in India. People from all over the world come to this snow-covered hills to enjoy the snow and also to visit the Buddhist monastery here. Over 100 lamas reside in the town, and hence the town is known as the ‘land of lamas’ too. The easiest way to reach Spiti is by air. The town is around five hours away from the Kullu Airport at Bhuntar, Kullu.
Back in the days of colonial rule, Darjeeling was a summer resort for the English elites. It is known as the 'queen of the hills' and is located in West Bengal. The best thing about this hill station is the backdrop of Kanchenjunga, the world’s third highest mountain. The town is known for the tea estates. The nearest airport is Bagdogra Airport. The town is only three hours away from the airport and no one misses the chance to enjoy a train ride when in Darjeeling. The views from the train are just like the movies and do not disappoint the one who takes it.
It rains every day here. And we all crave for some rain during the summer season. This town is a dreamland where every day is a monsoon. The town is in Meghalaya which is the abode of clouds. And when there are clouds, rain isn’t far away. The town was originally named Sohra. During British times the name became Cherrapunji. The state government has restored the original name, but it is yet to take off.
It is one of the best hill stations in India just for its climate. It is the location that facilitates the single monsoon in Sohra. Many travelers are unaware that the nearest airport is only 2.30 hours away from Sohra.
Himachal Pradesh is a state blessed with beautiful hill stations. Dalhousie is one of the lesser known hill stations in India. It is in the Chamba district which is popular for being the location of Subhash Ghai’s Taal. Its title song shot on the lush green valleys of Chamba is one of the best till date. Dalhousie is situated 1,970 metres above sea level. You will see mountains everywhere you look as the town is situated on five hills. The town is named after the British Governor who established it as a summer retreat. The town still has the neat streets and colonial architecture. The Kangra Airport in Gaggal, Himachal Pradesh is only three hours away from Dalhousie.
Also Read: 12 Offbeat Destinations To Travel In India
This tiny hill station’s temperature in April is 18℃ and if that isn’t enough for you to hop on a flight, then count the breathtaking beauty of buildings that are mostly monasteries. Thanks to the Buddhist culture of the state. National Institute of Tibetology which is also a museum and library, Enchey Monastery, Hanuman Tok, and Tashi View Point are popular tourist attractions. Bagdogra Airport is the nearest airport, and it is only an hour away from Gangtok.
Ooty is one of the most popular tourist destinations in India, and it is also a fvourite location of movie makers. This hill town is as beautiful as we see it in movies. The town has the largest rose garden in India. The hills of Ooty is blessed with various flora and fauna. Apart from the forests, the lake is one of the most visited spots. The Ooty lake covers about 65 acres and is open to boating. The natives of this hill station are Toda people. And the tribal huts and museum are also worth the visit. But, a trip to Ooty will not be completed without taking a ride in Nilgiri Mountain Railways. It is one of the UNESCO's World Heritage Sites. The nearest airport, Coimbatore International Airport is only three hours away.
All Ruskin Bond fans are familiar with the cozy town of Mussoorie. The author has chosen this small town in Uttarakhand as his home for all the dreamy reasons. . Tourists won't be disappointed with Mussoorie as it has many popular spots like Natasha Estate, Gun Hill, Kempty Falls, Lake Mist, Mussoorie Lake, Bhatta Falls, Nag Devta Temple, Cloud End, Benog Wildlife Sanctuary, and Lal Tibba. The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, and it is only two hours away from the town.
Chail is another hill station in Himachal Pradesh that is known for the beautiful, less explored forests. The Chail Palace is another popular landmark known for its exceptional architecture. It was built during the British Raj by the Maharaja of Patiala. The cricket ground in Chail is the highest one in the world and the sanctuary in Chail is one of the major attractions which is spread over 10,850 hectares. You can also take a detour to the Sadhupul village that is located near the hill river called Ashwini. It is known for its simplicity and old world charm. Nearest airport to Chail is the Jubbarhatti airport of Shimla, and it is only two hours away.
Nagaland is known as the Switzerland of Asia. This tribal hill station is worthwhile not only for its weather but cultural history too. Kohima War Cemetery, Naga Heritage village, are Nagaland State Museum are popular attractions. It is an ideal place for hiking and trekking. Situated at 1500 meters above sea level, Kohima is on the lap of hills and forests. The nearest airport is Dimapur Airport, and it is only three hours away.
This is a place to enjoy true spring. Gulmarg is famous for the meadow of flowers, and the flowers start blooming in May. It is winter and spring together in one town. The town is popular as a heartland of winter sports in India. It is one of the best ski destinations in Asia. The nearest airport is Sheikh Ul-Alam International Airport Srinagar, and it is only two hours away.