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5 Things I Will Miss When I Leave Shimla

Shimla Hill

If you ask me to name five things I am going to miss when I leave Shimla I will definitely find it hard to answer. Yes, nature has endowed the place with a beauty, which is hard to find anywhere else and I am definitely going to miss that when I leave the city. However, if I say that I am going to miss the natural beauty of the town you may find that rather vague. Let me try to be more specific.

My Time around the Scandal Point

Many may claim that the Mall Road in Nainital is far better or the one in Darjeeling offers prettier view; but for me, the area offers a queer combination of activity and tranquility, which is not found anywhere else. Indeed, this is one of the most happening places in Shimla.

Scandal Point with the Statue of Lala Lajpat Rai

If you had been here, you would know that the Mall Road is actually made up of two roads; the Upper Mall Ridge Road and Lower Mall Road. The point where these roads meet is known Scandal Point. I had often stood there, under the statue of Lala Lajpat Rai, watching crowds passing by and each time I had felt that a mini India had unfolded before my eyes. 

Indeed, the area not only holds a number of hotels, restaurants, cafes, shops and departmental stores, but many important offices and institutions. Consequently, everybody has to come here some time or the other. If you like to study human nature, here is the place to come.

Mall Road at Night

However, if you are a lover of nature, the Mall Road is also the place to visit. I often sit there watching the green hills against a backdrop of blue sky and my mind floats away with the clouds. After sunset, the area presents a different picture; while watching the night lights, I am often transported to another world. Indeed, this is one place I am sure to miss when I leave Shimla.

A Trek to the Summer Hills

I will also miss my treks to the Summer Hill. It is located at a distance of five Kilometer from the Shimla Ridge. Away from the hustle and bustle of the city, the place offers a solitude that I often crave for. As I walk along the roads lined with cedar and pine trees intercepted with rhododendron bushes, I feel a heavenly bliss that I do not find anywhere else.

Looking Over to the Horizon from Shimla Hills

The quaint railway station with toy trains coming and going, well maintained Georgian houses, birds hopping from one branch to another is enough to mesmerize one. There is hardly any shop and so there are no shoppers to jostle with. Everything is calm and quite.  When the rhododendrons bloom the place becomes something to view. The Chadwick Falls too add a different dimension to this area. When I have time I often go there to sit down by it and spend hours listening to the rippling sound of the water. Along with the trek I am sure to miss my sojourn at the falls.

Shopping at Lakkar Bazaar

Lakkar Bazaar

And I will also miss shopping sprees at Lakkar Bazaar. When I have to buy gifts I always head for it. Often I go there just to gaze at the wooden toys, sticks and other handicrafts. It is true, that the Mall Road has many big shops, but I just to love to bargain with the Sardarjees here. Centuries ago they had migrated from Hoshiarpur and since then they have been making and selling wooden artifacts at Lakkar Bazaar. I also love Chole Batura and Aloo Tikki at Sita Ram and I am going to miss that when I go.

Sita Ram

Of course, there are few more places to go for shopping in Shimla. In fact, the Mall Road itself is a shoppers’ paradise. Besides, there is the Lower Bazaar, which in a way holds the spirit of real Shimla. But, somehow, this place holds a special attraction for me.

My Fishing Escapades in Shimla

Fishing has always been my passion, but I had thought that there is not much scope for the sport in Shimla. However, a trip to Rohru made me realize that fishing is not confined to the plains alone. Indeed, the city located on the bank of River Pabbar is as much famous for its apple orchards as for trout fishing. Rainbow and brown trout are found in abundance in the water of Pabbar. Indeed, to stand at an elevation of 1525 meters above the sea level with a fishing rod in hand is a unique experience. I will definitely miss fishing among the Shimla hills

Pabbar River near Shimla

My visit to the Apple Ochards of Shimala

I will also miss my visits to the apple orchards close to Shimla. I had enjoyed my trips to the orchards in Ruhru so much that I decided to look for more and I found Thanedar. Such trips not only took me to exotic locales, but also enabled me to come in contact with simple folks in rural belt.

I had been guest at the Banjara Orchard Retreat at Thanedar more than ones. The place is located at a distance of 80 Km from Shimla.  Set up at an altitude of 2350 m, it offers magnificent views of the mountains, some of which are covered with green deodar forests while the ranges behind them are clad in snow. Far below, one can see River Sutlej flowing through a gorge.

Banjara Orchard Retreat at Thanedar

Thanedar has a special place in history of fruit cultivation. It is here the fruit cultivation started in Himachal Pradesh. It is said that, Samuel Stokes of Philadelphia came here in 1916 and was so moved by the condition of the people here that he decided to do something for them. He planted the first apple sapling in this region and his plantation was known as Starking Delicious. It not only provided employment to the local people but also ushered in a green revolution. The rest as we know is a history. I will definitely miss this aw well.

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