India is an overwhelming nation that surprises its visitors through its immense cultural & natural diversity to explore. Just wonder how distinctly popular hill stations of India would feel then! Ranging from snow-capped beauties to contrasting surreal thick green valleys, it has a long list of hill station varieties that you couldn’t find anywhere else in the world. But how to explore such a long list in limited days of travel? No worries it is misery for many travelers who wish to enjoy all the blessed landmarks of India. Therefore, I have collated a brief list of 15 top-most hill stations in India that uphold all the varieties of Indian landscapes, keeping you engaged with all its natural wonders. No more build up! Let’s dwell straight into the best hill stations ride of India then!
List of 15 Famous Hill Stations in India for Adventuring Holidays
Dharmshala is the epitome of a peaceful holiday destination in India. It is nestled at an altitude of about 1,487m in the Kangra Valley of Himachal Pradesh. A small village called Ganchen Kyishong separates two iconic hill wonders of Dharamshala and Mcleodgan from each other.
If you are searching for best hill station in India that can guarantee you a tranquil retreat. Then, Dharmshala is the best place to begin this journey amidst the Tibetan Buddhist culture. You’ll love the fact that the holy Dalai Lama also resided in this very village.
Places to Visit in Dharamshala: Bhagsu Waterfall, Bhagsunag Temple, Kangra Museum, Chamunda Temple, Dal Lake, Mcleodganj, Namgyal Monastery
Best Time to Witness Snowfall: December to February
Best Things to do in Dharmshala: Paragliding, sky diving, skiing, trekking, Monastery visits
2. Gulmarg, Kashmir
Some say if there’s paradise on Earth then it is in Kashmir. Gulmarg will surely be, one of the snippets from that paradise. Nestled at an altitude of 2,730m, it is encapsulate with deep ravines, snow-capped peak, llush hills, and serene valleys. Despite being the coldest hill station in India, the change in weather brings an enchanting charm to this hill station during the blooming season. It is also known as the Meadow of Flowers.
Whole place seems like a bed of flowers tucked between the picturesque snow-covered mountains of Kashmir. Not just the beauty, it aces in providing some of the top winter sports involving skiing, heli-skiing and snowboarding to the visitors. You can also take a ride over the the longest cable car projects in Asia.
Places to Visit in Gulmarg: Gulmarg Biosphere Reserve, Baba Reshi Shrine, Kongdori, Maharani Temple, St Mary’s Church
Best Time to See Snowfall: November to February
Best Things to do in Gulmarg: Camping at Ningle Nallah, Skiing at Gulmarg Backcountry Ski Lounge, snowboarding at Apharwat Peak, etc.
Read more: Hill Stations in Meghalaya
3. Nainital, Uttarakhand
If you are wondering about the most beautiful hill station in India then Nainital can’t be dodged out of that list. It is a surreal destination situated in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand. Being famous as the ‘Lake district’ of the region, it is an ideal family destination to explore this summer.
It is even directly connected to major cities of North India. Therefore, you don’t even have to worry about the travel routes. In your spare time, do take a visit to the oldest national park of India- Jim Corbett National Park. It will definitely bring new fun to your entire trip.
Places to visit in Nainital: Naini Lake, Naina Devi Temple, Mall Road, Raj Bhawan
Best Time to Witness Snowfall: December to February
Things to do in Nainital: Horse trekking at Tiffin Top, birdwatching at Sattal, cave exploring at Cave Garden.
4. Shillong, Meghalaya
Shilllong is a beautiful place packed up inside the misty clouds of Meghalaya. Who would say no to such a magical place after all? Shillong features the top signature delights of east Indian landscapes. Covered with lush green hills, vibrant valleys and tranquil atmosphere, it definitely worths all the value to be in the list of best hill stations in India.
Don’t forget to capture the views from the Shillong Peak & Elephant Falls. You can also experiencing a range of exciting adventures here, such as boating, angling, horse riding etc.
Places to Visit in Shillong: Lady Hydari Park, Elephant Falls, Ward’s Lake, Sweet Falls, Spread Eagle Falls, Diengiei Peak, Meghalaya State Museum, All Saints Church
Best Time to Visit: September to May
Best Things to do in Shillong: Witness beauty of Elephant waterfall, paragliding at Shillong Peak, boating in Ward’s Lake
5. Munnar, Kerala
Munnar is a well-preserved natural beauty that stands apart with its sprawling tea gardens & romantic weather. Surely, it is the one-stop place for anyone seeking the best hill station in South India. A unique pairing of tranquil and scenic settings makes this place a complete paradise that you’d never wanna leave.
