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Shimla

British India and evil monkeys!

sunny 28 °C

Shimla_Viceeroy_Lodge1.jpg

After a false start involving two wrongly set alarm clocks, a very late taxi, a mad dash to Delhi train ‎station and a missed connecting train, we eventually arrived the the town of Shimla.‎

The state capital of the north Indian province of Himachel Pradesh and the gateway to the Himalayan ‎foothills, Shimla became the official summer capital of the British Raj in 1864. Now a bustling town and ‎a favourite Indian honeymoon spot, it paints a fascinating portrait of the history of British India: from ‎the impressive gothic Viceroy Lodge, where the final negotiations for Indian independence famously ‎took place in 1947 , to the Christian church which still holds a regular Sunday service. ‎

Shimla_church.jpg

But there is a menacing presence in Shimla - like big furry evil gremlins, Shimla's monkeys sit in wait for ‎unsuspecting tourists. The thing is, they've got used to being fed, so they see a bag and get ready to ‎pounce, especially in their domain of the Hindu Monkey Temple. The poor Indian lady ahead of us had ‎the entire contents of her bag (camera and all) strewn from a tree. Greedy little blighters!‎

Monkeys aside, Shimla is a breath of fresh air after Delhi and well worth a visit for the history alone...I ‎just wish I could say the same about the ‘deluxe’ overnight bus to Dharamsala.‎

Shimla_Ambassador.jpg

Where we stayed:
Spars Lodge (approx 980 rupees/night) Up a steep hill and about a 20 mi walk from ‎the centre of town but the views from the communal are are stunning. Shimla is a little more ‎expensive than the other Himalayan towns. The Cecil Oberoi just up the road looked lovely! (If you ‎have a spare £150/night)‎

Where to eat:
Sagar Ratna on the Mall - yummy veggie Indian/Chinese food

How to get there from Delhi:
Air con bus from Delhi or connecting train via Kalka. Book well ahead to ‎secure a place on the toy train from Kalka – we only got waiting list tickets the week before - it’s ‎supposed to be well worth it.‎

Posted by Jules79 03:04 Archived in India Tagged backpacking

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