It also offers some romantic hotels and adventurous activities that any true nature lover wouldn’t mind experiencing. So what more have you got? Just pack it up already and book your tickets before they are sold out.
Places to Visit in Munnar: Echo Point, Atukkad Waterfall, Pothamedu View Point, Tata Tea or KDHP Museum, Chinnakanal Waterfalls, Mattupetty Dam
Best Time to Visit: October to December & January to April
Best Things to do in Munnar: Tree House Stay, Tea Estate Tours, Coffee museum visits
Suggested to read: Best Hill Stations in Assam, India
Many adventure aficionados visit this well-known hill station of India in search of a recreational retreat. Thought it is true! You can find some of the refined quality of recreational stuff here. But apart from being an deal backpacker’s destination, Kasol is a a very beautiful junction settled on banks of the river Parvati.
The lush green thickets of forests covering its valleys does seem like the shower of nature the fell onto this place. For enjoying the ride more closely you can try trekking in its valleys too.
Places to Visit in Kasol: Gurudwara Shri Manikaran Sahib, Thakar Kuan, Kheer Ganga Peak, Raghunath Mandir, Malana Village Tirthan Valley, Parvati River etc.
Best Time to Visit: March to May
Best Things to do in Kasol: Trekking at Chalal Trekking Trail, bath in Manikaran Hot Water Pool etc.
7. Ranikhet, Uttarakhand
Ranikhet used to be a British base. After Independence, it turned into a wonderful hill station for exploration. Now it serves as a perfect getaway to enjoy vacations far away from the chaos of the city. It is one of the famous hill stations in India that you should visit at least once.
The unique topography, flora, and fauna of the Himalayas, mixed with iRanikhet’s calm atmosphere will certainly win your heart. It is supposed to be a precise summer holiday destination for families during February.
Places to visit in Ranikhet: Chaubatia Orchard, Mankameshwar Temple, Haidakhan Babaji Temple, Binsar Mahadev Temple, Sunset Points, Golf Course
Best Time to Witness Snowfall: December to February
Best Things to do in Ranikhet: Trekking, fishing, golfing,temple visit, paragliding
8. Mirik, West Bengal
Mirik is a popular holiday landmark for all the nature lovers. Infused with thick covers of tea garden & wrapped up in misty layers of the cloud. Mirik is the king of hill station in India when it comes to natural beauty. It is called Mirik after a popular Mirik Lake or Sumendu Lake,
Along with its spectacular accessibility, Mirik is the perfect junction to enjoy boating, horse riding and many more adventures in East India.
Places to Visit in Mirik: Semendu Lake, TIngling Views point, Indreni Bridge Don Bosco Church
Best Time to Visit: March to June
Best Things to do in Mirik: Boating in Sumendu Lake, Explore hillside villages, try Mirik exotic cuisine
Discover: Best Hill Station in Kerala
9. Darjeeling, West Bengal
Another East Indian wonder that makes sure you never leave the touch of nature from your memory is Darjeeling. With its golden mornings & breath-taking sunset views eventually you’ll be in love with this hill station of India.
No wonder! It is lovingly referred to as the Queen of the Hills, making it a perfect winter vacations beauty to explore.
Places to Visit in Darjeeling: Bhutia Busty Monastery, Senchal Lake, Ghoom Monastery, Mahakal Temple, Tiger Hill
Best to Tiime Visit: April to June
Best Things to do in Darjeeling: River Rafting, Trekking, Toy Train rides, paragliding
10. Manali, Himachal Pradesh
For all the newly wed couples, Manali is usually the first choice for honeymoon vacations. Settled at an altitude of 2,050m in the northern end of Kullu Valley, it is the one of the best hill station in India for honeymoon holidays.
Romantic landscapes of this hill station offer all the perfect settings to enjoy a quality time with your beloved. You can also try numerous activities along with your partner such paragliding, rafting etc.
Places to Visit in Manali: Solang Valley, Vashist Temples & Hot Water Springs, Tibetan Monasteries, Manu Temple, Nehru Kund, Bhrigu Lake, Kothi
Best Time to See Snowfall: December to February
Best Things to do in Manali: Paragliding at Rohtang Pass, camping at Solang Valley, river rafting at Pandoh Dam
Himachal is known to offer numerous hilly hotspots to India for perfect summer vacations. Why should its capital be left far behind then? Shimla is the leading hill station to visit in India that is open throughout the year to welcome its visitors.
So, no matter when you plan to visit this high-end charmer of Himachal. You can always land on cheaper deals to enjoy your holidays. Don’t say, that I didn’t include the cheapest hill station in India to visit now!
Places to Visit in Shimla: Himachal State Museum, Jakhoo temple, Kalka-Shimla railway, Rashtrpati Niwas, The Ridge.
Best Time to Visit: March to June & October to November
Best Things to do in Shimla: Hot pool bath and river rafting at Tattapani, paragliding, camping, heli-skiing at Narkanda and Kufri.
Suggested Read: 20 beautiful hill stations in Ooty to visit
Almora is another cheap thrill that you shouldn’t miss on your summer holidays in India. Settled at an elevation of 1,651m, it is a surreal delight for enjoying the cultural heritage and spectacular views of the Himalayas.
Don’t forget to explore major highlights of this India’s hill station involving Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary, the Nanda Devi Temple, the Chitai Temple and the Almora Fort
Places to Visit in Almora: Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary, Jageshwar, Kasar Devi Temple, Chitai Temple, Zero Point, Katarmal Sun Temple etc.
Best Time to Visit: August to November & February to May
Best Things to do in Almora: Trekking at Ranikhet road or at Almora-Jageshwar, expedit painted rock shelters, visit Deer Park etc.
Mussoorie is a famous weekend getaway place of India that many visitors from New Delhi seem to enjoy. Known for its attractions like The Cloud’s End and The Mall, it has a nice touch to its entire aura. Settled in the mountains of Garhwal it is a perfect respite from the Indian summers to enjoy the majestic Himalayas and the Doon Valleys of India.
Places to Visit in Mussoorie: Kempty Falls, Mussoorie Lake, K Dev Bhoomi Wax Museum, Christ Church, Bhadraj Temple, Fish Aquarium etc.
Best Time to Visit: April to June
Best Things to do in Mussoorie: Ziplining and other adventure sports at Adventure Park Mussoorie, boating and amusement rides at Company Bagh etc.
Haldwani is a relaxing Kumaon town for a holiday delight. It will suit any visitor who loves to be accompanied by panoramic views in a secluded vacation. It is one of the famous hill stations in India for solo travelers.
With a rich culture and history infused with various opportunities for hiking, photography and trekking. It is definitely a pleasant place to settle down during vacations.
Places to Visit in Haldwani: Haldwani Zoo Safari, Kali Chaur temple, Dewalchour Roundabout, Gaula Barrgae, Sanjya Van, Hedakham Ashram etc.
Best Time to Visit: September to April
Best Things to do in Haldwani: safari ride at Corbett National Park, visit Haidakhan Temple, Boating in Sariya tal
Suggested to Read: Best Hill Stations in Maharashtra
If you are seeking a versatile hill station that can offer you varieties of adventures & beautiful valleys to explore then Palampur is the best choice to consider. It houses a variety of water bodies, streams and brooks embellishing the ravishing views of tea plantations.
It also serves as a surreal destination amongst the best Indian hill station for holidays in March. With an ample amount of shade and a cool atmosphere to relax it is a nice retreat to enjoy with your loved ones.
Places to Visit in Palampur: Bundla Tea Estate, Gopalpur Zoo, Shobha Singh Art Gallery, Tea Garden, Tashi Jong Khampagar Monastery, Birni Devi Temple etc.
Best Time to Visit: September to June
Best Things to do in Palampur: Paragliding in Kangra Valley, picnic fun at Saurabh Van Vihar.
Hope you liked the aforementioned list of 15 Thriller Hill stations of India that are filled with exhilarating adventures & scenic valleys to welcome your holidays on a happy note. Obviously there are many hotspots that couldn’t make it to this list. India is a place full of exotic beauties that you can never run out of! Still the mentioned popular hill stations to visit in India cater to all of your travel hunger. They offer you some of the refined selection of hilly wonders that promises to amaze its visitors on every turn. I have covered many other hill stations across other states of India. To follow up with them, just ping your favourite hill station over the search bar & enjoy the ride at Adequate Travel blogs.